I’ve had a feeling that season 3 of True Blood will be the best yet, and this press release from HBO has convinced me that I was right. Looks like this season of True Blood is going to immerse itself in the sinewy Peyton Place-ish story lines of the books. Here are the descriptions for the first few episodes. Beware, some pretty significant spoilers below.
With Bon Temps still reeling from the Maenads’reign of terror, Sookie Stackhouse begins her desperate quest for the whereabouts of Bill Compton, while her fellow townspeople face new threats that make their previous problems seem tame by comparison.
TRUE BLOOD kicks off its 12-episode third season SUNDAY, JUNE 13 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), exclusively on HBO, followed by other new episodes on subsequent Sundays at the same time. Mixing romance, suspense, mystery and humor, the show takes place in the not-too-distant future, when vampires have come out of the coffin, thanks to the invention of mass-produced synthetic blood that means they no longer need humans as a nutritional source. The show follows the romance between waitress Sookie Stackhouse (Anna Paquin), who can hear people’s thoughts, and her boyfriend, 173-year-old vampire Bill Compton (Stephen Moyer), who went missing at the end of season two last year, and is now the object of a frantic search. Alan Ball (creator of the Emmy®-winning HBO series ‘Six Feet Under’) created and executive produces the show, which is based on the best-selling Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris.
Other returning cast regulars on TRUE BLOOD include: Ryan Kwanten as Sookie’s trouble-prone brother Jason Stackhouse; Rutina Wesley as her in-mourning best friend Tara Thornton; Sam Trammell as Sookie’s shape-shifting boss Sam Merlotte; Nelsan Ellis as Tara’s sharp-tongued cousin Lafayette Reynolds; Chris Bauer as on-the-wagon detective Andy Bellefleur; Carrie Preston as Sookie’s fellow waitress Arlene Fowler; Todd Lowe as Terry Bellefleur; Jim Parrack as Hoyt Fortenberry; Alexander Skarsgård as vampire sheriff Eric Northman; Deborah Ann Woll as teen vamp Jessica Hamby; William Sanderson as Sheriff Bud Dearborne; Mariana Klaveno as Lorena Krasiki; and Kristin Bauer van Straten as Eric’s vampire sidekick Pam.
Joining the cast in season three are: Denis O’Hare as Russell Edgington, the Vampire King of Mississippi; Joe Manganiello as Alcide, a benevolent werewolf assigned to help Sookie; Brit Morgan as Debbie Pelt, Alcide’s werewolf ex-girlfriend; Theo Alexander as Russell Edgington’s royal consort Talbot; Grant Bowler as Coot, a werewolf; Lauren Bowles as Holly, a new Merlotte’s waitress; Marshall Allman as Sam’s long-lost brother Tommy Mickens; J. Smith Cameron as Sam’s mother Melinda Mickens; Cooper Huckabee as Sam’s father Joe Lee Mickens; Alfre Woodard as Ruby Jean Reynolds, Lafayette’s mom; James Frain as Franklin Mott, a vampire with a hidden agenda; Kevin Alejandro as Jesus Velasquez, an orderly who connects with Lafayette; and Lindsay Pulsipher as Crystal Norris, a mysterious girl from out of town who shares an instant connection with Jason. Returning this season is Evan Rachel Wood as Sophie-Anne, the Vampire Queen of Louisiana.
Episode #25: ‘Pack of Wolves’
Debut: SUNDAY, JUNE 13 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT)
Other HBO playdates: June 13 (11:00 p.m.), 15 (11:00 p.m.), 16 (10:00 p.m.), 19 (10:35 p.m.) and 30 (8:00 p.m.), and July 4 (9:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: June 14 (8:00 p.m.), 17 (10:00 p.m.), 18 (11:00 p.m.) and 20 (4:00 p.m.)
Sookie (Anna Paquin) turns to Eric (Alexander Skarsgård) for help in finding Bill (Stephen Moyer); Andy (Chris Bauer) urges Jason (Ryan Kwanten) to stay the course; Sam (Sam Trammell) reconnects with his past; Tara (Rutina Wesley) seeks refuge from her grief.
Written by Brian Buckner; directed by Daniel Minahan.
Episode #26: ‘Beautifully Broken’
Debut: SUNDAY, JUNE 20 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: June 20 (11:00 p.m.), 22 (11:00 p.m.), 23 (10:00 p.m.), 26 (10:30 p.m.) and 30 (9:00 p.m.), and July 4 (10:00 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: June 21 (8:00 p.m.), 24 (10:00 p.m.), 25 (11:00 p.m.) and 27 (3:00 p.m.)
Russell Edgington (Denis O’Hare), the Vampire King of Mississippi, concocts a plan to consolidate his power; Eric remembers his past; Sam tests the strength of his family bonds; Tara finds an ally in shady vampire Franklin Mott (James Frain).
Written by Raelle Tucker; directed by Scott Winant.
Episode #27: ‘It Hurts Me Too’
Debut: SUNDAY, JUNE 27 (9:00-10:00 p.m.)
Other HBO playdates: June 27 (11:30 p.m.), 29 (11:30 p.m.) and 30 (10:00 p.m.), and July 3 (4:40 a.m.), 4 (11:00 p.m.), 6 (11:30 p.m.), 7 (10:00 p.m.) and 10 (10:30 p.m.)
HBO2 playdate: June 28 (8:00 p.m.)
In search of Bill, Sookie heads to Jackson, Miss. in the company of Alcide (Joe Manganiello), a werewolf bodyguard assigned by Eric to protect her. Jason is distracted from his police exams; Bud (William Sanderson) reaches the end of his rope; Arlene (Carrie Preston) copes with unexpected news; Franklin charms Tara, and gets Jessica (Deborah Ann Woll) out of a jam; Eric bequeaths a gift to Lafayette (Nelsan Ellis). Haunted by visions from his past, Bill (Stephen Moyer) makes a surprising pledge of allegiance.
Written by Alexander Woo; directed by Michael Lehmann.
Concluding its 2009 run last September, the second season of TRUE BLOOD was a hit with critics as well as subscribers. The Boston Globe called the show ‘pure perfection,’while the San Francisco Chronicle termed it ‘bloody good,’and New York’s Daily News hailed the ‘exceptionally good ensemble cast.’
‘True Blood: The Complete Second Season’will be released on DVD and Blu-ray May 25. Bonus features include ‘Character Perspectives,”Vampire News,’trivia and in-depth audio commentary.
TRUE BLOOD was created by Alan Ball; based on the Sookie Stackhouse novels by Charlaine Harris; executive producers, Alan Ball and Gregg Fienberg; co-executive producers, Brian Buckner, Nancy Oliver and Alexander Woo; supervising producer, Raelle Tucker; producer, Mark McNair; associate producer, Christina Jokanovich.