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'True Blood' season premiere is too stuffed with storylines

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Mario Anzuoni/Reuters

(Read caption) 'True Blood' has the characters portrayed by stars Anna Paquin (center, with series creator Alan Ball) and Stephen Moyer (r.) caught up in too many plotlines.

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An often action-packed thrill ride through the repercussions of the previous season, the True Blood season 5 premiere presents a thoroughly entertaining, though flawed, first installment for the series’ new year.

Picking up where the chaotic True Blood season 4 finale left, much of the premiere follows Sookie (Anna Paquin) and friends through the aftermath of their murderous escapades. Certainly a necessity given the numerous cliffhangers and unfinished stories that were left from last season, a noticeable divide presents itself in the premiere, where tying up loose ends with some characters is juxtaposed with new, compelling stories for others.

As Sookie and Lafayette “take care” of Tara and Debbie, Bill (Stephen Moyer) and Eric (Alexander Skarsgard) “take care” of  Nan Flanagan and the Vampire Authority, and Sam (Sam Trammell) and Alcide (Joe Manganiello) “take care” of Marcus and the pack, while Jason (Ryan Kwanten) is kicking things off with Steve Newlin (Michael McMillian) and Jessica is trying to “find” herself. Oh, and Russell Edgington (Denis O’Hare) is back.

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