Recap 4.12 True Blood “And When I Die”

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Shakespearean bloodbath, anyone? How many characters did we just lose? So many that I actually lost track. That’s a lot of dead characters.

Jesus and Tara

Let’s start with Jesus. The writers have been signaling for awhile that we were going to lose Jesus, but it still made me cry. Jesus’ spirit seemed to be okay with passing beyond the veil, but how on earth is Lafayette going to live with what he did, even though it wasn’t his fault? And how will he be able to bear losing his beloved cousin on top of it?

As soon as Tara said she hoped she’d be rocking on the porch with Sookie when they were old, I knew she was toast. And I knew Debbie would eventually show up with a shot gun — it’s a book thing and it was obvious they were working up to it. We even had the foreshadowing of Gran dead on the kitchen floor. But those last few minutes? Still a shocker. Tara hasn’t been the most successful character in the series, but I didn’t dislike her and wasn’t expecting to lose her. Sookie and Lafayette are both going to be devastated.

I certainly didn’t hate Nan, either. She’s a hoot. Correction, she *was* a hoot. She got a lot of great scenes this season, mostly involving hilarious arguments with Bill that were chock full of obscenities. I’d probably be more upset about losing her if it weren’t for the cement scene. Russell Edgington returns! Hallelujah!

Bill and Eric

That menage a blood? What a super tease of a scene. Sookie forgives Bill! She’s gonna go back to Bill! (Noooooo!) Sookie admits she’s always wanted Eric. (I knew it!) She’s gonna choose Eric! My word, for a moment I thought she was going to do both of them. And who does she finally choose? Neither? You’re kidding me.

Is it wolf time now? Alcide did all but tell Sookie outright that he was in love with her. Once again, noooooo!

I hated seeing Eric and Bill burn, even knowing they could heal from it. Ick. I did like that it was Antonia who blew out the flames that had tormented her for so long. Antonia came full circle as a character, which is pretty cool for a ghost. And all this burning at the stake together and assaulting the magic shop has apparently made buddies out of Bill and Eric. They took out Nan and her bodyguards like they’d been working together forever. And I like that. They’re going to need each other now that they’re both targets of the Authority.

Eric and Pam didn’t make up, and that’s sad. Eric still cares, though. When he was about to die on the pyre, he didn’t call Pam for help. It was sweet that Bill didn’t call Jessica, either. Eric and Bill are both good vampire fathers. Awww.

Jessica and Jason

Jessica showed up at Jason’s house as Slutty Red Riding Hood. She was a good girl her whole life, and now she wants to have fun and be bad, and she wants a bad boy to go with her new lifestyle. It’s too bad for her that Jason really isn’t a bad boy any more. When they were going at it on the sofa, I was expecting Hoyt to show up with his chain saw. And Jason, for future reference, when you go to tell someone that you’ve slept with the love of his life, don’t do it while he’s holding a chain saw.

In conclusion

Marnie was an excellent villain. I don’t care how misunderstood she was — death was too good for her. Gold acting stars for Nelsan Ellis, who walked and talked like Marnie in this episode. I cheered when Gran yanked Marnie out of Lafayette.

The Halloween trappings were the perfect backdrop for the next season set-up. Russell Edgington returns! The missing Steve Newlin is now a vampire, because you can never have enough irony. Bill and Eric are in trouble with the Authority, which probably means Bill won’t get to be king any more. The ghost of Rene warned Arlene about Terry and his friend, Sergeant what’s his face, and I have no idea where they’re going with that. Alcide’s relationship with the Shreveport pack is still up in the air — and was Sam about to be attacked by one of them? Holly’s costume was really funny, and a big reminder about the looming fairy threat.

All this un-book-like setup makes me wonder if Alan Ball has decided to leave the one-book-one-season structure behind? You know, maybe it’s time.

Bits and pieces:

— Lisa’s costume (pregnant teen) was pretty hilarious and sort of disturbing. Much like True Blood itself.

— Andy was actually cool with Holly. Maybe there’s something going on there, after all.

— It’s been a really bad year for humans working as vampire bodyguards, hasn’t it?

— Nan was 816 years old. Not a bad run.

— Maxine needs some grandchildren to dote upon, because Sam is never going to call her “Mom.” Sam doesn’t need adopting or a pork rind casserole.

— I’ve never heard of a pork rind casserole, and I’ve lived in the deep south. Was that perhaps a transparent dig at southern food?

— Sookie and Holly both had premonitions of doom. I like Holly. What she did with the salt circle was awesome.

— My candidate for Most Obvious Symbolism was Lafayette sticking his fork in the eggs Jesus made for him.

— Loved Arlene’s zombie costume. And Bill and Eric in matching royal bathrobes.

— Bodies everywhere. Good thing Andy and Jason know about the supes, huh?

Quotes:

Sam: “Nobody taught Tommy how to love somebody without hurting them.”
Poor Tommy. Another poorly attended funeral, like Eggs.

Terry: “I heard you were dead.”
Devins: “I heard you were crazy.”
Terry: “Well, that’s still true.”

Marnie: “Nobody cares what I want!”
You got that right.

Marnie: “This fucking sucks.”
Antonia: “Change is hard.”
Good one, Antonia. I’m glad she turned out to be cool. So to speak.

Gran: “Being alone ain’t nothing to be afraid of, my Sookie. We’re all alone in death.” And yet, wasn’t there a massive crowd of dead people hovering around the Bon Temps cemetery? It looked like a convention.

Eric: “Excuse me? We’re feeling a little crispy up here.”

Pam: “I’m so over Sookie and her precious fairy vagina and her unbelievably stupid name! Fuck Sookie!”
Ginger was there to comfort Pam. I thought Pam was going to rip her to shreds.

Bill: “You saved my life. Both our lives.”
Sookie: “It was my turn.”

Jesus: “Dude, I’m dead. You’re a medium. I’m always with you.”

Steve Newlin: “Trick or treat!”

Luna: “I just feel like if we are too cute and cheesy, that God is going to drop a brick on our heads.”
She got that right.

Eric: “Hi, Nan. And gay stormtroopers.”

Four out of four dead characters,

Billie Doux

Thanks for following my True Blood reviews this summer. This fall on my site, BillieDoux.com, we’ll be reviewing Vampire Diaries, Supernatural, Dexter, Fringe, The Walking Dead, Glee, Community, and Chuck. I’m also planning to review all of the Sookie Stackhouse novels for our friends here at True-Blood.net and my site this winter, so stop back and check it out.

I'm a hopeless sci-fi geek and huge fan of shows like True Blood, Lost, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I write episode reviews and articles about many of the shows that I love. All of my reviews are at DouxReviews.com

28 Comments

  1. Liz

    September 12, 2011 at 9:38 pm

    Great recap, Billie! And thanks for making Sam’s quote about Tommy one of your choices. It was one of my favorites too.

    • Sookieeleana

      September 13, 2011 at 3:39 am

      Liz – I so agree 100% – that line brought a lump to my throat – just like when Sam said that it was so f**king sad as he was dying. I spent 10 years working in a home for young offenders and Tommy reminded me so much of half the boys in there (MA played him magnificently). They basically are incapable of unselfish love as no one has ever shown them it.

  2. Lauren E

    September 12, 2011 at 9:52 pm

    I am so sad that these recaps are done for the next 9 months!!! 🙁

  3. Janine Du Jour

    September 12, 2011 at 10:35 pm

    Hi Billie. Thank you for a great review of the finale. It’s going to be a long wait for the next season! Here are some of the things that stuck out for me in the episode:

    – Sam cleans up real nice. He rocked that black jacket and tie for Tommy’s funeral and looked totally gorgeous despite the sad circumstances *yum*

    – Jason’s explanation of his sexual positions with Jessica was priceless! Only he could misinterpret Hoyt’s question like that!

    – I like Alcide, but his pitch to Sookie was not exactly the stuff of legend or romance. I’m not sure that telling a woman you want to be together because it’s the logical thing to do is the right way to go. But he gets an A for effort – and for throwing his hat in the ring after fighting all that Sookie angst for so long. Should be an interesting quadrangle next year.

    – I’m undecided about Scott Foley as Devins. He’s got that all-American good guy thing going for him and I’m not sure how he’s going to channel his badassness next season if he’s supposed to be Terry’s psycho pal from his military days.

    – Goodbye and good riddance to Debbie and Marnie. And kudos to the actresses who played them – if the characters were so disliked it means they did a good job.

    – I knew Jesus’s time was up, but I didn’t see the Tara thing coming. I hope she’s not dead. I reckon Sookie’s screaming in the final scene will draw Bill and Eric to her (they both just had her blood again, like minutes before, so the connection should be good and strong). But whether or not they can save Tara remains to be seen.

    • Enirah

      September 13, 2011 at 11:20 pm

      @Janine Du Jour I found Devins’ vibe somewhat menacing from his first scene, actually. It was like someone you didn’t like from high school showing up years later, and you wondering exactly what they want from you now, with a strong suspicion that it can’t be anything good.

      In general …

      Pam may have gotten the best line in the history of the series in this episode. 🙂

      I’m Team Alcide, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed for next season in that regard.

      I am very, very sad about Jesus. I loved Kevin Alejandro in that part; I loved what they did with the character … truly sorry to see him go.

      I’ll miss Nan, too. She had great snap.

      Fiona Shaw is my nominee for MVP this season. She really impressed me with her range, clearly defining both Marnie and Antonia in turn.

  4. Jessica

    September 13, 2011 at 12:33 am

    I was sad to see some characters go, but I’m SO glad the writers cleaned house. It makes me look forward to a more comprehensive season next year. I’m totally psyched about the Steve Newlin story line, Jason and Jessica, and Sookie and Alcide next year. Also – did Sookie’s breakup scene with Bill and Eric remind anyone else of a final rose ceremony on the bachelorette? It was kind of cheesy, I thought. I’m hoping next year there will be less characters so the writers can focus on creating a comprehensive story instead of making up disjointed hijinks to give each actor his or her time in the spotlight. Finally, I wish you were right about Tara dying, but unfortunately I think she’ll be sticking around.

  5. Cassandra

    September 13, 2011 at 1:58 am

    I am absolutely P***** off that they killed of Jesus and Tara. Extremely so about Tara. True blood is based of the Sookie Stackhouse series and Tara doesn’t die in the book. Although yes her character is alot different in the book but what was Alan Ball thinking! Not happy about this at all. I know he doesn’t have to follow the books completely heck I’ve actually enjoyed some of the changes he made from the tv series compared to the book series but not this one. He’d better tread easy on who else he decides to just kill off. He might just loose a few viewers for that one. Especially if he even thinks of getting rid of someone like Eric. I’d been done!!!!

    • Sookieeleana

      September 13, 2011 at 3:36 am

      They would NEVER kill off Eric, it would be commercial suicide (along with Bill or Jason)
      And I’m not 100% sure we have seen the last of Tara. I saw an interview with RW where she said she doesn’t even know.

  6. summer

    September 13, 2011 at 7:27 am

    My grandma used to make a pork rind casserole!!! Take the dried rinds and soak them in a homemade chili (salsa), and heat until soft. Serve with warm tortillas. Pretty good if you like pork rinds!! LOL

  7. Erin N.

    September 13, 2011 at 7:49 am

    Billie, I love ur reviews and will definitely be on ur site this winter! I’m surprised u didn’t mention the Tara “death”. Do u actually think she’s dead? I mean talk about irony – she comes back as a vamp?! Oh and wasn’t Layfayette upstairs sleeping when all this went down? He surely wasn’t in his leopard bed at home. Finally, what are ur thoughts in the book’s Quinn storyline? Do u think AB will bring into the show?
    Thanks again!

    • esw45

      September 13, 2011 at 9:50 am

      I don’t think that Quinn will make an appearance this season because AB has decided to use Alcide as kinda like the “Quinn” character and as sookie’s possible boyfriend for new year.

      This is true blood, Sookie is not going to be alone….she should be but you know that she won’t and Alcide is boring as hell to me but they want to try to put them together.

      I like her chemistry with Eric myself but we will see if before the end of season 5 that will occur….because I think the days of Eric being sweet and loving with Sookie has just come to an end. He put his heart out there to her and she stomp all over it….so it will be awhile before he does that again if ever.

      • Billie Doux

        September 13, 2011 at 12:35 pm

        I agree with you, ESW45. I’m actually sort of hoping Alan Ball leaves the books behind. As someone has already said (and I can’t remember where), the differences between the books and the show are going to make it a lot harder to use the fifth book as a foundation for the fifth season. I don’t see a strong need to introduce Quinn when they already have a strong actor on board — Joe Manganiello — playing a were. Joe deserves more screen time.

        • esw1966

          September 13, 2011 at 2:47 pm

          Thanks Billie, what they did on the finale with eric/bill/sookie was a cop out…..because she will eventually have to make a choice on which one of these guys does she really love.
          Alcide’s logic to her was silly….love does matter not logic and if he doesn’t like then leave sookie alone cuz there is always going to be drama with her.

    • Billie Doux

      September 13, 2011 at 12:35 pm

      Thanks so much, Erin. I did mention Tara’s death in the first section, but if you mean whether she’s gone permanently or not? I have no idea. I thought she was irrevocably dead. But as we all know, in a show with supernatural elements, you never can tell for sure.

      • Erin N.

        September 13, 2011 at 1:38 pm

        Yes I meant whether u thought she really bit the dust or not. I doubt it. There’s a lotta love/hate for her character but I’m betting on her sticking around.

        I love the books but they really are so different to the show so I have to agree with other posters. Quinn should be left out and Joe needs more air time.

  8. Christine

    September 13, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    What if the wolf on Sam porch is the ghost of Marcus?

    • Billie Doux

      September 13, 2011 at 12:36 pm

      Christine, you made me laugh out loud. With all the ghosts running around, that makes perfect sense.

      • Erin N.

        September 13, 2011 at 1:40 pm

        Wow, that’s smart! I think u could be right!!

  9. Ms Stitcher

    September 13, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Thank you for your reviews this season! Been following all season x

  10. Crissy

    September 13, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    Tara dead, didn’t see that one coming, maybe because she makes it all the way through the books. I am wondering if Sookie screaming help is going to bring her great-grandfather the Fairy King/Ruler? Bill and Eric couldn’t even turn Tara to save her could they? If she isn’t saved, Layfayette is going to have a lot of company next season now that he is a medium.

  11. FANGBANGER 99

    September 13, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    All those comments and nothing addressing the King of Mississippi himself, Mr. rip your spine out on live television and take over the show and proceed to tell ypu that i’m going to eat your children…Russell Edgington !! Lets remember that he is 3000 years old and VERY PISSED. Anyone else surmise that it was Pam that broke him out? Hell hath no fury like a pissed southern scorned vampire. I seriously believe that Russel is exterminating some people next season.
    Is no one geeked over this? Is Pam (my favourite character) going to align herself with Russell?
    Interesting stuff…

    • summer

      September 13, 2011 at 10:08 pm

      Well, it must have been another vampire (either Pam or someone else), because the construction worker was glamored. It definitely wasn’t Russel who broke out himself, because that construction worker would have had his head missing; ripped off by Russel and sucked dried of blood. So, maybe someone pulled him out, but that doesn’t mean Russel has the strength to do anything.

      Pam is a weasel if she did pull Russel out though…she had her day with Eric long ago. Who cares!

    • Linda O.

      September 13, 2011 at 10:18 pm

      Fangbanger99, looking forward to RE return… I have a couple of thoughts.. (as obscure as they are) Nan was 816, which makes her older than Talbot.. what if Russell was HER maker..he would be able to summon her, like Eric did with Pam when he was buried in the cement. Nan didn’t want people to know, because she was aligned with the AVL and the authority.. and it was Eric’s “little political tar baby, no one wants to touch it…” Since she broke off with the AVL and the Authority… Russell being anti- Authority (especially right before he killed the Majestar (sp). Also Nan had dealings with Rev. Newlin both on and off the camera (with all that went on in Dallas with Godric), so could Nan be Steve Newlin’s maker?
      Don’t think Pam would align herself with Russell, because as soon as he would see her, he knows she is Eric’s proginy and would probably kill her before she was able to say anything.
      One other thought, and several people have hinted that Russell might turn Tara, I was thinking that would be close, as he followed Debbie to Sookie’s once before so it makes sense that he would be there again. Wouldn’t it be interesting.. Eric and Bill feel Sookie’s call for help, rush over there and Russell be outside waiting for them. (Now that Eric owns Sookie’s house, does Russell still need to be asked in?) I think either Sookie or LaFayette will save Tara in some capacity.

  12. Eva

    September 14, 2011 at 9:05 am

    I thought the season finale was going to be great but I was extremely disappointed. I won’t even compare it to the books, but watching the season finale felt like episode 11 should have been the finale. It’s like they ran out of things to write about, killing Tara big mistake Sookie doesn’t have any friends other than Tara. Marnie taking over
    Lafayette’s body should have caused a lot
    more damage instead of that plot ending in
    the first 30 minutes. I hope season 5 is better than this one and that they won’t have a million plot lines going on at once. From this all I enjoyed was Sookie and Eric, Sam getting a hot girlfriend and Lafayette as usual as the life of the party.

  13. SI

    September 14, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    what a great season! and we definitely can expect an awesome season 5 (can’t wait to see how they solve bill and erics problem with the authority, the return of russel and ….)

    but by then: waiting sucks – again.

    in the meantime i will watch “lost girl”, which seems to be a nice show too. but nothing compares to true blood, right?

  14. kelley

    September 14, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    anyone else think that maybe Steve Newlin has to do with Russell’s breakout? just a thought………………….

    • Cha

      September 16, 2011 at 5:47 pm

      I’m liking Nan for that job like another poster mentioned in another post. To go up against the AVL and the Authority she was gonna need a heavy hitting major player. Also remember it wasn’t really public record how he was dealt with he just sorta disappeared. How would the Rev have known where he went? Idk you may be right this could go any which way at this point. *Sigh*

  15. ScottishTrubie

    September 23, 2011 at 7:28 am

    There are so many things that have been left open it’s impossible to wait 9 months! I wont be able to stand it! But one thing I seriously want asnwered – who is Steve Newlins maker? That should be very interesting if it is ever brought up which it really should do to be honest.