Grief offers no relief in True Blood’s ‘Lost Cause’

Bill promises his bride that he'll survive the war. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

Bill promises his bride that he’ll survive the war. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

This week, the residents of Bon Temps confront their grief head on. Sookie mourns Alcide, Lettie Mae mourns Tara, and Arlene mourns Terry. Andy makes the biggest decision of his life, while Eric and Pam continue their quest to find — and kill — Sarah Newland, the crazy Christian we all love to hate.

This fifth episode of the final season of HBO’s True Blood series focuses on love and loss, while we all start to come to terms with the death of some of our favorite characters as well as the end of the long-running television show. It’s a more restrained — and less hilarious — episode than last week, but we can only hope that we’re being set up for more over the top fun in the weeks ahead.

Spoilers ahead – you’ve been warned!

Eric releases Willa after her temper tantrum. “It’s like being kicked in the cooch by a wallaby,” says Pam, of the releasing process. Willa gives up the name and whereabouts of Sarah Newland’s vampire sister, Amber, which should help the dynamic duo find the Christian they want to kill.

Poor Ginger, even with her 15 years of service, doesn’t get to go along. “You know what a sex slave is without the sex?” she asks. Pam lets her have it: “A slave.” The two vamps roll their eyes and head out for Dallas, while Ginger is unceremoniously slid off the top of the travel coffin. Boy, can that woman scream.

Written by Craig Chester
Directed by Howard Deutch

The boys are getting to know each other. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

The boys are getting to know each other. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

LaFayette and James show up to help a bereaved Sookie, and get her up to sleep. Sookie can’t handle her empty house, and LaLa will be there in the morning. What a sweetie.

Sookie wakes up to find a house full of food. Alcide’s dad is there, tells Sookie that he’ll help her go through Alcide’s things. LaFayette, James, and Suzy are throwing a party to help Sookie’s house feel less empty. Sookie’s not super impressed, even when Bill shows up bearing flowers.

Pam and Eric show up at Amber Newland’s house. We get some backstory: Amber has been disowned and disappeared, though she gets a cash stipend each month to stay hidden. Sarah is in Dallas, hiding out with the sisters’ parents, who are going to a political fundraiser full of assholes, but no vampires — they’ll never get in, says Amber. “You don’t know us, sweetheart,” says Eric. “We can be assholes.”

Lettie Mae can’t quite convince her husband to go to Sookie’s party, which he fears will be full of alcohol and vampire blood. She grabs the Benadryl from the cabinet. So sneaky, is Lettie Mae.

Party is in full swing at Sookie’s place, designed to deny death it’s day. The three ladies that were stuck in a dungeon

Flashback time: Bill Compton back before the Civil War. Apparently, Bill is a bit too friendly with the colored folk. His other white friend is fomenting the revolt to secede from the union. Bill is not amused, calling this a lost cause. The northerners, he says, will destroy their town, scorch the town.

Sookie comes downstairs – Violet the bad-boundaries vampire makes Sookie feel even worse by telling her that Violet’s lost hundreds of boyfriends.

Alcide’s dad calls his late son arrogant, but a good man who’d fight for those worth fighting for.

Lettie Mae uses the Benadryl to knock out the reverend and sneak out to the party. LaFayette tries to get her out of there, but Sookie calls Lettie Mae back to say a few words about Tara. Lettie Mae tells Alcide’s dad that his son died a hero, just like Tara. Lettie Mae reminds everyone what a crappy mother was, and how heroic Tara was to sacrifice herself for her horrible mom.

Holly said yes. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

Holly said yes. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

Andy goes out to talk to Jessica, who’s outside feeling miserable about herself. Andy forgives Jessica, and tells her to stop beating herself up. Andy says life’s too short to always look back, and he needs her help to go forward. He asks Jessica for a ring so he can propose to Holli. Jessica suggests using Sookie’s grandmother’s ring, which was originally left to Jason, even though he’s now Violet’s forever lover.

Andy makes the sweetest wedding proposal to Holli, who accepts before he actually pops the question. She agrees to marry him even after the official question.

Sookie is happy for the new couple, but this whole party is a bit more happy than she can take, in her grief. Bill shoots lingering looks at Sookie while she emotes.

Arlene and Sookie bond over recently deceased significant others, while Alcide’s dad eavesdrops outside the door. Outside on the porch-bench, James confides in LaFayette how Jessica rebuffed his advances, calling him a “wet blanket.” LaLa says Jessica’s “little bit of love” is like paying the minimum on a credit card – you never get ahead. LaLa takes this opportunity to find out whether James was in love with the boy he was beaten for before James was turned. James and LaFayette kiss when James admits that yes, he and Danny were more than just friends.

Eric and Pam ready themselves for the political ball. “Oh, my, god,” says Pam in her sparkly dress. “I’m a republicunt.” Getting Eric into his own fancy clothes, Pam discovers that he’s stage two of Hepatitis V. “I’m going to die, Pam,” he says. “You’re going to have to accept that.”

The vampire that saved Arlene thinks she’s the most beautiful woman he’s seen in 300 years. She responds with a, “I’ve got to go tinkle” moment that’s classic Arlene.

Jessica starts looking for James, and finds James and LaFayette going at it outside near a car. Jess freaks the hell out. Jason rescinds James’ invitation to the house, James ask LaLa to be alone. LaLa reminds James he knows where he lives. LaFayette gets up in Jessica’s face and says that Jess didn’t know enough about James and that it’s high time for LaLa, who all the straight, white people get to make fun of, to get his own piece of happiness. Why is that so hard for everyone to understand?

Jess, ever the sweet heart, can see his point. LaLa says, “If you don’t love him, let him go, and I will take over from here.” Maybe LaFayette is right, thinks Jess. Jason points out that they did meet in a vampire concentration camp. He then confides in Jessica how weird it is that Violet is so off. Jason pulls off a funny Transylvanian accent to tell his story. Bottom line, Jason isn’t ready to marry crazy Violet. Jessica kisses him and they’re off to the love land.

Sookie starts hearing good things from the minds of folks at the party. They’re starting to see her as a tragic hero, the one who’s lost more than anyone.

Flashback to Bill Compton, running the underground railroad, leading a bunch of folks, white and black, to the north. Bill’s slave friend gets shot by Bill’s white friend. Bill’s pissed, burns the map the dude on the horse wanted.

Together again? Not yet. Photo: John P. Johnson/HBO

Together again? Not yet. Photo: John P. Johnson/HBO

Sookie comes out of the house, interrupting Bill’s reverie. She’s drunk, but happy. Bill tells Sookie that she’s done more for mainstreaming vampires and humans than he’s ever been able to accomplish in decades. Sookie gives Bill a big, happy, drunken hug. They’re headed down the road to lovey times again. At least until Violet returns and catches them doing the nasty in the bedroom.

Lettie Mae loses it and stabs Willa in the shoulder to get her blood. The lady just does not learn. Nicole steps up and calls out the whole town for being insane. People are dead, traumatized, and hurting, and these folks are having a party. “This shit doesn’t happen in other towns,” she says.

It's kismet, these two. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

It’s kismet, these two. Photo: John P. Johnson/ HBO

Pam and Eric (decked out in full Texas drag, complete with string tie and huge cowboy hat) end up at the Bush fundraiser, looking for Sarah’s parents. Sarah finds her “mommy” in the bathroom, and starts begging for help. Sarah’s looking for help from Laura Bush, but Bush doesn’t want to help Sarah, who’s the monster who created the Hep-V vampires. Sarah tells mommy that the Yakuza are after her.

Eric glamours Sarah’s daddy, just in time for the Yakuza to show up. This is over the top crazy fun, and Eric and Pam are there to witness it all. The Yakuza bad guys gun down Sarah’s father and mother, while she runs down the hallway and right into Eric’s strangling embrace. Eric makes short work of the Yakuza, dropping Sarah and then ripping the face off the bossman. Gory!

After the party, Sookie finds Alcide’s leather jacked on her bed and puts it on, just to feel his arms around her again. The music is soft and low, full of violins, as she strokes the pillow where he last lay his pretty head.

Everyone dies. Photo: John P. Johnson/HBO

Everyone dies. Photo: John P. Johnson/HBO

Bill, in the meantime, is in the bathtub, flashing back to the Civil War days again. He’s saying goodbye to his wife, headed off to fight. He promises that he’ll survive the war and come back to her. As his reverie ends, he gets out of the tub, then rubs off the steamy mirror, only to discover that he, too, has been infected with Hepatitis V. Everyone is gonna die, apparently

Cut to black. Beck’s “Lost Cause” takes us out and through the credits.

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About the author

Rob LeFebvreAnchorage, Alaska-based freelance writer and editor Rob LeFebvre is Cult of Mac's Culture Editor. He has contributed to various tech, gaming and iOS sites, including 148Apps, VentureBeat, and Paste Magazine. Feel free to find Rob on Twitter @roblef

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