A Few Random Thoughts on Episode 3.04 – 9 Crimes

In Episode 3.04 – 9 Crimes we see everyone getting deeper and deeper into a web of deceit, destruction, obsession, corruption and more. Bill especially is bound in this web of political danger and is walking a very thin tightrope to stay in one piece, keep Sookie safe and get out alive.

The episode begins with Sookie and Alcide discussing the narrow escape they made from Lou Pines the night before when Sookie receives a call from Bill. This call sets up the episode when he tells her that he has left his life in Bon Temps and is no longer interested in her. He tells her that he has just made love with Lorena only as two vampires would where he didn’t have to be gentle like he does with Sookie. He tells her not to try and find him because he does not want to be found. He says “I am death; I will bring you only suffering”. It’s obvious to me that Bill is still protecting her and I’m hoping that he will break loose, but we’ll have to wait and see if this comes true.

Alcide soothes Sookie and we find the first instance of a possible relationship between them evolving. Yet, in the very next scene we see Eric flying outside Sookie’s room. She invites him in and she seems interested in him and they start to have sex, but before that can happen, we are taken to Fangtasia with Yvetta dancing and we learn that Eric was only fantasizing about Sookie. Maybe she has somehow glamoured him, I don’t know, but Eric obviously is extremely attracted to Sookie and I’m not sure even he understands why.

Sam finds his family sleeping in their van outside Merlotte’s and when he confronts them about Tommy taking money from him he finds out that the family has been evicted from their home. He goes to look for Tommy, when he finds him, they have a few minutes where they actually seem to communicate and bond as brothers. When they return Sam offers to get his family a place and give Tommy a job at Merlotte’s. Somehow I’m not sure that Papa Mickens is very happy about this and I think that this family is going to prove to be just another heartbreak for poor Sam.

Tara has been taken prisoner by Franklin and he forces her to call Sookie and get information from her. Franklin seems to be the first truly psychotic vampire we’ve met in the series so far, well except maybe for Lorena, and in his warped mind, he thinks he is showing his love to Tara somehow. I think he is a very dangerous vampire and Tara had better watch herself around him.

Jessica is hired by Sam to be a hostess at Merlotte’s. While doing so, a boy she used to know from Bible Study sees her and she has to glamour him so he forgets. Unfortunately, Hoyt sees this and we’re led to believe that he now thinks Jessica has found someone new. That may be true, but it sure isn’t going to be this fellow.  I so feel for poor Hoyt who deserves to find someone he can share his love with and I hope he does.

After Eric has come to the aid of Lafayette, who is being beaten up by Calvin’s men, Pam calls him from Fangtasia saying “we’re being raided” and it’s not the police this time, it’s the Magister. The Magister takes Pam into custody and begins torturing her. When Eric arrives and is confronted by the Magister, he watches him continue to torture Pam. She screams out in pain that it was Bill Compton and Eric backs her up, saying “It’s true, he’s gone missing.”  Is this said only to get out of the current problem or is this something that we can expect Pam and Eric to pursue?

In this episode we are introduced to two of the women in Alcide’s life, his sister Janice and his former girlfriend Debbie Pelt. Janice is a beautician who comes over to help Sookie. She needs to change her appearance so she can get into the engagement party at Lou Pines that evening. Wearing a black wig and a new sexy getup, Sookie convinces Alcide to take her to Lou Pines to the party.

When they get there, we meet Debbie who immediately hates Sookie. Both Alcide and Sookie realize that this is not an engagement party, but as Janice told Sookie, it’s an initiation for Debbie into “Operation Werewolf”. Part of this initiation is when Russell Edgington, King of Mississippi shows up and gives his blood to the pack turning the event from a bikers party into an almost religious ceremony similar to Holy Communion. Part of the initiation is for the Operation Werewolf symbol to be branded onto Debbie’s back. They all drink vampire blood, brand Debbie and turn into Werewolves and just in the nick of time Alcide tells Sookie to get out of there. Obviously, Russell has this pack of werewolves in his control since he has them hooked on “V”.  As we saw in the flashbacks from World War II, this group has been in existence and he has controlled them for a long time.  Russell is a staunch enemy who seems to be truly evil and out for no good and wants to control the world.

Prior to this, Bill meets with the King and it’s now time for Bill to provide information to him. Before doing so, Bill tells the King what he wants in return for his cooperation, for Lorena to be gone. The king replies that killing a vampire is a punishable offense and Bill exclaims “Not if it’s not reported”. The king smiles in agreement.  Bill then tells him about Eric and the Queen’s selling of V.  Deciding to celebrate this information gathering, the King takes Bill and Lorena in his limo to a stripper bar and asks Bill, who has told the King his job for the queen was that of “procurer”, to find them a snack. Bill returns with a stripper and the three of them drain her completely.

This episode was very tightly woven and well done, as were the three before it.  But this week’s, for me, exemplified what Bill is all about, that of his struggle to maintain his humanity. I think Bill is on the verge of potential destruction and I worry for him. He seems to be the center of the vampire story this season, the King wants him, Eric and Pam are using him, and Lorena won’t free him.

Also, I have to comment on Stephen Moyer’s performance of Bill, which for me was the best thing about the episode. His performance was so gut wrenching and incredibly powerful that I almost couldn’t believe what I was seeing. The pain and torment that is so apparently inside Bill was clearly evident in his portrayal. Bill is involved in a dangerous game within a spider’s web and Stephen Moyer is playing it to perfection.

12 Comments

  1. I really liked this episode….it was paced nicely and had some good moments and tied some more of the storyline together.

    There were some very funny moments along with the serious stuff which is nice and TB always throws that in.
    Stephen and Anna rocked their scenes! the phone call was emotional and heartbreaking. Well done to both of them.
    Bill just shined! his expressions and mannerisms are superb. It was completely obvious what he was doing and who he is playing. Bill is no dumb vampire, and is not a wuss like so many have said about him last season. I am loving him so much that I can’t wait for the weekly shows! He is the PERFECT vampire. He loathed going into that bar to get the girl, it was written so clearly all over his beautiful face. When Anne took her bra off he actually turned away. That is the respectful Bill we all know and love, our vamp who still tries to be a gentleman.

    Bill’s treatment of Lorena is justified, 110%. She needs to be staked. All there is to it. I knew he would ask the king about getting rid of her. But I think Sookie will do it. Which in the long run will bring Bill and Sook closer together, imo.
    Loved the punch scene and Lorena totally got off on it!!! freak.
    I do feel sorta sorry for her, and that is what the writers are intending……her love for him is intense! and quite pathetic.

    Alcide is growing on me……I would love to see Sookie have him as her rebound, he is sooo lonely and seems sorta lost. I really felt for him with the whole Debbie thing. Sookie did as well.
    Speaking of Debbie…damn that girl is a bitch! and not just in the wolf sense…LOL
    and uhm…Kinda ugly……but I think she is supposed to be. ALcide is jaded with relationships and his little lecture to sooki on whether or not it was her first was interesting. There was actually a few scenes about relationships…..including Bill and Anne. I think its a point of what is to come. but also I guess its also about what we would do for the ones we love…..Bill and Sook are being tested huge. AB said it would happen.

    I like that Sookie is using her telepathy, finally.

    Love, loved Janice!! she was fantastic in her short scene. She is similar to book Janice, love her.

    Interesting how they are tying in the Hotshot community and the V. Eric is getting himself into big shit.

    I liked seeing the relationship with Pam and Eric, not impressed for them throwing Bill under the bus but I don’t think the Magister fell for it. He sensed they were panicking. Another inquisition for sure by the end of the season, he is out to get some vamps.
    Eric’s dream was complete CHEESE. *rollseyes* nothing more to add.

    I see where they are going with Eric and showing him have his softer side, which we all knew he had, both vamps are like that, as they are all…because they all used to be human. I think that gets forgotten. imo.

    I kinda feel for Sam and bit…..he family seems so f*cked up and lost. Sam is always trying to do the right thing…..the man needs some LOVE.

    Ohhh Franklin…damn, that vamp is mean. I am seeing the books in him now after this episode. poor Tara…..I am sick of her bad story lines though…..I really like her character and hate to see her like this. Franklin is in love with her though in his own messed up way. Vampires are lonely and I think this episode really portrayed that.

    Loved Laffy…..as always. I actually liked Eric swooping in and saving his ass as well. good scene.I liked this episode and will watch it again tonight…..as usual I am excited for next weeks! Sookie and Bill really hate being apart, you can tell its eating at them. this is the whole yes, they are soulmates stuff AB was talking about. No matter what they go through and endure they want to be together.

    1. I agree with all you said I HATE lorena and eric and I agree with what you said at the last part about bill and sookie that they dont like to be apart and that they are soal mates ment to be togather true blood is the best ever

  2. Excellent recap, Lynn. I’m on vacation and with my limited on line time, I can’t add my thoughts the way I’d like to. I’m grateful I was able to watch the episode.

    The phone call nearly broke my heart … so moving and compelling between Bill and Sookie.

    Stephen absolutely rocked this episode.

    I’m really frightened for Tara. Franklin is psychotic. Still, I’m drawn to his character.

    Jason blackmailing Andy?

    Sam will have his hands full tending to his family.

    A second redhead at Merlottes. Arlene is less than pleased.

    Russell, Debbie and the weres at the blood and branding ceremony. Further insight into Russell’s power over this pack.

    Lorena got what she deserved when Bill punched her out of the room.

    Bill gave Russell a pertinent piece of information about Eric, SA and V selling … and thanks to Pam he is now on the hook with the magister for the very same thing.

  3. Here is my Bill-centric review!

    Is it wrong that I loved hearing Bill drop 2 F-bombs? It’s no not Bill, but I loved it.

    Bill’s call to Sookie was gut-wrenching. So cruel, but so necessary for Bill to try to keep Sookie safe. Bravo to Sookie for having suspicions on the sincerity. Stephen and Anna got chemistry over the phone! That is sick in an awesome way.

    Bill laying on the bed all shirtless was a sight to behold.

    Hmm, how did Bill come to suspect that Sophie-Anne was having Eric selling V? And how cool was it that Bill asks Russell to have Lorena killed. He wants something in return for signing his own death warrant, so go big, I guess!

    Bill looked as hot as ever going into that stripper joint. So hot. When the stripper was talking about how she will never escape the hell that is her life, you seen how Bill understood that. He is in his own personal hell right now.

    Very tragic that he felt Sookie’s danger but could do nothing about it.

    Woah, a femoral bite that didn’t involve Sookie??!! NOOOOOOOOO!

    At every turn in the episode, you seen Bill having to do very bad things, but yet you seen his inner struggle. That human side of him was still very clear and present. He is hating everything he is doing, but either he sees no other option, or has his own agenda that he is pursuing. I’m thinking it may be both.

    Stephen is just rocking this stuff this season. I love that it has been a huge season for Bill. This man better get some strong awards consideration.

    1. Cherie, I for one really enjoyed your Bill-centric review (since my whole view of True Blood is Bill-centric!), and I’m sure I’m not alone. Everyone had some excellent thoughts about this complex, emotional episode. That phone call from Bill to Sookie broke my heart. Stephen played Bill’s pain and determined restraint perfectly, and Anna totally got me with her tears–it was contagious. She is so genuine, it amazes me. Even later on when Alcide was attempting to console her, her eyes looked all puffy just like she had really just spent an hour crying!

      A lot went on in this episode–everyone’s story lines are getting SO interesting–but that opening phone call was the centerpiece. (I am as feminist and pacifist as it gets, but that punch that sent Lorena out into the hallway was such a satisfying counterpoint to the heartbreak of the phone call.) How does Alan Ball DO IT???? Pure genius, I guess.

    2. Absolutely loved your Bill-centric review. He so ruled/rocked this episode. And a femoral artery bite–WOOHOO! (even if Sookie wasn’t involved.)

  4. Great recap, Lynn! Stephen was magnificent last night, as he has been all season. I’m so glad he’s getting all of this great material to play, and I can only hope it continues and gets even better as the season progresses.

    Bill’s scenes with the stripper were probably my favorites of the episode. How sad they were, both of them. Stephen/Anna also knocked it out of the park with that phone call, and man was it hard to watch. I was glad that Bill told Sookie about Lorena so that wouldn’t be a secret between them, but damn I didn’t need him to do it like that.

    Lorena was just delusional last night. I can totally understand being d*ck-whipped by Bill Compton, I’m sure I’d be the same way. But at least acknowledge that he loathes you and you just want him any way. He will never, ever, ever love you. Ever. No matter how many decades you give him.

    Franklin is a total freak, I’m tired of victim Tara, Jason is losing all cool points he gained with me in season 2, and Sam’s story is boring. I do like Alcide and think JM’s description of him as “grumpy” was pretty spot on. The vampire politics and the were craziness are probably the best stuff going on right now in True Blood.

  5. “AB pure genious” Absolutely. This season may well be the best one yet. Yes, I miss Bill & Sookie together, but I’m loving the suspense, the intricate plot lines, the Vampire politics and deceptions, and who remains loyal and who does not, and why, and Stephen! My God, he’s stepped up his game as Bill, like it or not. The whole ball of wax is nothing but addicting, impeccably written drama with a whole lot of other things thrown in for good measure. Amazing. I think this is the season that should win an Emmy (I know it’s premature), but I’ll take one for last season as well. The casting of the new characters has been brilliant.

  6. I have to say Stephen has given one stellar performance after another this season. Not that he hasn’t always been wonderful but the material is so rich and Bill oriented this season. Do we miss Bill and Sookie together? Yes, but as I have said previously, as long as Bill isn’t marginalized and remains in the forefront with good storylines we can take anything AB throws at us. Obviously Stephen can handle any scenario they can imagine for Bill.
    Stephen with the most subtle facial expressions and tone of voice conveys volumes of Bill’s most inner thoughts and emotions. Extraordinary scenes that would not have had the impact they did with a less talented actor.
    That brief hesitate moment before Bill spoke to Sookie on the phone so that he could regain his composure after hearing her voice and steeling himself to be cruel and push her away knowing it would break her heart but hopefully keep her safe. Their hearts were broken and so was mine.
    Bill’s determination to not allow Lorena to sink her claws or should I say fangs into him yet again resulted with a punch that would result in Bill being declared champ in any ring. I say give the vamp the belt, he earned it. She needs to be introduced to the sharp end of a stake asap.
    From the sad procurement to anger at being forced to feed was spellbinding. That Bill felt Sookie’s distress but unable to go to her just fueled the flame that is burning so hot under that cool beautiful exterior. Bill is looking better than ever . Be still my heart. Upon his return to BT I want him to bring his new fabulous wardrobe. Stephen deserved a post on his performance alone.

  7. Thank you for the recap lynn.

    Most everything has been touched on by Bills lovely babes already but I need to say myself how absolutely outstanding Stephen is playing Bill!!

    Stephen your acting talents and professionalism are coming out full swing. Well they always have in all you have done but this season your character is so tested, to the very limits and you have risen to the occassion and moved us all with your outstanding performance. You have owned this season. Fabulous story and acting.

    You are asked to perform above and beyond for your character and you do so magnificently.
    Our hearts are broken for Bill. I have been so moved to tears for him. That is the affect you have on me. Your range of emotions are hands down incredible. Bill is so tested and forced to do so much against his will but he is always fueled by his everlasting love for his miracle.
    I look forward to the time when we will see Bill eventually rise above and triumph against all his adversaries.
    Only the most noteworthy character can be have so much evil thrown his way to over come. Bill is such a character.

    I believe in Bill and I adore you Stephen. No matter where you go and what you do you will always have so many devoted fans.

    I am hoping that the powers that be will see what has been always right before their eyes and give Stephen what he has earned and deserved. Stephen your acting throughout True Blood has been Emmy worthy to say the least. I am hoping that next year we see a nom and win!!!!!

  8. Ladies:
    I loved the whole episode.
    I’m still trying to pull apart the episode and also make sense of it.
    We had so many cannonballs lobbed at us on Sunday and they expoloed into
    many different elements to many different storylines.
    1. We saw another part of William Thomas Compton’s personality:
    That he can hurt someone that he supposedly loves while under the spell
    of His Maker.His maker is one of the most sadistic people I’ve ever seen.
    She keeps on coming back for more punishment.
    She only want others to feel pain,I would say Lorena has never felt a
    good feeling in her Human life.
    When Bill made that phone call to Sookie and he broke her heart and that
    witch was listening in to the phone call showed that Bill Compton had
    “NO Class” Phone calls like that are supposed to be PRIVATE!!!
    When Bill made this call he gave Eric Northman “A Free and clear path to
    Sookie Stackhouse” Bill will never be trusted & he will never get Sookie
    back~She is gone forever” ByeBye Bill!!!

    We now know that Russell Eddington’s is behind “Operation Werewolf”,
    that he’s supplying the Vampire Blood~and that he could even be setting
    up Eric Northman to get to Queen Sophie Anne LeClurque????
    Alcide’s ex,Debbie Pelt is a Skank~And a tease,she two timed him while
    they were supposedly seeing each other. He’s better off without her.

    Franklin Mott needs to be staked!! I can’t stand him.
    he’s creepy.

  9. Marlene – When you wrote above:

    “When Bill made that phone call to Sookie and he broke her heart and that witch was listening in to the phone call showed that Bill Compton had“NO Class” Phone calls like that are supposed to be PRIVATE!!!”

    My reply: Bill’s phone call had two purposes:
    Bill called Sookie in front of Lorena to convince Lorena that he didn’t want Sookie anymore. He let Sookie know Lorena was there so that Sookie would know that he was saying this for Lorena and under duress. It got Lorena off the scent and let Sookie know he was alive. I think that was his intention.

    Did you notice that when he left the strip club he felt Sookie was in danger? The look on his face told me that he wanted to go to her, but knew he didn’t dare. He is a captive and in a very complicated mess.

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