I really liked True Blood Season One, thinking that Alan Ball did a great job expanding on the books without losing Charlaine Harris's vision of Sookie, the people of Bon Temps, the vampires, etc. *were*. This season, in spite of feeling big love for the unexpected Jessica Hamby story arc. I really enjoyed the whole Steve and Sarah Newlin angle, and that crazy church camp atmosphere was creepy and funny in equal amounts.
But oh my unholy bacchanalia, could the story line with MaryAnn have been drawn out more annoyingly? It's really annoying to watch a show based on the Sookie Stackhouse novels - because you'd think you'd be seeing a lot of Sookie, right? - only to find her starring role pre-empted by a maenad, a creature who played only the most minor of roles in the novels. I don't think that the television series has to be based chapter-for-chapter, episode-for-episode on the books, but there's only so much that can be done to "improve" on Charlaine Harris's work without the entire story (which includes all the characters) dis-integrating.
MaryAnn's story line wasn't so much uninteresting to me as it was stupid and overplayed. Greek mythology considered, her persona as Kind and Caring Social Worker was unusual...I would have thought that a maenad would have been the complete opposite and way more up front in her desire to party hard and take the town with her. Tara is revealed to be one of the most gullible and inept characters on television, possibly only surpassed by that little boy named Timmy in the long-ago program "Lassie": he was the kid who kept falling into wells or wandering into burning barns with alarming frequency. Tara is just as bad, and in the space of one short season has gone from an edgy and high-strung character that I liked to one that makes me roll my eyes every time she wanders on screen to either yell at someone or gush all over "Eggs."
With an HBO drama, you know it's going to be pretty forthright as far as language and sexuality go, and Season 2 of True Blood was no exception. I'm no prude, but seeing orgy scene after orgy scene was just grotesque. Listen, I don't want to see even young, fit people engaging in group sex, much less the droopy and middle-aged. But boy, you got to see it everywhere. Out on the lawn, sprawled across the booths in Merlotte's, just a bunch of groping, gasping, ugly group sex. It was too much, way too much. By the time MaryAnn was done away with, I was ready for all those nasty people of Bon Temps to go with her. Surely there's another little town near Shreveport where Sookie could have moved?
By the last episode, I was ready for True Blood Season 3 to include the following things: 1) for Sookie to call ServPro ("Like It Never Even Happened") to get her house back to normal, because you know her Gran is probably turning over in her grave; 2) for Lafayette to make enough money selling V to send Tara to some out-of-state university; 3) for Sookie and Eric to get something going on, already; and 4) for the Newlins to get their comeuppance.
It remains to be seen if those things will happen. On to Season 3!