True Blood: Season 1 Review

show creator: Alan Ball

starring: Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Sam Trammel, Ryan Kwanten and Rutina Wesley

genre: Drama | Horror | Mystery

first aired: September 7, 2008 on HBO

number of episodes: 12

based upon the novels: "The Southern Vampire Mystery Novels" or otherwise called "the Sookie Stackhouse Novels"

How could I have not seen the fun in True Blood for so long? After recently watching the whole first season. I realized that the show, has been wrongly ridiculed and made fun. Its eye candy, silly characters, insane setting and emphasis on dramatic romances and mysterious pasts are what makes it special. These charming elements and more is what makes the best wackiest supernatural show on TV.

story:

True Blood follows Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin) a waitress at a diner "Merlotts" in Bon Temps, Louisiana. She has secret abilities being able to look into other people's minds. Her best friends and family know of the secret but try to live past it in harmony. Her boss Sam Merlott is in love with her and packs a few secrets of his own, best friend Tara is a self-destructive personality and her brother Jason is the town stud and stupid hick. Their lives will change from the norm, when a man enters their town and most importantly a vampire called Bill Compton (Stephen Moyer).

With the Vampire Bill's arrival coincidentally murders occur, violence brews and lives are changed for the worse. In this world, Vampires existence is public knowledge to the human population. They have their own Vampire League that looks to make them equal with humans. The only reason why this was all possible was due to a synthetic blood substitute called Tru Blood. A solution that brings vampires closer to humans without drinking their blood.

thoughts:

When the show first premiered, I presumed most were expecting probably a very serious Vampire series like I was. What we got was a TV show that was well written and produced, but didn't want to take itself that seriously. It had am anything's go's attitude with its cast of characters from Vampires, demons and much more. Now if this isn't your cup of tea than you should look for supernatural entertainment elsewhere.

For me it needed a second viewing after a couple of years of first seeing it to give it another shot and appreciate it for what it was. This show is not like 'Twilight' nor to the classic Bram Stoker Dracula style of Vampires and not even close to 'Blade'. It takes from vampire lore and tries to include more to the mix instead of remaining stale and focusing on just a romance or just on one mythic vampire character. It recognizes that there are other fantastic elements of supernatural lore and that they can all be one.

Additionally, it goes further than that and does get cheesy with its acting at times and has enough hilarious situations that you wouldn't believe can happen with examples being the silly manner that vampires act overall or the trippy drug sequences it has. In general, it’s all a part of the fun and you have to have a very laid back approach to it. As this isn't the show to get frightened by or to be stunned by the performances or feel the gravity of the drama around. It’s to have a blast with each and every moment that is presented to you. It could be Sookie's romantic vampire journey, the search for the killer in Bon Temp and Jason's sexcapeds or Lafayette's sassy personality. There are many story threads to choose from and to enjoy.

verdict:

'True Blood' is almost the 'Twin Peaks' of today with its supernatural elements, mysteries and cooky characters. However, lacking in the originality, cleverness and depth that 'Twin Peaks offered'. Nonetheless, if you’re into the supernatural, 'True Blood' is a perfect choice. Just know, it’s not only about vampires and isn’t programming that wants to take itself seriously or that plays by the rules.

Personal Rating:

review by Paul Katsaros

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