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True Blood Round Table: "And When I Die"

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Lives ended, choices were made and a many new storylines were teased.

While fans debate the season four finale of True Blood, editor-in-chief Matt Richenthal is here to dissect "And When I Die," along with staff writers Eric Hochberger, Carissa Pavlica and Jim Garner.

What was your favorite scene?
Matt: Eric and Bill being chained up above that giant fire pit and, no, not because they were shirtless. But because it was the prime example of lazy, incoherent storytelling. How did they get there? The two had full, regular use of their bodies and their brains. Considering it was the conclusion to the Marnie storyline, a seemingly major event of the season, I need to highlight this as my "favorite" example of the episode's sloppiness.

Eric: This is going to sound insanely morbid, but I'm going with Tara getting half her head blown off. We've been crying for too long about how this show needs to kill off some main characters and I can't think of a more useless one. I've been ready to say goodbye to since season one.

Jim: Sorry, Eric, I am fully on board with Jess/Jason on the couch. With that "red-riding hood" cloak flowing around them, sex or not, this was a beautifully filmed scene. The red of that cloak offsets the blue of Jessica's eyes amazingly.

Carissa: Bill and Eric offing Nan. Especially because the scene started with "Nan, gay stormtroopers." Such a simple hello from Eric set the tone for the whole scene. Bill and Eric on the same page, who knew?

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Is Tara really dead?
Matt: I must echo my colleagues here and say: she seriously better be. The show must have consequences, and it will an incredibly cheap tease if she is simply revived via vampire blood on the premiere. Oh, Tara also sucks. I won't miss a nanosecond of her whining.

Eric: I sure hope so after my morbid first answer... or won't I feel like an ass? Plus, then I really should have gone for J-Squared on the couch as my favorite scene. That was way hotter than truck bed sex.

Jim: I swear she spun at the last minute and was only grazed by the blast, so I am going to guess she might not be dead yet. As we have never had a primary character become a vampire (Jessica became one after turning), it would be an interesting twist to have her saved as a vampire.

Carissa: Dear God, I hope so. She has provided nothing but annoyance since her first scene. She's never been sassy and cute, just sassy and stupid. I swear her hair was covered in brain matter. No twisting in the wind can stop a shotgun from blowing away her head. Right? Right?!?

Did Sookie make the right choice?
Matt: Sure. She heeded the depressing advice of her dead grandmother (We all end up alone...), randomly made into a spirit with major powers by Holly. This is the sort of thing on which we all should base our love lives.

Eric: Yes. Between that and killing off Debbie, it perfectly sets her up for Alicide, giving her all three hot guys on the show and living out every woman's fantasy. And isn't that all True Blood is about these days anyway?

Jim: Oh, most certainty. Granted, her version of "you're dead to me" with Debbie was a bit more literal than Alcide's, but I think she and the werewolf could still make something work.

Carissa: Unfortunately, yes. And just like Sookie, I would have bawled my eyes out at the front door. But, like TV Fanatic's Eric said, this leaves the door open for Alcide and three suitors. Every woman's dream. Zowee!

Which season five storyline has you most excited: the return of Russell Edgington, the unraveling of Terry's past, Reverend Newlin as a vampire or Bill and Eric vs. The Authority?
Matt: I'd go with Bill and Eric if any part of me believed they wouldn't continue to obsess over Sookie. So, instead, let's hear it for the return of Russell! Denis O'Hare is unquestionably entertaining in this role.

Eric: Bill and Eric officially lost me on their team when they killed off one of my favorite supporting characters (Nan), so all that's left is to enjoy the return of the hilarious Russell Edgington.

Jim: You left off my favorite couple, Jess/Jason. Maybe I am just the romantic, but I think their "not-relationship" is an interesting contrast to the one Jess/Hoyt had and I am curious to see where it goes.

Carissa: Bill and Eric vs The Authority. Somehow I think Eddington will figure into that fight. When Eric and Bill stop their petty arguing over Sookie, they make fantastic partners. I'd like to see more of them against the world.

Give season four a grade.
Matt: Inc. Really, "incomplete" is the best I can for a season that never addressed what it means for Sookie to be a fairy. Remember when she discovered that information last year? Remember the premiere in June? It's inexcusable for a show to just drop a storyline in such a manner.

Eric: C. This season started off with so much potential, bringing in a layered necromancer that had control over our vampires. Yet all the show really did was mess with some relationships, have some conversations, and kill off a couple supporting characters.  What has this show become?  A vampire soft-core soap opera?

Jim: C+ This season felt more like Desperate Vampires than True Blood. We spent way too much time with Sookie, either imagining being in bed with Bill or Eric (or both), or out of a dream (as in this episode), with both of them feeding from her at once. We get it, Alan Ball, you really wanted a Sookie sandwich. Move on! Besides that, Martonia wasn't a very scary villain and having Adele reach into Lafayette and pull Marnie out like a bad tooth was the epitome of the entire story line.

Carissa: C. The witches were a TOTAL BUST for me. Disliked every single second of that storyline. Plus, it lead to the death of Jesus, who I really enjoyed. There were too many odd dangling bits left due to the focus on the witches. What it really means for Bill to be King and the faeries, for example. Oh, lest I not forget the F of the season: the were-panthers. The season was full of meaningless, trashy characters. Here's hoping for Season 5 gets back to the root of the main characters and their struggle with life in Bon Temps.

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    Thank you Monique! I agree 100%!!! People have been going on and on about Tara and how she "whines".... funny, about 80% of the people who have commented on True Blood have been whining endlessly!!! about how the show isn't EXACTLY like the books and how they hope Tara is really dead ect.... when they should be enjoying the show for what it is... fantacy

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    Honestly True Blood is the most awesomest show on earth...But seriously TWILIGHT?! Twilight is for kids who are to cheesy to watch True Blood. And also the Vampire Diares is worse than Twilight..just sayin I give True Blood a A+. And i give credit to Bill and Sookies love..some movies dont go with the book. So stop whining.( trust me i know movies dont go with the book i read Twilight....Wat a disaster!:/) But give true blood credit! TRUE BLOOD #1!! @ ,_, @

    Evan

    The season was terrible and Tara had better be dead. I hope Sam dies from being attacked by that wolf also.

    What happened to the layout of this site, its so bad now. I don't come on here for a month and everything changes.

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    am glad i didnt because id be screaming at the TV right now. the pyre scene was not set up, and her stealing magic from Jesus like "pokemon cards" was a joke. eric is becoming a pussy who talks too much. why is he tattling on bill? and if halloween was so powerful, we would all see ghosts. but i guess that is just Bon Temps...
    and im sorry, but i could give a crap about Terry and his terrible past. boo hoo. why inject more supernatural when you cant even do what youve Got right? quality is why i turn on HBO, and this show is seriously lacking lately.

    in season 5, they should send sookie to fairy world and teach her to use her fairy powers already. and ya know what...? keep her there for a while shes bugging me. Im thinking the same as Pam in the office. Eric and Bill should prep for war with the authority, and russell will make a good loose cannon. next, bring the wolves into it. apparently they are weaklings in this show, compared to vampires, but at least they can be impressive-lookingin the woods. im no fan of police, but jason and andy need get in the game. their incompitence is no longer cute. or just cut andy and all the other lame human characters out.

    Bon Temps lost its character too. in the beginning, it seemed like a real city. now its cheesy just like the people. This isnt Buffy,m where the res always a new place or house, or relic with evil energy or whatever each episode. the budget is bigger, and I expect more from HBO...

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    ok so heres the thing. This eason sucked. it started out strong, but got lost along the way. I never read the books, and from what i hear, i

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    If we could stay a little closer to the storyline in the books things would progress much more smoothly. If your going to base a show on a series of books you shouldn't forget that it has already been written for you. Yes changes are good and welcome for the most part. However don't disappoint by cutting and changing almost everything that makes it enjoyable. Jason should be a werepanther. I'm glad lafyette lived. Eric wasn't supposed to remember his life during the.spell at first and what about amelia and bob the cat? Not to mention hadley's untimely demise. So much more with alcide that would have made a great watch. Super disappointed.

    Interuppted

    @rgabriella

    i am a huge trueblood fan,its amazing and it has a fantastic storyline,and its more adult with its sex and a bit more blood. but the bit about vampire diaries? wrronnnggg,yeah their might not be naked people in every sex scene,and their might not be as many sex scenes as trueblood,but there is alot of blood,and its not just a load of pussy vampires running around after a girl,their is a whole back story,and i think if you gave it a chance it could be just as good! but i agree with you and the twilight thing;L

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    @ The show must have consequences.

    That is one of the major problems with this show and has been for a while now. Sookie forgave Bill way too easily for his betrayal( which was major) and called out Eric out on his stuff(which was minor in comparison). Bill was rewarded for being a spy on the monarchies for the Authority, while working for the Queen to procure a fairy, and all at the expense of a innocent woman who knew nothing about any of it. Yes, it makes sense for him to become a King. *major eye roll*

    Not that anything came out of him being King because that storyline was abandoned, we should have found out more about why they recruited him in the first place, besides planting seeds of discord among the monarchy. When did he does this and how?

    Hot Shot which was a hot mess was abandoned as well. were we just supposed to know about "Ghost Daddy" and "Ghost Momma" being members of the fae. stop just stop, too much crazy for me.

    I do not want a bromance between Bill and Eric. Bill and Eric work because they can't stand each other and that is not all about Sookie either. Bill tried to kill him once before so we know he can't be trusted. Yet another thing Bill got away with. Jason should not want to have sex for a good long while after what happened to him. There was an awful lot of time wasted on the skinwalkers storyline which seemed to only be used to kill Tommy off. The writers had a gold mine there and squandered it. Marcus was a wasted of a packmaster that let everyone else do his dirty work, he was only used as a plot device to give Alcide a reason to abjure Debbie. Speaking of, this is the only thing Ball remained true to, the abjuring line verbatim. Too bad he did not use this for Sookie because I would have loved to hear her same a line verbatim to Bill.

    When he said I love you, she said ”Those words are not a magical formula,” Sookie said. “They’re not going to open my heart to you”
    I would have loved it if these words had been said because no truer words were spoken. What Bill did in the books was so much less than in the show and we get an unbelievable "I forgive you" when she did not even deal with his betrayal. I can see her saying it after dealing with it but not before. Also, forgive but never ever forget. So much for popcorn for smart people.

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    we all know there wont be a vampire show that will be better then buffy

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    seriously a C?!
    If anyone asked me this season was a fail. Some good ideas in the beginning do not excuse awful writing and sloppy directing. Even the supreme cast seemed to be acting in a lazy obvious manner. The usually hot and sexy scenes were also deadly cheesy and boring this season. If I want to watch a lame soft porn I don´t turn on true blood. Alan Ball should ask some Game of throne Writers to join his team otherwise the once greatest show on tv turns to a lame supernatural excuse for showing hot bare actors / actresses.




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