June 14th, 2010
01:53 AM ET

There will be 'Blood' (and werewolves)

In the desert that is summer television, there’s at least one vein filled with fresh entertainment, and that’s HBO’s “True Blood.”

We left off at the end of the second season with a dead maenad, a brokenhearted Tara, an engagement and the disappearance of Bill Compton, all of which have left fans dying to sink their teeth into the third season. As the promos for the HBO show coyly state, "waiting sucks."

But the wait is finally over tonight at 9 p.m., and while the orgies and Fellowship of the Sun storylines from last season may seem hard to top, as one TV critic put it, that “soapy mix of sex and horror” is still there in abundance for season three.

Jeanne Jakle at the Houston Chronicle promises that if “True Blood” “sucked you in before, just wait until season 3.” Nelsan Ellis – whose character Lafayette finds a love interest this season– told Jakle that there's still plenty of sex, just less weird than before. "It happens between people with strong connections and chemistry," he said.

There’s also “way more action," Ellis added: “We meet some werewolves, really mean and vicious ones. And the wolves fight the vampires.”

Yet there’s an undercurrent of fear that “True Blood” is on the verge of going off the rails. As the Washington Post warns, “’True Blood’ seems dangerously close to peaking, as it introduces nearly a dozen new characters into a saga that is already too engorged…This season's new characters make me wish that ‘True Blood's’ writers would pink-slip most of the original ensemble, including just about everyone who works at Merlotte's. The show grinds to a halt whenever it turns its attention back to Sookie's brother (Ryan Kwanten), best friend (Rutina Wesley) and boss (Sam Trammell), who've each been sucked dry, character-wise. “

Said USA Today television critic Robert Blanco, “The first three hours are 'True Blood' at its goriest, sexiest and strangest as an old fondness for naked torsos and severed limbs shares airspace with a newfound interest in Nazi werewolves and misbehaving monarchs.” And while all of that is part of the fun of "True Blood" is watching it go "barreling along at full speed,” he added that “it also can leave you with a queasy feeling that the show is only barely under control — and may at any second jump the tracks.”

Salon.com's television critic Heather Havrilesky is unperturbed by thoughts that the bloody HBO soap is going to lose itself in its over-the-top vampiness.

"The first three episodes of Season 3 look promising indeed, serving up one juicy twist after another, plus a steady flow of great dialogue, intense conversations, brutality, blackmail, mystery, suspense and, best of all, some wickedly funny moments that are beyond compare," Havrilesky wrote. "Despite all of the campy, overly obvious commentary on prejudice, bigotry and marginalized subcultures that were always gumming up the works in the first season, 'True Blood' had an addictive second season and now the show is reaching a new high."

Filed under: television • True Blood

soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. gdh

    Please get rid of that idiot Tara and the entire story line. In the books, she is a minor character and yet in the rush to be politically correct, she has been given a major part of the story. Just get rid of her. The brother is an excellent actor, but the books focused more on Sookie and not these extra characters. Stay with the books, quit taking poetic license, and stop adding such foolishness as the Maenad. If you don't go back to the core, you will lose much of your literate audience.

    June 29, 2010 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  2. thehenderson

    Finally it's back on!

    June 14, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  3. douginator

    Folks you also may want to check out a new adult in-depth new series on werewolves at: http://douglinator.wordpress.com/2010/06/11/werewolves-of-deadwood-confessions-of-a-werewolf/

    June 14, 2010 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Jason

    One of the best shows on television. Last night's episode was just as good as any other. They didn't waste anytime starting the "new" stories, or expanding on the existing ones, and it seems they've set up a very good season. Can't wait to see what happens each week. I think this show is going to have some staying power for a few more seasons, as it never feels "slow" to me. The end of season 1 was rewarding for the viewer, and nothing leading up to it was disappointing. Great characters, great story lines. While the main characters are great, the best secondary right now is Jessica. She's hilarious, in a twisted kind of way. Evan Rachel Wood is a good one too.

    June 14, 2010 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
  5. AJ

    I've ready most of the books. Love that direction. But the season 3 premiere. Boring. And not what I expected after all this time.

    June 14, 2010 at 8:44 am | Report abuse |
  6. tame


    June 14, 2010 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |

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