Horror Reviews

Monday, September 22, 2008

True Blood - Episode 3: Mine

Review by Alyson

Okay, the annoying vampire coven that was introduced last week on "True Blood" is bothering me less. There is one who is a Southern gay vampire with a soul patch, a sassy Chaka Khan-esque vamp and a bald, tribal tattooed dude that wiggles his tongue all the time - and that one just makes me feel icky. These vampires are the ones that Bill says are evil vampires. They don't totally agree that vampires should have gone public and they just want to keep making ghouls and feeding on humans.

This "nest" of vampires show up at Bill's unannounced and he has to make sure they know that Sookie is his and that they cannot try to feed on her. Sookie leaves the house upset by the visiting vamps and tries to stay away from Bill. Virginal Sookie is feeling bad about using Bill as masturbatory fodder and doesn't trust herself around him, but Bill is still trying to court her.

Sookie's best friend Tara gets beat by her bible thumpin' drunken mama and convinces her boss (who remember, is in love with Sookie) Sam to sleep with her to alleviate their mutual loneliness.

Jason begins to have erectile dysfunction as he thinks of his girlfriend's previous vampire sex, so he visits Lafayette (Tara's super flamboyant, gold pants-wearing,-short order cook, drug dealing, gigolo cousin) to obtain Viagra, but Lafayette hooks him up with vampire blood instead.

As the characters grow on you, "True Blood" gets better. I had a hard time figuring out how to feel about Sookie at the beginning. She's so naïve and sweet, but short and fierce with people as well. At first I thought the way her character was written wasn't working, but now she's really a multi-faceted likeable character. Bill I loved from the first moment he was on screen, but he's a well-mannered hot vampire that wears his jeans well, so what's not to like? Every scene with Lafayette is just delightful.

Now that I care about the characters I'm getting excited for the future episodes, but it usually takes the first few to get into that zone. Also, I usually watch shows on DVD, so I don't have the chance to think about the one episode all week – I'll just blast through a season in a weekend typically.

I do not like Jason's character. He's too high strung, annoying, and extremely anti-vampire. It's obvious he's going to become one of the vampires. I wonder if overdosing on V-Juice can change him into one.

"True Blood" has its campy moments, but I guess that's how vampire TV shows must go. I'm a novice in vamp TV, though. I never watched "Buffy" or "Angel" or even "Kindred: the Embraced" for that matter. I am well versed in vampire film and literature, however, and "True Blood" is reserving its spot in my personal vampire realm.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

True Blood - Episode 2: The First Taste

Review by Alyson

The First Taste is an episode mostly devoted to character development; less plot unfolds than in the first episode of "True Blood."

Last week we left Sookie as she was under attack. The couple she had stopped from stealing Bill the vampire's blood came to get even. This time Bill saves Sookie's life, and as she's dying on the ground Bill feeds her his blood to heal her.

Sookie gains heightened senses and libido from Bill's blood and a sort of bond forms. Bill can now tell where Sookie is when they're apart. The blood, however, doesn't transform Sookie into a vampire.

Sookie's brother Jason continuously has crazy sex with women that have fang marks on their bodies. On the bright side, Jason finds out that he hasn't committed the murder he was suspect of.

Bill agrees to speak to Sookie's grandmother's Civil War history group and soon after Sookie makes a move on the vampire.

Social commentary regarding the war, immigrants and gay rights are prevalent at this point in "True Blood." There is also some blatant symbolism (e.g. a small innocent blonde girl napping in front of a black wolf in a painting) going on, and that always gives me a strange feeling. I'd prefer it to be subtle.

When the vampire fangs come out in the show, they snap down like a pop-up switchblade. Fang transformations are one of the things I look for and this isn't my favorite method.

Some new vampires are introduced toward the end of The First Taste. One, in particular, is kind of obnoxious. In a world where vampires are real, they can't all be stoic, brooding beauties I suppose.

So far, "True Blood" is good, but considering how amazing "Six Feet Under" was, I'm anxious to see what is going to unfold. Every TV show HBO develops turns to gold and no doubt some wonderful things are waiting to happen in "True Blood."

Monday, September 8, 2008

True Blood - Episode 1: Strange Love

Review by Alyson

So, a vampire walks into a bar – no joke – and that scene is what's going to make me tune into next week's episode of True Blood on HBO. The first episode of True Blood was written and directed by Alan (Six Feet Under) Ball and follows Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin) a mind reading, Jesus-loving waitress in Louisiana. True Blood is set in a world where vampires are real and have interest groups that are trying to get a Vampire Rights Amendment passed. The Japanese have created a synthetic blood that vamps are able to order up in bars, making them somewhat less of a threat to mortals. Meanwhile, humans seek out V Juice (vampire blood) to drink as it makes them feel healthier and it improves their sex lives. Bill, a handsome new vampire in town (the town's first vampire, to be precise) is already in Sookie's debt because she saved him from a bloodletting that two local drug dealers were performing. The immediate charisma between Bill and Sookie is everything a vampire fan could hope for. Sookie's brother Jason (who is suspected of the murder of a "Fang Banger" a.k.a person who seeks out vampire sex), best friend Tara (the loud mouth tough girl that can't hold down a job) and boss Sam (who is in love with Sookie) all disapprove of her fascination with Bill. And Sookie soon finds herself in trouble. Like Six Feet Under, True Blood used a dream sequence to further the plot and I'm sure there will be more to come in future episodes. There are clever jump shots used and the saturation of the colors is beautiful. HBO original series easily leave the viewer wanting more, and True Blood's debut episode doesn't just make you think the series has the potential of being good, I'm already anticipating next Sunday. Check back next week for a review of episode two.