The Trouble with True Blood

Best costume of the entire season. Hands Down. Also, she looks how I feel.

So there’s this show. You may have heard about it. It’s called True Blood. It’s loosely based on characters created for a series of mystery novels, but as the differences grow stronger every season, it’s hardly fair to say they are related. What they do have in common is a slow slide from “oh, this is pretty entertaining” to “wow, this isn’t worth my time.”

At least, the books were slow to decline.

True Blood has always had a bit of a problem dealing with multiple story arcs in a single 12-episode season. Sometimes arcs finish up a bit early or stall out waiting for enough “room” in the season to take over a fair portion of and episode. Some seem disconnected until they tied back into the main line. Some stay unrelated, but wrap up well enough that when they’re over, the characters jump into the main one just in time for the finale. Occasionally, something sticks out oddly and it’s only until halfway through the next season that it ties back in.

This disconnect has gotten worse every season, and this season was awful. Two episodes in, I thought maybe I’d missed the episode where we learned enough backstory about the Sanguinistas and the Authority to follow what was happening enough to care. An entire set of characters behaved as if they’d been there all along and I felt like I was expected to care about them and their crazy politics, but I so did not. Any storyline that was interesting was short-changed to make room for these boring, disconnected monstrosities. A few new characters managed to be clever enough to make an impact, but usually half an episode before they were turned into bags of goo or decapitated. There was so much death on the show that i hardly flinched, evens hen I knew I was supposed to be shocked. …Well, save that last one. I honestly didn’t expect that. Good thing the show lived up to my disappointed expectations by more or less undoing it moments later.

Bottom line, I wasn’t invested in anyone or anything.

So why keep watching? There were a handful of bright spots. Although, save for “The Birth”, I don’t think any had anything to do with the light-obsessed fairies. At least once an episode one of the better actors would get a great line or a great moment. It was enough to keep me going, in hopes that the season would turn around. Sadly, it never did.

Will I keep watching next year? Oh, probably. My enthusiasm has seriously waned, though. Unless the creators take a queue from the mass of frustrated, disappointed fans, it will likely be the last season.