The Season 3 finale of True Blood was kind of an understated affair and/or a mess — you choose! As in past seasons, a big-bad villain was dispatched (R.I.P., Russell), but instead of providing any semblance of satisfying closure, his death was a mere side dish to several other incremental developments that appear to be setting up Season 4. In the meantime, we're left with quite a few burning questions:
Is Russell actually dead? We see Eric silver and bury Russell in concrete, but certainly vampires have escaped from greater peril. Will Denis O'Hare be back for Season 4? My gut says no, but wouldn't it be something? His is the one story I'd like to see more of.
Where's Tara going? Her parking-lot flashback — to the macabre deaths of Miss Jeannette, Eggs and Franklin Mott — remind us that Tara has had it pretty tough of late. So who can blame her for wanting to leave town? I hope she finds some fun next season — she certainly has the right hairdo for it now.
What's up with Lafayette? That V trip isn't all that's ailing Lala. When he finally tells Jesus about all the freaky things he's been seeing (blood on Sam's hands, Rene choking Arlene), Jesus has some news of his own: he's a brujo, a male witch.
Did Sam shoot Tommy? After discovering that his brother has crossed him yet again, this time by breaking into his safe, Sam kind of loses it and goes after the little thief with a gun. We watch as Sam pulls the trigger, but clearly it's just a tranquilizer gun, right? There's no way that Sam is killing the only family he knows. He'll have no Season 4 story line!
Is Jason going to save Hotshot? Two things have made Jason's story remotely watchable this season: 1) his budding romance with Crystal and 2) his attempts at becoming a cop. In one fell swoop, the writers have, it appears, eliminated both, instead saddling him with what is sure to be the most leaden part of every episode next season: watching Jason save Hotshot. Ugh.
Is Hoyt and Jessica's new house haunted? Let's put aside for a moment that lame intervention that Maxine, Summer and Hoyt's old guidance counselor staged. When we last saw Maxine, she was buying a shotgun, presumably with wooden bullets, so I sure hope that Hoyt didn't send his ma a change of address card, because he and Jessica are moving in together! Their new place has but one flaw: a creepy babydoll left behind in the living room, sure to indicate impending doom.
Is Bill going to kill the Queen? Wait, I thought Sookie already knew that the Queen sent Bill? At any rate, she does now, and she ain't happy about it. Bill might redeem himself by killing Sophie-Anne Matrix-style, but wouldn't it be more interesting to see Bill on the outs for a little while?
Where did Sookie go? Sookie makes it clear that she has had enough of vampires, which, well, wouldn't you have by now? In response, she disinvites both Bill and Eric from her home and seeks solace at Gram's grave. Claudine, Sookie's fairy godmother (like, really), finds her there and sweeps her off to Fairyland. Now if we had seen a bit more of that during this hour, I might have less to complain about. But we didn't.
I'm a very forgiving True Blood viewer, but looking back over Season 3, I have to say, it's been kind of a letdown. There were satisfying moments here and there (most of them came courtesy of Denis O'Hare), but I had high hopes that Alan Ball & Co. would take the big pile of characters and plot strands they presented us with back in June and weave them together into a tight, logical narrative fabric.
But here we are in September and just one of those 34 story lines found closure — if Russell is indeed dead. On the flip side, Lafayette, Arlene and Jason — three characters of whom I'm quite fond — will all be saddled with the same story lines next season, and I'm already as sick of them as Sookie is of vampires. Let's hope the next nine months makes me miss Bon Temps.
What did you think of "Evil Is Going On"? Did you hanker for more closure? Are you excited to see how the pending stories play out next season?