Before “True Blood” aired on HBO, I’d read all the books. I was thoroughly invested in the show. I was so invested that, when it went off the rails in the final few seasons, I still watched. I had followed Sookie and her friends for so long that I kind of felt obligated, like you do with that one friend from college. You know, the one you really liked once upon a time, but now you can’t stand the way she chews. It wasn’t the books. I loved those. It was the show. I mean, really, the fairies were just a mess.
That said, I’m about to take a chance on a new series inspired by the work of author Charlaine Harris. This time around, I haven’t read the books. I got a chance to check out the pilot of “Midnight, Texas” at WonderCon this past weekend and I loved it. It reminded me of what I loved about “True Blood” when it first started. It was charming.
If you’re not familiar with the premise for the show, a man named Manfred is the lead. He’s a medium. Most of the time he fakes it, but he’s really a conduit for the dead. His grandma even helps him out here and there. When he gets into trouble, she tells him to head for Midnight, Texas, a very, very small town full of some odd people. We’re talking vampires, witches and even angels. (Well, one guy has wings and protects the town, so I’m guessing that’s what he is.)
Sounds like “True Blood,” right? Well, first of all, it’s on network TV, so there’ll definitely be less violence and nudity. The thing that’s different here is the charm. This show doesn’t seem to be taking itself too seriously, where “True Blood” definitely did a lot of the time. This one has a talking cat. OK, I’m not sold on that part yet, but I’m willing to give it a shot. The stakes seem high, but the actors seem to be having fun. It doesn’t feel … heavy. I think I’m right at the point where that sounds absolutely lovely. I bet I’m not the only one.
I think the thing that struck me about “True Blood” was that it was about a bunch of outsiders who wouldn’t fit in anywhere else, and the few humans who are totally cool with that. I like the idea of a place where no one gets judged for who they are. We’ll see how it plays out when it premieres this summer, but for right now, I’m totally in. Bring on the weirdos!