True Blood‘s season finale saved the best for last. With the existence of both humans and vampires at stake, “Save Yourself” downed the last of Lilith’s ancient blood and upped the body count. Find out what happens when the lines between good and evil are blurred.
- Director: Michael Lehmann
- Writer: Alan Ball
- Cast: Alexander Skarsgard, Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Denis O’Hare, Joe Manganiello, Scott Foley, Sam Trammell, Rutina Wesley, Kristen Bauer van Straten, Ryan Kwanten, Chris Bauer, Lauren Bowles, Nelsan Ellis, Valentina Cervi
Episode Title: “Save Yourself”
The faeries must defend themselves against Russell, and Sam is brought before Bill. Luna makes a final attempt to rescue Emma. Andy must tell Holly about Maurella. Alcide attempts to further reconnect with his father. Nora, Eric, and Tara enlist the help of Sookie and Jason to save Pam, Jessica, and Bill from the clutches of the Authority and Lilith.
- Foils: Flashbacks of Pam and Eric’s love inform her and Tara’s similar relationship. Both instances consist of a maker/progeny connection beyond the obvious parent/child. These comparisons allow us to ponder the different types of love we can experience: paternal/maternal, brotherly/sisterly, erotic, neighborly, et cetera. These foils also prompt us to look to the past to understand our future in a playful way. Bill and Sookie’s current relationship mirrors their past when he reminds her of their first encounter as a way of excusing (or explaining) his current behavior.
- The (Major) Cliffhanger: The last 30 seconds of the show ended with the most bizarre and gory twist thinkable. Some might deem it predictable, but we were pleasantly surprised by who died and who lived. True Blood’s great strength has always been its ability to shock and awe. In this case, they pushed the limits that founded a following by bringing a sort of immortality into the mix. Jessica said what’s so exhilarating about being a vampire in “We’ll Meet Again:” the undead never age and have the ability to live forever (until they’re turned to goo). But after five seasons, we want something more than general drama and betrayal. And it seems next season might just fit the bill (pun intended) by giving us a taste of what it’s like for a vampire to never die. Hopefully, that comes with disastrous consequences.
- Humor: There wasn’t a lack of humor in this episode. From one-liners to shape-shifting fiascoes to Eric calling Jason “Dearie.” We’re glad to see the fun has veered away from amateur puns, picking up on the possibilities for laugh-out-loud moments that are unique to the show. For example: when Bill can’t catch Sam as a fly or when Maurella’s “light breaks” to indicate she’s going into labor. The directing in such instances is great because it’s a clever use of characterization.
- Too Many Loose Ends: Season five has been a plot-heavy, and many of them were left unresolved. There’s quite a list of questions. What is the purpose of Jason’s strange mental state after being blasted by the elder faerie? What happened to Steve Newland? Who is Warlow? What is up with Eric and Nora’s random hook-ups? Why should we care that Sookie might lose her powers? What about the deed to Gran’s house? Furthermore, those that were resolved, such as Alcide finally finding his place or Andy’s new paternal role, seemed to distract us from the main plot surrounding Lilith, Bill, and Sookie. We would have preferred they wrap up the majority of these details and left us with a couple solid questions to address in season six.
- Jason: “If I want to be a fool, then I’ll be a fool. It’s my God-given right as an American.”
- Nora: “What is she?” Eric: “She’s a waitress.”
- Sookie: “Eric, please ask your sister to stop looking at me like that.”
- Pam: “Must all roads lead to fucking Sookie?”
- Jason: “Before things what–spin out of control? That train has already sailed.”
- Arlene: “Who knew watching an alien give birth could be so…comforting?” Lafayette: “You kidding me? It’s always the weird stuff that’s the best.”
- Pam: “I can totally believe it about Bill. He’s always looking for something to feel guilty about.”
- Lafayette: “I don’t even want to think about how many hours of my life I spent listening to Sam Merlotte’s redneck taste in music.”
- Bill: “I told you the first night we met. Vampires often turn on those we love the most.”
- Jason: “Oh fuck, Tara, I forgot you were one of them.”
- Pam: “One of the worst things about being immortal is having to watch the same stupid scenario happen over and over. It’s usually the humans though.”
“Save Yourself” may have left too many sub-plots in limbo, but the episode was successful in providing us with clever twists. There was plenty of humor, and clues to understanding the character’s complicated relationships. We’ll be sticking around for more.
True Blood airs Sunday nights at 9 p.m. on HBO.
Will you be tuning in for season 6? Let us know in the comments!