I love the Sookie Stackhouse mysteries, the books that is. From the opening credits, I knew that True Blood was not going to be that series on the screen.
First of all, the music didn't go at all with what I thought would be the soundtrack for Sookie. And the images they used in the opening credits were really disturbing the first time I saw them (it's right up there with the Ghost Whisperer and Medium's opening credits, both of which I consistently fast forward through!).
Here are my thoughts about the show:
1. Anna Paquin doesn't seem to have a grip on the character of Sookie. She's supposed to be tough and practical and stubborn and have a bit of a temper. She smiles when she's uncomfortable. Instead, Anna smiles inanely all the time without that explanation. It makes her look like she's a terrible actress; lucky for her, I've read the books and know what that's all about! Also, she worries a lot about money in the books and one of the reasons she agrees to some of the dumb set-ups with the vampires is that they might be paying her for her telepathic time; not even mentioned in the series.
2. The vampires look like they have baby powder on. Fix that. Immediately.
3. The actor playing the Viking vampire, Eric Northman, is Alexander Skarsgard. Originally, not liking him so much for the part; I didn't think he was attractive enough, but now that they got rid of that craptastic hair and cut it short (that comes from being married to a military man I guess!) I am liking him more and more this season. He's a character you love to hate.
4. Bill. Bill Bill Bill. Where do I start? In the books, he is reclusive, dark, edgy, he loves Sookie but is unsure how to go about telling her and showing her....consequently, he ends up doing stupid possessive things and is totally uncommunicative, getting himself further into trouble with her. Typical male, but with fangs. But in the show, he's all mushy and almost comically over-possessive of her. Not in a serious, growly, I'm going to rip your head off type of "she's mine!" but in a poke you in the shoulder, hey dude, stay away from my girl kind of way. And his hair....sigh....someone needs to talk to hair and make-up over there for God's sake! STAY AWAY FROM THE FLATIRON people!! And use a foundation 2 shades lighter instead of the clown make-up!! Geesh. They need a Mary Kay rep over there something fierce!
5. Ok, Mr. Ball, listen carefully as I say this: We've had enough of the damn maenad storyline already!! I sigh and reach for the remote every time I see Mary Ann's face!! I am always thisclose fast forwarding through those parts. Sookie is the main character, like Angela Lansbury was on Murder She Wrote!! You really DON'T need to over-develope those subplots man! The one episode, I swear, I saw Anna Paquin for like 15 minutes out of the whole hour!! and with her psychic ability, well, I just think they should focus more on her and could've used a voice-over method with her voice to give us more insight into her character. Especially since none of the subplots involve her!! Even that would be better--to have her in on Tara's difficulties with Mary Ann as another thing for her to worry about. Draw her in, make her the hub of the wheel, not one of the spokes! And all the attention to Jason, who is such a complete moron, is enough to make me grind my teeth. I hated that storyline with the Church of the Sun and am sooooo glad it's over!!
6. Enough with the orgies already!! For the love of God man! You CAN over-do it! It would've been so much more suspenseful to have the townspeople just disappearing into the wood and waking up weird places the next day. It would've been very Lost-like, but to have the whole town blacking out and nobody knowing why? THAT would've been cool! and when Sam gets dragged into the clearing, just having him be like, "What the hell?!!" and then ending the episode, THAT would've been suspenseful. But no, we had to have several panoramic views of the orgy in progress. Just because it's HBO and you can show full nudity doesn't mean 50% of the show needs to be nude. Newcomers may be confused, thinking it's about a nudist camp of vampires. Enough already!! And need I mention the bloody sex scene with Bill and Lorena?....hmmm, I didn't think so!
7. My favorite characters are Tara, LaFayette, Eric and Pam. Although lately, Pam is nowhere to be seen. And still, they should be seen as friends of Sookie whose subplots are integrated with her life in some way, not separately evolving storylines, in my opinion. And poor Eric---what was with the highlight foils in his hair and the cape, like he'd just leapt from a hairdresser's chair in order to chow down on a human in an abrupt blood munchy state?? Totally emasculated him. And I called it when I said they were going to have his hair go bad and use that as an excuse for getting his hair cut. Like that needed to be written in! He's a 2000 year old vampire people!! He can certainly cut his hair on a whim with no explanation needed!!
8. Can we please fix the love scenes with Sookie and Bill. They are downright hokey for God's sake!! Ms. Harris wrote them so much better! Quick screwing with a good thing and just expand ever so gently on the original, ok? Face it, Mr. Ball, you're a guy. You don't know how to write romantic scenes unless your middle is Nicholas Sparks. Which I don't think it is!
9. Get Vin Diesel For Quinn. I demand it.
10. Finally, I have to grudgingly admit that the show is finally, midway through season 2, getting better. It was like watching a B movie train wreck the first season, but I loved the books and the characters so, I couldn't seem to tear myself away if that was the only way I could see them on the screen...Even if it did make me wince and vow at the end of every episode that I wasn't going to watch it anymore! But I have hope, Mr. Ball. Just quit trying to make it into something else. Tweak the mood and get it right! Focus more on Sookie. Drop the maenad. And get Vin Diesel for Quinn. Oh, did I say that already? :)
For more info on True Blood, one of the best places to go of course is the show's website:
True Blood on HBO.