Sookie and Eric make it out of the burning Authority building, and meet back up with Jason, Jessica, Pam, et al. And so does Bill—or Billith as he appears to be now. Back in Bon Temps, he drags Jessica back into his sphere, but after the vampire mayhem the Governor of Louisiana is taking action to control and oppress the vampires. Angry with everyone, Jason has a encounter with someone who knows a bit too much about his family.
The culmination of events at the Vampire Authority HQ may open the new season of True Blood with a bang, but dramatically it seems redundant and it might have been better served to simply deal with the aftermath back in Bon Temps. The strength of the series has always been in how small town folk dealt with the big repercussions of vampire events, but it lost that focus in season five. It would be good to get back down to the gritty, intimate issues rather than the big epic stuff.
This episode the show does achieve that to a certain extent, with Andy’s attempts to become a father to his fae babies the best thing here by far. Chris Bauer’s facial expressions are a wonder to behold! With him, and the single scene with Lafayette in Sam’s bar, there is clearly hope.
There is also promise in the big, new guest star, Rutger Hauer. He is always value for money, and here he certainly adds moments of intrigue and potential threat in his teasing conversation with Jason. It’s still not quite clear who he is playing (Is it Niall? Is it Macklyn? HBO’s pre-publicity for the series is confusing), but he should be good.
There’s just a little niggling doubt that his arrival alongside Arliss Howard as the Governor, plus another love interest for Sookie (yet to appear), means that an already large cast is becoming bloated (shades of Game of Thrones). Several new season storylines are introduced, though clearly Warlow (Hauer) will be the dominant one, which might not bode well for a shorter season of only 10 episodes. But there is still some promise.
Verdict: Better than fish piss!
Episode 1 ‘Who Are You, Really?’: 6/10