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- DVD: True Blood Season 2
- Rating: R
- Starring: Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Sam Trammell, Ryan Kwanten, Alexander Skarsgård
- Written By: Various
- Directed By: Various
- Distributor: HBO Home Entertainment
- Original Year of Release: TV (2009), DVD (2010)
- Extras: See Below
- Series: True Blood
True Blood Season 2 DVD Review
Bon Temps is heating up
By Tim Janson
May 26, 2010
HBO’s True Blood Season Two
The big question for season two of True Blood was if it could avoid the dreaded sophomore jinx. True Blood ratcheted up everything in season two…more characters, more elaborate plots, but it made it all work with outstanding performances, witty scripts, and some of the quirkiest humor ever seen on TV, becoming HBO’s most-watched show.
Season two had three main plots, two of which completely took place outside of the small-town confines of Bon Temps. First, Jason Stackhouse has been recruited into the vampire-hating evangelical Fellowship of the Sun Church and leaves home to attend a leadership conference at the church’s Dallas headquarters. There, he is initiated into the cult’s inner circle by Reverend Steve Newlin and his wife Sarah, who are impressed by Jason’s dedication.
Second, Eric Northman, the Sheriff of Area 5, enlists the aid of Sookie and Bill Compton to travel to Dallas to try and find Eric’s maker Godric, a 2000 year-old vampire who they suspect has been abducted by the Fellowship of the Sun.
In the final plot, Maryann Forester, who came to town in season one, is revealed to be an ancient supernatural character of Greek myth called a maenad. Using her mind-control ability, Maryann soon has nearly the entire town under her spell, turning them into black-eyed zombies and having them engage in drunken orgies. This includes people getting naked who have no earthly business getting naked on film. We’ll also find out why Maryann is after Sam Merlotte who learns he’s not the only shapeshifter in town.
While Sookie and Bill’s relationship is still the focal point of the show, season two gave much of the rest of the cast a chance to excel. In particular Alexander Skarsgård shined in his role as Eric Northmen. The badass sheriff showed uncharacteristic emotion and genuine love for his maker Godric. In flashbacks we see Eric as a Viking warrior and the moment he was turned by Godric,
Ryan Kwanten as Jason was also a standout. His performance this season was far different than the town man-whore he played in season one. In fact, Jason has only one brief sex scene the entire year. He has some of the funniest scenes of the season when he teams with drunken detective Andy Bellefleur to try and save the people of Bon Temps from Maryann.
Evan Rachel Wood makes an appearance as the Vampire Queen of Louisiana. While her appearance is brief, she steals the show forcing first Bill, and then Eric to sit in on her marathon game of Yahtzee.
Bill and Sookie’s relationship continues to expand and grow stronger as Sookie brings out even more humanity in him. Their relationship is put to the test when Bill’s maker Lorena returns with the intent of getting him under her power again. This is the great appeal of True Blood. Whether the characters are major or minor, there’s nothing disposable. Even the small roles are important and enjoyable. One of those is Jessica, the young vampire made by Bill in season one. Her role is both funny and sympathetic as she comes to terms with being a vampire.
And finally there is Anna Paquin herself as Sookie. She is the rock of the show, bringing a quiet calmness and strength to every scene she is in. It’s clear that Sookie is more than just a human who can read minds. Even Maryann cannot figure out what exactly Sookie is…
True Blood Season Two not only topped its first season it blew it out of the water to become the best show on premium cable TV (Sorry Dexter!).
The Five DVD set features audio commentaries on seven of the twelve episodes with a variety of cast and crewmembers. There are also two featurettes:
Fellowship of the Sun: Reflections of the Light (12:45) is four short vignettes hosted by the Reverend Newlin and his wife Sarah preaching about the evils of vampirism.
Vampire Report: Special Edition (23:40) is a faux tabloid TV style news show reporting on various issues important to vampires such as co-existing with humans, and the first vampire actor to star in a TV show.
The featurettes are the only weakness to the set. While they are cute, it would have been nice to see some serious features or interviews with the cast.