What2Watch: True Blood Ties Things Up

I have begun to come around somewhat on the subject of True Blood, now in the home stretch of its second season. True, the hype is a bit excessive, as it tends to be whenever vampires are the subject. Its central pair of Sookie and Bill (Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer) is still none too interesting, and the subplot involving Maryann (Michelle Forbes) has become surprisingly tedious when you consider that orgies tend to erupt in her wake.

But I give creator Alan Ball and the show's writers and producers credit for making a lot happen in a short time, and for upping the amount of humor in Season Two. The penultimate episode of the season (HBO, Sunday 9 p.m.) follows the aftermath of the return of Sookie, Jason, and Bill to Bon Temps, where they discovered general chaos. Bill calls on the local vampire queen (Evan Rachel Wood) for help in dealing with the crisis. Also, Jessica continues trying to drive a wedge between Hoyt and his mother, while Lafayette works tirelessly to keep Tara out of danger. But please: no more vampires meeting the sun. I hate it when this show makes me cry.

Also this week:

Monday: Nurse Jackie (Showtime, 10:30 p.m.): I have to say that with the exception of the hilarious supporting performance by Merritt Wever as Zoey, this series has not lived up to its hype. The first season finale features the long-awaited meeting between Jackie's husband and her boyfriend, and Jackie having more problems than ever juggling her many commitments.

Tuesday: The Colony (Discovery, 10 p.m.): It's not easy for a reality show to break through and get attention these days, but this series has attracted some buzz for its evocation of a struggle to survive in a post-apocalyptic urban environment. The latest crisis: someone in the group goes missing, forcing the others to try their hands at fashioning communication devices in an attempt to locate him.

Wednesday: Top Chef: Las Vegas (Bravo, 10 p.m.): The remaining cheftestants will be divided into male vs. female teams this week, in a battle to cater bachelor and bachelorette parties. I really hate these gimmicks because the men can't seem to avoid looking like goons, even if they happen to win.

Thursday: Big Brother 11 (CBS, 8 p.m.): We're nearing the end of the season, as there will be only five people left in the house after this evening's eviction. At this writing, it's not looking very positive for Natalie, but on the bright side, if she is evicted she can then take a shower without fear of the cameras. I have to assume her dislike of bathing on BB is not something she indulges in the real world, at least if she has a job and a boyfriend and all that good stuff.

Friday: Psych (USA, 10 p.m.): Ray Wise played the devil on Reaper, but he's switched sides! Wise guest stars as a teacher at the Catholic school that Shawn and Gus attended, who enlists their aid when he believes the devil was behind the apparent suicide of a current student. As a veteran of eleven years of Catholic schools, I'm not buying the suicide either. Now homicideI can see. Those nuns were tough.

Saturday: Being Human (BBC America, 9 p.m.): This is such a good show idea -- werewolf, vampire, and ghost living together -- that I'm surprised no one got around to it before now. Maybe the CW will steal it. The season finale will feature the three friends battling circumstances, their inner natures, and recently acquired knowledge -- all the things that (spoiler!) naturally set up a second season.