Tuesday, September 16, 2014

'True Blood' Season 7 Discussion, Pt. 2 #TrueToTheEnd

In last week's post, we discussed the 7th and final season of True Blood in terms of the fates of some of my favorite characters: Tara, Sam, Alcide, Jessica, and Arlene. Today we'll wrap up with Sookie, Bill, Jason, Eric, Pam, and Lafayette.

I'm going to mention Charlaine Harris's book series, so if you don't want to be spoiled on the books, do not proceed.

Lafayette Reynolds and James Kent: Tara Thornton met a terrible fate, but fortunately her cousin Lafayette did not. Several seasons back - in Season 5 - Lafayette lost the man who had the potential to be the love of his life, Jesus Velasquez.

(I'd forgotten how beautiful Kevin Alejandro was until Tit Elingtin and I watched the series Weeds. Then I remembered the Jesus-Lafayette romance. Then I made myself sad.)

It was high time for Lafayette to find love again.

Creative Commons image by Kristin Dos Santos
When we met James Kent in the vampire internment camp is Season 6, he was introduced as a love interest for Jessica Hamby. He was also played by a blond actor names Luke Grimes. When Grimes read the script for Season 7, he decided to leave the show. In a plot twist, James turns out to be bisexual. The '70s rocker vampire had a previous relationship with a male bandmate, and he's attracted to Lafayette.

This season, James is played by dark-haired actor Nathan Parsons.

Creative Commons image by Nehrams2020
I have a wee bit of a problem with the way their relationship was handled, though. James, rather than breaking up with Jessica and then pursuing Lafayette, he sneaks off with Lafayette at Sookie's party. Of course, Jessica just happens to step outside at the right time catch James and Lafayette having sex.

A) I don't like the stereotype that bisexual and pansexual people are all cheaters. We're probably no more or less faithful than the gays, the lesbians, and the straights.

I don't judge people for non-monogamy, but I do judge people for betrayal of a partner's trust.

B) I wish James and Lafayette's sex scene had been better than just an outdoor quickie leaning against a car. It seems like every other couple on the series has, at one point, gotten romantic music, candles, firelight, and a bearskin rug...or at least a nice, sturdy pool table. James and Lafayette don't deserve a romantic sex scene? Even Eric-Talbot was more romantic...up until the point that Eric staked Talbot.

However, the bad blood between Jessica and James did not seem to last long at all. I think she was just happy that he was happy with Lafayette. The finale's flash-forward showed them still together.

I must say, Lafayette and James made one strikingly beautiful couple. But, as we saw with Pam/Tara, this show had a history of giving short shrift to couples when one of them is a person of color.

On the next TV show Nelsan Ellis lands on, can he please play the main character?

Jason Stackhouse: Jason's story ends happily, and pretty much the same way it did in After Dead. I'm glad, because you have to like Jason, even if he is dumber than a bag of hammers. The biggest difference between book Jason and TV Jason, of course, is that book Jason turned into a werepanther.

In the True Blood finale, it appears that Jason has married Bridget, Hoyt's fiancee from Alaska until they broke up over the issue of children. They have three children together. Jason appears to be an excellent father. Happily ever after for them.

I don't really have any emotional attachment to Bridget. She was introduced this season, essentially as a plot device to resolve the tension between Jessica, Hoyt, and Jason. But it's still good to see Jason settled down.

Creative Commons image by Kristin Dos Santos
Ryan Kwanten, I will miss your butt. I hope to see it again in your next project.

Pam Swynford de Beaufort and Eric Northman: By rescuing Sarah Newlin from the Yakuza, only to use her for their own purposes, and then killing the Yakuza, Pam and Eric have become rich beyond their wildest dreams, cured Hepatitis V, and no longer have to answer to anyone. They get to stay together, and there's no indication they'll have to meet the true death any time soon.

This is a much sunnier ending than After Dead mapped out for Eric, married to a vampire he didn't love. I don't even remember what happened to Pam, other than that she took over for Eric as the sheriff of Area 5.

What I didn't like about Pam and Eric's ending was their cruelty to Sarah Newlin. They keep her chained in the basement of Fangtasia, and vampires pay them thousands of dollars to spend a few seconds terrorizing her. Yes, Sarah did an awful thing to vampire-kind when she helped the governor unleash Hep V on them, but that still doesn't make it okay for Pam and Eric to torture her. Pam and Eric are cruel. Eric's cruel nature is why I never really rooted for Eric and Sookie to be together.

I also wish that Alexander Skarsgard's unnamed "boyfriend" character in Lady Gaga's "Paparazzi" video had been nicer to the character Gaga is playing. Instead, he pushed her off a balcony.

Still, I am also going to miss A.Skars's butt. I'm sure we'll see it again, though. He does all those strange foreign movies.

Drum roll, please.

Sookie Stackhouse and Bill Compton: In Dead Ever After, Sookie embarks on a relationship with Sam Merlotte. The official end of the book series doesn't tell us whether or not they'll have a long, happy life together. After Dead reveals they do, with three children, although one of their children dies as a teen.

I had always hoped Sookie and Bill getting back together would be the endgame of the book series. I did not get my wish. I had a faint hope that it would be the endgame of the TV series...but that started getting dismantled as soon as the ailing Bill started pushing Sookie away.

I really didn't think she would kill him, though. I really thought they would change their minds at the last minute.

Sookie driving a stake into Bill's heart was sad enough after all the time I've spent reading about and watching these characters. It was made even more poignant by the fact that Anna Paquin and Bill Moyer fell in love in real life, got married, and had a child together. This must have been an agonizing scene for them to film - who wants to contemplate the mortality of their spouse? The scene of Sookie covered in the goo that used to be Bill was heartbreaking.

Creative Commons image by BladeRunner0427
The flash-forward to three years from that moment, showing Sookie married to an anonymous human man and pregnant, held no emotional pull for me. Was he the love of her life? Maybe, but since we the viewers had no clue who he was, he didn't mean anything to us.

I just really wish Bill would have been happy knowing his daughter's descendants, Andy and Adilyn, were alive, well, and possibly carrying on the family line, and that Jessica was happily married and might have a vampire progeny of her own some day. (Possibly, Hoyt will one day want Jessica to turn him.) I wish that had been enough of a reason for him to stay alive - or, well, undead, at least until Sookie's death. Considering what a magnet for supernatural trouble she is, Sookie probably won't live that long, anyway.

So, the thing that disappointed me most about the finale was Bill's death, followed by Sookie's lackluster, non-supernatural HEA.

What did you think about the last season of True Blood?

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