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True Blood Recap: “Fire In The Hole”

Now, which one of you thinks you're Harry Potter?

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By now I’m sure we’re all cried out of bloody tears from last night’s episode (if not, go to a doctor. That cannot be good for you.) Yes, someone got whacked on yesterday’s True Blood  (amendment: someones got whacked), but the recap must go on. It’s what they would have wanted.

Last night’s episode opened in a sexed-up yoga studio, where Sarah Newlin is in downward dos-guise as a brunette named Mumi. I’m as big a fan of Sara Newlin’s story arc as anyone (mostly thanks to Anna Camp’s athletically zany performance) but I was still a little let down by the scene. There are only seven episodes left of this entire show. If Sarah is going to be a main player again, she better earn her place with some deliciously wacky behavior.

Meanwhile, Pam herself could clearly use some deep-breathing as she deals with the realization that her maker has contracted Hep V. Pam tells Eric that she sensed her progeny/lover Tara’s true death, but am I the only person who didn’t see that realization from the character at all? Did the writers actually choose to have that huge emotional epiphany occur off screen?  Regardless, Pam is definitely having a bad day. She asks Eric if his depression has anything to do with someone named Sylvie, which cues a flashback to France in the ’80s that does not disappoint in its eighties-ness. Eric and this Sylvie dame are, ahem, mashing grapes in a vineyard when they’re interrupted by a representative of the Authority who rips Pam and Eric a new butthole for not paying taxes and having too much sex outside.  Eric-of-the-flouncy-hair starts smooching Sylvie on a beautiful turn of the century couch and tells the Authority to go fuck themselves. Although Pam is “as big a fan of the French vagina” as Eric, she’s worried his disobedience will put them in danger.

Meanwhile, in present-day, a nearly-nude Alcide is wandering around his house shouting to Sookie (who left at the end of last episode to go visit Bill) about steak. He then runs shirtless and barefoot through a graveyard and kicks in the door of Bill’s house, because love makes you do crazy things, okay?

While Alcide is busy flexing his most powerful muscle (his heart) Bill reveals that after being drained at the vampire camp, he has a clean slate and can no longer sense Sookie’s fear. Bill drinks Sookie’s blood again (while driving, which has to be illegal) and Sookie reminds him that she has a boyfriend.

Back at the police station, Wade and Adilyn are still locked in a cell, and Adilyn cheers Wade up by telling him they made out once before he was glamoured (probably not a great romantic tactic outside of the True Blood universe). Jessica and Andy arrive to release the young lovebirds and learn that the town has stolen all of the station’s guns and ammo.

At the church, Sam is talking to the reverend about the pizza they found in St. Alice, because an uneaten pie apparently says far more about the brutality of death than the entire pit Sam saw full of bodies. Sam says life is supposed to be more than a pizza dinner, and he admits he’s worried for Nicole and their unborn baby. Oh, yeah. Nicole. Pffft.  The reverend and the mayor are interrupted by Willa and Lettie Mae, who is still high on V and searching for her daughter.

Meanwhile Max the vampire and Sam the dog-mayor are approached by the newly assembled Bon Temps militia (Maxine Fortenberry, what would your son think if he saw you now?). Vince has revealed that Sam is a shifter and tells him to leave Bon Temps–but only after poor Matt is shot into splithereens. Sam shifts into a bird and flies away in a hail of bullets.

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Meanwhile, Jason asks Violet if she wants to adopt a baby with him, because a man is nothing without a family. Violet is disgusted by how “womanly” Jason has become since the town was invaded by vamps, to which Jason proclaims: “I’m a modern man. I think and I feel. And I’m still a badass motherfucker of a warrior!” True, Jason, but Violet also likes “men with iron-forged cocks.” Do you have one of those? The argument is interrupted by Andy, Wade, Jessica, and Adilyn, who arrive to warn Jason about the town’s revolt and tell him Sookie is in danger.

And then, thank God, the episode is salvaged by a twenty-second Lafayette dance break (props to that King Tut tank top). James shows up and mentions vague romantic problems with Jessica. Lafayette offers the vamp the chance to get high off pills by drinking his blood, saying “I’ll do the swallowing,” which is a totally normal and non-sexual way of putting that.

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Meanwhile at Fangtasia, the cast of High School Musical 2 the infected vamps (but seriously. The direction of this gang is increasingly stranger) are planning to go out and hunt for “trail mix.” They catch Holly, Arlene, and the rest of their food down in the basement attempting to summon spirits and decide to take Holly/Harry Potter with them as bait.

Back at the ranch, Sookie is sitting in the middle of a field while Bill watches from a tree. Sookie reveals she’s setting herself up as bait so she can find out where the vamps took her friends. Bill asks if Sookie loves Alcide and Sookie reveals that her werewolf boyfriend has stronger feelings for her than she does for him. Vampire Bill gives her some romantic advice, none of which is “stop sneaking out of the house to go meet your undead ex-boyfriend, girl!” Sookie asks Bill if he’s ever been to Six Flags and explains that the anticipation of fear is often worse than fear itself. Bill, for some reason, has another flashback to his human life, in which Julene Fortenberry took a portrait of the Compton family. (Bill flashbacks are the Arwen/Aragorn scenes of True Blood for me. i.e., the worst.) Sookie cuts an enormous gash in her arm so that the infected vamps will arrive and rescue the audience from being bored to death.

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Meanwhile, while Andy and the Scooby Doo gang are attempting to track down Sookie, they find Sam’s abandoned truck in the road. The mob appears and Jason talks like a “badass motherfucker of a warrior” to Vince, whom you’d think would be more empathetic towards shifters considering his own tendency to transform into a giant turd. Maxine Fortenberry shoots Jessica, and a surprisingly loyal Violet rips out Mama Fort’s heart. Welp. Nice knowing you for seven seasons, lady.

Back at the church, the reverend lets Willa feed on him and reveals that he moved to Bon Temps after the death of a child and the ruin of his first marriage. Lettie Mae, he explains, saved him from a crippling depression. Due to Lettie Mae’s addictive personality he says Willa must leave, so he rescinds her invitation to the house.

At the love shack, Lafayette has passed out after listening to music and espousing the virtues of living in the present. James fears his new drug-buddy has overdosed and begins to panic, but Lafayette wakes up in time to see the vampire’s concern. James reveals that he’s “grooving on” Lafayette, but, you know, he has that whole girlfriend thing going on. Jessica, baby I love you, but please do not stop this beautiful romance train from rolling.

And suddenly we’re in another flashback? (Mostly indicated by the return of Eric’s overly floppy hair.) Yakimono corporation thugs tell Eric that as punishment for his disobedience, either Sylvie or Pam must die. Since this is a flashback, we obviously know who Eric chose. Sylvie is brutally murdered, and yet another complex layer  is added to the (in this instance literally) gut-wrenching Eric/Pam relationship. Back in present-day, Eric tells Pam that although he didn’t contract Hep V on purpose, he also didn’t avoid getting sick. Pam asks her maker not to give up and attempts to motivate him by revealing that Jason allowed Sarah Newlin to escape alive from the vamp camp.

Somewhere less depressing, Sarah and her yoga teacher are practicing several, um, interesting positions. Namaste, of course. The Yakinomo corporation arrives (they just do, okay. Clearly all logic must be relinquished at this point.) Sarah hides in the wine cellar while the yogi is beheaded, which seems to be a trend for Ms.Newlin’s lovers.

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Back in Bon Temps, Sookie’s plan to act as bait is finally working. Holly and the Hep V vamps arrive just in time to battle Jason, Alcide, and the rest of the Sookie Protection Squad. The Hep V vamps are quickly disposed of and Sookie goes to wash off the infected blood in the river, when Alcide is fatally shot by Lou. Sookie refuses Jessica’s offers and watches as her boyfriend dies a very naked death.

Although the year’s premiere gave me high hopes for season 7, I think I can now consider any positive expectations for the final episodes about as dead as Tara (in other words, almost definitely dead at this point. Right? I mean, surely she’s not coming back now?). Considering the few episodes remaining in the show, it seems sloppy to me that the writers expect the audience to have patience with endless flashbacks and new plotlines. Can’t we just have an interesting, dignified resolution for the characters that have kept those of us still watching invested since the beginning?

Regardless, one of the show’s remaining reasons to watch died with Alcide. May the wind be ever at your back, my stoic friend. I’m sorry for everything I said about your hair.

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