Friday, May 29, 2009

Newest guilty pleasure: True Blood

I’ve always enjoyed offbeat things like sci-fi series and getting involved in a good storyline. I try to keep my TV viewing to a minimum, which I will honestly say, I’m not very successful in doing, because, as I’ve mentioned before, I’m pooped. At night, I veg in front of the almighty pixel lit box. However, now that the major TV season and Lost are over until next year sometime, I’m beginning to branch out.

I never used to carry the HBO channel spectrum, because the guys were young and didn’t need even more channels to watch, and I didn’t want to pay for more than basic cable, anyway. Now that we have our internet through the cable company, we have to carry HBO. For a long time, I have been avoiding it, but I recently got hooked into one of their new series. Honey and I discovered True Blood in on-demand. We’re playing catch up before the new season starts in a couple of weeks.

Now, while I love the symbolism inherent in any good vampire tale, I have never become ensconced in the whole vampire fan-base. I don’t read Anne Rice like she’s the be-all end-all of the truth of vampires. I don’t get hooked into every vampire thing since the old Nasferatu or Bela Lugosi Dracula movies. I don’t succumb to the I wish I were a vampire fantasy that so many these days go to great lengths to profess. I don’t cut my hair with a widow’s peak, dye it black, or get my teeth molded into fangs through cosmetic dentistry or even wear Byronicly frilly blouses. I have bought Twilight, the book, but my fourteen year old’s review so far is that it is mind-numbingly plotless, so he hasn’t finished it yet. He says it is a chick book. I do want to read it to see what all of the hubbub is about. I see perfectly reasonable literature reading people going crazy over it like I did over the Harry Potter series. But back to True Blood.

I’m only six episodes in, but so far it seems like a great character-driven piece of fantasy drama. It has romance, a torn moral vampire (of course) who fits neither with the hedonistic vamps or humans. It has a spunky main character in Anna Paquin’s lead and her brother’s hedonism is unraveling him. There are juicy, bloody murders, and blood-drained ones, and plenty of sexual over and undertones, a requisite in any vampire tale. There are friends with benefits, dirty nasty vampire sex, dirty nasty vampire wish sex, romps of one night stands and unrequited triangles that lay over each other in very interesting puzzles. And then there’s Sookie and Bill. And I am really loving Sam at this point, but I’ve always loved dogs, so go fig. Lafayette has a whole different show going on behind that bead curtain, too, that I would love to see. My favorite character I can’t get enough of is tough talking Tara. I am torn up about Gran/Adele’s murder. Frankly, it should have come later than the sixth episode because she is the single most loveable pure heart character in this guilty pleasure of a show. All of the characters, main and supporting, are something to behold. Yes, they lean toward stereotypes, but I want to get to know them, and have the stereotype fade.

As for Tru Blood, the synthetic drink for vampires looking to mainstream, I can’t help but think of Diet Coke. Having been born in Atlanta and raised on Coke, I’m a bit of a purist and consider anything but the Real Thing to be a poor imitation. I guess I’m more like the bad vampires, in that respect, but like Bill, I’ve lived a long time without the Real Thing, as I try to be healthy, eating and drinking well, instead of supporting the big corporations in their addictive HFCS source of sweetness and orgiastic junk food which is leading us down a hedonistic road toward a national obesity epidemic. But I digress.

In the very interesting title sequence, backed by my favorite Chris Isaak song, if I don’t blink near the end, apparently the series is based on a book series, Sookie Stackhouse…then it disappears…

I can’t wait to watch it tonight so I can find out what that book series is completely called and who it’s written by, so I can go read it.

Not that I’m obsessed with vampires or anything. But if the storyline continues the way it has so far, I just have to get to the source!

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