True Blood 3.09 “Everything Is Broken” Review

August 16, 2010 by  

Denis O'Hare True Blood Holding Bloody TalbotIn the world of True Blood, people’s lives were forever changed by the knowledge that vampires existed, and they changed again in “Everything Is Broken.” Russell Edgington issued a Great Revelation of his own, essentially waging open war on mankind. With only 3 episodes left to go in Season 3, who can stop him? Even if Russell can be stopped, how can the damage he’s caused be repaired?

At the start of the episode, Eric flies to Fangtasia to tell Pam what he has done and get them to a safe place. Inconveniently, Nan Flanagan of the American Vampire League picked this time to drop by and inquire after the missing Magister. She instructs one of her soldiers to take silver to Eric, and Ginger‘s familiar horrified screams take us into the opening credits.

Russell arrives home to find Talbot nothing more than a pile of bloody guts on the floor. He frantically starts trying to hold onto what’s left of his lover, although he takes a brief moment to look curiously at the empty stand which should hold his Viking crown.

Sookie climbs into the shower to rinse the blood off from her fight with Debbie and her sex with Bill. Then Bill decides to join her, and their intimacy takes on the sweeter tone we’re used to. He drinks a little more from her neck and then bites his finger, using his blood to heal the bite marks. As they kiss passionately and appear to be begin another lovemaking session, the water washes away the blood from both of them, and they seem closer than they’ve been in a long time, emotionally and physically.

Afterwards, some of the unpleasantness of reality sinks back in as Sookie discovers the body of the werewolf Bill killed. It’s quite an amusing scene, though, as Bill and Sookie talk about what life would be like if they were “normal” while wrapping up the dead naked man in a tarp to dispose of: “What would you rather be doing? Sittin’ on the sofa, watchin’ television?” “Well,” Sookie responds, “that used to be my idea of excitement, you know. You’ve spoiled me.”

Like Sookie seems to have done in a very short amount of time since the dramatic events of Jackson, I find myself easily softening up to Bill again and forgiving him for what seemed so awful only a few weeks ago, particularly when he looks so heartfelt: “You have to trust me….don’t you?” She uses the opportunity to bring up the folder of newspaper clippings and family information shown to her by Russell: “Okay, see, I don’t know how you did things in the 1800’s, but keeping a file on the woman you love is…creepy.” Bill explains that he was only trying to learn what she was to see why Eric was so interested in her, and so that he could protect her better. Sookie makes a very good point: “You have to trust me, and stop thinking of me as a thing to be protected. I took care of Debbie myself. I’m not afraid to spill a little blood anymore. As much as you want to be human, I think I’m meeting you halfway to vampire.”

Lafayette surprises himself when he wants Jesus to stay the night. Normally after sleeping with a guy, he comes up with an excuse to kick him out. This is definitely a new experience for him, and he looks happier and more peaceful than we’ve ever seen him. The next day, Jesus takes Ruby Jean back to the hospital. She recognizes something different about Lafayette (or as she calls him, “La La”): “You ain’t got your mask on…My son is shining through.”

Meanwhile, Crystal is sending some seriously mixed signals to Jason. When he returns home to find Felton screaming at her, she acts like Jason kidnapped and raped her, much to his confusion. Then when Felton starts in on Jason, she hits him over the back of the head and wants Jason‘s help tying him up and making an anonymous call to get him arrested for selling V. Later at the police station, she and Jason hear that Felton badly beat that sweet mumbling deputy, Kevin. Jason offers Andy an idea that’s actually not bad, to raid the drug house in Hot Shot. (And what was with the sinister music playing when Andy looked at the vials of V?)

Eric gives a shockingly honest account about his history with Russell to Nan Flanagan and the Authority (Big Brother-type people in suits watching via video feed). He talks about the branded werewolves fed with vampire blood, the killing of the Magister, his vendetta after the death of his family–even Pam didn’t know about that. He tells them that Russell doesn’t want to coexist with humans, “he wants to subjugate them.” His confessions seem sure to get him staked as punishment, but he appears to be resigned to that. At least he would be leaving behind people who know about Russell’s maniacal plan and could try to stop him. And just like Bill and Sookie from earlier in the episode, we see Eric and Pam closer than they’ve ever been before, with him saying she should Make another when he’s gone, and her laying her head on his chest. She cries to think that their years together might be over, but he somberly tells her, “Everything ends. Even the immortal ones.”

Now that Sam has accepted responsibility for Tommy, he has to deal with all the problems that accompany having an obnoxious teenage brother to look after. Terry and Arlene call late in the night, disturbed by loud noises coming from next door. It seems that Tommy and his lady friend are enjoying themselves a little too much. Sam goes over there to tell them to keep it down, and Tommy calls him “a stick in the mud.”

Sookie gets a phone call from Hadley who wants to see her again. She admits that she’s the reason Sookie is being hunted because of things she told Sophie-Anne, not realizing what the consequences would be. She pulled her son out of the daycare and brought him to the aquarium. She wants Sookie to find out if he has telepathy, too, because then she’ll know that she needs to hide him. Sookie sits down next to Hunter and thinks, ‘Which is your favorite fish in the aquarium? It’s alright, no one knows, it’s just us.’ ‘The blue one,’ he replies wordlessly. Hadley gets very upset when she realizes her suspicions are confirmed. Hadley starts running off with Hunter to hide him, and he yells to Sookie “she knows, she knows”.  Who is he referring too?

Tara goes to a meeting at a local church for rape survivors. There she sees Holly, the new Merlotte’s waitress, who shares her story about being attacked by a coworker many years ago. What she says really resonates with Tara: “Every day I face not only my memory of that, but that part of me who wants to feel sorry for herself, and expects the worst out of people. But that’s not who I was raised to be. And I still believe that people are worth trusting, and every day that piece of me gets a tiny bit stronger.”

Holly comforts Arlene, too, when she’s crying at work over Tommy stealing her tips. She opens up about her pregnancy and how worried she is about losing Terry. She feels like her baby is a “timebomb” that’s going to be just like his evil daddy and destroy her life. Holly asks the hard question, “You want this baby?” Arlene doesn’t, but neither will she get an abortion. Holly hugs her and assures her there are “other ways to resolve it.” What could she mean by that? I like her. I hope she doesn’t die…

Hoyt brings his new girlfriend to Merlotte’s. Jessica gets mad at him for coming, then embarrassed for her fangs popping out when she meets Summer. Jessica sits down with Hoyt when Summer‘s in the bathroom (leaving all her antique dolls on the table…). “Does she at least make you happy?” Jessica asks. Hoyt admits that he hates Summer, but “it beats sittin’ around thinking about you.” Awwww…

Jesus drops by Merlotte’s to see Lafayette, and Tara can’t believe her cousin might actually be in a relationship. He says he can’t decide if Jesus is a miracle or a fool.

Crystal is worried that her family is going to think she’s a snitch. She’s scared they’ll hurt her, but her fear turns to concern when she hears from Jason that they might all get busted. Then after Sam smashes Calvin’s face in for calling him a pussy, she rides with her dad to the hospital. Crystal doesn’t seem to know what she wants.

For Sam, Calvin‘s insult was one step too far after all the stress building up, and Tommy‘s comment that he lets everyone walk all over him. Jason tries to stop Crystal from going back to the people who’ve controlled her life, but she doesn’t listen. Jason is left standing in the parking lot, and it’s a good thing, too, because who should make his grand return but Franklin Mott. He pins Tara to a wall and prepares to kill her, but he says he’ll mourn her death because he loves her. “You don’t love anything. You can’t, because you’re a psychopath! You violated me and terrorized me because that’s what vampires do, and you’re calling that love…You wanna hear me beg for my life, is that it? That’s the only thing y’all can feel: the destruction of life, ’cause you ain’t got none in you.” She’s not afraid to die because then she’ll be rid of him.

Jason cocks his shotgun behind Franklin. “You do realize, I’m a vampire. You could empty every round in me, and I’ll heal.” “Not if I got wooden bullets,” Jason says, as Franklin explodes. (I won’t mourn psycho Franklin, but I will miss James Frain!)

Bill is the one who finds the truth about what Sookie is. He’s asleep in his cubby hole, when he has a strange dream (or is it a dream) of climbing out into that garden we saw in “Hitting the Ground.” He’s dressed all in white, and walks on the water across the pond (symbolism, much?). Claudine happens upon him, confused as to how he came to be there. She thinks he killed Sookie and runs from him. He chases her down and, as he looks down at her neck, it’s clear he wants to bite her. When his fangs come out, Claudine shoots light out of her hands and throws him back.

Bill promises that Sookie is safe, that he would never hurt her. Claudine doesn’t believe him at first, saying he doesn’t really love Sookie and only wants to steal her light. But she seems persuaded by his insistence on protecting Sookie and gives him some kind of insight into what they are. When Bill goes to Sookie, now hiding out at Jason‘s house, he sits her down and begins to tell her about his strange experience and answer the question she has wondered about all her life: “Sookie, I know what you are.” (Except, we still don’t know exactly because the episode ended before we got to see that part!)

The dramatic ending goes to the King of Mississippi, who has gone crazy in his grief over Talbot, whose entrails he is now carrying around in a crystal jar. Just as the American Vampire League gives Eric the freedom to quietly and unofficially carry out his justice on Russell (“Bring me his fangs,” Nan commands, “or I will have yours”), Russell interrupts a news broadcast to make his big statement to humanity. Ripping out the spine of the news anchor reporting on the Vampire Rights Amendment, he says,”We are nothing like you. We are immortal–because we drink the True Blood, blood that is living, organic, and human…Make no mistake, mine is the true face of vampires! Why would we seek equal rights? You are not our equals. We will eat you, after we eat your children. Now time for the weather–Tiffany?”

So what are everyone else’s thoughts on this episode? After Ruby Jean’s remark to Lafayette about his “mask,” I was extremely impressed by you commenters who’ve been talking for weeks about masks that the characters seem to be wearing!

(Photo credit: HBO Inc.)