True Blood – Season 4 Premiere: She’s Not There

This post contains a few spoilers. So if you haven’t watched the episode, proceed at your own risk.

This is the first time I had to wait for a True Blood season. I watched all three previous seasons back to back last December and I was hooked.

The accurate description for a show like True Blood would be vampire porn. There’s more nudity in it than any other show you’ve watched and it’s about vampires, werewolves, witches, fairies and other fairytale elements.

Well, season 4 premiered on Sunday with a brand new episode titled “She’s Not There” and the episode sets the tone for what is looking to be a great season ahead.

At the end of season 3, Sookie found out that she’s half fairy and that vampire Bill Compton had a mission by the queen of Louisiana to get her trust so they can harvest her blood and soon enough, she was transferred to some sort of parallel realm full of similar fairies. But she starts to get suspicious in that realm, as season four starts. Something doesn’t feel right. And soon enough, she finds out that these fairies are harvesting humans. She escapes and gets back to Bon Temps, her hometown, only to find out that the ten minutes she was in that realm are equal to a year on Earth.

I never thought True Blood would go the time jumping route but it simply made sense. Imagine Sookie going back to her hometown only ten minutes after the end of season 3? It wouldn’t have left any room for substantial plot advancement. And the plot advances considerably to basically allow the viewer to have some sort of “blank” slate for season 4, one that doesn’t need to strongly build on previous seasons. This also marks the first time there’s a substantial time difference between True Blood seasons. The previous two picked up where the one before them left off.

Her friend Tara is apparently now a lesbian who goes by the name of Toni and has moved out of Bon Temps. Sam Merlotte is going to a weird anger management program and his brother is very much still alive, albeit being shot in his leg and needing physical therapy. Jessica Lamby is still with Hoyt but their relationship is struggling as they try to get used to the differences between them: her being vampire and him being human. He takes her out to Fangtasia, the show’s favorite pub, where she meets a human that entices her but she stops herself from acting on her impulse.

Lafayette is still dating the male nurse/witch and they go to a seance, with a very interesting twist, signaling a very substantial role for witches this season. The leader of the witch coven is a named Marnie, played by Irish actress Fiona Shaw, known for her role as aunt Petunia in the Harry Potter movies.

Jason Stackhouse, Sookie’s brother, is now a cop. He has also sold her house because he thought she was dead and the house had too much memories for him to take.

Bill Compton is now the king of Louisiana and has a new love interest in the form of Any Belfleur’s sister: Portia, a local lawyer. Eric Northman is the one that has changed the least and as he tells Sookie, he’s the only one who was sure she wasn’t dead. The vampires are still battling for their civil rights and Eric starts playing a role with the PR of the movement.

The premiere had a few off moments though. How could a fairy godmother be a guy with a six pack is the first WTF moment of the season. Add to that seeing Tara/Toni making out with a girl in a dark alley somewhere and you start wondering: when did she decide to turn lesbian?

All in all, it was a highly entertaining season premiere. But get this, next week’s episode looks to be much better!

The Killing – TV Series

I recently started watching a newly airing TV series titled: The Killing.

Based on a Danish series by the same name, The Killing can be summed up with its tagline: who killed Rosie Larsen?

Set in Seattle, Washington, the show follows the series of police investigations revolving around the murder of a teenage girl, Rosie Larsen, found dead in the submerged trunk of a politician’s car. When the city of Seattle is at the brink of mayoral elections, every twist in the Rosie Larsen murder case has more ramifications than that of a simple investigation. Some people want the truth to be hidden forever, while others long for it.

The first season is made up of thirteen episodes, each chronicling one day of the investigation. The show is highly absorbing. The overall tone is very dark, and it shows. The city is almost always gloomy and so is the whole ambiance. You delve into their world. You live the sorrow of the Larsen family and the frustration of the police department and the political bickering of candidates trying to score points against each other using Rosie’s murder.

The Killing is highly addictive as well. With each episode ending on a revelation regarding the investigation, it keeps you coming back to know what will happen. And unlike other murder investigation TV shows, this one is realistic. It is authentic. It is not about the death of Rosie Larsen, per se, as it is about the psychological aftermath.

Starring Mireille Enos as lead police investigator Sarah, The Killing has very strong acting. None of the actors and actresses in it underperform. They actually blow you away at certain points Michelle Forbes, whom I know from True Blood, gives a powerhouse performance as Rosie’s mother. At one point, when she learns her daughter died by drowning, she tries to mimic the feeling by submerging herself in the bathtub. Not able to continue through it, she emerges, weeping, clutching the side of the tub. And it is in moments like this that The Killing gives you chills.

Overall, this is a series that you must watch. Why? because it’s real, raw and sometimes gut-wrenching. The series does not shy away from ripping the bandaid while the wound is still fresh. On the contrary, it relishes in the idea of doing so. And I honestly really want to know who killed Rosie Larsen.