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True Blood Recap: Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood

With one more episode left in this season, last night set up for some surprises for the finale. We lost Marnie in corporeal form, but she managed to stick around in spirit. Andy was touched by magic in a very special way. Sam and Alcide bond together to bring justice to Marcus. A slightly unexpected plot twist leaves the door open for what could be a fantastic conclusion. The real winner of the night, however, was Pam, whose observation that the “entire fate of the vampire species is at risk for the sake of a gash in a sundress” sums up the entire series in one fell swoop.

The Bitch Is Back
Inside Moon Goddess, the coven is freaking out. The A-Team’s outside with automatic weapons, and the only thing Marnie has to offer is a sacrificial knife, which she tosses into the middle of the room. When Casey from the coven rushes her, Marnie Latins the knife toward her where it lands, square in the gut, sending her to her knees.

If this isn’t enough to scare the shit out of everyone, she pukes out Antonia, visible only to Lafayette. Lafayette breaks it down for those listening — Antonia doesn’t play like this, but Marnie’s gone batshit. It’s her way or the highway, so she casts a binding spell that sucks Antonia’s spirit back in through her gaping maw and traps her there for good.

Holly and Sookie decide to take matters into their own hands, and have a little chat with Marnie, who comes off as a bit pathetic. She’s tired of being a doormat, and the heady taste of power is too good to give up. This strikes a chord with Sookie, who can relate — she knows how it feels to be an outsider, to be misunderstood and picked on. Sookie, please. The years of teasing and bullying Sookie endured for being “special” must have been difficult, but this spiel coming from Sookie, the very sun around which this show revolves, is unconvincing and laughable. Marnie is so desperate for validation that Sookie’s speech works, and she agrees to negotiate.

Bill, Eric, Pam, Jason, Shiz
The A-Team is close to launching their balls-to-the-wall attack on the witches when Jason comes scurrying out of the shadows. Sookie’s inside — put down your weapons. Sookie is perpetually in the way, yet everyone acts surprised every single time she turns up somewhere she doesn’t belong. As anyone who’s been watching this show for more than ten minutes could intuit, Sookie has a flagrant disregard for authority. The fact that she’s inside Moon Goddess should be no surprise.

Everybody hates Sookie, until Jason comes to his sister’s defense; Sookie picked Eric up off the side of the road and cared for him when he was just a giant baby in a pair of basketball shorts; she let Bill use her as a personal bloody buffet and saved his ass, too. There’s no way they can blow up the building with Sookie the Savior inside, so the mission is aborted. It’s time to find another way.

The big vamps walk away to discuss business, and Baby Vamp Jessica stares at Jason in admiration and ... anger? Jason cares enough to follow up, so he and Jessica have a talk. The Stackhouse is hard to resist, but at the heart of the matter is the fact that Jessica is, for time immemorial, a 17-year-old girl. She grapples daily with the heightened emotions of adolescence and the primal, animal instincts of a creature that subsists on human blood.

The vamps’ planning sesh is interrupted by the two robot vamps that Marnie’s enchanted. Eric makes quick work of one, and the other is on her back, about to lose more than just her vintage Cartier necklace. But before anyone has a chance to speak, Marnie commands her vamp robot to kill Bill, and when the King throws her into the barrier, we can all see how dangerous it is: The robot vamp meets the true death, in its spectacular, bloody glory. Enough is enough: time for negotiation.

Eric and Bill want only Sookie, but Marnie needs something in return — their lives. Pam laughs, the boys think, and Sookie protests, but before she even gets her say, Bill and Eric both accept, and it is at this point where I began yelling at my television. Sookie Stackhouse, while attractive, blonde, and full of sparkle blood that allows vampires to walk in the sun, is not worth dying for. As Bill and Eric prepare to die, Pam takes matters into her own hands, grabbing the flamethrower and sending a wall of flame right back at them.

This whole Sookie debacle has caused some serious rifts in the maker-makee relationships. Pam sees how sprung Eric truly is, when he commands her out of his sight. Jess asks Bill never to do that again, and I agree. Come on, guys. I refuse to believe that the love of Sookie Stackhouse is enough to drive anyone to suicide. Jessica has other issues to tend to: Jason looks like a rotisserie chicken, and needs her blood, stat, if he’s going to make it out alive.

The Call Is Coming From Inside the House
I would not want to be Marcus Bozeman right now. Sam and Alcide both are spitting mad, and on the hunt. The werewolf at the motorcycle shop won’t give up his leader, even with a gun to his head, but everyone is momentarily distracted by Luna, who is freaking out because Marcus has absconded with their kid. A phone call from Emma shows that she’s at Alcide’s house, so they’re off.

Marcus is trying to convince Debbie to run away with him. Marcus is full of solutions tonight. Debbie’s on V because it makes her whole. Once she’s raising someone else’s kid as her own with Marcus, she won’t need that anymore. Bravo, Marcus. Naturally, all women have an unrelenting desire to have children, and turn to drugs when their partner isn’t wiling to provide one. To her credit, Ms. Pelt isn’t down to leave with Marcus, because she loves Alcide.

Once Luna, Sam, and Alcide show up, it’s time for a showdown in the living room. Sam can’t find the heart to kill Marcus, so Alcide takes care of it for him. Debbie, all tears and apologies, tries to talk her way out of this, but she’s abjured, all loyalties and ties to Alcide erased. She’s lost the best thing she had, and it hurts.

He’s Got the Magic in Him
Andy still hasn’t found his way home, but he does find something else in the woods, a ball of light that turns into a pretty lady named Maurella, who blasts Andy to the ground. Once she determines that he’s not a vampire, they have a little chat. She’s ready to get down with Andy, but she needs to trust him completely because she needs protection. He swears to the twinkly ball of light on her finger, they touch fingers, and now he’s sparkling, too. (Can he throw fairy balls now? Is he special?)

Back home, Arlene’s been waiting for him, worried sick. As he recounts the details of his evening, she does her best to listen but gently suggests that maybe it’s a side effect of withdrawal. The fairy lady, the phenomenal sex, it was all in Andy’s mind. He’s disappointed, but I’m pretty sure he has no reason to be. It looks like the Fae might be back. Lest we forget, Eric drank Claudine to death, and from what we can tell, the Fae don’t take things lightly. Is Maurella the harbinger of fairy revenge?

Ding, Dong, the Witch Is Dead
Never one to miss an opportunity, Jesus grabs Casey’s dead body and drags her into the bathroom. He’s about to do some brujo shit, explaining that Casey’s dead body will somehow amplify the magic, forcing the bond between Marnie and Antonia’s spirit to be broken. With Lala as sous-chef, Jesus gets to work.

Marnie, having foretold her own death in the puddle of Casey’s blood on the floor, knows that she must act in desperation. She commands everyone to join hands, to form a final circle that will keep them all alive.

This spell is working great. The vampires outside are now leading with the hips, lurching toward the wall like prettier Thriller extras. Jason ESPs this to Sookie, who shoots a gigantic ball of light from her chest, breaking the circle and enraging Marnie. Into the naughty corner she goes, except the naughty corner is a ring of fire. Jesus transforms into a blue-faced demon and Antonia’s spirit leaves Marnie for good. With that, all the spells are broken and the vamps come in to finish the job. Eric wastes no time in proving that he’s up to old tricks; he rips Roy’s heart out, drinks from it and then lets Bill do the honors, killing Marnie.

Post-Marnie, a bit of housekeeping: All the appropriate people have been glamoured, Jason and Jessica talk things out, further driving the stake into Hoyt’s already-crushed heart, and Bill and Eric have a hushed conversation over flamenco guitars while Sookie looks on, for once left out of the picture.

Jesus, having gone through a terrifying spiritual ordeal, is sad, tired, and ready for bed. As they drift off to sleep, Lala hears a noise: Marnie, in specter form, grins wildly and possesses Lafayette. I hope Lala makes it out of this one alive.

Photo: John P. Johnson/HBO