True Blood, “Night on the Sun”

The last three episodes of True Blood have been some of the series’ best thanks to a more narrowed focus on a smaller group of important characters and an emphasis on the wider scope that exists in this world. “Night on the Sun” continued that trend, but unfortunately also decided to spend lots of time examining the Bill and Sookie relationship.

I feel like I have a heart. I get upset with characters I care about break up or go through turbulent times. But when Sookie and Bill “broke up” at the beginning of this episode, I couldn’t help but chuckle. And that’s because I knew they’d be back together in no time. It turns out no time was less than a day later, at the end of this episode. I understand the desire to have some push and pull between the lead romantic pair, but the series has never really been able to work it between Bill and Sookie (see all of season one), except for early in this season, if only because both characters were given cool things to do on their own. Here, Sookie realizes that she can not even begin to forgive Bill for attacking her…until later that night when she’s basically able to do just that when Jason and Andy suggest pressing charges. Again, it’s not that I hate series twisting our hearts with its main characters, especially in a series like this when there are so many other factors and temptations at play, but the execution here is often boring and leaves me questioning what the fight was for to begin with. It’s one thing to put some other character between them, it’s another to create constant false drama and waffling that no one watching really believes in. Just keep them together!

The rest of the episode saw an increased focus on the various romantic entanglements that don’t really hold up individually and thus really annoying when piled together as the thread for an entire episode. Alcide is still trying to clean up Debbie’s messes, Arlene is having creepy nightmares about Rene while Terry lovingly watches, Hoyt and Jessica both whine a little bit about their respective issues, Tara dreams of Franklin and has a moment with Sam, Jason and his weird lady friend get closer and Eric hooks up with Talbot as a means to an end. And to be honest, only the last one of those plots held my interest because we’ve been waiting to see what Eric’s plan was for a few episodes now. Turns out his plan was to take King Russell’s family away from him in a bout of payback, so if that included some sex with Talbot to get him a compromising position, so be it.

With all sorts of power, Russell was looking to grab Sookie again…for reasons unknown. Cousin Hadley comes to Sookie with apologies for spilling the beans about the “truth,” and Sookie clearly has some more force behind her during sex with Bill, but it’s still unclear what she can do, why she can do it and why Russell (or anyone) thinks she can start or solve some cross-creature war. I don’t know how I’ll feel about the story if it turns out Sookie is the most important person alive that can somehow bring races together or stop some major threat, but it looks as though we might be headed that way.

However, I am excited for the prospects of a pissed of King Russell, a vampire who has already been super dangerous and super crazy even when not angry. He was ready to kill Bill just before feeling Talbot’s death, but it looks as though Mr. Compton and Mr. Northman might have to team up to fight the powerful and enraged king. Aside from his few moments with Sookie, Bill’s been nothing but a straight-up bad-ass this season (his training of Jessica this week was great), so if he and Eric finally put their personal differences aside and decide to throw down, the final few episodes of the season should be as good as the three before this one. But hopefully, those upcoming four episodes focus on this story and not the relationship drama — or Sam’s family at all, for that matter — because I feel a good season in there, somewhere, just itching to come out.

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