True Blood season 7 episode 8 review: Almost Home

Review Emma Matthews 11 Aug 2014 - 12:11

This week's True Blood ties up a number of the season's plot threads, paving the way for the ultimate finale...

This review contains spoilers.

7.8 Almost Home

The end is well and truly nigh. For us anyway – as True Blood’s final season creeps ever-nearer to its conclusion, there was a distinct air of finality to the proceedings this week. Finality and more than a touch of forgiveness. It seems that with Sarah’s capture, and the confirmation of her status as vampire saviour, the spirit of cure and making things all better has somehow spread to the whole town – Eric’s as healthy as he’ll ever be, Hoyt’s a hero, Violet’s a big puddle, and things are looking up for everyone. Well, almost everyone. Bill’s Hep-V induced hallucinations have apparently gone to his head...

Yes, Vampire Bill is about to become Ex-Vampire Bill, deciding as he has to martyr himself for reasons known only to him. His refusal to drink from Sarah would, on any other day, be entirely understandable – that woman is enough to put any self-respecting vampire off human blood for eternity – but in a choice between painful death and a distasteful meal, surely the meal wins, no matter how distasteful it might be? The GoT-style no-one’s-safe massacre of the early part of the season is one thing, but it’s a whole different deal when the cause of death is self-inflicted, a deathly refusal of help that smacks of self-indulgence and a badly misplaced sense of nobility. And, to add insult to injury, Bill’s putting the last two people on the planet that he allegedly cares for in danger - if the Yakuza-types in the bar realise there’s a vamp not-curing party going on downstairs, Sookie won’t have the chance to live the Bill-free life he’s decided she’s got to have.

At least the ever-self interested Eric Northman hasn’t allowed his principles to get in the way of the lifestyle to which he’s become accustomed - having drunk from Sarah despite his distaste, his presence is assured for the rest of the season. As is his fortune, thanks to Mr Gus’s diabolical plan to turn New Blood into a life-long habit, rather than a one-shot cure. Of course, having admitted that the Corporation has already synthesised Sarah’s blood, Mr Gus has surely written her death warrant. Eric isn’t generally known for his patience, and he already has plenty of money. It would be a damn shame if she makes it out of the season alive.

While Bill and Eric are busy making Sookie and Jess, and Mr Gus respectively, deeply unhappy, the rest of Bon Temps seems to be happily reconciling left, right and centre. Hoyt and Jason are already drinking together, and Hoyt and Jess are already fixing to leave Bridget in dumpsville. Lovely as it was that Hoyt was involved in the Sweet Valley rescue, the end to Violet’s museum of death was a tad disappointing – no bitchfight, no deaths other than her own – one bullet to the back and the Sweet Valley mini-arc was over as abruptly as it began.  It’s a shame to see Violet go though, she was just starting to get interesting before she went batshit insane. But then it seems that Jason does tend to have that effect on women...

The serious wrapping-up of storylines represented by all the reconciliation continued with Lettie Mae’s final visit from Tara. What’s in the front yard? A ton of regret. And a twenty year old – unused – revolver. Tara’s right, she should have used the gun when she had the chance – on both of her useless parents. As touching as the forgiveness was, it’s a shame that there wasn’t something a little more interesting at the end of the trip down memory lane. Poor Tara. Her death was identical to her life – all about her mother.

Having taken care of so many of the season’s main storylines, Almost Home perhaps would have been better titled Almost Done. The cure is on the horizon, the H-Vamps appear to have given up terrorising the town, anyone who’s alive and able to has reconciled, and even some who aren’t alive were able to forgive from beyond the grave. All of which leaves us facing the prospect of a lower-key ending to the show than we would ever have imagined. Bill’s martyrdom, closely tied in with Sarah’s survival, is pretty much all that’s left to deal with, and that’s the most surprising thing about this episode. While it’s true that the show began with Bill and Sookie’s relationship, it has since expanded to include many, many other characters and relationships, all of which are equally deserving of a memorable goodbye. Whether we’ll spend what time we have left in Bon Temps watching Bill kill himself remains to be seen, but let’s hope that True Blood can surprise us one last time...

Read Emma's review of the previous episode, May Be The Last Time, here.

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