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If you need me...


... I'll be watching "True Blood". Colei na série. :P

Cá fica uma revisão do primeiro episódio!

The Bloodsucker

There has been a pretty good buzz going about the vampire themed HBO vehicle “True Blood” lately. “True Blood” stars Anna Paquin among others, though she may be the only face audiences recognize immediately. The setting is present day (but with vampires) and due to some advances in their diet, vampires no long have to hunt humans for food. Thus, vampires have come out of the closet to live, work and eat among us. In turn, the vampires are both reviled as a dangerous minority group and also as an object of fascination. At one point a character claims that he “read in Hustler that everyone should have sex with a vampire at least once.” The story concept is based on the popular “Southern Vampire” novels by Charlaine Harris. Its a welcome change from the metrosexual and lace-covered vampires popular culture has been enamored with ever since Anne Rice first published “Interview with a Vampire.” Although for some reason, the series still coagulates around Louisiana as Rice’s vampires did.

Right away it becomes clear that these vampires can be anywhere or anyone. They can even be the camouflage-wearing redneck at the convenience store. We begin to meet the people of the small Louisiana town. They’re stereotypical small town folks. The barmaid, the Wal-Mart employee, the sheriff, etc. Interestingly enough, the Barmaid Sookie (Anna Paquin) seems to be able to hear the thoughts of her country clientele. Her power is limited in that she can’t hear a vampire’s thoughts. The extent of her powers are really only hinted at in the first episode, I’m certain we’ll be smacked over the head with it in the future. Throughout the show, we’re peppered with various references to the bumpkins meeting vampires, including a woman who shares the fact she once had sex with a vampire with a lover, only to have him murder her. The murderer is Sookie’s brother. The murder is clearly a plot line that will have some resonance as the season moves on. Later, Sookie saves a vampire from having his blood stolen (vampire blood has a drug-like impact on the humans) eventually becoming enamoured with him.

The show certainly seeks to challenge the audience’s ideas of society and the place of minority groups. Vampires seem to be used as stand ins for civil rights over and over again. We’re left with uneasy feelings about the vampires. At times, they seem less frightening than the humans who want to drain their blood but the danger they present is ever present. Its a potent allegory, and it sticks.

There are a few problems. First, as a real honest to goodness southerner I can tell you, it is ridiculous how poor many of the actors southern accents are. People from Louisiana (where “True Blood” takes place), sound nothing like Texans or Georgians. The actors apparently had no idea. I now know how the British must feel when some American pretty boy tries to tie on an English accent (looking at your Brad Pitt). Particularly dreadful is Paquin’s attempt. She sounds as if she learned her accent at the Yosemite Sam school of diction. Second, as an program on HBO, “True Blood’s” producers are able to show as much gore, blood and sex as they like. This proves to be a double edged sword. Often the most frightening moments in film and TV are the ones you don’t see. “True Blood” seems to feel very comfortable in its ability to show you anything it needs to. In that way, the series occasionally smacks you over the head with its images.

These headaches will probably not keep you from enjoying “True Blood”. Its interesting, has plenty of action and thrills and is well shot and directed. I hope that as the plot advances, the show explores more of the relationships between humanity and vampires as the tenuous truce between the two continue to grind against each other.

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