How many different characters and storylines can a single show pack into an hour? “True Blood” is determined to find out, in the second episode of Season 6, “The Sun.” In the early seasons of the show, vampires were an allegory for gay people. Now they’re a stand in for African Americans and Jews. Shapeshifters are the new gay. Sookie (Anna Paquin) gets a new love interest and a grandfather. Bill gets more powers. In case you don’t want to create a spreadsheet to keep track of it all, here are the highlights.
Bill the Prophet
Bill (Stephen Moyer) can see and feel other vampires being tortured, including one humans have chained to the back of a truck, who is being dragged for miles, just like the horrifying murder of James Byrd by white supremacists in Texas several years ago. That’s a little on the nose, even for this show. Bill has a vision of Lilith in a field that she informs him is known as “no place.” She tells him to complete her work. She clarifies that he is not a God. She is the vampire equivalent of Adam and Eve. So this season, “True Blood” is doing its own riff on the Originals, a la “Vampire Diaries.” Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll), concerned that Bill is seemingly catatonic, orders a “human edible” for him. Instead of just taking a little drink, he uses his powers to psychically break all her bones, then suck all of her blood out of her body. Lilith tells Bill he must save them all. Jessica asks Bill if he is God. She prays to him, asking him to bless everyone. This literal Bill worship seems destined to end badly. Bill comes to and watches a news report about the vampire he saw being dragged by the truck. Jessica realizes Bill can see the future. He sure can. He has a vision of vampires being burned in a concentration camp, complete with uniforms and what appears to be a shower drain. In future weeks will we see piles of vampire skulls a la Pol Pot?
Sookie Meets Another Half Fairy
Sookie dreams that a creepy-looking creature, presumably Warlow, is after her. She finds a male half-fairy lying by the side of the road. He tells her he has been attacked by a vampire, so she takes him to her house. He tells her she reminds him of his school girlfriend, which is the cheesiest line ever, unless his girlfriend liked to hook up with vampires. Then he passes out. Sookie uses her fairy powers to wake him. Ben tells her he can sense she is a good person. He is coming on so strong that I am suspicious of him. She takes him to the entrance to fairyland. He asks her out because every guy on this show must be in love with Sookie. She tells him she’s not ready for romance. He can read her mind and knows she’s reeling from losing Bill.
Jason (Ryan Kwanten) points a gun at the man he believes is Warlow. He informs him that he is actually Niall (Rutger Hauer), his fairy grandfather. He’s been watching over him his whole life. Jason failed his test by blabbing his life story to a stranger. He better shape up if he hopes to stand a chance against Warlow. Jason brings him to Sookie’s house and shows him where Warlow tried to break through. Gramps uses his powers to jump into the portal. He reappears soaking wet and says it was worse than he thought. Jason introduces Sookie to Niall, comparing him to Boba Fett. Gramps announces that Warlow has arrived in the past 24 hours. He exposits that Warlow has been obsessed with them for thousands of years because they are the original fairies. Gramps is the Fae king, which seemingly should make him the Fae parallel to Lilith. They have a secret power. They can channel their light into a single ball of energy that when released goes supernova and kills vampires. Because Sookie is a halfbreed she can only use it once, and when she does, she will lose all her powers. So the question for this season is whether or not Sookie will sacrifice her powers to kill Warlow. Niall tells her to manifest her light, then let it reabsorb to practice. It’s like “The Secret” for fairies.
Eric Goes Undercover
Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) disguises himself as a nerdy human from the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries so he can talk to the governor. He attempts to glamor him into loving vampires. But the governor laughs him off. He is wearing contact lenses that make him immune to glamoring. Were they developed in the week or so since the Tru Blood factories were bombed, or have any vampire factions had this technology for a long time? He says it’s time for humans to fight back. A couple of guards drag Eric away, telling him they are taking him “to camp,” presumably the vampire Buchenwald that Bill envisioned, not Camp Hiawatha. Once they lead him outside, he flies away — a power they didn’t know he had. Eric floats outside the governor’s daughter’s window, waits for her to remove her contacts, then glamors her into letting him in to her bedroom.
Eric Saves Tara
Eric removes the silver bullet that emits UV rays from Tara’s (Rutina Wesley) body. Pam (Kristin Bauer) is happier than she wants to admit. Nora (Lucy Griffiths) assures her that Eric loves her and didn’t tell her that he had a sister because he wanted to protect her.
Shifters Versus Wolves Versus Humans
An activist from the Vampire Unity Society seek out Sam (Sam Trammell) because she wants to start a human shifter dialogue. They want him to come out of the supernatural closet. She warns him that the government is coming for shifters just like vampires. She thinks he can inspire others to do the same, thereby empowering all shifters. Alcide (Joe Mangianello) wants Emma to rejoin the wolf pack. Sam wants to retain custody of her. He hits Alcide. Alcide punches back. Martha takes Emma. A member of the Vampire Unity Society photographs the melee.
Patrick’s pregnant wife shows up at Merlotte’s, even though the show wrapped up the boring Ifrit saga last season. She thinks Patrick ran off with another woman. Arlene (Carrie Preston) lies that he did, because it is easier to explain than Ifrit, or the other possibility, that Olivia Pope’s father is holding Patrick in a secret prison [on "Scandal"].
“True Blood” airs Sundays at 9/8c on HBO.