True Blood uses its penultimate episode of the season to definitively wrap up two storylines: Terry’s (Todd Lowe) life and the end of Vamp Camp. Plus: another death for good measure.
Let’s bitch it out…
Let it never be said that True Blood doesn’t know how to give a good send-off (unless you’re some chick that randomly popped up in S5. Or the supposed bad guy of the season). After a relatively unassuming, albeit heavily foreshadowed, death in 6×06 ‘Don’t You Feel Me’, Terry Bellefleur gets the royal send-off in an episode-long funeral ceremony that includes nearly half of the show’s cast. While I imagine that viewers who tune into the show for blood, sex and nudity were chomping at the bit to return to the over-the-top action of the Vamp Camp, Terry’s funeral is a nice counterbalance that provides some of the most genuine emotional moments in a few seasons.
Love him or tolerate him (I don’t think anyone hated him), Terry has been with the show since the first season which more or less makes him a fixture. It’s nice that the True Blood writers saw fit to give the character an appropriate amount of respect, including several tear-inducing eulogies and a 21 gun salute that finally put Arlene’s (Carrie Preston) grieving widow to rest. While I once again found the flashbacks mostly unnecessary, overall I was pleased with the funeral and the pacing of these portions of ‘Life Matters’.
If anything, the solemn nature of Terry being laid to rest helped to heighten the madness of the destruction of the Vamp Camp. After juicing up on Warlow’s (Rob Kazinsky) blood, Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) goes on an absolute massacre: dismembering guards, releasing vamps and exacting revenge on sniveling traitor Steve Newlin (Michael McMillian). Although I’m sad to see the whining loser go, the moment he greets the sun with a hilarious proclamation of love for Jason Stackhouse (Ryan Kwanten) is another great send-off. Bonus points for Ginger’s perfectly cued howl, which we’re initially meant to attribute as Jason’s response to Steve’s final words. Brilliant.
The ruin of Vamp Camp is the perfect synthesis of True Blood‘s insane appeal. From Sarah Newlin’s (Anna Camp, still S6 MVP) desperate praying to the vamps’ twisted revenge against the guards and scientists, everything in these scenes is beyond ridiculous. The obvious highlight has got to be the demise of head scientist Dr. Overlark, who first has his genitals ripped off by Eric, then has his head stomped-in by Billith (Stephen Moyer). I watched Evil Dead a few weeks ago and Overlark’s death is as graphic as anything in that hard R horror film. Ah yes, True Blood: not a show for the squeamish!
- In a lot of ways this feels like a season finale, particularly Eric’s abrupt departure at the end of the episode. As usual the brief interaction between Pam (Kristin Bauer van Straten) and her maker yields satisfying drama. All it takes is a simple sad request from Pam (“Don’t you leave me”) to tug on the heartstrings
- Speaking of Pam, she gets her revenge on the sleazy psychiatrist (Pruitt Taylor Vince), though I could have done with a bit more sweet suffering. Nice of Eric to treat Pam so well as to save her the kill, though
- Despite his best attempt, Jason proves Sarah right when he’s unable to kill her. And so Sarah Newlin escapes to fight another day. If she doesn’t return for the finale next week, let’s pray we see her and her amazing Jesus-hair-and-pantsuit combo sooner rather than later
- Billith prevents his “end of vampire” vision from becoming a reality by feeding everyone his Warlow-infused blood, though were it not for Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) and James (Luke Grimes) he would have died in the process. Side Note: Annoying Violet (Karolina Wydra) is among the survivors Billith saves. Le sigh
- Everyone like Sookie’s “coming out” moment at the funeral? I love the non-reaction her statement receives from the audience. Weird shit is so common in Bon Temps that a telepath is the equivalent of a supernatural shrug
- Finally, where can I get some Raging Bitch beer?
- Sookie (when Bill suggests they had a deal for Warlow): “Eric took our deal and fucked it in the ass”
- Eric (as he feeds Jason his blood): “When you dream of me, dream of nice things” I want to go there!
- Grandma Bellefleur (after Big John sings): “I really don’t see what the point of that was”
What are your thoughts on ‘Life Matters’? Did this feel like a season finale? Were you happy to see Sarah Newlin escape? Are you sad that Steve Newlin is dead? Did you enjoy Terry’s funeral? Did Sookie leave Warlow to die? And what the heck is there left to explore next week?! Sound off below
True Blood airs Sundays at 9pm EST on HBO