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261 of 286 people found the following review helpful
HALL OF FAMEon August 18, 2009
Format: DVD
I have been a major Sookie Stackhouse fan for years. I began reading Charlaine Harris's series, then called the Southern Vampire Mysteries, since before book four came out, and have read them all in order. I was puzzled when I found out that HBO was going to make a TV adaptation of it. Why this particular series? Why not Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake series? (It would have been suitable, what with all of the sex and all.) There were others as well, like Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld and MaryJanice Davidson's Queen Betsy series -- all of which have the erotic tones that HBO would have loved. So why this book series? Now I know why, but more on that later.

I very much enjoyed season one. It was very faithful to Dead Until Dark, except that small characters like Tara and Lafayette were expanded, and you get everyone's point of view, not just Sookie's. Also, Bill has more depth here, and you see things from his point of view, and you understand him better. Other storylines were added, like the emphasis on "V" addiction, which makes sense. Season two has taken things to a whole other level and I love it so far. I can't wait for the blu-ray release! From the very beginning, the show has very sexually explicit scenes, most of which centered on Jason's exploits, and some violence as well, with a great deal of emphasis to vampire hatred as the new form of southern racism/segregation. Season two takes things further, with gore and horror replacing the sex (there's still plenty of it though), and the fledging out of characters like Eric, Tara and Lafayette (whose death does not happen in the TV series). MaryAnn is the mysterious creature that makes a brief appearance in Living Dead in Dallas, but is expanded on the TV version to the point that she almost takes over the entire show. Jessica, Bill's "daughter," puzzled me at first. What's the purpose to this character? But I like her now, especially after Hoyt becomes her love interest. And I love the emphasis on vampire makers, like Lorena and Godric, the latter of whom moved me almost to tears in the last episode that he's in (plus, the actor who plays him is totally hot). I don't want to ruin it for people who don't have HBO and have to wait for the DVD or blu-ray release, but, in spite of the departures from the books, it's better than season one.

The actors are great. Ann Paquin has grown on me as Sookie, British hottie Stephen Moyer is wonderful as Bill, and I finally like Alexander Skarsgard as everyone's favorite vampire bad boy Eric. I am also enjoying Sam Trammel (Sam Merlotte), Rutina Wesley (Tara), Nelsan Ellis (Lafayette), Michelle Forbes (MaryAnn Forester) and Ryan Kwatten (Jason Stackhouse). I am also enjoying the actors who play Andy Belleflour and Hoyt for the comic relief they supply. (Andy is hilarious as the drunken out-of-work cop who witnesses the orgies and general odd behavior and no one believes him.) All in all, if you're a big fan of the books, then you won't want to miss this show. No boring moments throughout the hour-long series. I cannot wait for season three and season two is not even over yet! And I see why HBO decided to adapt this particular book series. They must've seen the potential for character development and the southern setting on the small screen. Great job!
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74 of 87 people found the following review helpful
on June 5, 2010
I've already watched the two season and was delighted to see I could get it on demand. Willing to put out my hard earned money to own the show but then was puzzled to see it was only a rental and not ownership for On demand. What makes this even more insane is the rental is $3 per/ eps for one 24 hr viewing. That is the same price to OWN 1 eps. in HD for any other show. Then to add to the insanity you can buy the season on Blu-ray for only $42. Ok a little more then $3 per/eps but still they have to make the disc and the box the disc go in and storage for inventory vs on-demand being a little server space. And you OWN the disc and can walk over to anyone house with Blu-ray to play it, no restrictions to deal with. So how in the world does their on-demand policy make sense?

Again it shows why piracy is so common place when companies come up with these insane pricing and ownership schemes. So I guess for now I just won't own True Blood and live with just one time viewing when it shows on HBO (cheaper that way).
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61 of 77 people found the following review helpful
on May 31, 2010
I recorded most of True Blood Season 2 last summer on my DVR but I missed two episodes.

I though I would just purchase them from Amazon because I had some credit left from a gift card. Then I found two problems. First, I was disappointed to see that it's $3 per episode, not the $3 I am used to for TV shows. Second, I was even more disappointed to see that it's only a RENTAL, not a purchase. HBO and Amazon expect you to pay $3 an episode to watch the season ONE TIME!?!

That's just crazy. If they want to make them rentals they can't be more than $1 per episode. If I pay more than that I expect to OWN the series and be able to watch them over and over. This is why people download shows illegally, unreasonable policies and ridiculous pricing.
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93 of 121 people found the following review helpful
on September 9, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
While this is still a very good show, it's already come dangerously close to jumping the shark (jumping the Sook?), in just it's second season. I wanted to give it 3 1/2 stars but that's not possible here. I just couldn't bring myself to give it four, so I went with three.
For starters, the show has veered much too far off on a tangent concerning the Maenad Maryann, and many, many viewers have been frustrated by it. Too little time was spent on the vampires of Dallas, which I found to be far more interesting. Too much attention was also spent on the Jason/Fellowship of the Sun arc, which was a deviation from the book series. All in all, there was too much "filler" to get to the good stuff.
The penultimate episode (#11, "Frenzy") was a disconcerted illogical mess with few highlights, and the portrayal of the vampire Queen of Louisiana, despite Evan Rachel Ward's beauty, left much to be desired, for whatever reasons. I think Holly Valance, who played "Lola" in the (now regrettably defunct) Moonlight episode "B.C" would've worked out better. "Frenzy" is widely regarded as by far the worst episode of the series so far, for various reasons.

Still, inevitably, many characters have been been interestingly further fleshed out from the first season, adding depth to the series; notably, Eric, Pam, Sam, Jason, Tara and her mother, but mostly the effervescent Lafayette, played by the very talented Nelsan Ellis. While many deviations from the books have been made, some good, some bad, the decision to keep the character of Lafayette alive was definitely a good move. We also get to see, briefly, the darker, more powerful side of Eric. Anna Paquin is playing the role she was born to play, she just shines in her role as Sookie, and all in all, the cast is amazing, despite some lapses in judgement this year from the writing staff.
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38 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on July 31, 2009
Format: DVD
I have always gravitated toward books, movies, and TV shows about the occult so it was a given that I would watch True Blood. I am disappointed in parts that I feel stray too far from the books (I know the actors at Comic Con disagreed but the books are so incredibly good that I don't think they can be improved on.) especially in season one when they let Bill save Sookie by killing Long Shadow when in fact Eric saved her and Eric killed Long Shadow. I could not understand how it made the story better by making that change. As to the comment that the actor playing Eric is not as handsome as the book Eric I firmly disagree. He is even more handsome than I pictured, mainly because he is so beautifully tall and the way he plays his part I almost feel if there were such a thing as vampries he would be one. My only hope is as the series progresses they do play up the Eric character more as he is a much more prominent character in the books than Bill and 100 time more interesting.
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39 of 50 people found the following review helpful
Format: DVD
The first season of True Blood was about as much fun as a TV show could be and as a fan I was eager to jump into season two, especially after the cliff-hanging ending to season one.

The first few episodes weren't too bad - they fit in well with what came previously. We see that a few humans have been kidnapped for various reasons and are being kept in a basement that was decorated right out of the darkest moments of "Saw" or "Hostel".

But then the show pursued two equally inane storylines: the first involves the "Fellowship of the Sun", a fundamentalist bible-thumpin' Christian Church led by a group of big-haired, frozen-faced... I was going to say "zombies", but they're humans - just the worst kind of stereotypes - the husband/wife team heading the church is like a younger version of Jim and Tammy Faye. Anyway, the Fellowship recruits Jason to become a warrior for Jesus while they have secretly kidnapped Godric, one of the more ancient and powerful vampires. The second storyline revolves around Tara and her evolving relationship with Maryanne, a woman with mysterious supernatural powers. (I'm stifling the urge to add spoilers, even though I think the spoilers wouldn't dampen your enjoyment more than the already tepid script.)

Season one was fun and sassy and sexy, with great characters: Bill the Southern Gentleman vampire, Sookie the telepathic waitress, Jason - Sookie's dim-witted brother, Tara the sassy on the outside - tender on the inside girl and Lafayette, Tara's exotically flamboyant gay short-order-cook cousin. Season two is dull and disjointed and often just plain stupid. The series, initially designed around the characters of Sookie the Waitress and Bill the Vampire, demotes both of them to supporting characters in this disjointed mess of a season. I'll stick around for a few moments of season three to see if the show improves, but life is short, know what I mean?
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102 of 136 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I started reading this series when book 1 just came out. What can I say, I like vampire books. I really liked Season 1 on HBO. The deviation the show took that bothers me is that Bill killed Longshadow, not Eric, because that could really become problematic later on.

Bill seems to be becoming one dimensional on HBO, he is nearing sainthood. Why would Sookie ever dump him, or date any of the many people she later dates in the books if he is a saint???

In the books, you eventually see that Bill really has less human feelings/emotions than Eric and other love interests of Sookie. 'Book Bill' is too self-absorbed to even notice Sookie's problems a total change from HBO's 'Saint Bill'.

When Eric got to save Sookie in Book 1 she warmed up to him, which gives an opening for a romantic change for Sookie----makes sense, especially when your "love (Bill)" just stands there and is ready to let you die. Also, when someone you love just keeps lying and keeping secrets, like 'Book Bill' you eventually say (even if you love them) enough is enough time to move on--and GEE maybe he is not 'the one'.

The way the HBO series is unfolding if Sookie leaves Bill and goes to Eric or anyone else she might just seem like a [...]_itch. If she just stays w/ Bill the whole series, then it will probably get boring---or completely deviate from the books storylines, as most of the story lines have a connection to Sookie's love interests at the time. Either way making Bill a saint, in the long run, will not help the series.

The subplots are fine---but it would be nice for them to stay SUBPLOTS and not overpower the show like this season.

Long and Short---- Yes, I have preordered season 2--would have preferred less subplots and less of 'Saint Bill'. One of the best books in the series (and one that has an impact on the rest of the book series) is coming up. It involves Eric losing his memory. I just hope that HBO can get over the total 'Saint Bill' thing before that books plot line is covered, and follow a great story from a great writer, so that the rest of the main plot lines from the books can be used.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I love True Blood, I really do, but I just couldn't get in to this season. I read the books and really loved them, but to tell you the truth the show is completely different from the books, so I will not refer to them at all in this review. Instead, I want to talk about how weird this season was. It was just a little too weird for me.

The second season starts out where the first season left off, and then spirals downward from there. In the first season, you meet MaryAnn when she bails Tara out from jail and then allows her to live in her home. But the truth about MaryAnn soon comes to the surface and it isn't very pleasant. It was just weird and I wasn't feeling it.

I would still suggest that if you liked the first season, then you should most definitely buy this season, but I will warn you that it wasn't the best thing in the world. To be honest, the only reason why I am giving this review three stars is because of Jessica, the girl that Bill changes in the first season. Jessica took me by suprise in this season, with her beautifully long, red hair and intelligent, bule eyes. And then she speaks... She blew me into oblivion with her sexy, southern cadence. I fell in love with her immediately and my heart gave a little stutter every single time that she came onto screen.

Other than that, it wasn't that great. But I have high hopes for the third season and I can't wait for it to come out on DVD. So, I can't really tell you to buy this book, but I would suggest that you buy this so that it makes the transition from season one to season three just a little less messy. Have fun.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on September 15, 2009
Format: DVD
I totally loved the books and the 1st season!!! I even had to order HBO just to watch the second, at 1st I thought everything was good but by the middle thing got boring! I really wish they would have stuck to how things went in the book more. I could not wait for them to kill Maryann off! It was like she did the same thing in every show "have to find Sam, make everyone crazy, kill someone, if all else fails make everyone have an [...]." The season finale was the biggest let down of all, I was expecting so much more. And Bill proposing to Sookie what was that all about, he never even talks about marrying her in the books. I will buy the 2nd season just to have it in my collection and I hope they make some changes for the 3rd.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on December 30, 2009
Format: DVDVerified Purchase
I just wanted to write that I watched this show as it aired on HBO this past summer. The dvd box set is sure to be awesome, and I will be purchasing on Bluray.

The DVD is being released on June 24th, according to HBO.
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