Let's begin with Franklin and Tara because they stole the hour. Franklin had Tara tied up in a chair as they waited for Russell to return with Bill and Lorena from their joyride. Talbot (''Who's a pretty girl?'') played host even though Franklin and Tara were at odds with his décor. The trio returned with blood still on their faces from the stripper they'd dined on, and Tara asked Bill for help. He said no.
Franklin was there to give the King Bill's file on Sookie, which made Russell think again that Bill had been in Bon Temps under Sophie-Anne's orders. Why else would he have a dossier on his human? (And we know that Sophie-Anne believes there's something special about Sookie; she told Eric in last season's finale that Sookie's not entirely human.)
Franklin asked to be paid for his services in cash, and Russell told him the last time he had any real money, he ended up at the slots in Biloxi slaughtering a church group of elderly women. ''They wouldn't let me have a turn,'' Franklin said. Russell told him it was sloppy to drag another girl around, but Franklin said Tara was different. ''She's such a f---ing disaster, we could be twins,'' he said. ''The attraction is electric.'' As someone who noted last week that Tara is one of the five unluckiest characters on TV, I laughed out loud at that. Russell called Franklin a huge freak but said he likes his work.
The next time we saw Franklin, he was tying Tara — clothed in a long, modest gown that Franklin said he picked out (but that I'd like to imagine Talbot selected) before he sat down to do Tara's hair — to the four corners of the bed. It wasn't quite as horrifying as seeing her tied to a toilet last week (which, now that I think about it, could have been Franklin' attempt at kindness — they never deal with hostages… soiling themselves on TV, but if they're tied up for hours, they must, right?). Of course, anytime you see a woman tied up, you worry that a man's about to force himself on her. Are we supposed to think Franklin hasn't forced himself on Tara, or assume that he's using mind control to make her a willing participant? He pounced to lay his full weight on top of her, and said, ''Even when I'm away, I can feel your flesh molded to me. That's how close we are now.''
''That's really sweet,'' Tara said, trying to play along.
''I know,'' he answered. Franklin then remembered that Tara had gotten a text from Lafayette, ''Bitch, where are you?'' He demanded to know who Lafayette was, or he'd rip Tara's throat out. She hesitated, not wanting to bring Lafayette into this, but finally said he's her gay cousin. The next portion of the scene was by far the best moment of the episode: Franklin wondered what he should type back to make Lafayette go away. He thought about ''I'm busy, bitch,'' but then realized that was too many bitches. Something with ''hooker,'' Lafayette's other term of endearment for Tara, maybe? Tara told him to say she's okay. ''Say, 'Trust me, motherf---er.'''
NEXT: I guess Tara doesn't use T9?