Recap: 'True Blood' Season 2, Episode 10
"True Blood" officially careened into batty territory Sunday night with the entire town of Bon Temps possessed by Mary Ann's black-eyed maenad magic. Also, the episode lasted only 45 minutes, leaving the impression that somehow the writers simply couldn't figure out how to proceed after the B-horror-film level of nuttiness they introduced into the plot. (I'm not saying this is a bad thing, necessarily; I love B horror films. "I, Madman," anyone?)
Barely a nod was given to Godric's self-immolation. Except for at the beginning of the episode when Eric is shown in his hotel room, topless and crying blood. Sookie comforts him and in the surefire way that television grief inevitably gives way to hot sympathy sex, they are making out with verve. But wait; sorry, ladies, it's a dream.
Sookie wakes up in a car with Bill (in his coffin) and Jason as they drive into Bon Temps. The town has gone mad. Most everybody is bloody and naked, and someone yells, "We have to find Sam, it's almost time." Time for Mary Ann to sacrifice him at a pagan stake she has built in Sookie's front yard with what looks like fathers and meat -- organs, kidneys, livers. (I swear I built something similar once, you know, just for kicks.)
Sam is holed up in Andy's scuzzy motel room, terrified. Andy, for some reason, has not been affected by Mary Ann's spell. They discuss why Mary Ann wants Sam, and Sam concludes that it's because she wants to "cut out my heart while a bunch of naked people watch." Yup, sounds about right. Then Arlene calls Sam crying from Merlotte's. "They've got Terry, and they're gonna come for me next," she moans, Sam says he'll be right there. No, Sam! It's a setup.
Meanwhile, Bill, Sookie and Jason arrive back at Bill's mansion to find Jessica and Hoyt trying to deal with Hoyt's mother, who has gone as black-eyed crazy as the rest of the town. She's screaming terrible things about Jessica and playing Bill's Wii like a frat boy on adderall.
Jason has seen enough. He says he's going to Merlotte's to see what's happening. "I'm not gonna sit back and watch monsters destroy my town; this is the war I've been training for," he says.
When Sam and Andy show up at Merlotte's it's dark, but Sam knows it's full of people. Sure enough a crew of crazies, led by Terry and Arlene, come out of the woodwork (angry villagers with cocaine and cleavers rather than pitchforks and torches) and surround him. Andy shoots his gun in the air, the townspeople become confused, and he and Sam barricade themselves inside the walk-in cooler. The loonies howl with dismay.
Back at Lafayette's he and Tara's mom have a black-eyed Tara chained to a chair; she spits venomously and head-butts her mom. "He's coming," she says. Who's he? The devil or Dionysus? I like to think that Dionysus is a little more fun-loving than this.
Soon Sookie and Bill arrive at Sookie's house to see that it is indeed prepared for a sacrifice, with candles everywhere and eerie music playing. Mary Ann appears and grabs Sookie, so Bill bites her. She is poison to him, he vomits green bile. Sookie pulls Bill away from Mary Ann and tells her to get away from him. She puts her hand up to Mary Ann's face and a white light emerges out of it, blocking Mary Ann like a shield. This is delicious to Mary Ann. "What are you?" she marvels as Sookie rushes out of the house with Bill.
Fortunately for everyone, Jason has equipped himself with a nail gun and a chainsaw (conjuring up fond memories of "Evil Dead" for me). People are having vigorous sex in Merlotte's in ways that made me want to cover my eyes. "Hey, this party's over," Jason shouts, brandishing his chainsaw. Nothing happens. But when he saws the party radio in half the lunatics come to life. When he grabs Arlene and puts the nail gun to her head Terry says, "Stop! Don't hurt my special lady." Demon spawns do have feelings! Jason gives Arlene to him and the villagers retreat outside. Jason locks the door and tells Andy and Sam it's safe to come out. When they do Terry throws a keg through the window and they all come pouring inside again.
Sam realizes that Mary Ann will not rest until she gets him so he tells Andy and Jason to save themselves and gives himself up to the mob.
Meanwhile, Tara is still chained up and speaking in tongues. She calls Sookie ugly names, Lafayette slaps her. Sookie tries to read her mind but sees only darkness. Bill glamours her, which gives Sookie a window of opportunity to cross over the possession into the real Tara, she sees all the orgies and the anger, and manages to pull Tara out of her inner prison. Tara's eyes go back to normal, she hugs her mama. "I know it wasn't you, baby," her mom wails. "I know it wasn't you." (This must be how parents of teenagers regularly feel. I will never have a teenager, just a baby.) Tara tries to go find Eggs, but she is restrained again.
Outside of Merlotte's, Sam is being strapped to the roof of a car when a booming voice yells "silence!" It's Jason, he's shirtless, wearing a welding mask and shooting flares off to great effect. He claims to be God, but the townspeople say God has horns, so Andy helps by holding some sticks up behind Jason's head. Sam takes advantage of the moment, jumps off the car and pleads, "Lord, smite me!" Jason has no idea what that means, and he fumbles a bit trying to figure it out, but then he regains his footing and thunders, "I smite thee, Sam Merlotte. Die!" At that moment Sam shifts into something imperceptible -- a fly maybe -- and disappears entirely, leaving only his jeans and boots behind (boy, he goes through a lot of jeans and boots, and where does he keep his wallet?).
"I'm very pleased with my offering," Jason tells the confused townsfolk as they stumble away, thinking their work is done. After they're gone Sam reappears naked, wrapped in an apron. Andy is baffled.
Back at Bill's mansion, Hoyt's psycho mom is still heaping abuse onto Jessica, who says, "Give me one good reason why I shouldn't drain you dry. Lady, you have no idea how little control I have over my actions," before flying at her and biting her with a solid crunch. Hoyt runs to her, yelling no.
Finally we are left with Bill making a visit to the vampire queen of Louisiana's house for help. The house is gorgeous and lush and imbued with an unsettling silence. He approaches the queen; all we see is her naked foot -- it drips blood.
--- Jessica Gelt
Photo: Anna Paquin (Sookie), left, Ryan Kwanten (Jason) and Stephen Moyer (Bill). Credit: HBO