Episode: True Blood 3.05 – “Trouble”
Original Air Date: July 18, 2010
Screencaps by marishna.
There certainly is a lot going on in this season of True Blood! Lucky for me, I have the opportunity to talk about a couple of this season’s episodes, including 3.05, “Trouble,” which aired on HBO on July 18. Why am I here pontificating about True Blood, you may ask? Fandomania’s resident True Blood expert, Summer, has been extremely busy with various family matters and as a result I’m going to do a little catching up for our readers. But don’t worry too much; Summer will be back to review True Blood episode 3.07, “Hitting the Ground,” which aired on HBO this past Sunday.
As a relative newcomer to True Blood (I started watching about a month ago and rapidly made my way through both the first and second seasons, as well as all of the episodes of season three aired to date), this season is a lot to take in. In episode 3.05, “Trouble,” various seemingly unrelated subplots begin to converge into the type of organized chaos that this show does so well. As we all know, Sookie (Anna Paquin) has succeeded in dragging the werewolf Alcide (Joe Manganiello) into the cloud of danger that inevitably surrounds her, and in episode 3.05, “Trouble,” she pushes her new accomplice even further in her (often frustrating) effort to save any- and everyone that she meets.
As a result, Sookie’s quest to rescue Bill (Stephen Moyer) from whatever fate has befallen him at the hands of Russell Edgington (Denis O’Hare), the King of Mississippi, is now intertwined with a somewhat misguided effort to thwart the V-addicted werewolves that stole Alcide’s girlfriend, Debbie Pelt (Brit Morgan), and branded her as a member of their pack. As is often the case, Sookie’s actions have various unintended negative side effects due to our heroine’s seemingly uncontrollable, compulsive habit of barreling ahead with her own plans regardless of the advice or concern of others. Unbeknownst to Sookie, she and Tara (Rutina Wesley) are being held under the same roof while Franklin (James Frain) completes his work for Russell (luring Sookie to Mississippi) and refocuses his attentions on Sookie’s best friend.
Franklin is by far my favorite new character from season three. The reason why is best summed up by an interaction between Russell and Franklin that takes place during this episode:
Franklin: This one is spectacularly different. She’s such a f–king disaster, we could be twins! The attraction is electric!
Russell: Franklin, you’re a huge freak, but I like your work.
Franklin is a self-admitted train wreck, and one with an adorable accent and a tendency to use words like “strumpet” to describe the object of his affection. As if that weren’t enough, Franklin is also hilariously funny, as his pride in his vampiric texting abilities demonstrates, and his intentions towards Tara threaten to transform her from an annoying, self-pitying blood bag into something worthy of viewers’ attention. I must admit that my heart skipped a beat when Franklin proposed his plan to Tara and I saw an opportunity for her to become a truly interesting character. We’ll just have to wait for now to see whether or not that will happen (I’m avoiding spoilers here. You’re welcome).
Eric (Alexander Skarsgård) has also made his way to the King of Mississippi’s realm in search of Bill, but for very different reasons than Sookie. In order to save Pam’s (Kristin Bauer) life, Eric has pinned the V trade rampant in his territory on Bill, citing the vampire’s recent disappearance as proof of his involvement. The whole ordeal smacks of larger powers at work, and even Eric and Bill’s history of butting heads wouldn’t justify the Sheriff’s actions. Something big is coming.
While all of this drama is unfolding in Mississippi, some interesting events take place back in Bon Temps. In a nutshell, Lafayette (Nelsan Ellis) receives a surprise visitor at Merlotte’s, Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) and Arlene (Carrie Preston) have a run-in while on the job, Jason (Ryan Kwanten) falls for a mysterious new girl named Crystal (Lindsay Pulsipher), and Sam finally starts to figure out the strange, unhealthy relationship between his brother, Tommy (Marshall Allman), and his biological parents, Melinda (J. Smith-Cameron) and Joe Lee (Cooper Huckabee).
The romantic development between Lafayette and his mother’s orderly, Jesus (Kevin Alejandro), is extremely cute, especially given Lafayette’s characterization as a loner and an outcast, but the awkwardness depicted between the two men will make some viewers squirm. At the same time, it’s nice to see the softer side of some of Bon Temps’s residents, and the hesitant concern that Sam Merlotte displays for his newfound brother, Tommy, is no exception. Without giving away the details of the subplot involving Sam’s biological family, I will say that I like where the story is going and I’m very interested to see how it plays out. Sam has been an incredible a-hole since losing Sookie to Bill, and the obvious affection he feels for Tommy is a welcome change.
Episode 3.05, “Trouble,” highlights Tommy’s potential to be a very compelling character on True Blood. Although I think that Jessica and Hoyt (Jim Parrack) make an adorable couple, the idea of Jessica and Tommy hinted at in this episode intrigues me. Tommy’s open-mindedness about vampires, probably the result of his own abilities, is exactly what Bon Temps, Merlotte’s, and Jessica all need, especially given Arlene’s obvious fear of vampires in general and Jessica in particular. I am a bit concerned about the direction that Jessica is heading in during Bill and Eric’s absence, but Deborah Ann Woll is such a knockout that I don’t really care if she continues to feed on humans. And if she glamours them, I doubt they’ll care, either.
Rating: 4 / 5 Stars