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12 September 2009 @ 03:13 pm
True Blood - I'm There  
My office is across the street from HBO's corporate headquarters in New York, so whenever I walk up 6th Ave. to go to work, I'm always inundated by promotional flyers and the plate glass display of the HBO store hocking their Flight of the Concords, True Blood, and Sex and the City merchandise. I've been vaguely interested in True Blood, but not enough to go out and get the DVDs until this week when we had a meeting with the HBO licensing head honchos about possibly creating some branded TB product for them. My interest piqued, I watched the first two-episide disc from Netflix on Wednesday evening and LOVED it.

As I've mentioned before, watching Buffy in the days of yore was mother and daughter bonding time in the Cat residence, so naturally I invited Mom to watch these eps, too. Maybe we could relive the magic together, you know? And we did, we really did. The show is so darn campy, the Southern accents are atrocious, Sookie's infatuation with Bill is so why? (I mean, he looks like he's been dead for 100+ years and possibly been doing meth the entire time), and yet none of that matters. I was sucked in from the get go by, of all people, Lafayette. Hilarious! What a queen! Can I lock him up in my closet with Adam Shankman, so that my life may always be filled with snarky one-liners?

There's definately a lot of similiarities to Buffy -- how can there not, after all? -- but I'm definately intrigued by the world they've created and like the premise of vampires being a somewhat exotic, mysterious, public Other in the landscape of American politics. I hope they get more into the social realities of what their emergence and burgeoning rights mean. Not that really graphic sex acts aren't entertainment enough, but... you know. Plot is good, too.

So, what should I expect? Does it get better/worse as the series progresses? So far Sookie is acceptably independent and badass, but if she starts mooning over Bill like a love struck puppy just cause she drank some "libido enhancing" (wtf?) vamp blood, I'm outta here.
 
 
 
flake_sakeflake_sake on September 12th, 2009 08:42 pm (UTC)
Billwise it gets first a little worse and then better. They seem to fasten the progress a bit relationshipwise compared to the book.

Sookie stays roughly independent though and the other characters get more room and become more interesting. It's not Buffy, not by long shot, but it's also not Twilight :) The libido inducing vamp blood has a role to play in the future though.
ClawofCat: spikesmilesclawofcat on September 12th, 2009 09:46 pm (UTC)
Billwise it gets first a little worse and then better. They seem to fasten the progress a bit relationshipwise compared to the book.
It struck me as very Buffy/Angel. Kinda lame at the get go, real interesting S2 and then lame again. He's got the old school, skulking, brooding Angel vibe down pat.

It's not Buffy, not by long shot, but it's also not Twilight :)
Thank God for small favors, eh? I'm totally going to see New Moon though (for free, mind) so that I may make fun of it with my Buffy college roomie friend. It wouldn't be the same without the sarcastic running commentary ;)
(no subject) - flake_sake on September 13th, 2009 07:09 am (UTC) (Expand)
petzipellepingo: true blood lafayette by washizdarkblisspetzipellepingo on September 12th, 2009 08:57 pm (UTC)
So, what should I expect? Does it get better/worse as the series progresses?

Better, much better - especially Season Two which is ending tomorrow night. And there's lots and lots of Lafayette in both Seasons. Sookie will continue to moon over Bill but... things start to change in late Season Two...
ClawofCat: giddyclawofcat on September 12th, 2009 09:51 pm (UTC)
Hee! Perfect icon! And hooray for more Layafette. Everything is better with a little gay sprinkled on it.

Sookie will continue to moon over Bill but... things start to change in late Season Two...
This is Eric, yes? I sort of know about True Blood, but not all the details. That's the thing about LJ. You pick up little bits of things here and there. I've never seen an ep of Torchwood or Dr. Who, but I was able to carry a conversation about it at work based on what I'd heard here.
(no subject) - goldenusagi on September 12th, 2009 10:29 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - petzipellepingo on September 13th, 2009 09:22 am (UTC) (Expand)
louise39: Spuffy ying yanglouise39 on September 12th, 2009 09:55 pm (UTC)
I've only watched season one DVD and I've read the books. The TV series is changed from them so that doesn't count to predict but... Bill does take a back seat in print up until the very last line in the last book. Sookie in the novels stays feisty.
[The TV Bill is definitely off-putting.]
ClawofCat: okay gunnclawofcat on September 12th, 2009 10:50 pm (UTC)
Neat! I should fly through the 1st season. So short! Only 12 eps. I wonder why they produce so few episodes?

The TV Bill is definitely off-putting.
Yeah, he looks a bit haggard and worse for wear. At least Angel was a fox when he first waltzed on. I could why Buffy found him so attractive, but Bill looks like he got dragged through a gutter.
mendenbar01mendenbar01 on September 13th, 2009 12:35 am (UTC)
Agree with pretty much all the comments so far. If you have read the books, then you find the whole thing strange, for instance, Tara is white, there is no Maryann, Andy is an intelligent good guy etc, but they only claim that is based on the series in general not in specific. 'Sokay, its still fun.

About Bill, death not warmed over? BTW Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer(bill) are engaged.

The accents are SOOOO hokey because 2/3rds of the cast seem to be Australian in the first place (Bill, Jason, and another guy I can't remember who). Eric IS Scandinavian - the Norse is accurate!

Fun times all around. Season 2 is better but it takes about 4 episodes to get going again.

D
ClawofCat: Xander thinkingclawofcat on September 13th, 2009 06:44 pm (UTC)
I know nothing about the books, so all I have to go on is taking whatever they show me on screen at face value. I feel like it's usually easier to enjoy fannish things when you know very little about the original source material. That's why I'm very selective about which super hero movies I'll see - when they start to aggregiously make the characters OOC, I'll notice and it'll drive me bonkers!

About Bill, death not warmed over? BTW Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer(bill) are engaged.
Dude, seriously. That's a hard 30 years, for sure. And how much older is Stephan Moyer than her anyway? Like, 15 years?

The accents are SOOOO hokey because 2/3rds of the cast seem to be Australian in the first place
Oooh, that might explain it a bit. I often think that Southern accents sound funny on film and TV. It's like they aren't subtle enough. They're always way too base and crude sounding. I'm not from the South myself, but simulated Southern accents are so often grating to the ear. There's a softer lilt to them in reality.
(no subject) - mendenbar01 on September 14th, 2009 06:02 pm (UTC) (Expand)
M: TB Lafayette - gonna make me grab my peaspankulert on September 13th, 2009 12:54 pm (UTC)
It gets better, much better. Season 2 has me hook, line and sinker \o/ Of course, it is Southern vampire thrash on crack, so it doesn't get too serious(except 1x05 I guess. Still one of my favorite episodes).
ClawofCat: Laughclawofcat on September 13th, 2009 06:48 pm (UTC)
LOL! Oh, so much icon love. I need to get one or two True Blood ones. I just about died laughing when Lafayette is coming on to a confused, overweight patron at the bar in episode 2 and is like, "You wanna be my Santa Claus?" and he's all up on him, butt thrust out. *shakes head* Too much.

Of course, it is Southern vampire thrash on crack, so it doesn't get too serious
Ha! Well, as long as everyone embraces it for the camp it sets out to be, then it'll have a following. I was slightly horrified at some of the violence. When poor Sookie gets beaten to an inch of her life my inner feminist was shrieking and flapping its arms wildly.
(no subject) - spankulert on September 13th, 2009 08:24 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - clawofcat on September 13th, 2009 10:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - spankulert on September 14th, 2009 06:29 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mendenbar01 on September 14th, 2009 06:04 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - spankulert on September 14th, 2009 06:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
KSena: Me Zombie girl watching by syandstix@a_tkseenaa on September 13th, 2009 02:00 pm (UTC)
I have seen three episodes so far, since it has just started running here on swedish television. And I am loving it so far. :-D

I am loving Lafayette to! X-D Awesome character!
ClawofCat: yayclawofcat on September 13th, 2009 06:50 pm (UTC)
Yay! We can be True Blood newbies together :D And I didn't know you were from Sweden! Neat.
(no subject) - kseenaa on September 13th, 2009 07:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
servus_a_manu: The Tickservus_a_manu on September 13th, 2009 04:13 pm (UTC)
I haven't had a chance to sample this yet, but your opinion seems to be one of two that dominate the watchers: those who embrace the camp and those who recoil! I think now that everyone understands that it IS camp, there might be a few more willing to embrace, including me.
ClawofCat: having funclawofcat on September 13th, 2009 06:58 pm (UTC)
You know, I'm not usually one for camp. I'm a fan of Serious and Angst and Misery, but I guess it's a genre that I have a lot of history with and can appreciate the tongue-in-cheek humor of it all. It's there for your ridicule and that's awesome. On the other hand, you have something like Twilight, which its fans take waaaay too seriously, and that's when you have to put your foot down and say, "Really, guys? Really?"

Also, the characters on True Blood are entertaining, and I think the first hurdle that a show must jump is creating a cast you can root for and care about. That's why Mad Men really doesn't do it for me. I know a lot of people love the show and it's complex characters, but God do I hate them! I just think they're horrible people despite their deep flaws, so I can't get behind them.

I think now that everyone understands that it IS camp, there might be a few more willing to embrace, including me.
There are also only 12 eps a season, so if you really aren't feelin' it, there's not very much to suffer through anyway! Perk.

Did you get through the school assignment that you were dreading where you had to access the Deep Feelings, btw?
dragonflylady77: Chuck smiledragonflylady77 on September 13th, 2009 08:42 pm (UTC)
Heehee. I only ever watched the first episode because it was on at the same time as Chuck and I love Chuck.
The accents bothered me, as did the lil noise the fangs make when they get them out. I found that whole vampires are real and they drink synthetic blood an interesting premise though. And the way those bad guys immobilised Bill in the first ep, with the silver chain, so they could drain him, that was clever.
As far as Bill goes, I so agree with you! I've seen pics of Eric and he's definitely eye candy. :P

Just wanted to add my 2cents. *grins*
ClawofCat: think sexclawofcat on September 13th, 2009 11:02 pm (UTC)
The accents bothered me, as did the lil noise the fangs make when they get them out
Yeah, they have weird little, baby fangs! I don't like their teeth or the little *click!* noise they make when they come down, either.

As far as Bill goes, I so agree with you! I've seen pics of Eric and he's definitely eye candy
Bill cleans up a bit more as few eps in, but he's still sort of creepazoid looking. Eric is tots eye candy though. I'd watch him and Spike ANY DAY. There could be oil involved.
(no subject) - dragonflylady77 on September 14th, 2009 08:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
Sotia: swaggerssddgr on September 14th, 2009 06:40 am (UTC)
If you've read the books, the show so far is sort of a disappointment. On its own, however, it gets better, I think. And there's a snarky blond vampire added, which is always of the good :D

Sookie/Bill is a bit Buffy/Angel (I don't mean that as a good thing), but she's not as insecure as Buffy was. I say, keep watching :D
ClawofCat: CoC spike profileclawofcat on September 14th, 2009 07:01 pm (UTC)
Gah, everyone has the best True Blood icons in this post! *stares at Eric!swagger and approves*

I haven't read the books, so I have no expectations about what standard the show should live up to. Enjoying it so far, and highly amused by the camp of it all. I'll stick with it and finish up the first season.

Sookie/Bill is a bit Buffy/Angel (I don't mean that as a good thing), but she's not as insecure as Buffy was.
Yeah, I noticed that. She's also nearly 10 years older than Buffy was when she was with Angel. I think in the last ep I saw she said she was 25. Her maturity shows. Sam also made an awesome Buffy reference, saying how he wished Buffy or Blade could come to their town and get rid of the vamps. Yay, in-genre jokes!
(no subject) - ssddgr on September 16th, 2009 07:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
Andreiblackoberst on September 17th, 2009 10:22 am (UTC)
I'm ambivalent towards True Blood. Most of the time, it's like a train wreck you just can't take your eyes off. Compared to other HBO shows, this isn't very good, though. And the fangs being incisors instead of canines... aaaa... why?

The end of Season 2 was pretty crappy imo.
ClawofCat: buffy pensiveclawofcat on September 20th, 2009 03:46 am (UTC)
Sorry it hasn't lived up to your expectations. I don't have HBO, so what I've seen of their other shows were all on DVD, including the first season or two of Sex and the City (which i'm not a fan of) and bits and pieces of the Sopranos (which I did enjoy). True Blood is somewhere in the middle and definately falls into "brain candy" territory. It's not asking you to think deep, and sometimes that's okay.