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If last week’s season premiere of True Blood was a high point for the series over its last several seasons, “I Found You” likely ranks near the bottom of the heap. I had so much hope for this season of the show- the belief that perhaps the series would take itself a bit more serious for its final outing. But, that immense optimism has all but been shattered after tonight.
There isn’t all that much to say about the plot of the episode, seeing as it offers only a single revelation: Eric is alive (because even True Blood is unable to resist the magnetic pull of Alexander Skarsgard), but is infected with Hep V. It doesn’t take a genius to guess what’s going to happen to him by the end of the series. Hopefully he’ll get a better death scene than Tara (who, it does appear, is completely dead, although still appearing in Lettie Mae’s V induced hallucinations). In addition to lacking any forward movement within the plot, this has to have been one of the most poorly written episodes of the series. While I’m sure that opening sequence made a large chunk of the show’s viewing audience happy, I think HitFix critic Daniel Fienberg captured the essence of the scene perfectly when he tweeted, “Opening of tonight’s “True Blood” is the fan-fickiest bit of fan-fic in the history of a show that has been nothing but fan-fic for years.” Spot-on, Mr. Fienberg.
I completely understand that the series likes to be campy. I get that. And, you know what? In its early years it was campy, fun, and well put together. But characters can’t simply stagnate over the course of seven years. The show needs to let them grow and move on. Judging from this episode, it certainly doesn’t appear Sookie has grown or moved on. She’s still making the worst decisions of anyone on television- and that’s saying something, considering some of the characters currently gracing the TV landscape. And Alcide has gone from an interesting, mysterious guy to a dull character pretty much resigned to lose Sookie to Bill in the end (because if Sookie and Bill don’t end the series together, I’ll eat my hat- because the show has zero creativity or ability to think of Sookie as a character who can survive without any of the men in her life, despite trying to play the character off as strong and independent).
Now, the episode did have a few moments that caused me to chuckle, particularly Mrs. Fortenberry’s observation that Adylin was an infant like a week prior, but those moments only serve to highlight how the show has started to just throw everything and the kitchen sink into each script to see what works. I’ve definitely wondered how the citizens of Bon Temps who aren’t played by series regulars fail to notice so much, and I guess they do notice. They just don’t seem to care until the story dictates they should. As for the vigilante gang that is rapidly turning into the mob from Beauty and the Beast, well, the less said about this ridiculous plot point the better.
Honestly, is it too late for the series to be reworked to star Deborah Ann Woll (Jessica) and Chris Bauer (Andy), with occasional appearance by Jason, Pam, and Lafayette? It might not make much sense, but the quality of acting would be top notch, and there would certainly be enough room for humor and camp. And please don’t take this criticism as someone simply hating on the show. I did once genuinely enjoy the series. I’ve read all of Charlaine Harris’s novels. I do care. It just makes me mad to see that the writers and producers don’t seem to care enough to send the show out on a high note. Perhaps the magic was lost several years back. But it pains me that the creative talent behind the series couldn’t put their heads together to craft a coherent 10-episode season.
— While Woll and Bauer seem to be the only cast members who have decided to put some serious emotion behind their performances so far, Bailey Noble has also been doing fine work as Adilyn. In fact, the only storyline I’m genuinely interested in at the moment is the drama surrounding Adilyn, Andy, and Jessica.
— We spent a large chunk of the episode on an “investigation” by five of our central characters that felt more like a scene from The Walking Dead than something from True Blood. And, in that time, we learned absolutely nothing that we didn’t already know. So, pretty much a waste of an episode.