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‘True Blood’ Review: “I Found You”

True Blood Final Season I Found You Review Eric
HBO

True Blood’ season 7 spurts out its 2nd episode of the final year, “I Found You,” as Team Sookie investigates a nearby town left behind by the infected vampires, while Lettie Mae continues her search for Tara, and the Bon Temps townspeople form a vigilante mob to deal with the growing threat.

Last week’s ‘True Blood’ finale, “Jesus Gonna Be Here,” saw the Hep-V vampire attack taking its toll on Bon Temps, while Pam searched for Eric, and Sookie made a shocking admission.

Read on for your in-depth recap of everything you need to know about ‘True Blood’ season 7, episode 2, “I Found You”!

Jason dreams of tracking down Eric to a remote villa, telling the Nordic vampire that despite his relationship with Violet, he can’t get Eric out of his mind. The two fall into bed together, before Jason wakes up, having dozed off in church. Outside, Sookie volunteers to help Andy by pointing to a dead girl in the woods might lead them to the H-vampires last target, while Sam tasks the town with keeping busy by helping to repair the damage done to Bellefleur’s.

Back at Fangtasia, the infected vampires argue over Ronnie drinking more than his share of blood, before the head vampire switches an older woman named Betty to reap their next victim. Downstairs, Arlene and Holly recognize the woman as their children’s former teacher, reasoning that they can find a way out of the basement. Out in the Bon Temps woods, Sookie and the others identify the dead girl as Mary Beth Grant of neighboring Saint Alice, a town Sam and Andy had lost touch with days earlier. Meanwhile, Lettie Mae pays a visit to check up on Lafayette, secretly hoping to obtain more vampire blood to reconnect with Tara. Lafayette dismisses her claims, and sends Lettie Mae away.

Tired of taking Sam’s orders, Vince attempts to rally the crowd at Bellefleur’s against the supernatural goings-on of the town, and the leadership of Sam and Andy Bellefleur. Adilyn telepathically overhears one of the townspeople reasoning that they can arm up at the police station, before Adilyn drags Wayne out to go warn Officer Kenya. Meanwhile at Fangtasia, Arlene and Holly attempt to reason with Betty the next time she comes down for a victim. Though initially hesitant, Betty agrees to help them escape at the first possible opportunity.

Sookie and the others arrive to Saint Alice to find the town completely abandoned, boarded up and unaided by FEMA, before Sookie herself discovers a mass grave containing the leftover townspeople. The group visits the home of the deceased girl, wherein Sookie reads her diary to discover she’d fallen in love with a vampire, just before the infected attacked the town. Sookie recalls her own past with Bill, while the others lament the dire fate the people of Saint Alice had fallen to. Back in Bon Temps, Adilyn successfully warns Kenya about the coming mob, but the officer soon changes her tune when the townspeople remind her Andy passed her over for promotion in favor of Jason. Kenya attempts to restrain Adilyn, leading Jessica to feel the girl’s fear, while the rest of the townspeople gleefully arm up.

Lettie Mae has the idea to burn herself on a skillet, forcing a reluctant Willa to offer her blood to heal the wound. Once high on the substance, Lettie Mae sees a vision of a crucified and snake-adorned Tara, whose words become lost in the haze. Back at Fangtasia, Betty volunteers to be the sleep monitor for her fellow vampires, sneaking downstairs to free Arlene and the others at an opportune moment. Arlene agrees to feed a weakened Betty to aid in the escape, but Betty quickly grows ravenous, and ultimately dissolves to the disease.

Andy returns home surprised to find Jessica in the attic upstairs, to which Jessica insists that she hadn’t hurt Adilyn, but his daughter remains in danger nonetheless. Meanwhile, Sookie sneaks out of the house during Alcide’s shower to head to the Compton manner, asking if Bill can still sense her fear should she find herself in trouble. Finally, Pam tracks Eric to a valley in France, and is horrified to discover that a weakened Eric is stricken with Hepatitis V.

OUR REVIEW:

Last week’s premiere brought a bit of mixed reception for multiple reasons; for one, it’d prove near-impossible for ‘True Blood’ to regain the kind of intimate, layered storytelling it did well through some of the early seasons, now burdened with an over-abundance of characters to serve. For another, ‘True Blood’s seventh season premiere had a great deal of carryover from the season 6 finale, making last week’s events a bit too chaotic and rushed to resonate with any kind of sense of narrative momentum (see the glossing over of Tara’s death).

This week definitely slowed things down a bit, and gave more opportunities to emotionally connect to the story at hand, for all its dire overtones. The mystery angle gave a nice vantage point into the post-apocalyptic conditions characters could only exposit in dialogue last week, as we see this time around a sense that even the United States government finds itself overwhelmed enough by the H-vamp threats that many small towns are left to fend for themselves. Part of that emotional resonance emerges from Sookie’s own sense of guilt, feeling responsible yet conflicted over a vampire relationship that may well have doomed the town. It’s not exactly subtle, and more than a bit crass to have the final season leaning on early season flashbacks for a sense of the series’ roots, but under these conditions, it’s more of a clear path than we had last week.

Seeing Sam, Andy and Jason grieve for their own lost loved ones was a nice moment as well, particularly against the more heated reactions from the human characters back in Bon Temps. We like the idea of the put-upon side characters finally taking matters into their own hands, though for the moment at least it would help to have a more sympathetic character leading the charge, so as to sharpen the mob mentality into a stronger message overall. We haven’t seen this “Vince” anytime before last week, nor have we any reason to sympathize with Maxine Fortenberrry, and the movement seems to suffer without any real voice of reason.

Elsewhere, it was nice to see Rutina Wesley at least keeping with the series in some form, however the mystery of her demise ends up playing out with the grating Lettie Mae stepping in the spotlight. Tara’s wasn’t the only major return however, as we finally got confirmation of Eric’s survival, though he now appears to be infected with the same Hep-V virus that seems to serve as a catalyst for the season. As with Tara, it’s clear the series wants to drag either return through the mystery mud for another week or two, so hopefully at some point we’ll actually see the circumstances that led Eric to his current predicament, and find some plan of action for the final season to carry on with.

Likely the weakest story of the hour owed to Arlene, Holly and Nicole’s trials in the Fangtasia basement, as the thread fell victim to ‘True Blood’’s usual curse of including characters for the sake of inclusion, rather than to advance their story. After all, putting a more human face to the H-vampires only left them in the same predicament by hour’s end, seemingly made more dire for the lack of any hope. All in all, “I Found You” made for a stronger episode than last week’s chaotic premiere, but still needs another episode or so to find the season’s legs, given all the wandering threads.

Well, what say you? Did you get your fill of fang-banging ‘True Blood’ action?  What did you think about tonight’s premiere “I Found You”? Join the discussion in the comments, and check back again next Sunday for another all-new recap and review of ‘True Blood’ season 7′s latest, “Fire in the Hole”!

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