This week, I asked Arturo what it was like recapping Heroes near the end. He said in the beginning, all of his friends would head to the bar after the show because they were eager to discuss what had happened. When things spun into a decline, they stopped going to the bar afterward. Considering that I had to browbeat the Roundtable into putting in comments for this week, I think adding a bar to the mix might improve everyone’s mood. This week, Joe, Carly, Alea, and Tami try to hold on for the last few eps.
Will Russell Edgington Please Report For Duty?
Latoya: Please tell me Russell is up to an EPIC betrayal. Because I am about to start changing the damn channel or painting my toes or something. Carly: He has to be. There is just nothing about him that equals “follower.” And I may be wrong, but isn’t he the only one comparable to Salome age-wise? Alea: I believe so. I’m still utterly baffled by why she thought freeing Russell was a good idea, but the look she gave him and Steve after the latter’s attempt to say grace makes me think that she’s beginning to see the ideological chasm between them. Love the pantsuit, though.
Gratuitous Aside, #1
Alea: Tina Majorino. Siiigh. Such a freaking dreamboat. Joe: I hope, after this is all over, she isn’t a pile of goo and somehow becomes the leader of the authority. I could really get behind a technorati vamp president.
Lala The Fly Medium
Latoya: Wow, an actual normal conversation between Sookie and Lafayette. Like actual people. Alea: But she only asked him over there because she needed help. Carly: Thank you, Ghost reference! Joe: His mirror vogueing was the highlight of my Sunday.
Alea: It was blue steel times magnum to the infinity plus one power, and those eyelashes are fierce. Werrrrk. Continue reading →
The Roundtable is really not feeling this one. Sookie continues her existential crisis, we’re worried about Luna, Tara’s situation gets even more racially icky, and we don’t even know who Bill is anymore. Tami, Alea, and Kendra chose to sit this episode out, leading Joe and I to invite a new tabler – longtime reader (and friend of Joe’s) Carly – into the mix just to keep up the flow of conversation.
Carly: First off I want to thank everyone for letting me drop in and share my thoughts. I love reading the panel’s postings so I’m excited to have this chance to be part of it. Joe: We welcome you with open virtual arms, my dear! Now on to the dissection… Latoya: Something that’s been bothering me since last week – why doesn’t Sookie ask more questions when people tell her things? He didn’t say “Hey, your life is gonna be nice, normal and human.” Dude said “You’ll be fae no more.” And as we all know, you gotta read between the lines with these kinds of things. Joe: I agree. “You’ll be fae no more” could in fact mean, you’ll disappear into nothingness, or you’ll turn into a tree, or something weird and mythical like that.
Luna? Is That You?
Latoya: I really hope they give Luna something to say besides repurposing Magneto speeches. And didn’t you have to kill someone to shift into them? Maybe I am misremembering. Carly: I can’t remember the rule for shifting into other people either… Did Tommy also shift against his will? The way they’re playing this out with Luna makes it seem like a sickness. I wish she had shifted into Marcus. Now that would’ve been pretty shocking. Joe: I think the rule was that you could turn into anyone you’ve met, but if you kept doing it, you would die a horrible and painful death. I wonder what the point was of Luna turning into Sam. Was it that she was mad as hell and wasn’t gonna take it anymore? I don’t remember why exactly someone would make a change like that against her will, unless maybe she was mad and thinking about Sam too much at the same time. Latoya: Boyfriend’s guess was that she’s up the stick. The vomiting then makes sense, but the weird rippling pains don’t. And if she shifted into Sam because she’s pregnant, then wouldn’t that have also happened with Marcus? (And I just realized I am trying to grok the logistics of supernatural pregnancy. I think I’m gonna go read a book…)
The summer heat is closing in, and this season drags on. Each week, we lose more roundtable members. For episode 5.7, “In the Beginning,” only Joe, Tami, and Alea are with me to share their thoughts on an increasingly dull season.
Sookie’s Fae Powers
Joe: Half fae? That’s a marked increase from the books of about 30%. Alea: There has to be something else that makes her special. Just being half-fae doesn’t seem to be enough. Latoya: Be interesting if the vamp who killed her parents was Bill. Or maybe Eric. Joe: It will be. That’s the only reason they aren’t showing the face. She’ll find out as her and Eric have sex up the stairs again, cue crying, woe-is-me stances, and the like.
The Hate Group, Revealed
Joe: “Lamestream media?” I’ll take “Go-to GOP Satiric Phrases” for 100, Alex. Alea: This whole scene feels like such a cheap shot at rural Southern folk, a group the writers seem to think of as “real racists.” Joe: This hate group seems like a bunch of whiny idiots. And they don’t even know why a hate group is called a hate group. I really hope they aren’t going to attack Jessica. Latoya: Let’s discuss this hate group a bit more. Because WTF. What did they do, watch a couple old eps of Jerry Springer and pull together a plot arc around it? Joe: Yes, lets. I love how they stuck in a token black guy (I see you, Damien from Harry’s Law) so that the hate group doesn’t read “racist” but “supernaturalist”. P.S. I’m totally claiming the supernaturalist.tumblr.com. Alea: Token black guy, token hapa-looking guy. We finally get to see two types of PoC in a room together and they’re exercising their agency by being in a hate group [that’s all about love]. Clayton Bigsby they are not. Can the title of this roundtable be “O Hai, Shark! I’m Jumping You: Alan Ball Has Lost His GD Mind”? Continue reading →
Last week, we got to meet the folks behind the show. But unfortunately, this episode was kind of…meh. Joe, Tami, Kendra, and I pull threads from an increasingly tattered plot.
Tara and Pam Come To Terms
Latoya: “Yes’m Missy Pam?” Oh lord, Tara. Joe: She’s acknowledging the slurs for what they are…that’s at least a step in the right direction. Kendra: Did Pam just call her a dog though? Tami: I am not comfortable with this vampire version of Gone With The Wind. More than offensive, it’s inconsistent. I know Pam was put out about having a “child” to take care of, but what about the whole “no human can ever hurt you know” and gazing at Tara in her coffin stuff? Is Pam Tara’s mom or master? Joe: I think the writers [are] trying to emphasize that she’s waffling with responsibility and her “I don’t give a fuck” attitude, and the less responsible side of herself has the wheel most of the time, hurling vitriol. Notice I said “trying.”
The Ifrit: Revealed
Kendra: And here’s the part of the episode where I paused to find out exactly what an Ifrit is (being not at all well versed in Arabic or Islamic mythology). Wiki tells me that they’re essentially fire jinns. It’s great that they want to branch out in their sources of horror, but because it’s taking time away from Bon Temps (and is also taking place like 1000 miles away) I can’t get behind it the way I’d like to. Joe: I also don’t like how it seems somehow Patrick is going to get all (emphasis on all) the blame for “the incident” and the fire monster will sear him till he’s well done, but Terry is going to get out of shooting some innocent Middle Eastern woman in the face. Continue reading →
This season finally takes a turn for the interesting, with better characterization, the return of Russell Edgington, Sookie continuing her newfound journey into an actual heroine, and Tara now vamping with the best. Tami, Joe, and Alea join me to discuss.
Tami: So, do we think episode writer, Angela Robinson, helped get the stink of privilege out of this season of True Blood? According Television Without Pity recapper, Jacob Clifton, she’s a lesbian, black writer, which he believes helps things.
Joe: I can see that. In watching this episode… I don’t know I just noticed I enjoyed it more than the last ones? It was hard to pinpoint why; I don’t think I can tell when other black gay people are involved in things (that would be a great power, lol) but I think it has more to do with the quality of the writing. I hope she writes more episodes.
Latoya: Maybe it was the sign of someone finally taking this season seriously. Those scenes shot against the Authoritarian speech were damn near poetic. And this was the first episode in the season that prompted me to rewind multiple times to rewatch scenes. Clearly Angela Robinson and Michael Lehmann have a chemistry that needs to continue. Beautifully executed. But let’s actually watch the show… Continue reading →
Apologies all–between my vacation in June, Arturo’s semi-vacation this month, SDCC, Adacamp/Wikimania, and other power-out madness, we neglected to put up this roundtable last week. This is the discussion for episode four–tomorrow, we will post episode five which aired this Sunday. – LDP
Carryover–On Pam’s Slur
Latoya: Since it wasn’t called out last week, we need to talk about Pam. She straight up dropped a racial slur while describing one of her employees. As commenter Mickey pointed out:
I actually forgot to mention that in my post. When she said that I was like, “Huh!?” But then again, she used a similar slur against Tara’s girlfriend in the previous season (“yellow tail”). Does Pam have something against Asians?
Tami: That made me cringe when I heard it. I love the character of Pam. But, disturbingly, it seems that True Blood’s writers have bought into the idea that anti-P.C. (read: racism, sexism, etc.) is “edgy” and adds to the character’s bad-ass persona. They routinely put racist and sexist shit in her mouth. Racist slurs…the “gash in a dress” line…
Kendra: Knowing where she’s from–San Francisco, 1905–I wonder if she does have something against Asians. It could be a remnant, albeit a horrible one, from the era of her turning. Granted, it would show a follow through in character traits that TB hasn’t exactly excelled in in the past.
Joe: I was thinking the same thing actually. It would in fact be a terrible, yet accurate addition to her character. She did in fact have an Asian employee, so if she were really that racist, we could have gotten an indication of the racism in the flashback. It would have at least made more sense coming out of nowhere back then.
Alea: Cosign, Kendra and Joe. While the word was jarring to hear, it wasn’t anachronistic, and Ruby’s very presence in the array–along with her reaction to Pam’s introduction–make Pam’s anti-Asian racist language signify something more complicated than her just having “something against Asians.”
Latoya: But as we already know, just because something may be historically accurate doesn’t mean they will treat it with any kind of nuance or insight. It’s just another racist throwaway. At least with struggles for queer and civil rights they gave some context before abandoning plot development in favor of one-liners. Continue reading →
Michael McMillian as Steve Newlin. All images courtesy of True Blood Wikia.
Meet the new (public) boss. And Steve Newlin sure isn’t the same as the old boss. This week, the Vampire Authority made Steve Newlin the organization’s public face. Meanwhile, we got more insight into Tara’s new powers and their effect on her, and Bill and Eric took part in a particularly clever bit of product placement, albeit one with deadly implications.
Confused? You won’t be after Alea Adigweme, Kendra James, and Joseph Lamour analyze “Whatever I Am, You Made Me.” Spoiler Alert is, of course, on for everything under the cut. Continue reading →
Christopher Meloni (center) as Roman. All screencaps by Joseph Lamour. Courtesy: HBO.
This week on True Blood, it was time to Respect His Authoritah! After weeks of hype, Christopher Meloni made his debut on the show as Roman, the head of what looks to be one of the season’s major players, the Vampire Authority. Meanwhile, the show’s former Big Bad, Russell, is back on the loose–or on the mend, at least. And Bill and Eric continue to do their Starsky & Hutch routine. But will it hold up–and will the Authority hold up before Alan Ball’s all said and done? Our intrepid Roundtable–Tami Winfrey Harris, Kendra James, Joseph Lamour and Alea Adigweme–are on the case!
Kendra:Pam has an actual job to get to. Therefore, Pam is officially my favorite character.
Alea: Pam is absolutely my favorite. “I am [doing something]. I’m laughing.” So wry and no bullshit, though it was interesting to see her smile falter when Tara started eating Sookie.
Joe: It looks like Tara is reacting to Pam’s order a little like a pet who doesn’t quite understand what is being said. She’s still staying in the house–and not eating Sookie anymore, but the way she reacts to words (and well, anything) doesn’t bode well for her previous personality coming back in my opinion.
Kendra: No, I think the guesses from last week are right. We’re headed towards a violent Bubba/Drusilla hybrid.
Alea: I’m actually kind of excited about that. Tara might just get to have a little range along with her revenge?