TRUE BLOOD 4.09 ‘Let’s Get Out of Here’

Sookie finds an unexpected ally as Antonia plans a major assault on Bill at a vampire tolerance event.

Blair Marnellby Blair Marnell

Episode Title: "Let's Get Out of Here"

Writer: Brian Buckner
 
Director: Romeo Tirone
 
Previously on "True Blood":

Antonia (Fiona Shaw) completely took over Marnie's body and recruited Tara Thornton (Rutina Wesley) for her new new coven. Anticipating Antonia's next move, Bill Compton (Stephen Moyer) ordered his subjects to restrain themselves with silver before Antonia and the coven could cast a spell that would force the vampires to commit suicide by emerging during the day. Bill even warned his former rival, Eric Northman (Alexander Skarsgard) and Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin). During the spell, only one vampire killed herself and Jason Stackhouse (Ryan Kwanten) saved Bill's progeny, Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) when she broke free from her chains.

Although Jason was drawn to Jessica romantically, he rejected her when she broke up with his best friend, Hoyt (Jim Parrack). Elsewhere, Sam Merlotte (Sam Trammell) reconciled with Luna (Janina Gavankar) and her daughter before being threatened by ex-husband, Marcus Bozeman (Dan Buran) — the leader of the Shreveport werewolves. Lafayette Reynolds (Nelsan Ellis) also found himself possessed by the spirit of Mavis (Nondumiso Tembe), a murdered young woman who used Lafayette's body to steal the baby of Terry (Todd Lowe) and Arlene Bellefleur (Carrie Preston).

Meanwhile, Sookie convinced Eric to help Bill fight Antonia while Debbie Pelt (Brit Morgan) made Alcide Herveaux (Joe Manganiello) promise to stay away from the vampires. In the confrontation between the two sides, Bill offered peace but Antonia secretly cast a spell before Sookie warned Bill what was happening. During the ensuing chaos, Antonia placed a spell on Eric and Sookie was seriously wounded by gunfire. As Bill was restrained by two coven members, Alcide emerged and carried Sookie to safety… which was witnessed by Debbie in secret.

Story:

As Alcide runs with Sookie in his arms, Bill speeds up behind him and grabs Sookie himself, knocking over Alcide in the process. Alcide growls as he follows Bill into Sookie's house and finds her non-responsive to Bill's attempts to feed her his blood and heal her. At the Moon Goddess emporium, Tara asks Antonia why she didn't take Bill's peace offering as the dead witch shows off her control of Eric. Tara and Holly Cleary (Lauren Bowles) speak out against Antonia's actions, but some of the coven members agree with her. And the witch won't let anyone leave before her planned attack of a vampire tolerance event the following night.

Back at Sookie's home, she awakes after Bill's blood heals her. Alcide tries to make her see that her association with vampires is destroying her, but she practically ignores him before asking Bill to search for Eric. Alcide then leaves in disgust. At Luna's home, Sam convinces Luna to bring her daughter Emma (Chloe Noelle) with them for an inpromptu camping trip to avoid a return visit by Marcus. Later at Merlotte's, Tommy (Marshall Allman) is writing a goodbye note for Sam when Marcus comes in with another threat for Sam to meet him later. Tommy sarcastically agrees to pass on the message.

At Bill's mansion, Nan Flanagan (Jessica Tuck) arrives and she is stunned when he relates the latest events to her and she even says that Bill is a more incompetent leader than former Queen Sophie-Anne. Nan also refuses to postpone the vampire tolerance event the next night despite Bill's reservations. During the day, Sookie has a blood induced dream about Eric and Bill as she realizes that she loves both of them and she urges them to both be hers instead of regarding her as their sole possession. In Hoyt's home, the possessed Lafyette shows up with Arlene's baby and chases him from the house with a gun stolen from Andy Bellefleur (Chris Bauer).

Jason and Andy race to the scene, but Andy is once again high on V and his erratic behavior makes the situation worse. Terry and Arlene also show up at Hoyt's house in a panic before Jesus Velasquez (Kevin Alejandro) arrives. Jesus enters the home and he convinces Mavis' spirit that the Bellefleurs' child is not her own. He also learns that Mavis and her child were murdered and buried nearby. After convincing Mavis to return the baby, the assembled men dig up the bodies of Mavis and her baby before Jesus releases Mavis from Lafayette's body. Everyone there watches in amazement as the spirits of Mavis and her child depart this world.

Elsewhere, a visibly distraught Debbie scores some V and heads over to Sookie's house. Much to Sookie's surprise, Debbie says that she wants to help Sookie and Sookie's telepathic powers seem to confirm her intent. Together, they travel to Marnie's emporium. And while Debbie engages Antonia at the front of the store with the promise of aid from the werewolves against the vampires, Sookie sneaks in the back and finds Eric. Although Eric's new personality seems intact, he is unable to act against Marnie and Sookie comes face-to-face with a gun wielding Tara. Realizing that the trick has been exposed, Debbie tells Antonia that she brought Sookie to her.

Telepathically, Sookie hears Tara say that the coven is now being held against their will by Antonia and she warns Sookie about Antonia's plans to attack the vampire tolerance event. Tara also telepathically urges Sookie to charge her so that her escape will seem credible. Debbie and Sookie both get out of the store, but Debbie seems disappointed that she wasn't able to leave Sookie behind. At Bill's mansion, Jason shows up with a box of Jessica's things from Hoyt. Both make a slight attempt to fight their attraction, but Jason and Jessica end up making love in the back of his truck rather quickly. Elsewhere, "Sam" shows up to answer Marcus' request and he finds himself surrounded by several werewolves, including Alcide.

"Sam" seems unusually flippant in the face of Marcus' threats and mouths off to him. In response, Marcus and the other werewolves (minus Alcide) nearly beat him to death until he reverts to his real form as Tommy. Alcide then alienates the rest of the pack by taking Tommy for medical treatment. At the grand vampire event, Antonia uses Eric to lure the other vampire guards there into succumbing to her control. During Bill's speech, Sookie barges in and screams that it's a trap. Eric and the other controlled vampires then enter the room and begin their bloody assault as Sookie pleads for Bill to run.

Breakdown:

During the promotional buildup for this episode, HBO declined to release any footage that confirmed Sookie's survival from last week's cliffhanger. That was somewhat disingenuous considering how easily it was wrapped up after the opening scene. Sookie's recovery from the gunshot was so fast that I kept expecting it to be revealed as a fever dream she was having.

Sookie's later dream was a welcome return of Eric's original persona for the first time in weeks. And it was also a revealing look at Sookie's desires. In her subconscious, she's already made the decision that she loves both Bill and Eric and she wants to have both of the vampires in her life. To a certain extent, Sookie is right that there is a double standard against a woman taking on two lovers simultaneously. But it also shows that she no longer views her relationships within the lens of traditional human morality. For Sookie, human and vampire relationships are an alternative lifestyle that she seems determined to pursue regardless of the consequences. Alcide may be correct that the vampires will ultimately get her killed, but Sookie just can't stop letting them into her heart.

Alcide was prominent in three storylines this week, which makes him seem like he's about to get a bigger push in this series. Alcide is clearly holding a major torch for Sookie and he seems increasingly racist against vampires despite his earlier friendship (or working relationship) with Eric. The cold way that Sookie ignores Alcide's warning was a little surprising. She didn't even thank him for saving her life. And yet I still doubt that's going to be enough to get Alcide to fully stay out of Sookie's life.

For his own plotline, Alcide expressed a desire to move up in the Shreveport pack only as a way to appease Debbie. He also seems blissfully unaware of just of unstable Debbie is becoming over his perceived betrayal with Sookie. But more importantly, Alcide stood up to Marcus and the other pack members and took Tommy — a complete stranger to him — away to safety. That can't have gone over well with Marcus, but Alcide seems to naturally be the Alpha Wolf in any pack.

Debbie Pelt's gesture to Sookie was an interesting surprise, but I still doubt Debbie's sincerity. I believe that Debbie was able to fool Sookie's telepathic powers by thinking what she wanted Sookie to hear in her thoughts. At the emporium, Debbie seemed disappointed that Sookie had escaped the coven. And now Debbie's actions could also imperil the Shreveport clan if Antonia thinks that they've sided with the vampires against her. That said, I really enjoyed Sookie and Debbie as an unlikely team. Too bad it probably won't last much longer.

These last few weeks have been a revelation for Fiona Shaw, who looks like she's having the time of her life as the increasingly malevolent Antonia. Her method of keeping the coven members under her thumb was very entertaining and it had the added benefit of making Tara and Holly more sympathetic. The one downside to Antonia is that she seems almost too powerful now and it's going to take some very clever writing to make sure that her eventual downfall is believable.

Through most of this episode, I had written off the Lafayette/Mavis possession story as a failed experiment, especially after nearly a full season of subplots brought events to this point. But the scene between Jesus and Mavis in the house turned the entire sequence around and generated some sympathy for Mavis once her true fate was revealed. Nelsan Ellis also gets props for the hilarious moment in which Mavis realized that she was in a man's body.

Jason also had the chance to show off his more competent side during the siege of Hoyt's house and his subsequent confrontation with Andy over his V addiction. And yet, Jason showed that he's still ruled by his sexual desires when he ended up sleeping with Jessica just after seeing Hoyt. At the very least, it's an improvement over the Hot Shot storyline from earlier this season.

Given his relationship with Sam, I'm wondering if Tommy planned to take that beating in place of his brother as a way of getting back in Sam's favor. That would actually suggest that Tommy is much smarter than we've given him credit for. Sam may hate Tommy for what he did to Luna, but I doubt that he'd be okay with a pack of werewolves kicking his brother's ass. They haven't been seen for a few episodes, but there are other shapeshifters in town besides Sam and Luna. And this could eventually lead to a war between the shapeshifters and the werewolves on top of everything else that's happening.

By the end of the episode, I was rooting for Nan Flanagan to become the next vampire killed by Antonia… and I still hope to see that. Nan definitely had some amusing thoughts on Bill's leadership abilities, but she has such an unpleasant personality that she becomes annoying if she's onscreen longer than a minute. It would also be intriguing to see the vampires attempt to talk their way out of another PR disaster without their traditional spokesperson.

This was another strong episode of "True Blood" and it seems to be building momentum for the final three episodes. This is what fans wanted to see and "True Blood" is constantly delivering.

Crave Online Rating: 9 out of 10.