‘True Blood’ Recap: ‘Authority Always Wins’

It was all about the vampires in this week’s visit to Bon Temps, with the Authority out for blood, Tara out for revenge and Steve Newlin out for a sweet, sweet taste of Jason Stackhouse. Here’s what transpired on last night’s “True Blood“!

Tara’s (Re)turn
For a while, it looks like Tara’s turning has gone as badly as everyone feared—she’s like a furious, feral animal, and Pam isn’t sticking around to give her a newbie vampire orientation. But after a sleepless night of flashing and smashing her way through Sookie’s house (seriously, Sook, just don’t ever bother cleaning up your kitchen again), and a restorative daytime nap in the leftover cubby from Eric’s residency (during which a tearful Lafayette almost mercy-stakes her), Tara appears looking more like herself.

Which is to say, pissed.

“I will never forgive either of you,” she says, flatly, and then tears away into the night.

This would be a good time for a makerly intervention for the newborn babyvamp, but Pam has other things on her mind: for one, an emotional recollection of her very first meeting with the man who became her maker. Flash back to turn-of-the-century San Francisco, where Pam is a hard-as-nails madame in a Victorian brothel. After a rough night at work—one of her girls is found dead, presumably by vampire—she walks home through the gas-lit streets and is attacked by a man wielding a knife…who is promptly squelched by a rescuing gentleman, who is ERIC NORTHMAN IN A TOP HAT. (Let’s all pause a moment to fan ourselves, shall we?)

We don’t see the presumed outcome of this meeting, but it’s enough to wake Pam up feeling very, very sad. Because where is Eric? We know! But first, let’s talk about the folks who are…

Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places
Meanwhile, our new, old favorite character Reverend Newlin is putting all his energy into scoring with Jason Stackhouse, showing up at Jessica’s house with an offer of $10,000 for a shot at the golden boy. Jessica haggles him up to twice that price before delivering a shame blow: “I don’t sell my friends!”

On the other hand, Jason might just need some extra protection from a second pair of fangs before this season is out: his attempts to make up with Hoyt are causing friction, and the furious son of a woman Jason slept with shows up at the police station to punch him in the face. Is Jason’s wayward wiener about to get him in trouble again? Or more to the point: Will we ever see the magical day when Jason’s wayward wiener doesn’t get him in trouble?

And Jason’s not the only one whose romantic life is taking a turn for the worst…or the weird. Andy confesses that Holly hasn’t spoken to him since their interrupted tryst; Terry’s hard-won happiness with Arlene and the kids is being threatened by the Devins-inspired recurrence of his PTSD; and Sam Merlotte, still bloody from his ordeal with the wolfpack, gets kicked out of the house by Luna after showing a flash of sympathy for Mama Bozeman’s plea to see her grandchild. Is it over between them? Er, probably not. Prickly as she is, Luna’s going to need some emotional support now that Emma has officially wolfed out. (And if you were wondering when “True Blood” was going to pause the grit and gore to give us something cute, well, here you go: a wolf cub in pajamas. Aww.)

A Lesson in Respecting Authority
And finally, the heart of this episode: a visit to the secret underground headquarters of the Authority! Bill, Eric and Nora have gone from would-be runaways to unhappy captives, where they’re imprisoned in tanning booths torture cells and then interrogated by two high-ranking members of the vampire elite. The primary purpose of this scene? To give us a lesson in Vampyr Biblical Studies, which goes something like this: God is a vampire who created Adam and Eve not in his image, but to serve as tasty treats for the first vampire, Lilith. Which is why, thousands of years later, the vampire community’s fundamentalist nutjobs keep trying to sell the people-as-Popsicles approach to vampire-human relations. Well! That explains that! And lo and behold, it’s Christopher Meloni in his long-awaited appearance as The Guardian, looking delightful in a tailored suit and (naturally) blood-red tie.

The Authority is understandably peeved at Nora’s betrayal and Nan’s death, and it looks like a staking is in order for all involved…until Bill offers an exchange: their lives for the delivery of Russell Edgington. It’s his last card, but it’s a good one; the only thing the Authority hates more than a non-compliant traitor is a threat to the mainstreaming of their race, and Russell—with his penchant for ripping out spinal columns and all—is the biggest threat of all. Especially now that…

*cut to a blood-soaked gurney where the convalescing, crackly-faced Russell opens his eyes on cue*

…he’s baaaaaaack!

What did you think of this week’s “True Blood”? Sound off in the comments and on Twitter!