True Blood season 2 episode 4 review

It’s all change this week, as Sookie does Dallas, and Tara gets some Eggs...

4. Shake And Fingerpop

After an agonising two week wait True Blood, the best thing on TV, returned on Sunday. Picking up where we left off, the much talked about road trip to Dallas finally goes ahead, but with one addition – in a stunning display of generosity, Bill agrees to let Jess tag along. It’s the least he could do after threatening to throw the incredibly sweet Hoyt “out of a window that is closed”. For his own safety, natch.

Once there, the gang thwarts a kidnap attempt planned by the Fellowship and aimed at Sookie. Clumsy as it was, she’s on their radar, and somehow the Church knew she was on her way to Dallas. With Bill and Eric currently on her side, at least for 12 hours of the day, the Fellowship will have to review their sunshine-centric kidnap-tactics.

But it’s not just the Fellowship that’s interested in Sookie. Eric’s increasing fascination with all things Stackhouse brings him back to Lafayette – restoring him to full strength with a healthy dose of 1000 year old V and handily making sure they’ll always be connected. Eric then joins the happy party in the Lone Star state. The search for the missing Godrick is more than just concern for a fellow sheriff, but as always, Eric is playing his cards very close to his chest.

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During Bill and Eric’s meeting, Sookie gets another surprise – because almost being kidnapped isn’t enough excitement for one trip. When Jess orders a rent boy/snack, (not the surprise) he just happens to be delivered by Barry the psychic…

Back at the brainwashing centre, poor Jason has the bejesus scared out of him after the creepiest dinner part ever, courtesy of Luke and some ketchup. The Luke-inator – he’s such a card. Luckily, Jason has a witty retort and a swift uppercut for every situation.

Macho rivalries aside, Jason’s transformation is nearing completion, and the final phase appears to be in full swing.  Separated from the group and installed at the mansion for his soldier training, he’s more susceptible than ever to talk of war.  Sarah’s down home seduction technique really isn’t helping the situation, but the smart money is on the good reverend making the first move – he does seem to have just the tiniest crush on our Jason.

The respective paths that he and Sookie are on – kidnap attempts notwithstanding – are getting closer to their convergence point. The Old Testament-style eye-for-an-eye the Fellowship preaches could lead to some very uncomfortable Cain and Abel type stuff twixt the Stackhouse siblings. It’s going to get ugly.

After last episode’s orgy too far, Tara takes the plunge and moves into Sookie’s house, just as Sookie leaves for Dallas. Even the usually hospitable Lafayette doesn’t have time for Tara, recovering as he is from his recent incarceration. Alone on her birthday, Tara gives Maryann just enough room to finally get Tara and Eggs together in the biblical sense.

As we’ve come to expect, the ‘birthday party’ thrown by Maryann descends into Cro-Magnon level fun, and the gluttonous display, complete with a dirt buffet, just happens to coincide with Maryann ritualistically chanting and revealing a nasty and familiar set of claws.

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Just as Jason’s transformation is almost complete, so it seems is Tara’s, even if she isn’t quite so complicit.

Elsewhere at the party, we discover that not only has Daphne survived an attack that at best should have left her paralysed, but she knows about Sam’s canine tendencies. He just can’t resist a cute blonde with hidden supernatural abilities. Doesn’t look like he’ll be leaving town anytime soon…

As always, this week’s instalment is sharply written, with some great one-liners. Jason in particular had a couple of zingers, but it’s the attention to detail that really makes the show pop. For instance, the Vamps fly Anubis Air, just for all you Egypt/Stargate fans out there, and the vampire porn that tempts Sookie at the hotel was particularly amusing, poking fun as it did at Anne Rice. Cheeky? Maybe. Hilarious? Definitely! 

The show’s rich vein of dark humour (no pun intended) is something that has been overlooked, what with all the blood and nudity, which is a shame. The comedy on display here would put many a sitcom to shame, and not just because they’re allowed to swear.

With episode four given over mostly to the other storylines, Lafayette’s appearance this week was a small one, but he still managed to steal the show with the energetic dance he performed for Eric. Eric’s connection to Lafayette hopefully means the show will continue the excellent dynamic between the two, which, as you may have noticed, pleases this reviewer greatly.

Outside of interpretative dance, this week’s standout performance award belongs to Jess (Deborah Ann Woll), who began her TB tenure as a spoiled and annoying brat, but is rapidly becoming a funny and lovable character. Her childish delight at glamouring her first human was almost sweet.

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As always, it would be remiss not to mention Eric, but not this time in a performance capacity. No, this week, it’s time to discuss his plans. He’s never been a fan of mainstreaming, and his veiled threat regarding Godrick’s followers raises serious questions about his intentions. Eric’s a sneaky one at the best of times, and his concerns that any Vamp could be taken just don’t ring true. He’s up to something, and that means trouble for any breathers in the vicinity.

So, a third of the way through the season and we’re settling in nicely. Our fourth trip to Louisiana raised more questions than it answered, particularly with regards to Daphne, and Maryann’s grand plan, but isn’t that why we love it? Who needs answers when the questions are this good? Thank God it’s only a week til the next one! 

Check out our review of episode 3 here.