Mon
Jun 13 2011 11:48am

True Blood Season Four: A Bloody Mess?

True Blood Season 4Some of us have been concerned, to say the least, about Charlaine Harris’s Southern Vampire series. There have been times when some of us have threatened, and carried out our threats, never to return to Bon Temps. I may be having one of those moments. But I’m not referring to the books; I am talking about those first six minutes from the HBO Season 4 of True Blood

****SPOILERS BELOW!****

First, the alternate universe that we see Sookie in at onset bothers me. I don’t like that glowing fruit, the fakey background, or the fact that the fae are laden with so much fabric. After the startling array of set design talent that we’ve seen on Game of Thrones, it’s ridiculous that we are subjected to sets that are comparable to Bewitched and Leave It to Beaver. After a full year of waiting, we get the set of Xena: Warrior Princess?

Next, let’s get at that fruit. Is it a Christmas ornament with a light bulb stuck in it? Are you kidding? You can almost see the electricity running through them. HBO took the cast of Entourage to a beach that was no less than grandiose. But for one of the series with the highest number of On Demand views ever, they light up a lemon squeeze bottle!

Then we have the Granddad, who what? Recognizes his grown grandchild after 20 years? Get the hell outta here! He is unquestionably disillusioned, but we’re supposed to accept that he recognizes this grown woman on sight? I’m having problems. Here’s the other problem. Why is it that out of all the humans that are trapped there, Sookie is the only person that decides not to partake of the forbidden fruit? I know that she’s the heroine, but a braniac she is not. I found it farfetched and hard to fathom.

Since the book and series are somewhat standalone, at least, there have been some changes to enhance the theatrics, I can understand some of the vagaries that were made to the various scenes, but this one was off the chart with asshatery! One of the worst moments was when the trap was revealed and the walls of the mirage began to fall—where did they get that arid scene that I’m sure I recognized from when Captain Kirk had his first fist fight with Khan (KKKHHHAAAANNN!!!)? 

The fireworks from Sookie’s hand? I’m sorry, but once you use something twice, you should have a general understanding of how it works. Didn’t Spiderman have a general understanding of his webbing on the second go around? 

There was plenty of great stuff to choose from for Season 4; I loved amnesiac Eric, I love the kick-ass witches, and I even marginally tolerated the faeries.  Hopefully, Alan Ball has some hellified plans in line to make up for this debauchery. Promises have been made and I’m really hoping that our friends at HBO can keep them. Trubies have a certain set of expectations. We forgave Season 2’s oxen in the form of a demigod. We understood that floating into the atmosphere is a hallucinogenic side effect of dried vampire blood. But I am having a difficult time wrapping my mind around this mess. It doesn’t even seem fair.

To balance it all out, here’s what I did like about the first six minutes…Sookie had on a very pretty dress. When Mab, the HFIC (head faerie in charge) was struck with Sookie’s faerie-blaster, her head morphed into three different faces, the middle face was a man or what looked like a man. That was pretty cool. She looked like Mr. Tumnus. I’m just praying that there is a little more of that going on in the next season. I heart special effects, good ones, that make me sit up straight in bed. Here’s hoping that I get some.

After all those spoilers, I’m hoping that you’ve seen it already. In case you haven’t, pleaes take a look and don’t forget to stop back by to tell me whether you agree, or think I need to get my glasses checked.

Season 4: The 6 Minute Sneak Peek

 

Aliza Mann, email:   This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Paraplayground.com

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17 comments
Carmen Pinzon
1. bungluna
@Aliza - speak for yourself. I still haven't forgiven the oxen mess. Last season I tried to get back into it but couldn't. After your description of this season, I'm wondering if I'll even try, sigh.
Megan Frampton
2. MFrampton
@bungluna: I went there with the oxen last season, but like Aliza, was totally not loving the whole vaseline lensed preview of this season. I'll likely still watch, though, because I'm a masochist like that.
Aliza Mann
3. AlizaMann
Hi TrubieSisters, Book 4, for realz, was the best book of the whole series (arguably), so I am going to try, but AB better not pull this again, or I'm going on strike. :-).
LOL @vaseline lensed
jaxg
4. jaxg
I am so glad that you mentioned the set looking like something taken from old Star Trek! I had been thinking that myself after watching all 8 minutes. Let's hope they leave Star Trek & Xena behind after these 8 minutes and move onto something a little more worthy of the show.
jaxg
6. bookgirl46
I am so glad I am not the only one distress with the 6 minute preview! It seems the TB writers stray farther and farther from the books each season and I was looking forward to the book 4 storyline. The whole fairy plot seems to have picked up a bit of the Fairy War from book 9. When I think of TB as something totally different than the books I become enchanted with the program again. This season I am not looking forward to the Arleen/Renee baby storyline and I am not looking forward to the Jason/Crystal storyline (but I did not like Crystal in the books). I do hope we get to see the more human loving side of Eric we found in book 4. But to be honest I will watch anything if Alexander is gracing the screen.
Joy Bowles
7. Missouri58
Have to agree with Bookgirl46 I will watch this series to the bitter end as long as Alexander is in it. I also agree that the first 6 minutes of the new season is not what i want to see from this show. For me it always has and always will be the vampires. I loved book 4 as most all of the other bookies and i will have to picket HBO if AB messes it up.
jaxg
8. True?
My first reaction to seeing the first 6 minutes of this coming season was....WTF was that??? I am a die hard Trueblood bookie, but I don't mind the fact that Allen Ball deviates from the books. All I would like to see is for him not move to far from the basic feel and mood the books have. The sneak peak I watched on HBO's sight has me a little worried!! But....like most of you, I will still watch. Pleeeeeease let AB include the Eric memory loss story line!!!!!!!!
Tara B
9. box5angel
I don't like the alternate Fairyland. I liked it fine in the books where everything took place on Earth, but I can understand that there are big changes between the books and the tv show.

Also, the Hot Shot storyline with Jason. What a mess they made of that!

I also could care less about the whole Eric/Sookie/Bill/Alcide storyline. A lot of crazy Eric fans have turned me off to the series. There's one phrase I'm tired of hearing, "Moar Eric". Even if there is one scene where he has no business being there, someone always tends to think he should be there. So annoying! He's not the show!

I care more about the secondary characters Tara, Sam, Lafayette, Jessica, Hoyt, Jason and what happens with them.

Tara is my favorite character and I ship Tara/Sam. I just hate what they've done with her character in some of s3 though. I hope we see the return of bold, strong, and humorous Tara.

And I wish her and Sookie had a better relationship. Besties, yeah right! Tara has been there and done more for Sookie, than Sookie has or will for Tara.
jaxg
10. Milly01
I must say I am hooked to the show, but I have also ready ALL the books. I'm quite a bit dissapointed with the show in the fact that they aren't staying as true to the books as they could be. Especially after seeing Game of Thrones and how precisely close to the book they have been with it. I think CH or HBO needs to step in and get things back on track some.
Aliza Mann
11. AlizaMann
@bookgirl46: I think Rene should stay dead and if he becomes a ghost/zombie, I'm going to have to plan a revolt! @Missouri58: I love Alex! I'm seriously looking forward to the movie that he's in. They better not do anything crazy to Eric! @True? - I would like to know AB so that I can give him a piece of mind. You know, some of the other clips looked fine. This was my very favorite Sookie book, so I'm praying it works out. I did see a clip with Eric as an amnesiac, so hoping that they portray that true to the storyline. @box5angel - I don't like the way they portray HotShot at all. I'm very disturbed at Tara's angry character also. I think that we should all get together and do fanfic, even if Ms. Harris doesn't like it. ;-) @Milly01 - It makes me a little sad that they have done such wonderful things with portraying the storyline from Game of Thrones - even keeping Ned so... challenged, yet took some of Charliane Harris' truimphs out of the TB seasons - specifically the things that we've mentioned in this post. I think we're all pretty die hard, and I really hope they know how we're feeling. Perhaps I should call the HBO offices....hmmm
Megan Frampton
12. MFrampton
I wish they'd do something more and better with Tara, too. She's had an even worse time of it than Sookie lately!
jaxg
13. True?
It seems as if Allen Ball is taking the characters that had very small roles in the books and expands on them: Marianne the succubus; Berry the bellboy; Godrick the old vampire; Frank (I think that was his name) the vampire obsessed with Tara; Eggs, Tara's mother...I can go on. The one person I'm glad AB did expand on is Lafayette. I LOVE his character and I'm sooooo glad he wasn't the one found in the car dead at the end of season one.
jaxg
14. Celticdva
I don't have HBO so I have to wait t pre-order disks...yes I'm a die-hard fan at heart even though at times a VERY disillusioned one. I had been reading all of Sookie's stories before TB came to HBO. I'm always making constant comparisons between the books and TB no matter how much I try not to. I'm a big girl and understand that of course there would be some changes/additions to the series story lines after all they need to stretch a through a whole season.

I like that the supporting cast has been given expanded story lines with more character development, which fleshes them out that much more. Like True? I also am glad Lafayette is going strong. I remember being shocked and disappointed when he was found dead in Andy's car in the book.

What I don't like is how they have gone so completely off the res with the story lines. What I loved in the books and hope will not be lost with translation to the small screen is Pam and Sookie's budding friendship, the fun loving Claudine dubbing herself as Sookie's "fairy godmother" and always being there for her when needed in Bon Temps, including hanging out and distracting the men in Merlotte's. Will we be seeing her snide twin Claude or will he fall by the wayside? Perhaps now this is all a moot point since TB jumped the gun and Sookie already knows she's fae. I felt jipped w/Alcide's character not being more fleshed out and expanding on the budding relationship between him and Sookie, so I'm hoping to see the sweet/alpha side to him that attracted me to him as opposed to only the sexual tension that we've seen in season 3. And pleeease keep my favorite were-tiger John Quinn! I know the JQ/Sookie relationship didn't officially start until Dead as a Doornail (5), but I believe he was introduced and drawn to Sookie in Dead to the World (4). God but he was scorching the pages! Bring 'em on!!!
Carmen Pinzon
15. bungluna
I think the thing I miss the most is any hope of a good character in the series. Calvin is a decent man in the books but a drug dealer in the series? Any good people in Bon Temps? Not according to the series.
jaxg
16. Safelady
I have resigned myself that the series is so loosely based on the books that TB is just another night time soap opera. I love the books and I follow the series when it comes out on DVD. Love the reference to Star Trek you hit it right on. I wish HBO would come up with a pay per view on the computer with out having to signing up for HBO at home. Oh well....
rachel sternberg
17. rae70
Yes the set looked cheap and awful! The glo-fruit idea was so contrived and stupid. The folklore of not eating anything from fairy is out there for anyone reading Grimms fairytales, so I am surprise it was only Sookie (just a simple waitress) who could remember that bit of info. It kinda sucked that they are making the all the fairies ugly behind their glamour. Claude and Claudine and her grandfather/uncle were all supposed to be highly attractive and not because of glamour.. I was looking forward to seeing who they would cast as Claude (lol!) As for Quinn, I do hope they introduce him into the storyline. He was a nice hottie addition to the mix.
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