I really loved the flashback scene with Godric and Eric earlier this season. I've enjoyed Eric's (Alexander Skarsgard) character immensely this year. It was a very good idea to make Godric Eric's maker. In the books Eric's maker was not really focused on, which given the magnetism of Eric, was a mistake.
As for the Maenad, as you know, Michelle Forbes is near and dear to the sci-fi community. Any chance I get to see her I'm giddy, but yes, this Maenad needs to go. She's too much trouble. Poor Sam. In the book, Sam and the Maenad were traveling companions when Sam was in dog form. The storyline really wasn't based on her. She was just a nuisance and not a main part of the storyline in the book--what a mistake. Michelle has been absolutely delightful to watch this season.
One huge mistake I think Alan Ball made last year (which has slightly cont'd this year), is his stance that the "series" should focus primarily on the relationship between Sookie and Bill. Bill doesn't really have a prominent part in most of the series, excluding the 1st novel. Eric is Sookie's main love interest in most of the books. So hopefully, Alan will get with the program and recognize that rising star Alex Skarsgard, who plays Eric, is the character we want to see most.