True Blood 3.08 ‘Night on the Sun’

Bon Temps was a place full of weeping and gnashing of teeth in “Night on the Sun.” Season 3 is becoming quite the complicated mess, and it’s hard to even imagine how the storylines will converge in the end.

This episode was a tangled web of heartbreak, violence, and sex, so that there wasn’t even time to deal with the big picture stuff, like Sookie’s mysterious identity. I’m guessing she sees her experience with Claudine and the pond of light as just a dream. Nor did we come any closer to understanding the King’s master plan, or what the consequences will be of his defiance of “The Authority.”

At the Paley Center writers panel earlier this year, Raelle Tucker said that Jessica is her favorite character to write for, and it showed in “Night on the Sun,” which gave Deborah Ann Woll some great material after a few episodes sadly lacking in baby vamp. Her scenes with Bill were my favorite last night. With him gone, Jessica didn’t enjoy her freedom as much as she thought she would. He’s so miserable from his break-up with Sookie that he tries to get her to leave. He wants it to be a permanent separation, too, or he would have just commanded her to go away for a while. Instead, he says, “As your Maker, I release you.”

This is a big moment. That phrase holds power. It severs the link between a vampire and Maker. As we saw in flashbacks, Bill almost staked himself to get free of Lorena, until she said the phrase to release him. But when Bill says the words, Jessica doesn’t even know what that means. And that’s the problem–Jessica still has so much to learn about being a vampire. It’s Bill’s responsibility to teach her (Pam certainly isn’t volunteering for the job). Jessica confesses what happened with the trucker: “I drained someone. I was hungry, and I was sad, and it was an accident, but I didn’t know how to control myself because you never taught me. No! I need you, you’re the only Maker I’ve got!…I don’t want to be alone anymore.”

Bill and Jessica are suffering from the same thing–they’re both in love with humans, both tragically flawed and self-loathing, both resigned to the fact that their loved ones can only have the happy life they deserve without them. Hoyt appeared to be moving on, but his tears driving home from Merlotte’s after Tommy’s mean comments suggest otherwise.

Sookie, however, isn’t ready to move on. She thought she couldn’t forgive Bill for almost draining her to death last week. It wasn’t that she didn’t understand that he never meant to hurt her, that he was just so weak and hungry that he couldn’t stop drinking her blood–rather, she’s tired of the constant state of danger she’s been in since they met.

Like many girls do when going through a break-up, Sookie pulled out the “Bill & Sookie” photo album to reminisce over happier times. There was one picture, and the rest of the pages were empty. At the end, though, after she fights Debbie and Bill comes up to check on her, all those good reasons they have for being apart don’t seem to matter.

Their relationship problems aren’t just going to disappear because they reconciled in the heat of passion, so I’m already thinking ahead to the other contender for Sookie’s heart: Eric. He found a way to exact his revenge on Russell for murdering his family 1,000 years ago. He worked to earn the King’s trust and to encourage Talbot’s attraction to him (not that it requires any effort on Alexander Skarsgard’s part to be desirable). Then, when Russell was in Bon Temps, he staked Talbot: “Russell took my family. Now I take his.” What will Eric feel now, having completed the task set to him by his dying father? Relief? Satisfaction? Emptiness?

With all the tears and blood shed in this episode, I’m excited to see what Alan Ball and Co. are saving the rest of Season 3, just as I’m dreading it.

Other thoughts on “Night on the Sun”:

–I’m sorry for what Tara went through with Franklin, but I have a low tolerance for her raging diatribes about how all vampires are cold, psycho monsters.

–Sookie’s life would be so much simpler if she and Alcide could just fall for each other. They’ve really bonded over their past week together, and even though they’re just friends for now, I love the potential for more.

–Sam and Tommy are still getting to know each other, but I think this new arrangement could be great for both of them. We got to see a little bit of brother tag team action when Crystal Norris’ father and fiance showed up at Merlotte’s. Smells like shifters?

–Oh, Jason. He never has any idea what he’s getting himself into. He shoots first, asks questions later (in more ways than just the literal one, i.e. killing Eggs). He can only see the immediate benefits to himself in whatever he does. What’s great about Ryan Kwanten is how he manages to imbue Jason’s overwhelmingly self-centered worldview with a sense of nobility and innocence.

–Ruby Jean Reynolds may be a crazy old woman, but her comment about how the “vampires, witches, dogs, and cats” are coming to get her, while paranoid, also seems somewhat prescient, given all the supernatural activity we know about, are just learning about, and have yet to discover.

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