Still coming down from his vampire style ecstasy trip from last week Bill (Stephen Moyer) has to sober up so he can get behind the camera. Moyer makes his directorial debut this past Sunday in "Somebody That I Used to Know" and like most series actors taking a stab at the director's chair he did a damn good job.
"Somebody That I Used to Know" is definitely the most balanced episode of the season so far. Each story line gets their due, no one character or actor/actress is given central focus, and everything flowed together from start to finish. That's not to say thing didn't a little out there or farfetched, but hey, it still True Blood after all.
Picking up after the council's Mardi Gras setting, Lilith blood induced, acid trip and killing spree all but one is happy about what they had just done. After seeing Godric in a vision last week Eric, for a change, has become the silent voice of reason. Jason stops Sookie from extinguishing away all of her fairy powers and convinces her to meet with Claude (the unofficial head fairy), from the secret night club, to learn more about the vampire that killed their parents. Not even back to minutes from his near death Brujo experience Lafayette gets dragged into Terry and Patrick's Ifrit curse problem by Arlene and Holly. While tracking down the redneck supe-hunters Sam and Andy get a suspect, Jessica gets captured, and Luna shifts into Sam. And finally Alcide and JD have their confrontation to be the next pack-master.
Hats off the Stephen Moyer on an episode well done. "Somebody That I Used to Know" was not only an entertaining episode, but a complete episode that also added some mystery and new life into the series. I'm sure the episode's script helped out a ton but Moyer really got to do a little bit of everything as far as True Blood episodes go. From shifters shifting, vampires feeding and killing, sprits crossing over, to exploring more of the fairies and their powers. Moyer even directed the first werewolf-on-werewolf sex scene between Alcide and Rikki; which was boarder line soft core porn. I think being in its fifth season and Moyer being a key part of the series cast since the pilot episode helped lessen the learning curve for him because the whole episode had the feel of pros' direction. The only minor bit of criticism I could point out is a kind of catch 22 situation in that Moyer's own performance as a conflicted Bill Compton was a little shaky at that's time. However, all things considered he did a great job directing.
Since almost each story-line got equal billing this episode I'll only go into my favourite moments rather than a little bit for each. First would have to be Jason, Sookie, and the fairy story. After Jason talks his sister into wanting to stay fey (aka fairy) the two of them re-visit Claude and the fairy club to help unlock more of Sookie's latent fairy abilities. Granted I was probably the most sceptical person when it came to this fairy angle for the show, and to a certain extent I still am a bit, but again this week I'm slowly getting won over. Without going into the fairy technical mumbo-jumbo Sookie, Jason, Claude, and a half a dozen other fairies return to the bridge where Sookie & Jason's parents were murdered to channel memory ripples. Sookie was then able to see her parents being attacked by an unknown vampire through their own eyes, and then suddenly through the eyes of the same vampire. According to Claude fairies are unable to channel vampires so after Sookie told him that he was freaked. Sookie later remembers part of her vision that helps put a name to the unknown vampire figure who is called Worlow. Apart from giving a better explanation into the whole fey universe this story-line will bring a new, possibly older, vampire character into the mix.
The other story-line I thought was the most compelling was Eric and Bill's within the council after their Lilith high. Roman's former followers have quickly transitioned to playing for the other team so to speak. Now even Bill it seems is converting to this new anti-main stream outlook. What I love about the change in this new movement Salome, Nora, and Russell have started is the unlikeliest of characters in Eric looks like to be against them. Eric already hates Russell for killing his family and add in his vision from Godric he will definitely not be a team player in episodes to come. I still think Bill is pretending to be part of Salome's movement for now, but with his suggestion to bomb the 'True Blood' manufacturing plants to help kick start their revolution is a bold move he might not be able to come back from. Eric is apparently over 1,000 years old so he is capable of single handily taking out about half of the council, including his own sister 600 year old Nora, but other than Russell (3,000 years) we still don't know how powerful Salome and some of the others are. With Bill's proposition of getting rid of the 'True Blood' supply at the very end of the episode I have to say it makes Eric's story arc ten times more exciting as he will no doubt be on his own.
I didn't really touch on Lafayette and his inclusion to the Ifrit story in this review but I can't ignore Ellis' brilliant and hilarious dialogue. Ellis' Lafayette gets this episode's quote of the week after Arlene and Holly come to see him about some spiritual help:
"Hooker I ain't in the helping business no more. I'm in the f*** off while a smoke a blunt business and business is about to pick way the f*** up."
Andrew Burns loves film and comics, and can be found writing about when those worlds converge. You can follow him on Twitter at @myAndrewBurns.