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'True Blood' Recap: Kinky Boots

More Vamp Camp atrocities are uncovered while Bill tests out Warlow's blood

Arliss Howard as Governor Truman Burrell on 'True Blood'
John P. Johnson/HBO
July 22, 2013 8:05 AM ET

Over the weekend, True Blood showrunner Brian Buckner announced to a Comic-Con International audience that the campy HBO series would be bringing the focus back to the humans and vampires as well as condensing its story lines. His declaration proved true in last night's episode, "Don't You Feel Me," which, while certainly not lacking in drama, hot sex or death – all TB staples – was considerably less meandering than the first half of the season. The cliffhangers from "Fuck the Pain Away" were dealt with in an expedient fashion, and for once I didn't feel like my brain was in a tailspin when the end credits rolled. And that's after watching Sookie and Warlow top the Sookie-and-amnesiac-Eric-high-on-V sexcapade from Season Four. Something tells me if Bill or Eric ever wants another shot at Sookie, they're going to have to learn how to make light emanate from her crotch.

Random Notes: Hottest Rock Pictures

But this episode wasn't without loss, which only makes the impending demise of one of the show's principal characters a constant shadow hanging over the citizens of Bon Temps. Merlotte's cook Terry Bellefleur may not have been at the forefront of the vampire-human narrative, but he's been a solid presence since Season One, a former Marine battling PTSD (and a freaky smoke monster called the Ifrit last season), all the while remaining a loving husband and father to Arlene and their kids. Terry's story came to a heartbreaking end last night as he was shot and killed by a fellow Marine. Unable to live with the guilt of murdering Sgt. Patrick Devins in order to vanquish the Ifrit, Terry arranged to have said Marine take him out when he wasn't looking. Gov. Burrell's death came as more of a shock, not just because he was such a fun, sinister character, but because I didn't expect True Blood to pull a Christopher Meloni situation two years in a row (Meloni appeared in a total of five episodes, while Arliss Howard clocked in at a close six). Burrell's hatred of vampires may have spurred the statewide crackdown, but there are still plenty of humans left to keep his cause alive. To paraphrase Veronica Sawyer, Bill Compton has cut off Truman Burrell's head, but Sarah Newlin's is about to sprout in its place.

Faerie Hybrids
In the unlikely event that Sookie is the doomed principal character (hey, it happened to Ned Stark, don't scoff), she's not dying at the hands of one of her closest friends (or rather, her dad, Corbett, who possessed Lafayette last episode). Before we even get to the opening riff of "Bad Things," Bill has sensed a drowning Sookie's fear (so does "You're dead to me, Sookie Stackhouse" now mean the closer she gets to losing her life, Bill's Sookie-dar is more acute?) and released Warlow to rescue her. Warlow then light-power-exorcises Corbett's spirit from Lafayette, just in time for Sookie to renounce her daddy for good: "Tell him to get the fuck out of my life. Forever." Corbett's spirit fades as Sookie's loyalty is now pledged to the man who has twice saved her from her murderous parents. But there was no way Bill was going to let his new food source run loose once Sookie was no longer in danger of sleeping with the crawfish. As with Jessica, when Bill now requests his progeny's presence, it results in vomiting up blood and searing pain. So Sookie harnesses her own faerie light to transport Warlow and herself to a sun-filled dimension of Bon Temps (we see the Stackhouses' gravestones) where Bill's summoning can't reach them. It looks like the place where Sookie and Claudine danced together back in Season Three, and how Sookie was able to zap herself and Warlow there is another unsolved mystery, but who cares about details when our favorite telepath gets naked and bloody for the first time since the Bill Compton days.

But that comes later. First Warlow has Sookie tie him to a tree (no, not for that reason) because he doesn't trust his vampire side once night falls, and he hasn't fed. Then they have a discussion that sounds like what would emerge at a vampire-faerie speed-dating event: "When were you born?" "3532 B.C." "And you were made a vampire?" "3500 B.C." "If you agree to be mine, I'll tear up that contract from the 18th century – oh, and if you become a faerie-vampire like me, I would never hurt anyone ever again because we'd only need each other's blood to survive." Strangely enough, Sookie isn't grossed out by the idea of eating her husband, but it's that whole vampire thing that's giving her doubts. Still, there is no denying her deep attraction to Warlow, and now that she knows the truth about her parents, she's ready to throw caution to the wind. She admits that she's a "danger whore," and she doesn't want to have the feelings she has for Warlow, but hell, he's hungry, he's got a great ass and she's had quite the dry spell herself. She tightens his bindings with her light power before allowing Warlow to go where Bill and Eric have gone so many times before. The difference? She chomps on Warlow's neck too, drinking his blood (practice?). As dreamy music plays, they fuck hard in the sunlight – another first for Sookie – as a glow emanating from their happy area engulfs their bodies. Notice how Sookie never even took off her boots?

Vampires and Humans
Back at Vamp Camp, Sarah's orchestrated showdown between Eric and Pam is a colossal failure when maker and progeny, still faster than any human LAVTF guard (remember, they can fly, too), turn their stakes on the hidden cameras and guards within the walls of the Hunger Games room. Both are separated for the duration of the episode (Pam is actually MIA following this scene), but they've avoided the true death for now. That doesn't mean they're any safer than they were before, though. Eric is now chained up in a metal cage, his temperment exacerbated by a visit from Burrell. Ever since Eric turned Willa into a vampire, Burrell's hatred is personal: "I want you to feel the same immeasurable loss." A prison-blues-clad Nora is wheeled in to Eric's cell, where Eric helplessly pounds against his cage as Dr. Overlark injects her with a deadly vampire disease he's calling "Hep V." Willa, meanwhile, whose been stuck in her own solitary-confinement cell, demands an audience with Burrell and requests to be placed in the general-population area, which winds up being a very smart move, even if it spells the end of her relationship with her father. Their discussion concludes with Willa calling her daddy a "pussy-whipped motherfucker," and the revalation that Burrell's goal was to find a way to "fix" her, i.e. make her human again. Once Willa is in "gen pop," playing Connect Four with Tara, Eric is able to summon her (fellow baby vamp Tara walks her through the odd sensations). Willa proves her mettle as the newest addition to Eric's family by charming a guard, ripping out his specialized contacts and glamouring him to open the door to her maker's cell. Eric dresses in the guard's uniform, while a weakened Nora is disguised in a doctor's lab coat. The fugitive vamps appear to be home free, thanks to the doctor's severed hand – there was nothing more entertaining this episode than watching Alexander Skarsgard trying to keep that limb out of sight – allowing them access around the facility. But their nightmare has only just begun as Eric stumbles into a room that's doubling as a reinstated TruBlood factory. Except there's a new ingredient being added to the recipe: Hep V.

At Compton Manor, Bill is petulant over his inability to summon Warlow, not to mention he just realized Jessica's gone missing. So he does what any vampire prophet would do and has Takahashi put him into a "coma" (drain his blood almost entirely and then transfuse it back into his body) so he can have a powwow with Lilith. Lil's pretty disappointed with him and isn't into Bill criticizing her choices of faerie saviors, so she tells him to get lost and not come to her seeking answers again. As he awakens from his disastrous meeting of the subconscious, Bill catches a news report announcing that TruBlood is back in production with Burrell's seal of approval. Unable to wait until sundown to get some answers, Bill slams down the sample of Warlow's blood he took and immediately he begins to glow. He heads outside, does a quick Jesus pose to check he's not going to burst into flames, and zips off to deal with that 175-year-old Vitamin D deficiency – and the governor's head. Literally, he shows up at Burrell's mansion, lets the LAVTF shoot him up with wooden and silver bullets, telekinetically makes the guards turn their firearms on one another, and then decapitates Burrell. Well, at least Bill knows how to use his time wisely – he only had a vial of Warlow's blood. But I'd pick up some SPF 1000 in the next few minutes if I were him.

No one (except Bill) knows that Burrell's head is gracing the grounds of the governor's mansion, but Sarah Newlin could not be more poised to take over as Louisiana's most evil, vindictive, hatemongering politician. Now that Jason has successfully infiltrated the LAVTF and is firmly ensconced at Vamp Camp (Ryan Kwanten wins MVP for this episode as he stole every scene, whether it was convincing the LAVTF recruiter of his vampire-exterminating enthusiasm or calling Sarah on her bullshit: "I'm grabbing you by your pretty little Texas balls," he tells her, threatening to expose her for being a "whore for Christ"), he's ready to bust Jessica out, but not before Sarah messes with his head even further. Jason is made to watch a "copulation study" (Jason: "Can you define 'copulation'?") in which Jessica and a longhaired, shirtless vampire named James are zapped with UV rays until they agree to fornicate. Not only must Jason watch Jessica be physically tortured, but Sarah knows how to twist the knife. James is a sweet, tender vampire who insists he's "not a rapist," so while he ultimately doesn't have intercourse with Jess, he's positioned as a potential new "friend" who could give Jason some serious competition.

Weres, Shifters and Humans
Life on the run is making Emma miserable, not to mention it's a pretty sucky existence for Sam and Nicole. So Sam breaks his promise to Luna, calls Martha and gives Emma over to her grandmother, with the promise that Martha never return to Alcide's pack. Given the massive power trip Alcide's been on, Martha's more than cool with this deal. Except of course, Jackson snitched to Alcide on Sam and Nicole's whereabouts, and the best Mr. Persnickety Packmaster could do for his now-former friend is tell him to get as far away from Bon Temps and Shreveport as possible. Because if the wolves ever find Sam and Nicole, Alcide won't save them.

But Sam will probably only lay low until next episode when he inevitably gets word that Terry is dead. Then again, he can always show up at the funeral in the form of a black raven.

Favorite Couple of the Week: Terry and Arlene. Terry's death was all the more heartwrenching because the day before he met his fate out by the dumpster, Arlene and Holly had a vampire friend (who apparently wasn't afraid of the statewide curfew) stop by to glamour Terry into forgetting all about his time in the Marines. So the last day of his life was filled with love and happiness instead of fear and guilt. In his final moments, Arlene sent him off to heaven by reminding him of "all the joy in your life," stroking his hair and singing "Hush Little Baby."

Winning Species of the Week: Faerie hybrids. Pam said it herself last season – remember her reference to Sookie's "supersnatch"? Well, she was on to something. If Sookie and Warlow can make their lower halves glow just by having sex, who knows what else they're capable of doing?

Losing Species of the Week: Humans. Two casualties on the human side this week. True, Truman Burrell is hardly a loss to his species, but don't forget, Heather Duke (a.k.a. Sarah Newlin) was way worse than Heather Chandler.

Previously: Prison Blues

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