My mama, when she thought something was too good to be true, she’d say, “˜Satan in a Sunday hat.’ That’s exactly what this is.
If only Tara would learn to trust her own instincts. Her quote encapsulates a lot about the season, about the problems of our perceptions and expectations. In this case, Tara’s words are setting up her storyline for Season 2, but look at Sookie-Bill, Sam’s true nature, or psychopathic waitresses and shlubby vampires. Satan in a Sunday hat.
As of the last episode, we know that the Bon Temps murderer is Rene but no one on the show does, so most of this last episode is waiting around for the final Rene-Sookie showdown and setting up our conflicts for next season. For a girl with uncontrollable telepathic abilities, it sure takes her a long time for her to pin down the guy with homicidal thoughts.
Jason is sitting in jail after confessing to the murder of Amy, dictating to Rene the dispersal of his worldly possessions. Hoyt gets his leather jacket, Sookie gets their parents’ house, and Rene gets his truck, because he’s been such a good friend. Rene doesn’t even crack a smile.
Sookie bullies her way past the guard to have a conversation with her brother, swearing up and down that she knows he’s not the murderer, no matter what he says. It’s this guy Drew who killed his sister. She doesn’t know what he looks like or what name he’s using and the police don’t believe her, but she’s sure it’s him. Rene has a few thoughts about her theory, which Sookie is quick to snap a retort to ““ so close, yet so far, Sook!
In comparison to the excitement on the other side of town, Tara wakes up peacefully. She’s in a big fluffy bed, gets served a “sculpture” of a breakfast, and Maryann tells her that she’s welcome to stay as long as likes. We’re already seen the kind of childhood Tara has had ““ its safe to assume that this kind of generosity has been rare in her life. Tara is hesitant about sticking around, though that changes when she meets another of Maryann’s vagabonds, Eggs. He’s fine enough to change anyone’s mind.
The episode escalates from there — Sookie shows up for her lunch shift at work with the idea that she’ll spy on the diners and figure out which one of them is Drew. This Nancy Drew, girl detective, stuff seems super exciting at first, especially since Sook has never done anything particularly useful with her talents, but it turns out to be Satan in a Sunday hat. Everyone in the bar is just thrilled that her brother is behind bars. Andy is gloating over his capture (which was, you know, Jason turning himself in), his toadies are buying him drinks and flirting, and hearing everyone think bad shit about your family isn’t as great as it seems. She flees in tears.
Or tries to. Rene has removed some piece of her engine or another ““ I will randomly tell you it’s the alternator, because I once had one go out on me and couldn’t start my car either ““ so that he can play knight in shining armor for Sook. She accepts his offer of a ride home, but not before Terry sees them off with a few choice observations.
During the truck ride home, Sookie notices that Rene’s thoughts are un-accented.
At Arlene’s, her kids have found a stash of vampire porn in Rene’s things in the garage. The stash includes a copy of the Maudette’s vampire sex tape that disappeared in the beginning of the season. He also has an audio tape of “Cajun for Actors.” Arlene appears worried.
At the bar, Lafayette finds that Rene has left behind his caution vest. When he gives it to Sam for the lost & found, Sam recognizes the scent off it ““ it’s the same scent he caught in Dawn’s bedroom, when he rolled around in her sheets after the murder. There’s a helpful flashback if you can’t remember why Sam would be sniffing someone’s clothing and looking concerned. (We’ve seen Rene in the bar several times over the course of the season ““ Sam never noticed anything before?) Sam runs out after them but they have a 23 minute head start.
At the house, Sookie thanks Rene for dropping her off and offering to keep her company until Sam shows up after work. While she goes to fix them some tea, Rene unloads Sookie’s shotgun for her. After that, he can’t keep a handle on his thoughts any longer, projecting images of Gran’s murder right into Sook’s brainpan. She tries to casually make it to her shotgun ““ and proves she’s totally willing to shoot Rene at point blank range, if only he hadn’t taken her ammo. So Sookie ““ the one I know and love, the one we lose in Season 3 ““ screams in his face and bashes him across the head with the stock before taking off.
Sam shows up too late, but can follow Rene’s blood splatter to find them. He starts stripping as he runs.
Bill feels Sookie’s fear and snap awake in the middle of the day. He crawls out of his hole and tries to go to her, no matter that he starts frying as soon as he hits the light.
Sookie has hidden herself in an open grave, trying to keep quiet as Rene bombards her with thoughts of his other murders and what he wants to do to Sook herself. And then, because he’s a clever SOB, he tricks her into thinking he’s gone back to the woods by thinking it deliberately. As soon as her blonde head pops up, Rene is on her.
It looks like sundown for Sookie. Bill is staggering across the field to where she lays, unconscious by a gravestone, but he’s one crispy vampire at this point. Sam the Dog has valiantly leapt onto Rene to defend his girl, but since he picked a tiny collie form instead, say, a Rottie or something with a lot of mass, Rene beats the snot of out him too. Once Sam’s unconscious and back to his human form, Rene really lets all the clowns out of the car, beating and kicking him.
Sookie snaps to – perhaps sensing Bill’s nearness, though I prefer to believe she’s just too ornery to keep down – leaps to her feet, and beans Rene with a shovel. And when Rene grabs her and keeps cursing, she decapitates him.
Sam and Sookie bury Bill back in the ground to give him a chance to heal up, though things do not look good. Never fret, friends, he’s in all the promo materials for this upcoming season.
We fade back in a Gran’s house, where we get a glimpse of how badly Sookie got it. Her face is a mess and she’s high as a kite on pain killers. All her friends have come by to see her ““ Sam, Lafayette, and Tara, and the Scarecrow, who she missed most of all. Arlene even shows up to apologize/unload about almost getting Sookie killed and mentions that Rene like to do things in bed that no normal man wants to do. (Cuddle? Rimshot!) Jason is freed from jail by a disgusted Andy. And Bill comes out of his dirt nap OK.
Things are supposed to be calm again:
Tara is living with Maryann, who Sam seems to have a past with.
Vermont has legalized vampire-human marriage.
Jason has started attending the vampire-hating church.
Pam and Eric dump Jessica back in Bill’s lap because teenage vampires are at least as much trouble as regular teenagers.
Lafayette mysteriously disappeared with much swooshing sometime after leaving Sookie’s house the night she got beat up.
And one night, while bundling a sodden, drunken Andy off to be driven home by his sister, Andy, Tara, and Sookie find a dead body in the backseat of Andy’s car. A dead body with a really good pedicure.
The girls scream.
And so, friends, we have come to the end of TBR: Season 1, just in time to flash forward to the Season 4 premier. We’ll have a live blog on Sunday night, so stop in and place your wager on who the first full nude will be this season.