Posts Tagged ‘vampires’

The season finale of True Blood is barely a week old and already I’m experiencing Bill-and-Sookie withdrawal, as I’m sure are most of my fellow Truebies. Well, if rewatching the episodes from this past season isn’t enough to satiate your appetite for some fresh Bon Temps-themed bon mots, there’s a clever book that you might want to pick up and I don’t mean one by Charlaine Harris. A Taste of True Blood: The Fangbanger’s Guide is an unauthorized collection of insightful essays that ponder the fascination the world of True Blood holds for Truebies around the world. Although Charlaine’s books are mentioned, the focus is more on her tale as interpreted by Alan Ball on HBO, and the writings, from a diverse group of contributors that includes authors, media pundits and even a psychotherapist, are as thoughtful and passionate about True Blood as are the show’s fans. No topic is left unexamined as pithy ruminations are made on the sociological significance of the show’s characters and plotlines, ranging from the class wars waged among the economic rubble of Bon Temps, to Bill Compton’s seemingly fading heroism, to a Freudian analysis of the dynamics of Bill and Sookie’s tortured romance. It’s all good fun and makes for a thought-provoking read without drifting into dullsville. The book includes an episode guide for the first two seasons with call-outs of the most memorable quotes from each episode. To ensure accuracy, although the authors clearly seem to be Truebies themselves, the publisher consulted with the popular True Blood blog The Vault. At just over 270 pages, it’s a breezy read and makes a good gift idea.  Here’s a link to their site.

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Can Sookie and Jessica rescue Bill from the werewolves?

Naked Boys on Parade

June 13: Serving up an extra dose of naked, shirtless and randy hunks, True Blood returned for its third season, picking up where it left off last fall. In the wake of Bill’s disappearance, Sookie (Anna Paquin) is having a hell of a time trying to drum up sympathy for her plight from the folks of Bon Temps. The deputy taking her statement thinks Bill (Stephen Moyer) skipped out on her. Sheriff Dearborne (William Sanderson) brushes off her suspicions that Lorena kidnapped Bill and would rather solve missing persons cases involving humans and Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) is busy trying to figure out a way to do away with the body of the jerk she accidentally killed in last season’s finale. It turns out that Sook’s lover boy was swiped by a gang of scruffy V-Juice junkies who are draining a shirtless Bill in a scene looking suspiciously like a leatherman orgy, pinched nipples and all. Those True Blood writers do love their gay innuendo, don’t they? Bill manages to escape them by causing them to crash and buries himself to recover from his injuries. A frustrated Sook barges in on a gloriously naked Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) banging his hot new Estonian pole dancer at Fangtasia and, after offering Sookie the alibi that he’d been “indisposed” with the dancer for the past six hours (Energizer Bunny, anyone?), he admits that as sheriff of Louisiana it’s his responsibility to look into Bill’s disappearance even though he “wants what’s his.” Eric’s next visit at the club is from Queen Sophie-Ann (Evan Rachel Wood) accompanied by the vampire magister (Zeljko Ivanek), who is investigating rumors that vamps are dealing V. Eric and Queenie feign shock and disbelief at the mere thought that their own kind would deal in the stuff and have a nasty hissing contest when the magister leaves. Queenie is broke and needs Eric to move the merchandise faster, even if he has to have a fire sale to do it.

 
 
 

Never call Pam a hooker.

In the Company of Wolves

Eric sends Pam (Kristin Bauer) out to first pay Sookie the ten grand Eric owed her, plus interest (another sign of Eric’s affection, perhaps?), then to apply pressure to Lafayette to unload the V pronto. Lafayette (Nelsan Ellis) learns two things from the encounter: never call Pam a hooker (she hates being reminded of her past), and don’t take her for a softy just because she wears a lot of pink. Lafayette also has his hands full helping Tara (Rutina Wesley) pick up the pieces after Jason (Ryan Kwanten) killed Eggs. Tara is understandably devastated and livid at everyone within spitting distance of her. She practically rips off Arlene’s head for her insensitive remarks about Eggs murdering all those women and cutting out their hearts under maenad Maryann’s influence. When she finds out that Sook used her telepathic power to help unlock Eggs’ murderous memories, she jumps her. Things are so bad Tara asks for her useless bible-thumping mother Lettie Mae, whom Lafayette will never forgive for shooting at him. After momma Thornton brings a reverend to minister to Tara, she does the obvious thing and tries to swallow every pill in the medicine cabinet just as Lafayette arrives to kick in the bathroom door. Jason is also traumatized from killing Eggs. Even after Andy convinces him that the best way to return things to normal in Bon Temps is to resume his horndog ways, a guilt-ridden –but buff– Jason can’t rise to the occasion when he strips down for a three-way with two vacationing New York girls. In Arkansas, Sam (Sam Trammell) is recovering from his deadly encounter with Maryann by tracking down his white-trash family. He gets his own naked moment when he has an eerily homoerotic dream about Bill showing up at his motel (shirtless, of course) and nearly luring Sam into a manly encounter in the shower just before he wakes up. What could the dream mean? Perhaps there’s a canine – or lupine—connection. Back in Bon Temps, Bill comes upon a little old lady’s home and feeds on her to recover his strength after his draining at the hands of the V junkies. Just as we get over our shock at his attacking a defenseless senior (hooked to an oxygen tank, no less), he glamours her and leaves her some money in thanks. Good thing he fed since he winds up surrounded by a pack of hungry wolves. As Sookie and Jessica discover when they come upon the dead body of one of Bill’s abductors, it turns out that the V junkies are werewolves!

Photos copyright 2010 Home Box Office, Inc. All rights reserved.

I may be risking the wrath of a lot of Eric fans when I say that I think Joe Manganiello is going to make a big impact as Alcide Herveaux the werewolf on True Blood. Believe me, though, it’s a good thing. I looked him up on IMDB after seeing the shot of him looking like a lumberjack as Alcide with Sookie (Anna Paquin) in Entertainment Weekly and realized that I’d seen him on the CW Network romancing Sophia Bush on “One Tree Hill.” He looked a lot more clean-cut in the role of Owen Morello, but no less hot. I’m guessing Alcide will fill a spot somewhere in between Sookie’s supernatural suitors; i.e., he’ll be more rugged than Bill (Stephen Moyer) but not as polished as Eric (Alexander Skarsgard). Time will tell. Still, there’s no denying his sex appeal. A scene I found on YouTube showing him as some sort of commando in a 2009 movie called “Behind Enemy Lines: Columbia” reveals that Joe is going to be one buff werewolf who’s more than capable of handling any action scenes that may come his way. Check out the scene here.

The thing I love most about the minisodes HBO is leaking to promote the new season of True Blood is how true the scenes are to the characters we know and love so much. Last week’s bit with Eric and Pam so captured their respective traits — Eric’s brooding air of danger and seduction, Pam’s acidic, snarky humor — and this week’s (R-rated) installment follows suit with a showcase for Jessica. Our favorite teen vamp, played by the luminous Deborah Ann Woll, has a surprising encounter with a self-righteous, Bible-thumping geezer and things don’t go as we might expect. The scene combines two central elements of Jessica’s story: a heartbreaking glimpse into a new vamp’s journey into self-awareness and resigned acceptance combined with the suspense of an impetuous savagery that can explode at any moment. Deborah Ann Woll’s baby-doll beauty masks a terrific bad-girl soul that hits all the right notes in this inspired subplot by the True Blood writers. I didn’t expect Jessica to be a major character when Bill turned her. I assumed the scene when he was forced to do so had more to do with his love/hate relationship with being a vamp, but I’m glad the writers had more in mind. Jessica’s story is one of my favorite parts of the show. Click on the image above to view the clip at YouTube. Kudos to Deborah Ann. The men of Bon Temps had better watch their backs.

YouTube footage copyright 2010 Home Box Office, Inc. All rights reserved.

The new issue of TV Guide got the scoop on how Sookie’s hunky new buddy Alcide (Joe Manganiello) the werewolf will look as his lupine alter ego. Check it out on page 10. It turns out that the True Blood producers opted to use real wolves rather than CGI effects. It should be interesting to see how well-trained the show’s hairy costars turn out. Werewolves have been a big pop culture trend recently and the approaches to their depiction have varied wildly. I liked the CGI wolves the Twilight movie series unleashed in “New Moon” and Benicio Del Toro’s updated tribute to the old-school Lon Chaney interpretation of “The Wolfman” was pretty chilling. I just hope True Blood at least gives us some cool transformation scenes. Sam (Sam Trammell) morphs into his dog form pretty seamlessly, but I personally like those messy man-to-wolf transitions that involve good-old-fashioned howling, stretching snouts and extending fangs and claws. Kind of like this scene from the ’80s classic “An American Werewolf in London.” Beware, it’s pretty intense!

Scanned content copyright 2010 TV Guide Magazine. All rights reserved.