June 14, 2009

Catching Up On: TRUE BLOOD

Tonight is the season premiere of True Blood, and I just caught up on the first season. All I can say is I thought that it was just OK. While it wasn't the best show in my opinion, I can understand why so many people dig it. It's pretty much a mature version of Twilight since it involves a love triangle between a woman and two men that are more than they seem.

For me, the characters were just too hit or miss. For example the main vampire, Bill Compton (brilliantly played by Stephen Moyer) is one of the better characters to grace the screen in the last few years. Yes he's a vampire, but he's the model Southern gentleman at the same time, so it's easy to root for the guy. Cedric Diggory should watch True Blood and take notes on how to be a leading man that also happens to be a vampire.

Another great character is Lafayette Reynolds (played by Nelsan Ellis). Lafayette is a flamboyant cook, and a drug dealing male prostitute, but you can't help but love him. Reynolds pretty much steals every scene he is in.

On the other hand, the rest of the characters range from tolerable (Anna Paquin's Sookie) to annoying as hell (Rutina Wesley's Tara). Also, I think that Paquin's performance is overrated because she has one of the worst Southern accents ever, which is a big pet peeve of mine.

The storyline itself is also adequate but far from spectacular. We get the cliched love triangle between Sookie, Bill, and Sam Merlotte (played by Sam Trammell) and it gets kinda old fast. Then there's the serial killer storyarc, which is loses some steam, and the revealing of the killer was the most anti-climactic plotpoint ever. The season did end on a pretty big cliffhanger, so I am intrigued to see how the second season starts off.

Also, there is some thinly veiled social commentary where vampires are the new race to hate by right-wing conservatives. If you replace "vampire" with "gay", you have a pretty accurate picture of where the show is going. The vampire-homosexual parallels can range from subtle to hit-you-over-the-head, but it's timely and only partially distracting.

Other elements, such as the blood and sex are also hit or miss. For me, I was never put off by the gore. I mean, it's a cable show about vampires, so of course there's going to be some bloody scenes. The sex on the other hand always throws me off. Now, I'm far from a prude, but for some reason sex scenes in movies and TV always make me slightly uncomfortable. The blood and sex aren't over the top per se, you just have to get used to it.

Overall, True Blood had it's entertaining moments, and I'll be checking out the new season, but I won't be scheduling my life around it anytime soon.


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