Things just keep getting better with “Scratches,” the third episode of “True Blood” season two, as a new element of villainy is added to the scenario and one that begins to play a larger role with more than just one of the series’ characters.
The episode picks up shortly after the goings on at Jessica’s (Deborah Ann Woll) parents’ house where, if you’ll remember, Bill showed up at the last possible minute at the end of the last episode, but we were left to wonder what was to come. Well, now we know and it isn’t exactly a surprise, but — as you can see from the brief clip from the opening minutes to the right — there is much more in store for this episode as well as the rest of the season as Sookie (Anna Paquin) is attacked and left for dead.
So, as Bill (Stephen Moyer) and Sookie turn to Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) for help, Jessica heads home on her own, a plot point not forgotten by the writers that will bring into play one of the town’s regulars not often given enough screentime, but it appears he may be getting much more in the future. Jessica is turning out to be the “Vampire 101” aspect of the show, but the writers aren’t using her naivete as a vampire as a crutch as much as a story-telling device and it is working quite nicely.
Meanwhile, back at “Vampire Killer Training Camp” Jason is having nightmares and beginning to doubt himself, if only for a brief second, but his portion of this week’s story is much smaller than previous episodes. However, he is around long enough to hear Steve Newlin (Michael McMillian) drop this quote on us, “You cannot love evil. You have to hate it. So hating evil is like loving good.” Jason nods his head and we are once again witness to his simple mind at work. Good stuff.
Instead, attention remains on the disappearance of the vampire Godrick in Texas and just what exactly is going to be done about it and the continuing presence of Maryann in Bon Temps as she throws a massive neighborhood party and once again things get a bit out of control causing Detective Belflour to say, “Whatchu doin’ here pig?”
We learn a little more about the new waitress Daphne (Ashley Jones), but the reason for Eggs (Mehead Brooks) remains a mystery. Has this guy merely been introduced as a character meant to distract Tara or is there something more sinister going on here? I have a hard time believing he is simply on the show just to play the ripped black man and hope there is much more to the story.
This episode continues to reinforce the best aspect of this show and that is that it doesn’t give in to appealing to the fans and their desire to see more or less of one character. Shows play out logically and special circumstances aren’t necessarily created out of thin air just to make sure one of the audience’s more beloved characters plays a bigger role. The show is obviously about Bill and Sookie more than anyone else, but you wouldn’t think that based on screentime. Each character is given their fair share and has their part to play in the overall story. It’s controlled and never feels forced and considering the size of the cast and the elements at play it’s quite an accomplishment.
In my opinion the second season episodes of “True Blood” only continue to get better and better. I hope you feel the same. If you don’t, I think you will once these hit DVD and Blu-ray or are shown successively on HBO, because as one entire piece they work gloriously.
“True Blood” airs on HBO on Sunday nights at 9PM.