True Blood season 4 premiere will finally air on HBO tonight. Fans have been waiting for the new season to finally start the second that season 3 ended last September. The highly addictive and fangtastic show will suck fans back into the world of Sookie Stackhouse and the many many characters in the world that is True Blood.
In the season 3 finale we see Sookie poof away and disappear with Claudine. The new season picks up right where we left off. She and Claudine are in that ball of orange light (that I grew to not like at all) and appear in FaeLand. The first 8 minutes of this part have already been shown by HBO .
True Blood fans may have a hard time sitting through this first sequence of action for the season premiere. It is not one of my most favorite scenes ever to appear on the show for me as a fan. The lighting and dialogue was just too cheesy. However let me add that having seen it in the smaller version on HBO Go and then again on a larger screen I did enjoy it with the larger screen. Please be patient and yes sit through this segment again where it leads is well worth the cheese.
The imagery of Sookie and her grandpa Earl standing on the edge of the FaeLand portal brought to mind how Sookie is also at a crossroad in her life. Having just learned of Bill’s true purpose in Bon Temps has left her raw emotionally.
Taking that jump into the portal was not a choice she made on her own. Earl seemed to have to grab her and jump in with her even though it meant a high cost for him. Earl did eat of the light fruit and was not allowed to enter the portal but did not want his grand daughter to stay in danger. Sookie is a strong woman but we have not seen a lot of that in the show yet. Season 4 does give me hope that Sookie will grow into her inner strength as an independent woman.
Yes we see where she and Earl land and it is the Bon Temps cemetery which seems to be the portal between the FaeLand and the human realm. Sookie finds her familiar surroundings looking quite different and learns of how fast time does fly by while in FaeLand. As her friends and family discover she is safe and sound she is facing a lot of questions that really do not have a logical answer but it all does work out when we see the action in the show. (trust me on this one even though it was a bit rough around the edges and rushed to me)
She learns that while some of her friends and family “gave up” on her a surprising someone did not. Not spoiling the who did not give up yet. Even her old job at Merlottes is different now so yes Sookie is facing a new way of life.
The theme for season 4 of True Blood is the issue of identity. The characters of True Blood have a myriad of identity issues. No two on the show are alike. Yes we have vampires but no two seem to have the same characteristics that make them who they are on the show. They can be ruthless killers in one scene and a loving undead being in the next frame.
Baby vamp Jessica is still growing into her “fangs” while also learning the day to day reality of living romantically with a human Hoyt (and I love this story line). The promo showing Jessica and Hoyt getting into a bit of a squabble does show that there is a little tension in the romance. Even vampire Pam tells Jessica “you’re a hunter”! Jessica is learning just what it is to be a vampire and have other “needs” that Hoyt is not filling at the moment.
Scenes of Jessica dancing at Fangtasia show her as a young woman testing the boundaries of her new found sexuality and yes also her appetite as a vampire. One of the best moments in the premiere for me was the scene where the hot guy watching Jess dance and is very much interested in her but is interuppted by Hoyt. He gives his lady a drink of Tru Blood but Jessica is in the mood for a different taste. She goes into the ladies room to dispose of the synthetic blood when Pam walks in.
Pam says to her “bathrooms are for humans, do I need to explain why?”. Snarky Pam is back fans. Rather than berate Jessica for being only with Hoyt she does remind her that yes she is a hunter and will have those “needs”. “The way you’re eyef-cking fangbangers from across the room is especially romantic”. Jess defends her life with Hoyt.
Another great Pam moment involved her trying to record a PSA for the AVL. Post Russell life for vampires meant a lot of public relations for the AVL. Pam is really not “feeling” the role. She is more deadpan than ever.
A flat lifeless (even for an undead) performance frustrates Nan when in walks Eric Northman. Eric records the PSA perfectly and this is the footage we have seen in the promos where he says “we love to serve humans at Fangtasia but not for dinner.”
In the one hour show, fan will get to see a lot of the characters on True Blood. Yes the show does not feature just a set number of main characters. Sometimes this glut of cast does weigh down the action in the show. The cast is amazing don’t get me wrong. I loved having so much more King Russell last season. I trust Alan Ball to once again “deliver” and give us his version of True Blood.
The first episode was not frenetic but it did seem like they were trying to lure us back in with little tid bits of each of the characters. Yes we see Bill Compton, Eric Northman and other vampires. The shape shifters are still in the “house” as well when it comes to True Blood.
A new group of supernatural beings this season are the witches. Not new news here but the way they show the group meeting was interesting. Lafayette has learned to deal with some of his natural abilities much to the insistance of his lover Jesus. The funniest moments of course this episode involved Lafayette! His delivery is spot on. Even he is surprised by his own powers and yes it was great to see Fiona Shaw as Marnie. She surpassed what I had expected of the character. Looking forward to seeing what she shows fans this season.
I tried to write this without too many spoilers. Honestly this season has been one of the most “spoiler heavy” ones ever! So many promos, videos, photos and even filming have given me a lot of clues into just what is ahead for fans. I don’t want to ruin all the season for fans. There will be a few mis-steps I fear but I stay hopeful that this will be a great season for us to enjoy. I know I have been waiting for season 4 since season 1 and have hopes that Eric’s character will finally be given the chance to really show his true mettle. He does show us even more surprises are in store for his character on the show.
Bill Compton will also prove to show there is more there than what fans may have believed there to be. Some questions will be answered but not all of them will be satisfied in the premiere. I know I was criticized before by saying there may be a chance that Bill is still out for revenge against Eric. I still stand by that. Bill loves Sookie and will stand by that devotion no matter what. Of course he will want to eliminate a rival!
There are a few characters that are not shown in the season premiere but not many are missing. Alcide will have a larger role in this season but did not make an appearance in 4.01. There are also a few new characters introduced (only briefly) in the first show of the new season.
Jason Stackhouse does show a bit more maturity this season. He has been “tending” to his wards at Hotshot. For a former romeo having to tend to kids and adults who don’t seem very much able to care for themselves was quite amusing to watch.
Alan Ball again will have fans frothing at the “fangs” with the new season action. Not all fans will be “happy” perhaps if they are unable to allow their perception of different characters evolve. The whole “team” mentality that seems to permeate the fandom does drive me insane. And I’m the biggest one to proudly say which team I favor (ok Team Alex…) I’ve never been subtle in my admiration for the Viking Vampire but I really try not to elevate one character over another just because that is how I want it to be on the show. Hopefully Alan Ball will be able to get past his devotion to the characters he prefers and will allow the others to also shine. This season is one of the ones I do feel the most hopeful about. Last season I felt very similarly but also did have some episodes where I could not figure out just what the hell happened.
One worry I do have are all the characters and having so many plot lines. Sookie is still the heart of the story for me and I hope we do get to see strong Sookie this season.
Waiting sucks but in a few hours the WAIT WILL BE OVER. Believe me when I say this “IT WAS DEFINITELY WORTH THE WAIT”. Oh and the episode ends on even a bigger question than ever! Yes fans the fun will soon be here!