With buckets of gore and flustery bluster, HBO's big-ticket summer items True Blood and The Newsroom signed off Sunday with noisy season finales. But as usual, the night was owned by upstart AMC's brilliant Breaking Bad in the season's penultimate episode — its finale airs next Sunday as a Labor Day distraction — with a quietly devastating death scene for one of its most memorable characters.
Some thoughts in ascending order (also the order in which I watched):
Ding dong! The Guardian is dead!
True Blood bid farewell to Christopher Meloni on Sunday after Russell Edgington (Denis O'Hare) turned the tables on Vampire Authority Guardian Roman, staking him in the heart and seemingly driving a nail in the coffin of the mainstreaming movement, which has seen centuries-old vampires assimilate into the human world on the HBO series.
Comic-Con: True Blood promises more wacky sex and naked Joe Manganiello!
How will Roman's death affect the war between the mainstreamers led by the supposedly devoted Authority and the ruthless Sanguinistas, who wouldn't hesitate to rip out your spine on live television and drink your blood for sport (Hello, Russell!)?
To get the scoop, TVGuide.com turned to Deborah Ann Woll, who plays teenage vamp Jessica, who says Roman's death and the arrival of original vampire Lilith will impact the rest of the season. Plus: How will Jason (Ryan Kwanten) feel towards Jessica now that he knows vampires were the cause of his parents' death?
Our top moments of the week:
14. The Miracle of Breastfeeding, Part 1: On Beverly Hills Nannies, veteran "manny" Justin isn't prepared when stay-at-home mom Marika asks him to organize her breast milk by date and ounces in a "dead-body deep-freezer of milk." "Are you stocking up for the apocalypse?" Justin asks upon seeing it already halfway filled with his boss' breast-crements. Marika is offended that Justin is so squeamish about her hoard milk, but shouldn't she have been more...
Stabler and Benson, together again? Maybe for one episode.
During the True Blood panel Saturday at Comic-Con, Christopher Meloni said that he might be willing to return to Law & Order: SVU for the eventual series finale.
The Authority vs. the Sanguinistas: Let the battle begin!
True Blood's vampire civil war is about to kick off in a big way. With the Authority divided and fearful of whom to trust now that it's been revealed that Nora (Lucy Griffiths) wasn't the only traitor — RIP,
the chosen one Alexander Drew — the rival Sanguinistas may actually stand a chance of taking over the world, especially considering their biggest acolyte, Russell Edgington (Denis O'Hare), is on the loose.
True Blood: Now that Pam is free, what's next?
And even though Nora has been hooked up to the silver torture machine for the better part of this season so far, Eric's (Alexander Skarsgard) vampire sister will soon fight back — even against Roman (Christopher Meloni). "Nora definitely comes off better," Griffiths says of Nora's feud with the Authority Guardian. Plus: The impending arrival of one very special vampire may also help with the upcoming war. To get the scoop, TVGuide.com grilled Griffiths on what's in store: