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“True Blood” — “I Wish I Was the Moon”: Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered

By Sarah Carlson | Industry | August 1, 2011 |

By Sarah Carlson | Industry | August 1, 2011 |

More humans and supernaturals than not spent Sunday’s sixth episode of “True Blood” Season Four possessed, be it through spells, curses or the fickle desires of their hearts. With such enchantments, we see a glimpse at the characters’ true natures, and it’s not always pretty. “I Wish I Was the Moon” kept the momentum of the season going strong and finally balanced the story’s weirdness, which has largely replaced its goriness, with a touch of tenderness. But with possession as a theme, joining the show’s favorites of nature and control, everyone is inevitably in for a bout of heartache.

Tommy’s case may be the most worrisome. By killing his parents in Episode Five, Tommy brought on the Skinwalker curse Luna explained previously this season: He now can shift into people, not just animals. Of all the “True Blood” denizens, he may be the worst to have this ability, other than Debbie Pelt. He can’t control shifting into Sam, but Tommy does chose to impersonate his older brother throughout the day, ordering the Merlotte’s staff around, firing Sookie and, after sleeping with Luna, kicking her out of bed. The mistaken identity storyline can only last so long, but having this trick in Tommy’s immature hands is frankly terrifying. The cost of shifting into a human appears brutal as well; the real Sam found his brother unresponsive that night in a pool of his vomit. He had been tending as a landlord to the fire that destroyed Terry and Arlene’s home and damaged Holly’s and was started, we assume, by baby Mikey or whatever or whoever the hell he is possessed with. Because Mikey was out of the house before it caught fire, sitting across the street with his creepy doll that can’t be destroyed. As Arlene hugged him, Mikey smiled at the ghost of a young black woman in ’20s/’30s garb standing in the yard, unseen by others.

In Mexico, Don Bartolo greets his grandson, Jesus, and Lafayette with the task of finding a sacrifice before the brujo will help them. When they return with a rattlesnake, Bartolo lets it bite Jesus’ face and leaves them to find a way to save his life. Lafayette quickly channels the spirit of a man, Tio Luca, and thus reveals he is a medium. He heels Jesus, speaking Spanish and staying calm, a surprise to both of them and a development that brings yet two more characters deeper into witchcraft and the supernatural. In Bon Temps, Marnie is still under lock and key at Bill’s mansion but she again channels the sorceress Antonia and witnesses her dealings with the vampire priests of 1610 Spain, who raped and fed on her and other witches. Marnie also saw the spell Antonia used against the vampires to bring them out in sun to burn, just as she burned at the stake. Luis, the vampire who discussed Antonia with the Louisiana sheriffs in Episode Five, was one of the priests who raped her back in the day. Marnie is able to quickly take control over him because she’s not Marnie anymore — what had been the occasional channeling appears to have turned into full-on possession. She, as Antonia, has an ax to grind against vampires, and their free will is for the taking.

Thanks to mail of Tara’s, Naomi tracks her down in Bon Temps and demands the real story of who Tara is and why she was posing as Toni in New Orleans. Naomi can’t bring herself to leave, however, and gets the 50-cent tour of the town before a stop at Merlotte’s, where the lovers draw looks from patrons. On this full moon night, Jessica is there to take their order, and Tara is visibly put off by her presence simply because she’s a vampire, a tension that’s been building for some time. She doesn’t have to deal with Jessica for long, though, because the baby vamp is called to Jason’s side in the woods near his home. She felt his fear, him having had her blood, and she’s there to calm him down as he worries he’s going to turn into a were-panther thanks to the bite-happy folks of Hotshot. He’s also scared of hurting those he loves, which is why he ditched the comforting Sookie at his house. Jessica and Jason are attracted to each other, her sweetness matching his cluelessness, and Jason surely could provide the physical excitement Jessica has been longing for and can’t find with Hoyt. But Jason, eventually convinced he won’t shift, walks away from the temptation.

Sookie, meanwhile, is traipsing through the woods looking for Jason. She runs into Alcide and Debbie, on their way to run with the Shreveport pack Debbie and packmaster Marcus dragged Alcide into joining. And later she runs into Eric, a happy reunion given the day’s events. Bill had discovered Sookie’s harboring of Eric thanks to a distraught Pam, and he barged in on the two at Sookie’s house as they were kissing and shedding clothing. Eric attacked him out of instinct but put his fangs away when Sookie told him Bill is his king. His allegiance and willingness to be arrested by Bill’s henchmen is the first of many surprises to weigh on Bill, who is busy balancing his political duties with the feelings he can’t help but still have for Sookie. She protests that Eric is harmless without his memory and calls Bill out on his jealousy potentially interfering with his judgment. But Bill tells Nan Flanagan that Eric represents a danger to vampires and probably is being used as a weapon by the witches. He orders the true death for the viking, who accepts his punishment with humility as he considers his past behavior. Pam, continuing to rot and becoming ever more hysterical, will have none of it, but Eric is at peace. When it’s time to die, his kindness gives Bill pause. “She still cares for you,” Eric says of Sookie. “I saw it last night.” He then encourages Bill to release Pam and take care of Sookie: “She deserves happiness with whoever can give it to her.” A plea to the heart did Bill in, because there at the end was Eric, back in Sookie’s arms in the woods for a love scene worthy of a Harlequin novel. And there was Bill, standing on his balcony, alone under the moon.

Eric in his right mind would have played the Sookie card against Bill, but the softer Eric had no agenda and spoke from a part of him that has been present all along, mostly hidden beneath the bravado he’s built during 1,000 years of living and killing. The spell on Eric shows his true nature, just as Tommy’s new ability shows his — he wants to be in charge, to have a say in things, to not just be Sam’s screw-up of a brother. Andy’s growing V addiction shows similar longings in that he wants to be taken seriously. And the spell on Pam, as it eats away at her flesh, is unleashing her vengefulness like nothing else could. She immediately tracks down Tara and Naomi at Merlotte’s and isn’t in the mood to hear Tara’s pleas of innocence regarding Marnie’s spell — “Spare me the dyke in the woods routine, Tara.” Odds are Naomi isn’t long for this world. If she dies, that will cement Tara’s possession with anger — anger with her environment, her past decisions and most importantly, vampires. She’ll be crazed, and at the rate everyone else is going, she won’t be the only one.

Favorite moments:

  • “If you ever loved me, you won’t hurt him.”

  • “Are you afraid?” “Fuck you! Pieces of me are falling off! I’m pissed!”

  • “Let me tell you a little something about King Bill. He’s a self-loathing, power-hungry, pompous little dork. And you hate his guts.”

  • “If you don’t shut the fuck up and stop fucking with me, then I’m gonna turn into a doberman and chew off your goddamn face.” “Then I will call animal control and have you put to sleep.”

  • “I ain’t never gonna forgive myself if I bite your head off.”

  • “I’m a police officer, and a were-panther! Back off!”

  • “Tell her I was born the night she found me. And because of her, I went to my true death knowing what it means to love.”

    Sarah Carlson has a front-row seat to the decline of the newspaper industry and lives in Alabama with her overly excitable Pembroke Welsh Corgi. She also is a big Neko Case fan and highly recommends her album “Blacklisted,” which contains the song “I Wish I Was the Moon.”

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    Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.