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10/17/12

TRUE BLOOD: SEASON 1 - REVIEW


It's crazy to think that True Blood came out the same year as Twilight.

It's just nuts.

I mean, Twilight is the bad Disney movie take on vampire lore!

True Blood is just...

Good.

The show sees that modernized Twilightness and gives it a very welcome, and very clever, tongue-in-cheek anything-goes rock-n-roll attitude combined with an effortless Near Dark cool you certainly haven't seen in a while when it comes to vamp flicks/series. The first season takes a familiar route with random murders being committed by a mysterious killer, typical TV plot (Twin Peaks, anyone?), the whole thing being a whodunit that just happens to also be about vampires and a whole hidden world humans have no idea about. The show is set in a time where humans and vampires have learned to live side by side with vampires settling on a blood substitute, a drink conveniently called "Tru Blood", but obviously unspoken tensions between both still exist. As the season goes on, what at first appears to be very black and white ends up being quite a bit more complicated than that...

It's not quite clear where the show's coming from based on the Pilot episode but stick around for a couple more and you'll be hooked. Seemingly one-dimensional characters are slowly but surely given fuller backstories, more secrets to reveal and you never know what to expect from them. Our lead is Anna Paquin's telepathic waitress Sookie, a quirky gal who falls in love with moody vamp Bill (Stephen Moyer) and discovers a way of life she never really understood. Sookie's naive, for sure, but she's feisty and the emotional rollercoaster ride she goes through over the course of this first season makes her a character that's impossible to dislike.

She's no Bella and that's... that's just fantastic.

Her brother Jason (Ryan Kwanten) is the moronic hunk who always gets into the dumbest of predicaments. He's insufferable at first but his antics soon become an irresistible must-watch. Tara (Rutina Wesley) is Sookie's cocky, tough, fast-talking friend and bar owner Sam (Sam Merlotte) is the Jacob part of the Sookie/Bill love triangle. They're all great and do a fab job throughout. Other regulars include Nelsan Ellis' gay, drug-dealing cook Lafayette and Alexander Skarsgard's intimidating vampire boss Eric plus look out for a few mini cameos here and there. Every character has fun with their, at times pretty out there, plot threads and character traits and there's perfect chemistry between all of them. Oh, and before you ask:

Yes. There are loads of lols to enjoy.

You get to see vampire Bill play Wii Golf, Jason has a rather unpleasant V experience (V being what the show calls vampire blood), there's a vampire club called "Fangtasia" (geddit?), loads of lolgasmic reveals and shit-tons more goodies. I like that Alan Ball's show never takes itself too seriously while still being sharply written throughout and providing enough style and punchy cliffhangers to keep you "glamoured" from start to finish. The season ends appropriately with a booming "dun dun duuuuun" and pulls you into its second season effortlessly.

For a first year, it's pretty darn perfect.

Overall, based on this solid first season, True Blood deserves its cult hit status and it's good to a see a good vampire-themed show for once after many disappointments (I'm looking at you, Vampire Diaries). It's funny, cool, devilishly clever, I hear following seasons are way more wacky than this one so we'll see if that works but, for now, consider me impressed.

Bloody good.

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