Tag Archives: Michonne

The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “A”

Are these people cannibals? So, pretty much the only atrocity we haven’t been subjected to, YET, on The Walking Dead is cannibalism. And I don’t know if you noticed, but as the Terminus shooters were herding Rick and company through the streets and alleys, there was a glimpse of…”meat” laid out behind a chain link fence. Also, there were voices coming from several stacked shipping containers yelling for help.

Plus, before Rick, Carl, and Michonne met up with Daryl, they dwelled on how hungry they were. Foreshadowing? I think so. Then, later, before the poop hit the fan in Terminus, there seemed to be a lot of meat-ish looking food to be had.

Cannibals? Maybe.

Just sayin’. I mean, I hope I’m wrong, but, after all, this is The Walking Dead.

Highlights from the season finale, “A”:

– Rick, Carl, and Michonne are still on their way to Terminus. And they’re hungry. Seriously, a lot of time was spent on talking about how hungry they are. Not that food hasn’t always been an issue, but the first part of “A” seemed to focus on it. A lot. Rick teaches Carl and Michonne (how did she not know this?) how to set up a snare to catch small game TO EAT. This is obviously important and very heavy-handed foreshadowing for what would happen once they get to Terminus. More on that later, though.

– They camp for the night on the road next to a trashed vehicle, which Carl is sleeping in while Rick and Michonne shoot the breeze outside. Suddenly, Joe and his band of nasties show up! Somehow, Joe worked out that Rick killed one of his guys back in “Claimed,” and he and his men have been tracking the trio ever since. (Wait, what? How did that happen? It must have conveniently taken place off camera, because it was certainly not shown that Joe and/or any of his men saw Rick at all! Not to mention Michonne or Carl! WEAK.) Joe has a gun to Rick’s head, another guy is covering Michonne, and a creepy pedophile is eyeing Carl in the vehicle. Then, Daryl comes out of the shadows and tries to convince Joe not to kill his friends. Joe and his guys turn on Daryl start to beat him. Joe declares that Daryl will be beaten to death, Michonne will be raped and killed, Carl will be raped and killed, and then, Rick will be killed.

So, let me just point out, we’ve had child murder on this show, and now we’re faced with the rape of Michonne and Carl. Disgusting.

Rick flips out and bites Joe’s throat out (literally), which allows the other guys to be taken down. The creepy pedophile is viciously killed. I’m not going to go into a lot of detail about this scene, because I had to look away. It was too much. Joe and his men certainly deserved to die, and if my son had been threatened in a similar manner, I think I would have reacted in much the same way; however, it’s something I decided not to watch due to it’s graphic nature.

– The next day, Rick, Carl, Michonne, and Daryl continue on their way to Terminus. (Daryl explained what happened since the prison, and Rick welcomed him back as a brother.) When they reach Terminus, they decide to scout it out and go over a fence rather than enter through the front gates. Carl goes with Michonne to scout rather than Rick, and the boy explains to her that he’s having “thoughts” and is not who is father thinks he is. What? Not sure what that meant, but at least he and Michonne had a nice moment, so that’s good, I guess. See, she had noticed that Carl was kinda avoiding Rick and asked him about it. I inferred it was because of Rick’s recent tough decisions (not helping a dude surrounded by walkers, etc.) and the brutality with which he took down Joe’s group, but it wasn’t explained.

Daryl takes in the scene during the Terminus herding. Image courtesy of AMC.

Daryl takes in the scene during the Terminus herding. Image courtesy of AMC.

– Before going over the fence, Rick buries a bag of guns, ammo, and arrows in the woods as a just-in-case plan. Seems smart to me! They hop the fence and enter a warehouse, where they find the lady on the radio broadcasting that Terminus is a safe place. Other folks are there, too, making signs…or something. They are greeted nicely enough, told to disarm, searched, and then welcomed to Terminus. They even get their weapons back! So, Guy who Appears to be the Leader from Terminus (GAL) tells Nice Guy from Terminus (NGT) to show them around, and he leads them out into an open area, where Tasha Yarr (TNG, anyone?) is cooking bits of mystery meat. She offers it to them, and Carl is just about to take some when Rick notices that NGT has a pocket watch that looks suspiciously like the one Hershel gave to Glenn. Rick also sees someone in what looks like prison riot gear and someone else wearing a poncho that looks like Maggie’s (It was Maggie’s, right? I think so.) Rick grabs NGT and holds a gun to his head, demanding to know where the watch, the prison riot gear, and the poncho came from. A sniper appears on a roof, but NGT waves him off, trying to calm Rick down. It doesn’t work. Then, GAL appears on a roof, and after a couple of half-hearted attempts to diffuse the situation (during with NGT pleads with GAL not to “do it”), signals gun fire from the roofs. Rick, Carl, Michonne, and Daryl are herded through streets, alleyways, and buildings (It was so very like the way Rick described the animal snare, btw. TOLD YOU IT WAS HEAVY-HANDED FORESHADOWING. It was also during these scenes that they ran past the “meat” and the stacked containers that had people inside yelling for help. I had to rewind it a couple of times to make sure I saw and heard what I thought.) until they reach a fence and a line of gunmen. GAL threatens to kill Carl unless Rick cooperates and goes to stand in front of a train car. Slowly, they are each forced to line up in front of the car before entering into the dark car. Once they are inside, they see Glenn, Maggie, Bob, Sasha, Tara, Abraham, Mullet Man, and the other girl.

– The episode actually ended with a grain of hope, when Rick states that the Terminus folks have messed with the wrong group of people. I thought it was hopeful, at any rate.

FADE TO BLACK on the episode and season four of The Walking Dead.

There are still lots of loose ends, of course! Where’s Beth? Who snatched her? Was it conveniently someone from Terminus?  And what about Tyreese, Carol, and Judith? I think they’re probably already at Terminus somewhere, because as Rick and co. were entering the train car, the camera let us see trampled powdered milk boxes. I’m thinking that those point to Judith, somehow. Hopefully, she’s still alive, but maybe they already made a meal of her! IF they’re cannibals. IF! Of course, they could just be another group of crazies.

WHY DID RICK AND THE GANG BELIEVE IN TERMINUS? Arrive and survive? Come on! Obviously a trap. At least, Rick had the foresight to go in the back way. Ugh.

Also worth mentioning about this episode where the frequent flashbacks we got of happier times at the prison when Hershel was teaching Rick how to be a farmer. We got a little more story about why Rick seemed to eschew weapons and leadership in favor of planting. Turns out it was all for Carl, of course. That wasn’t hard to figure out, though. Still, it was nice to see the show address it.

So, I think that’s it for me and The Walking Dead! There was just too much this season. Too much gore. Too much violence. Too much sadness. Not enough…hope.

The world is already a dark place with too many evil people. But, at least there’s hope.

 

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC.]]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Claimed”

So, I gotta give props to a show I kinda hate; this episode wasn’t too bad!

Let’s jump right in, shall we?

Highlights:

– After a brief scene of shocking domesticity at breakfast (complete with laughter), Carl inadvertently and rather offhandedly mentions Judith to Michonne and abruptly leaves the table.  It was just the two of them, and Rick, who was listening in the next room, thanks Michonne for being Carl’s friend, admitting he can’t be the boy’s friend AND father. Michonne convinces Rick to stay in the house for another day of rest while she and Carl scavenge for supplies. Rick agrees, and Michonne and Carl set out. Michonne tries to tease Carl out of his sullen mood (which he sank into after mentioning his dead –he thinks– baby sister) to little avail. It’s not until they are in a house, and Michonne promises to answer personal questions for every room cleared that Carl seems to brighten. Michonne reveals that she had a three-year-old son named Andre, and as the two of them go through the house, we are reminded of how terrible the apocalypse is for children. The house was obviously home to a couple of kids, and their stuff is everywhere, seemingly untouched. The pair separates, and Michonne finds the family, complete with two small children, dead in one room. It looks like suicide, because they’re all laid out nicely on beds. Ugh.

Serious Michonne is serious. Image courtesy of AMC.

Serious Michonne is serious. Image courtesy of AMC.

I had to wonder why the survivors hadn’t found more people like that, though. Seems like it would be pretty commonplace. Huh.

– Back at the house, Rick, who was upstairs taking a nap on one of the beds, awakens to voices and noise in the house. Someone’s in the house! By the sounds, it’s a lot of someones, and they don’t sound all that nice. Rick rolls under the bed to hide, and someone comes up to lay down. But, it’s not long until another guy comes up and demands the bed. The two fight and the second guy chokes out the first…but not before the first, who is on the floor, sees Rick under the bed! Luckily, the guy passes out, and the second falls asleep on the bed. After a time, Rick manages to escape from under the bed, and some near misses later, finds himself in a bathroom. BUT, OH, NO! THERE’S A DUDE ON THE TOILET! (I mean, he’s sitting on the toilet. But, his pants are on. What was he doing? His boots were off. Was he just taking it easy? Weird.) Rick fights with the man, making a TON of noise that no one hears…remarkably…and kills him. Then, he makes his escape out the window, leaving the bathroom door open a bit. (This is important, folks! I thought it was so he could hear the other people as he made his escape. It wasn’t!) Rick drops down from the roof and creeps around the house to the front, where he crouches by the porch. One of the guys is on the porch, and Rick seems content to wait a bit until he sees Michonne and Carl approaching. Somehow, the guy on the porch doesn’t see them, and Rick readies to leap up and take him out. Suddenly, cries erupt from the house, and it dawned on me that Rick left the bathroom door open so the newly minted walker could get out and cause some good ole fashioned havoc! Porch guy runs back in the house, and Rick runs to Michonne and Carl, leading them away. Later, we see them traveling on the railroad tracks and finding a sign guaranteeing safety. “Those who arrive survive,” the sign promises. No doubt, it’s the same place Tyreese, Carol, Judith, and the murder twins decided to head for last week. We shall see, but I have my doubts about the safety of a place that claims to be safe. I’m just cynical like that.

– The episode actually opened with Tara riding in the back of the military/giant truck. She’s writing down where they’re going on her hand, and when they stop, she jumps down to help Abraham clear some walkers. Abraham Ford is a giant ginger with military background, and we find out that he’s taking Professor Mullet (his name is really Dr. Eugene Porter) to Washington, D.C. Apparently, Prof. Mullet knows how the walker epidemic started, and until recently, he’s been in touch with smart muckety-mucks in D.C. But, when the muckety-mucks stopped picking up the phone (radio…or something), they decided Prof. Mullet should go to D.C.

Professor Mullet. Image courtesy of AMC.

Professor Mullet. Image courtesy of AMC.

Ummm…why? If they’re not responsive, doesn’t that mean they’re probably dead? I mean, think about it! A major metropolitan area? Full of people? It’d be walker central, guys. Seriously. But, Abraham has it in his head that getting Mullet to D.C. is tantamount to saving the human race and/or world. There’s also an under-dressed woman with them that I don’t care enough about to remember her name. She had like two lines, so I’m guessing she won’t be around long. We’ll see. Those of you who read the comics have me at a distinct disadvantage, but I’m going on television tropes, here. She’s a hot lady who is inappropriately dressed and doesn’t speak. I say she’s toast.

– Glenn, who was passed out in the back of the truck wakes up and makes them stop, declaring that he’s going back for Maggie. Abraham tries to convince him to stay and help them get to D.C., but Glenn is determined. They fight, because…why not?…and in the midst of the scuffle, walkers starts shambling out of the field they’re parked next to. Professor Mullet tries to get their attention, but no one is listening to him, so, he gets some big gun and starts firing wildly, hitting walkers and the truck. The others stop fighting and come clear out the walkers. After things settle down, Abraham discovers that Professor Mullet shot up the truck, and it’s no longer usable. Of course! They all decide to follow Glenn back, and there’s an interesting exchange between Abraham and Mullet, wherein the good professor declares that he’s smarter and that they need to stick together until another vehicle can be found.

Something is off about Mullet; he had a weird little smile on his face as they followed Glenn.

Those were the highlights of last night’s episode. Like I said, it was better than last week’s! Of course, not putting a baby in mortal danger makes just about anything better in my book. What did you think?

Only five more shows this season!

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “After”

I hate Carl.

I could end this article right there and be totally fine with it. Seriously.

I don’t hate him because we got an exposition-y episode about him last night. Quite the contrary! I, for one, enjoy character development. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who didn’t hate the farm season. (Really. I rather liked it.)

I hate Carl because he’s a dumb kid going through contemporary teen stuff in the apocalypse. He doesn’t have music to blast or tires to screech as he roars away from his parents in typical spoiled teen-drama fashion. So, he pitches fits, attracts walkers, and almost gets himself killed on a regular basis. It drives me insane.

Now, I’m sure they’re trying to make Carl relatable to today’s teen audience, but I just don’t buy it. It just doesn’t make sense that he would be so reckless after what he’s been through. And maybe that’s just it; maybe they’re trying to say look how this terrible situation is affecting this teenager! But, this teenager was a boy when this all started. He didn’t have the luxury to age into the selfish adolescence that is so common in today’s society.

Trauma does terrible things to people, to be sure. But, in this world, Carl would be more likely to put a gun to his own head than act out in a way for which there has been no real precedence… beyond what the audience thinks they expect out of a teenager.

Ugh.

At least the entire episode wasn’t about Carl. We got some flashbacks and insights on Michonne, and they were quite welcome!

(Before I do my recap, let me touch on the fact that I was in no way eager for last night’s episode. Downton Abbey is a much better way to spend the 9 o’clock hour.)

“After” highlights:

– After the prison battle, Michonne selects a couple of walker pets, hacks off their arms and jaws, and sets off. Before she leaves, though, we get to see Hershel’s head, complete with milky rolling eyes and mindlessly chomping mouth. Michonne stabs it and leaves.

Stupid Carl. Image courtesy of AMC.

Stupid Carl. Image courtesy of AMC.

– Carl and Rick keep moving and come to some kind of roadside restaurant and/or convenience store. They kill a walker there, loot what’s left of the supplies, and continue on their way. Rick’s in pretty bad shape, by the way. If you’ll remember, The Governor beat the ever-loving crap out of him, and he’s wheezing like his lungs are punctured. Oh, and Carl is a jerk, walking too fast and being a smart mouth to his father. Eventually, they reach what seems to be a subdivision of some kind and hole up in an abandoned house. Rick passes out from his injuries, but not before helping Carl block the front door with a couch. (Rick insisted the add the couch after Carl tied the door shut…because, you know…Rick LOVES Carl and wants to keep him SAFE.) Carl shouts at the unconscious Rick and generally hates on him, cementing my loathing of the teenaged character. Also, it’s generally a bad idea to make a bunch of noise in the zombie apocalypse, because, you know…WALKERS. And, sure enough, Carl’s hissy fit draws a couple walkers, who start clawing and pushing on the door.  Carl goes out a side door and lures the walkers away. But, the idiot keeps walking backwards, and you know something is going to happen. (!!!) Sure enough, it does and a couple more walkers wander up. Carl ends up wasting a ton of bullets and buried under a pile of dispatched walkers. Ugh. Later, he goes out looking for supplies and almost bites it again when another walker almost gets the best of him. He escapes, leaving his shoe behind.

Oh, and pudding. Carl finds a huge tin of pudding and sits on a roof eating it while the shoe walker tries in vain to reach him through a partially open window. Rawr.

– That night, Carl is sleeping next to unconscious Rick, when something wakes him up. Rick is stirring, and Carl thinks he’s died and walker-fied. He scoots away and readies to shoot his father, then breaks down in tears and confesses that he can’t do everything on his own, that he needs his dad, and that he’s scared –stuff he pitched a fit about earlier. But, Rick isn’t dead. Yay!

Michonne's new pets. I hope she named them Fido and Spot!

Michonne’s new pets. I hope she named them Fido and Spot! Image courtesy of AMC.

– Okay, so during Carl and Rick’s story line, we got cut-ins of Michonne. She and her new walker pets cross Carl and Rick’s trail, and she notes the fresh tracks. But rather than following them (not that she knows who left the tracks), she heads into the woods and joins a mini-horde. She, in a sense, briefly loses her humanity and becomes one of the walking dead as she trudges along with the pack. It’s during this time that we get a look at who she used to be and see her “lover” and another guy in a nice apartment. There’s also a small child, who turns out to be hers and her boyfriend’s/husband’s. We see the men change and worry about what to do. They refer to a camp they’re in, and the boyfriend/husband seems pretty hopeless. Suddenly, the men have no arms, and I assumed we were being shown Michonne’s original pets.

– Michonne snaps out of her reverie and seems to become aware of the mini-hoarde around her. She kills them all, even her new pets, and returns to the road where she saw the footprints. She follows them, comes to the same roadside restaurant/ convenience store and monologues about what we assume is her lost family. I got the idea that her boyfriend/husband killed himself and the small child after deciding there was no other choice.

– She continues to track Carl and Rick (she doesn’t know it’s them, though) and enters the subdivision. After finding an empty giant tin of pudding, she sneaks up to the first house, looks in, and sees Carl and Rick, who have since made up. Michonne politely knocks on the door, and Rick peeks out, sees her, and tells Carl it’s for him.

Aaaaaand that’s how the episode ends. It was rather a high note, actually, endowed with more of a sense of hope than we’ve had from this show in a long time. Michonne was overjoyed to find people again, and Carl and Rick seemed to have patched things up admirably. See, Rick told Carl what the idiot kid wanted to hear: You’re a man.

Whoopie. Great. So, let’s hope Carl starts acting like one, then.

 

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC.]]

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Where’s Judith?

Okay, the dust has settled and (hopefully) everyone has had some time to digest the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead. (BTW, can someone tell me when the “mid-season finale” became a thing? It’s new, right? I certainly don’t remember the terminology from previous years…hmph.)

Let me start by saying I didn’t see the last two episodes on the nights that they aired. Yes, dear reader, I SKIPPED them! It’s something that’s been building in my zombie-loving soul for a while, now. I’m sure you’ve noticed it if you read my recaps: I’m growing weary of The Walking Dead. Its utter sense of despondence and hopelessness is getting to me in the worst way, guys. Seriously. Oh, I even have “scientific” proof! I just took a personality quiz online, you see, and I am an ENFP. What does that have to do with this, you say? Well, I’m “Feeling” and stuff. Emotional or something.

Whatevs. I just like taking online quizes.

So, let me just hit the high points of the last two episodes:

– The Governor (TG), who now calls himself Brian, takes his adopted family to live in Martinez’s camp. Martinez accepts him and starts to trust him… right around the time that TG beats him over the head with a golf club and throws him in a walker pit. Buh-bye, Martinez! A nice man named Peter takes over leadership, and TG quickly takes him out, too. TG then goes to Peter’s brother and persuades him to join the dark side. The brother is, after all, a tank operator, and for those of you slightly familiar with the comics, you know a tank comes into play.

– TG humbly takes leadership of the camp. They’re going to SURVIVE, he tells them. How? Well, see, there’s this prison not too far. And, you know, they’re BAD people. Murderers and such. Let’s go take their prison! The camp folk are quickly convinced when TG tells them the takeover can be bloodless, because he’s captured two of the prison people already! WUT? Yep. TG skulked around the prison and captured Michonne and Hershel.

RIP, Hershel. Image courtesy of AMC.

RIP, Hershel. Image courtesy of AMC.

– Rick and company are alerted to visitors by the tank firing. BOOM! The commotion interrupts telling Tyreese that Carol killed Karen and that guy nobody cares about. Rick had just told Daryl about it, and they were off to tell Tyreese when TG’s howdy-do made them and others run outside to see what was going on. TG reveals his captives and summons Rick to the fence for a chat. TG demands the prison folk vacate by nightfall, or he and the campers will take the prison by force. Rick pleads with TG, telling him they can find a way to live in the prison all together. TG’s not having it, though, and to prove he’s serious, he hacks off Hershel’s head!

I WAS RIGHT! I totally called that Hershel was not making it out of this season! Proof here.

Lilly also shows up with Meghan’s lifeless body (Why hasn’t she turned, yet?). See, TG had left Lilly and Meghan behind at the camp, and Lilly let Meghan play a little too far away. The child was playing in the mud and uncovered a flash flood warning side. The audience was supposed to infer that the mud she was playing in had been caused by such a flood and a small landslide. Anyhow, her digging disturbed a buried walker, who noshed on her before her idiot mother could run over. So, back to the prison, where TG takes the dead girl and shoots her in the head. You know IT’S ON, now, son!

– A fire fight commences. Lots of shooting, etc. Boom, boom. Bang, bang. Glenn and some people make it out on the bus, but most of the other main characters are in the fight. (OH! And remember those two creepy blonde girls that Carol took charge of after their father died? Well, they and a couple of other girls have Judith and are making for the bus, when the older blonde girl stops them and declares that they have to be tough and stay and fight. WUT? So, they’re apparently wandering around during the shootout. Ugh.) TG is beating the crap out of Rick, who jumped him. But, Rick was shot and TG quickly gained the upper hand. Anyhow, blah, blah, beat, beat (Rick would have totally been killed. It’s seriously NOT possible to take that kind of beating and live.). SUDDENLY, Michonne shows up and runs TG through with her katana. She leaves him there to get eaten by walkers, who are, of course, beginning to swarm due to all the noise.

– Walkers are inching toward a miraculously still alive TG. (Michonne stabbed him through the chest. Come on!) So, we’re to think he’ll get eaten. However, at the last minute, Lilly shows up and shoots him in the head.

– Bob gets clipped with a bullet, but as far as I could tell, he, Sasha, Maggie, Beth, and Daryl (OF COURSE) make it out okay. Tyreese gets trapped, but who comes to the rescue but crazy older blonde girl! She pops a woman right in the head! Jeez! So, Tyreese and older blonde girl make it, too. Rick and Carl? AND JUDITH? So, Rick shambles back up to the prison courtyard and is yelling for Carl, when the smoke clears and out steps B.A. Carl right in time to pop a walker that was threatening his father. Together, they spot an EMPTY infant carrier that looks bloody. DID AMC JUST KILL JUDITH?! Well, Rick and Carl certainly think so. They lose it for a bit before regaining their composure and getting the heck out of Dodge. “Don’t look back, Carl,” Rick tells his son. (I don’t think Judith is dead. So, wouldn’t it be cool if Carol swooped in and saved her? Like, we wouldn’t see those scenes until February when the show comes back? That’d be cool. Or maybe Judith is still with the other little girls? We’ll see. But, what about the blood in the carrier? Well, a walker could have fallen on it or something. IT COULD HAVE HAPPENED. I DON’T WANT THE BABY TO BE DEAD!)

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Michonne finally gets her revenge on TG. Image courtesy of AMC.

Okay, so there’s lots of loose ends for the show to address when it comes back in February, but I think it would have been better to cut it off before TG was killed. Maybe even before the big prison fight! The last episode felt like a season finale to me, not this mid-season crap all the shows are doing these days. The BIG BAD (TG) is dead! What are they left with? To find their people, mourn for those who were lost, and rebuild/resettle.

Ugh.

What did you think of how The Walking Dead wrapped up this half of the season? Is Judith dead? JUDITH BETTER NOT BE DEAD!

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC.]]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Live Bait”

I was terribly glad to get away from the prison this week! Is it just me? Seriously, guys, the prison is starting to wear on me big time. And I was quite interested to learn what everyone’s favorite pirate has been up to since we saw him at the close of last season.

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Martinez be like, “You crazy.” Image courtesy of AMC.

So, let’s hit the highlights, shall we?

– After mowing down his own people, The Governor (TG) is abandoned by Martinez and Shumpert. Remember them? They’re the dudes that hopped in TG’s truck and sped away with him at the end of last season. Real stand-up guys. The pair ends up abandoning TG in the middle of the night (you’re telling me TG didn’t hear them drive away? Weird.), and TG grabs a conveniently located flat-bead truck and drives back to Woodbury, blowing the town’s gates wide open and then setting fire to just about everything. Because…you know…vengeance. Or something. I really have no idea why he did it.

– Time passes, and TG is staggering down a road to an evenly paced voiceover conversation with a woman. So, we know he’s taken up with or been taken in by someone. We also know a lot of time has passed because, my goodness, he has long hair! And a beard. He comes to a mostly empty apartment building and finds a family, who inexplicably takes him in, feeds him and treats him like one of their own. This whole series of scenes REALLY confused me. Why would they be so stupid? They don’t know this guy! He could be there to kill them and take their stuff! There are a pair of adult sisters (Tara and Lilly), one of which (Lilly) has a daughter probably around Penny’s (TG’s dead child) age, and an old guy who is dying of lung cancer (he’s the sisters’ father and the girl’s grandfather). TG tells him his name’s Brian, and they start asking him to do a number of mini-quests. Really, they demand it of him, and I could think of no reason why TG complied other than a remaining sense of misplaced duty to idiots who seemed to be as sheltered as the morons in Woodbury. These people didn’t even know how to kill walkers, or biters as TG calls them!

– TG shaves and gets a haircut. Who cuts his hair? Did he do it himself? I’m sure it doesn’t matter, but I’m also sure it’s supposed to indicate that TG is starting to come back to his senses. He’s been rambling around aimlessly, a shadow of his former BA self. Now, that he’s back around people again, he’s coming back from the brink of…where ever he was. I guess we were supposed to think his failure to take out Rick’s group, along with Penny’s “death” and the general lunacy of the Woodbury-ites pushed him over the edge. In fact, he told one of the sisters that he left his former group because the leader “lost it.” #Truth.

– The old man dies and turns, almost eating one of the sisters. But, TG jumps in at the last minute and smashes the man’s skull with an oxygen tank. Gross. Since the sisters and the girl weren’t aware that everyone turns after dying, they weren’t prepared for the brutal necessity of TG’s actions. The girl, who had warmed up quite nicely to TG, is afraid of him again. Oh noes! Replacement Penny doesn’t like him anymore! Her name is Meghan, but I prefer Replacement Penny.

– TG says goodbye to the sisters and girl, preparing to leave and go…somewhere. But, the girl’s mother demands that he take them. And…he does. WHY? They pile into a food truck (The old man drove for the company and stole it when the world “ended.”) and head out like the Beverly Hillbillies. Does TG have a destination in mind? The younger sister mentioned that she worked for the Atlanta police (We later learned she was only in the academy), and that the Army had gone into the city. Is TG going to get his tank?! (Reference to the comics) We don’t find out, guys.

– They park for the night, TG and the girl’s mom fool around and/or have sex (RIGHT NEXT TO THE OTHER SISTER AND THE GIRL! Gross.), and the truck won’t start the next day. Greeeaaat. So, they set out on foot! And, of course, a horde of walkers crosses their path. They dump the luggage to run, and the younger sister manages to fall down and hurt her leg. Seriously? How cliche! As the sisters are helping each other flee, TG looks back and sees Replacement Penny frozen in fear. He coaxes her to come to him, and she eventually runs into his arms and he carries her as they all run/limp through the forest. TG and Replacement Penny are running ahead, and they come into a field. Suddenly, TG falls into a pit! Of course, there are walkers in it, and he has to kill them all in front of Replacement Penny who is screaming/crying/whimpering in the corner. After the walkers are all dead, he assures Replacement Penny that he will never leave her and will always protect her. Awwww! How sweet.

– What’s that? Do you hear gun shots? Yes, you do! As TG was killing the walkers in the pit, you could definitely hear gunshots, and after he was done reassuring Replacement Penny, who pops into view, but…Martinez! See the following video for the emotion AMC was trying to elicit:

FADE TO BLACK!

So, all in all, I thought this episode was a refreshing take after weeks of prison bleakness. Not that this wasn’t bleak! And it definitely had it’s “What the crap?!” moments. Overall, I’m getting tired of The Walking Dead, and I find myself forcing myself to make myself watch it. I like it, but I hate it.

To be faced with people who have presumably been living under a rock for a couple of years (it has to have been a couple of years, now, right? At least a year and a half!), was ridiculous! TG was essentially presented with a tiny Woodbury. And they sucked him in and pushed responsibility on him; he retrieved the Backgammon set and went to the nursing home for oxygen tanks. Why? Why did he do these things? And why in the world did these people assume he would?! It makes no sense.

Was the purpose of this show to provide TG with a reason to live? After Penny’s death, he was bent on revenge, and when that failed, he lost his mind. Now, that he has Replacement Penny, will he totally snap back? And what of his need for revenge on Michonne, on Rick? We did see him skulking about in the trees watching the prison, and after watching the previews for next week, we can assume he takes up with Martinez’s new group. They appear to be nice folks, by the way…not so much.

I, for one, am glad TG is back. This show needs a Big Bad. True, the Spanish flu (or whatever was killing everybody at the prison) was nasty, but once they found medicine, it lost its teeth.

Besides, people are much more scary.

What did you think of “Live Bait?” Hit me up in the comments.

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC.]]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Internment”

You know who would have been handy during “Internment?”

Carol.

Not a whole lot happened last night, but shockingly, it was enough to fill an hour of television.

– After returning to the prison, Rick tells Maggie about what happened with Carol. Strangely, she seems fine with his decision. REALLY? Am I the only one who thinks it was a stupid thing to send Carol away? Seriously! Ugh. So, Rick and Maggie set about reinforcing the prison fence, which why they haven’t been doing that along, I have no idea. They had time to plant a farm, but not bolster the fence? Huh. Rick also finds the time to tell Hershel about Carol through the glass window into Cell Block Sick.

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I’m sure it’s bad that I was cheering for the walker. I dislike this creepy kid. Remember at the end, when she’s twirling her foot around in a pool of blood? Creep-tastic. I bet she’ll be the one to let the Governor in the prison. Image courtesy of AMC.

– In Cell Block Sick, things are looking grim. Hershel is running himself ragged trying to take care of everyone with the help of Glenn and Sasha, who are both dreadfully ill themselves. But, they’re tough and stuff. TOUGH, I say! People are starting to drop, and Hershel thinks it’s important to stab their brain pans out of sight of the rest of the sick folks. Something about morale. Blah, blah. The only real doctor of the bunch (Yeah, there’s a doctor. He’s made an appearance before, I know, but they haven’t really made that big of a deal about him, have they?), is sick (duh) and tells Hershel that he has a gun in his cell, because he expects things to go south. The doc also makes Hershel promise to close all the cell doors in the night. Seems like a logical thing to do. They should do that, anyway! It would have saved a lot of people when Philip went on his rampage through the Woodbury-ites. Just saying. In the middle of closing the doors, Hershel gets distracted when he finds Sasha passed out. He stops to help her, and some doors stay open. Of course, there is a woman who JUST drowned in her own fluids, and we see her walker eyes pop open. Shocking! Later, after Hershel revives Sasha (she was only dehydrated), he goes back to shutting doors and comes on one wherein a dude won’t let him check another dude. First dude looks to be the father of second dude and claims second dude is just sleeping. Riiiiight. Hershel buys it, though, and moves on.

Upstairs, Glenn is pumping air into some guy’s lungs to keep him alive, but the guy dies anyhow. Before Glenn can stab the guy, he has a coughing fit and kinda passes out. THEN…walkers! All of a sudden, there seems to be about 47 walkers attacking, but you know it can only be like five or six. Of course, second dude in the cell turns and eats his dad, Hershel barely makes it out from under another walker, and the walker we saw turn when Hershel was distracted by Sasha starts lurching around, too. Lizzie, the crazy blonde girl Carol was supposed to be looking after, lures the walker away from unconscious Glenn only to trip (OF COURSE) and have Hershel hop up the stairs and save her at the last minute.

Once things are largely under control, Hershel sticks to his convictions and leads walkers around a corner to shoot them out of sight of the survivors. Because. It’s important that they don’t see walkers…being killed? Umm. Okay.

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Hey, you guys dead? Poke, poke. Image courtesy of AMC.

– Outside, Rick and Maggie are still working on the fence. When they hear gunshots, Maggie leaves to see what’s going on, and Rick goes and gets Carl to help him. Then, it’s night. (Night comes on quickly in these parts, guys.) The posts Rick and Carl are setting up start to break, and walkers start pouring in! Oh no! They beat a hasty retreat and barely make it through a door, but the walkers are close behind and start pushing on another unfortunately placed fence. Rick and Carl get some heavy duty artillery and start mowing them down after they break through the inner fence. After they killed them ALL, they see a minivan. Daryl, Michonne, Tyreese, and Bob have returned with the medicine! Yay!

– Bob, who is a medic (I keep forgetting that, too), mixes up the medicine and Glenn gets a dose. I assume others get medicine, too, and we see Tyreese and Sasha reunite. Awww.

The next day, Daryl asks Hershel if Carol is okay, and Hershel tells him he needs to talk to Rick about it. You know Daryl’s going to be upset about Carol’s banishment! We don’t get to see that conversation, though. Hershel sets off with Michonne to burn a bunch of bodies, and the worst seems over!

BUT WAIT! As the camera pulls away from the prison, we see everyone’s favorite psychotic pirate, the Governor! He’s watching the grounds and, no doubt, planning his revenge!

FADE TO BLEAK… I mean, BLACK!

I sincerely hope they were fixing the fence. We didn’t see them fixing the fence, but they had to be, right? Right? Geez.

What’d you guys think of “Internment?”

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC.]]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Indifference”

Holy crap, Rick! Really? The former lawman’s decision seemed out of the blue and totally ridiculous!

You have to agree with me on this one.

Seriously!

What decision? Well, let’s get to it, then:

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Whoa, there, Tyreese! Back off, buddy! Image courtesy of AMC.

– After speaking with the ill blonde girl (who didn’t seem sick at all to me…) in her “charge,” Carol sets off with Rick for a supply run. It’s obvious Rick is terribly conflicted about Carol since finding out she killed Karen and dude no one cares about. Not a whole lot of time is spent on Rick’s feelings on the matter, though. We get a lot of angsty looks and a voiceover from the sick blonde girl about being strong and people changing. Then, when Rick and Carol are in the car together, Carol accuses Rick of not trusting her. Um. Yeah. Probs.

– Tyreese is trying to get himself killed. He’s convinced himself that his group’s (Daryl, Michonne, Bob, and Tyreese) delay in getting needed antibiotics has sealed the deaths of all the sick people at the prison, including Sasha. They come upon a minivan covered in vines that are connected to a building. Maybe it was a repair shop or something? Suffice it to say, there are walkers inside, and Tyreese tries to wrestle with one a bit too long. The others are like, “Dude. Stop trying to get yourself killed.” He’s all like, “Whatever. You don’t understand me! Nobody does!”

After finding stuff to get the van running, Daryl tinkers with the vehicle while Bob pours his heart out about being an alcoholic and feeling guilty about causing the helicopter to fall through the roof, leading to Zack’s death. Bob thinks he put a bottle of liquor down too hard, the shelf collapsed and then, the roof collapsed. Daryl’s like, “Shut up. It wasn’t your fault.” After the group finally reaches the vet college, it’s a fairly easy hop, skip, and jump to the medical supplies. Everything that Hershel wants is there, and they quickly gather the supplies and head out. There’s a quick aside as Bob finds a bottle of booze and stashes it out of sight in his bag. Okay, so here’s what I don’t understand: Apparently, they choose another way to leave the grounds, because they run in the hoards of walkers! And they seem to have been infected with the flu, too. Can anyone explain to me why they didn’t go out the same way they came in? It makes NO sense. At all! They end up having to bust out a window and escape onto a porch roof. In doing so, Bob loses his footing and his bag flips down. Of course, there are scads of walkers below, and they try to pull him down. See, Bob won’t let go of the bag, because that’s where he’s put the booze. But, the others haul him back up, and Daryl finds the bottle. They have a short standoff, and Daryl almost alpha males Bob off the roof, snarling that if Bob drinks any before the prison folk get medicine, he’ll get beat into the ground. Bob is ashamed, but tucks the bottle back in his bag and follows the group to safety.

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Don’t let the door hit you on the way out! Image courtesy of AMC.

– Rick and Carol drive to a subdivision and happen upon a pair of unlikely survivors. I say unlikely, because the man and woman seem like super easy walker bait. The woman has a turned-in foot — she said it healed incorrectly after being broken — and the man has a dislocated shoulder. Carol pops the shoulder back in place, and Rick asks his three questions to determine if the couple can come back to the prison. Apparently, they passed the test, because later, Rick tells them to stay put while he and Carol finish their supply run. He plans to pick them back up on the way out. But, no! The couple wants to help! The woman is fast despite her foot! And the dude is strong, too! Rick reluctantly agrees, and they decide to meet back up in two hours.

However, a bit later, Rick and Carol happen upon what’s left of the woman. Apparently, she wasn’t that fast, because walkers are eating her. Also, can we just talk about how they find her leg first? It was perfectly intact and just laying there. Dumb. Rick and Carol finish looting…er…looking for supplies and go back to the house to wait for the man. He never shows, and Carol thinks they should leave him. That’s the last straw for Rick! Carol has changed, he says! She’s terrible and ruthless, now! Inhumane! It was all rather confusing, really. Rick was upset that Carol made the decision to kill Karen and dude, so he determines that Carol must leave the prison! WHAT?! Yep. She doesn’t even fight him that hard! She argues a bit, but gives in WAY too quickly. They pack up what I guess was the couple’s station wagon with supplies, and Carol drives away.

Fade to black.

Excuse me? What just happened? Rick just kicked Carol to the curb! For all his pontificating about how Carol didn’t have the right to choose to end the lives of others, isn’t he essentially doing the same thing? Oh, sure, there were some lines in there about how Carol is strong and how she’d find another group…but, come on! And the pacing was totally off. I mean, you could see that Rick was thinking on what had happened, that he wasn’t happy about it by any means, but the whole thing happened extremely fast! He and Carol discussed it all too briefly. It was very unsatisfying from a story-telling standpoint. And let’s talk about it from a logical standpoint, shall we? This whole show is about survival, about making a life after life has ended. People are adapting and changing…but, don’t change too much or you’ll get kicked out of the group? I dunno. Carol’s point about acting in the best interest of the group is valid. Did she do the right thing? Probably not. But, is it up to Rick to decide that? Not according to Rick! But, I guess so…according to Rick. He took himself out of leadership, but now he’s making this kind of decision?

I think we’ve circled back around to the individual versus the group theme. Carol made the decision to act on her own to disastrous consequences: Karen and dude could have survived, and Tyreese is now homicidal and suicidal. Rick has made the decision to act on his own and banish Carol. What will be the consequences? Well, I’m thinking that Daryl will not be pleased, and he will probably go after her. Will the group fragment further? Will Tyreese set out to hunt her down? Will Rick lie about it, and say she was killed? If our show theme of groups are better had been played out, then Rick should have brought Carol back to the prison, and she should have answered for her actions. The group should have decided her fate.

What do you think? Hit me up in the comments!

 

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC.]]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Isolation”

I purposely wait until the day after to write my recaps. I think it’s important to look at the show as a whole, and a night’s sleep helps me do that.

My process is to think back through the entire episode, to highlight stuff that sticks out. As I go through, points will pop out, or I’ll remember more things. I’ll tell you the truth, it’s not coming easy today. The one thing I keep focusing on? The person who killed Tyreese’s love interest and the other dude no one cares about.

Initially, that is. The more I think on it, the more that comes back. And then, I think about the episode’s title, and what seemed to be a choppy show gains a bit of coherence in the light of the camera lens. “Isolation” was almost a series of vignettes, giving us a way to feel the characters’…isolation. It’s interesting, because before, some of the major thematic elements have heavily relied on working in groups, surviving in groups.

Being alone leads to death.

Let’s get to the highlights!

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Daryl’s offer of a mint doesn’t go over well with Tyreese. Image courtesy of AMC.

– Everybody’s got the plague! Well, at least everybody from Woodbury. But, then, folks (Glenn and Sasha) from good ole cell block C start showing signs and have to be weeded out and sent to quarantine. The kids and old people (Hershel is the only one we’re shown, so is he the last old guy? Maybe the rest are already sick.) are also separated out after the council determines it’s best to protect “the most vulnerable.”

– Tyreese is still quite upset about his love interest (Karen) being done up extra tasty crispy, and throw quite the fit in the small courtyard where he found the bodies (Oh, yeah…that other dude died, too. Who was he? Nobody cares.). Rick, Daryl, and Carol are there, and we get a bit of 28 Days Later rage as Tyreese starts a pissing match with Rick. I’m really not sure why they started fighting. I mean, I get that Tyreese is upset, but…? Something about murder being okay in the prison…yada, yada, yada. The two exchange blows and Daryl breaks up the fight, with Carol looking on like the stereotypical helpless female. Rick promises the murderer will be found.

– Before being separated due to his supposed vulnerability to the sickness, Hershel tells the council of an vet college that may still have much-needed antibiotics to help the suffering survivors.  It’s about 50 miles away, and Daryl and Michonne are set to go, along with guy who caused the helicopter to come crashing through the roof in the first episode. (I’m sure he has a nice name, but I’m also sure he won’t last that much longer.) Daryl wants one more on the team and asks Tyreese, but the man is freaking out over the fact that Sasha is sick and declines. However, Tyreese later decides to go after Sasha gets hopeful at the news of the medicine run. He approaches Carol and asks her to look in on Sasha every so often. You know, because Carol cares about everyone. Carol agrees, but throws one heck of a fit as soon as Tyreese leaves, turning over a nearby water barrel and crying. And right then, I knew I was wrong about Helicopter killing Karen and other dude. It was totally Carol.

So, Daryl, Michonne, Tyreese and Helicopter leave the prison in some kind of sedan, because it’s the fastest one they have. Also, sedans are much easier to get wrecked, overrun, etc.

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Glenn just needs to walk it off… Image courtesy of AMC.

– Hershel gets antsy in stay-healthy-quarantine and decides to go into the woods for elderberries. Carl, who has also be separated out, decides to go with him for protection, and they run into a couple of walkers. But neither of the walkers are fast (one is just a torso, actually), and Carl doesn’t need to shoot his newly restored gun. And what are the elderberries for? The illness symptoms, of course! Hershel has decided to go into the quarantine and take care of the sick people. He has a run-in with Maggie and Rick right before going in, but he gives a rousing speech about doing his duty, helping people, etc., and they reluctantly let him go. Later, we see Hershel helping folks and someone (the one and only actual doctor…or medic…or something) sneezes/coughs blood into his face. Hershel removes the kerchief that was covering the lower half of his face and calmly wipes the red away. Hershel = toast. UNLESS they can find those darned antibiotics!

– Daryl, Michonne, Tyreese, and Helicopter are driving along to retrieve said antibiotics when they decide to pop a CD in the car’s player. However, when they turn the radio on, they hear voices! Someone’s broadcasting?! In an effort to jimmy the radio to try to find the signal, Daryl isn’t paying attention to the road, and, don’t you know it, BAM! Walkers! And not just a few! Our intrepid heroes have driven into a massive herd. Daryl tries to back up, but runs over too many walkers and gets the un-sensible sedan stuck on head cheese. Literally. Gross. They abandon the vehicle and make a run for it, but Tyreese lingers, caught in some kind of mental whatsit. Finally, he emerges from the backseat, swinging his hammer and bashing walkers left and right. Daryl, Michonne, and Helicopter leave him behind, sure he won’t make it out from the giant ring of walkers. He does make it, though! Shock! (Not really) Tyreese meets back up with the trio and they continue on their way.

– Rick is playing detective at the scene of the crime, inspecting the courtyard and looking concernedly at the ground…which has been cleaned up, by the way, so I’m not sure what he’s looking at. Then, he finds a partial bloody hand print and somehow (I have NO IDEA how) figures out who killed Karen and dude nobody cares about. The episode ends with Rick straight up asking Carol if she killed Karen and dude nobody cares about. She confirms that she did (hence the unladylike behavior after her brief conversation with Tyreese. TOLD YOU!) and walks away. Rick’s all like, “uh-oh!” No, he does’t actually say that, but his face totally did. FADE TO BLACK.

As I said earlier, this episode really emphasized individuals and feelings of being alone and acting alone. Carol, who was given charge of the two annoying blonde girls after their father was killed, took it upon herself to act alone and take out Karen and dude. We also saw her fiddling with the water hose outside of the prison fence, alone, nearly getting caught by walkers before Rick came to the rescue. Glenn struggled with his symptoms alone before confessing to Maggie. Tyreese seems to be trying to face down some serious inner demons alone after Karen’s death and Sasha’s sickness. There are several scenes with Maggie and Beth talking through a door, both alone…however, when they start to realize that everyone really is working together, that everyone has a job to do, the tone in these scenes really changes from its sense of loneliness and separation.

Being alone leads to death. When will the survivors learn this? It’s a lesson that keeps coming up over and over.

So, what did you guys think of “Isolation?” Hit me up in the comments!

[Featured image courtesy of AMC.]

 

 

 

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Infected”

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Patrick? You okay, buddy? Image courtesy of AMC.

Let’s get right to it, shall we?

– As predicted, Patrick munched his way through the Woodbury survivors in cell block D. Aren’t you glad we have a nice batch of walker bait so our main cast isn’t really at risk? Thanks, Woodbury! Rick, Daryl, Glenn, Sasha and others charged in and saved the day…or what was left of the day. Lots of people died, but, let’s face it: we really don’t care because, after all, they were just Woodbury-ites, right? But, wait! There are a couple of folks we’re supposed to care about: Tyreese’s love interest (she’s okay, but has developed a curious cough…more on that later) and two little blonde sisters who have an unhealthy interest in the wellbeing of walkers. In fact, I’m pretty sure Blonde 1 (the seemingly older of the two) is feeding rats to walkers at the fence during the night. In fact, that may be one reason the walkers are congregating at certain places along the fence. Anyhow, the sisters’ father didn’t make it, and Carol takes charge of the pair. Later, we see some major crazy when Blonde 1 throws a fit at the fence because one of her pet walkers, Nick, had been killed. Carol fears Blonde 1 is “weak,” and I had to shake my head, because dear heart is basing this on Blonde 1’s inability to kill her own father before he turned. Really, Carol? Really? Blonde 2 sticks up for her sister and tells Carol that Blonde 1 isn’t weak, just crazy. Greeeeaaaat.

– The council (Hershel, Daryl, Carol, Glenn, and Sasha) get together to discuss what’s happened. (In my house, we think it’s the Spanish flu. Look it up; it’s gross.) So, the explanation is that Patrick had the flu, died, turned, and went on a spree. How they knew Patrick was patient zero? Carol did mention that he was sick the day before, but… Weak. Right after they decide there’s an outbreak of some kind of flu, right on cue, we hear Tyreese’s love interest coughing in the hallway. Uh-oh! Time for some quarantine action. Tyreese’s love interest and another dude are to be quarantined on Death Row. That’s some nice overt foreshadowing right there!

– Michonne, is resting in secure cell block C (the home of the main cast), because she hurt her ankle during Woodbury munch-fest. Beth, who is Judith’s stand-in mommy, hands the baby to Michonne, and we see tough girl cry. She totally had a baby at some point that died, ya’ll. I know I’m right, because she and Beth had just been talking about widows, orphans, and the like, and Beth specifically mentioned that there’s not a term for a mother who’s lost her child. Then, boom, Michonne holds the baby and cries. I’m just saying that we better not see that flashback! I don’t want to see that flashback! DON’T SHOW ME THAT FLASHBACK, AMC!

– Carol has a heart-to-heart with Carl about her knife lessons. In the last episode, Carl saw her teaching the kids how to use knives, and for some reason, this was a huge deal. It’s ridiculous to me that anyone would be against teaching children how to survive, but apparently Rick is? Maybe not. Carol explains that not everyone would be okay with it (stupid Woodbury parents, amiright?), and that if Rick finds out, he’ll tell everyone what’s going on. Carl says he won’t lie to his dad. Go, Carl! The kid is starting to grow on me. He just needs a haircut.

– The congregating walkers at the fence are starting to be a serious problem. In fact, they almost break it down at one point, but Rick, Daryl, Sasha, Tyreese, Glenn and Maggie get there just in time to brace it up. But, it’s not enough! Rick, who for some reason is conflicted about walker violence, decides to sacrifice the pigs to get the walkers away from the fence. Daryl drives Rick outside of the fence, and the former lawman cuts and throws off a trail of pigs to lead the bulk of the walkers away. The trail of bleeding pigs distracts the walkers long enough for the fence to be shored up. This seemed to be a huge turning point for Rick, who was trying to be more of a farmer/provider rather than a protector/hunter. Remember, he wouldn’t even carry his gun for some reason! Crazy.

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Uncle Owen? Aunt Baru? Image courtesy of AMC.

– Carl finds Rick tearing down and burning the pig enclosure and tells him what Carol is doing with the kids (teaching them how to use knives, protect themselves, etc.). Thanks, Carl. I’m proud of you! Rick decides not to get involved. Thanks, Rick! I’m proud of you! Then, after Carl asks when he can have his gun back (I’m assuming it was taken away after he took out that Woodbury kid last season), Rick goes to a toolbox, gets it out, and hands it over. More importantly, though, Rick retrieves his own gun and holster and straps it on. It was meant to be a singular moment, I’m sure. Rick was making a decision to reenter the fray, to take up his gun again. In doing so, he lost what little hope he had accumulated when he took up farming. Farming represented a new beginning, and that beginning died along with the screaming pigs Rick fed to the walkers. Heavy.

– Tyreese finds nothing but blood when he goes to visit his lady on Death Row! Told you about the overt foreshadowing… She and the other dude have been dragged out into a courtyard, and their bodies have been burned. It’s not clear whether or not they died from the flu before this happened, but the trails of smeared blood looked like too much to have come from flu-induced bleeding orifices. Were they murdered? Tyreese thinks so! Who would have done something like this? My money is on the guy who caused the chopper to fall through the roof in the first episode. Just putting that out there.

So, what did you think of “Infected?” Are you glad Rick’s taken up his gun again? Will it lead to Crazytown and ghost Lori again? And what about this flu? I’m thinking it’s going to go through a bunch more people before we’re done. And the “murder!” Who killed Tyreese’s love interest and that dude that no one cares about?

 

[[Cover image courtesy of AMC]]

 

 

 

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “30 Days Without an Accident”

All of the zombies have died off, Rick has taken up with Michonne, and Carl and a surprisingly mature Judith have started a folk duo! All is well on The Walking Dead!

Just messin’.

Our intrepid and draggy survivors are still holed up in the prison when season four of The Walking Dead opened last night. The influx of people from Woodbury has seemed to brighten up the place; there’s house plants! Flowers! And Rick is a farmer, now, seeming to eschew guns.

Wait, what?

For some reason, Rick doesn’t seem to like guns, now. I have no idea why. To try to be a better example for Carl (who showed some homicidal tendencies last season, I’ll admit)? At any rate, it’s a noticeable change. So much so, that Hershel approaches Rick and tells him that the Council (made up of Carol, Daryl, Hershel, and several others) have officially requested that Rick carry a gun when he goes outside of the prison fence. Apparently, he hasn’t been taking one? Um. Okay. Weird. Also, Rick is NOT on the Council. Interesting!

Let’s hit the highlights of last night, shall we?

– Tyreese has a love interest. My prediction: she’s walker bait.

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Pssst! Rick! Look behind you! Image courtesy of AMC.

– Glenn thinks Maggie is pregnant and won’t let her come on a supply run. Probably a wise choice, because even though Maggie ends up NOT being pregnant, the folks on the run get attacked by walkers…of course. Let me just rant about this for a bit. So, the people who go are Daryl, Sasha, Michonne, Tyreese, Glenn, Zack, and a Dude that tags along last minute (Highly suspicious in this world. What’s his angle? I’m not sure I believe his “I just wanna pull my weight” speech.). Zack is Beth’s new Boo, and as the group is leaving, Beth flippantly refuses to say goodbye. Obviously, Zack is toast. The group goes to a store for some good ole fashioned looting and a leaky roof proves to be their downfall. Well, it proves to be Zack’s downfall, anyhow. See, there’s a helicopter on the roof that appears to have crash landed. There are also a crapload ton of walkers ambling around. (Why…?) We are clued in on the roof situation when Dude (whose name I can’t remember, because I don’t think I care) is checking out some booze and inexplicably causes an entire shelf to fall, pinning him to the ground. I can’t think of a good reason as to why this would have happened, but it did. As the rest of the group are trying to get Dude free, the walkers, who ALL heard the crash of the shelf falling, migrate to the part of the roof that has water damage. The weak ceiling gives way, and walkers start falling into the store. Here’s my problem with that: They fall through the ceiling ALL OVER, not just at the water-damaged portion. Wouldn’t they all fall through at the same place? Of course, the hole would get bigger and bigger, but it would be in the same place! It makes no sense for them to fall through helter-skelter from all over the ceiling! Ugh. Everyone makes it out except for Zack, who does nothing but scream as a walker noshes on his calf. Wouldn’t you kick it or something? But, no, he just screams and helpfully falls down while the others look on in horror. Then, somehow the walker is suddenly at Zack’s neck nomming away. RIP, Zack.

– Rick is out checking the snares when he happens upon a crazed woman, who I thought for sure was a walker at first. Turns out she’s just remarkably filthy (most likely covered in walker gore to throw off her scent). She sells him a story about her survival and how she’d never have made it without a man named Eddie. Eddie’s back at her camp, and he’s a bit under the weather. Won’t Rick come and help? She’s done terrible things! It’s awful! But they had to survive, of course. And can they please come to Rick’s camp? Rick says he’ll need to meet Eddie and ask both Crazed Filthy and Eddie three questions that will determine if the pair will be able to join the prison group. We never see Eddie, but I can only assume he’s a head in the crate Crazed Filthy bends down to talk to when they arrive at her camp. Rick guesses she’s off her rocker and manages to dodge when she lunges at him with a knife…the knife Rick confiscated…then returned to her, by the way. Crazed Filthy babbles about Eddie needing something alive because he’s getting weak (Eddie is totally a head in the crate.). She led Rick to the camp for Eddie to eat, I guess. Then, she loses it totally and stabs herself, begging Rick to let her come back as a walker so she can be with Eddie. Ah, true love! As she lays dying, she asks what Rick’s three questions were. They were 1.) How many walkers have you killed? (She says none; Eddie took care of that); 2.) How many people have you killed? (“Just me,” she whispers.); and 3.) Why? (She burbles something about it being the only way and dies.) Rick, ever the romantic, hacks off her head and leaves it in a bag by the crate. True love! Gross.

– Carl has a friend! It doesn’t last. So, there’s this kid, Phillip, who is incredibly polite and nice. Rick actually encourages Carl to hang out with Phillip, and he does. The boys happen upon a group of younger kids who are talking to the walkers at the prison fence, giving them names and treating them like pets. Carl is not amused and reads them the riot act, and the group disperses and goes to story time. Story time, run by Carol, is for little kids! Not really, but kinda. Carl wants to go, but thinks he’s too old. Classic pre-teen/young teen attitude, Carl. Phillip goes, though, and we are treated to a nice scene with Carol reading to a semi-circle of kids. Phillip, who is quite pale, excuses himself because he doesn’t feel well. (Suspicious! I sense a plot device! And let’s not forget about the sick pig, Violet, who later dies… Will there be a plague outbreak of some kind in the prison?) Carl sneaks in to listen to story time and is surprised when Carol pulls out an assortment of knives. She’s teaching the kids how to use them. Seems sensible to me! But, for some reason, Carl seems scandalized, and when Carol sees him, she begs him not to tell Rick about it. What’s that all about? Why wouldn’t you teach kids how to use weapons in post-apocalyptic walker world?

– Daryl tells Beth about Zack’s death, and the girl doesn’t seem all that affected. She tells Daryl that she doesn’t cry about those things anymore; she’s just happy to have known him. In her room (cell), she has one of those it’s been ## days since the last incident signs, and she changes the number to zero. Talk about overt foreshadowing!

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Can’t you just let bygones be bygones, Michonne? Nerp. Image courtesy of AMC.

– Michonne has been out looking for The Governor but hasn’t had any luck. She’s thinking of heading to Macon, but that’s about 70 miles away, and no one particularly wants her to go. And is it just me, or was there some chemistry between her and Rick at the beginning? I’m probably reading into it, but I think it’d be awesome if they hooked up!

– Sick Phillip wakes up and goes to the shower room. It’s obvious that he’s really ill; he’s all sweaty and pale. Is this the same illness that killed Violet the pig? Just a bad case of the flu? He stands under the shower, trying to cool himself down and abruptly passes out. Phillip falls and (I’m assuming) dies from drowning…or hits his head…or something, because a time later when the camera pans up his lifeless body, he opens his WALKER EYES! [Insert dramatic music] I’m guessing he died and came back, but wouldn’t it be interesting if the walker disease was now somehow catching among the living? That’d raise the stakes! [SEE UPDATE BELOW!] The episode ended with Phillips walker eyes, and we know he’s going to go rampaging through the cell block.

Okay, so my first thought was: Even if you think you’re in a safe place like the prison, wouldn’t you still shut all the doors? They didn’t address the whole swiss-cheese-prison issue, and I can only assume there are still gaping holes in the building. Yes, that’s in another section/cell block, but I’d certainly still lock my cell every night.

You know they don’t. And they’ll suffer for it!

 

I’m glad The Walking Dead is back; I’m not glad The Walking Dead is back. There is nothing the survivors can ever do to fix their world, and that is very bleak. It depresses me. What hope do they have? Little, if any at all. Theirs is a tale of constant struggle and defeat against an ever rising tide of walkers. They will never find peace, for if they do…the show would be over, and AMC can’t have that, now, can they?

What did you think of last night’s episode?

UPDATE: So, I just took a quiz on AMC’s website about the season opener. I only missed one question, and it was about a walker at the fence during the beginning of the episode that had blood streaming out of its facial orifices. Foreshadowing I totally missed, folks! It’s evidence that some kind of plague is coming, or is already there, actually, since at the end, when Phillip collapsed we were shown blood seeping out of his nose and mouth. This leads me to believe we’re heading into virus-y zombie territory. An interesting change! It’ll really ratchet up the stakes, as I stated above.

 

[Cover image courtesy of AMC.]

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The Walking Dead Returns on Sunday!

Before we start geeking out together about the return of The Walking Dead (TWD) in the scariest month of the calendar year (Yes, October is scary. Don’t you watch television? All of the scaries are in October! I’ll have you know that my husband is planning to make me watch Aliens this month. I’ve never seen it! Isn’t that shocking? Well, yeah, kinda. But, still…scary!), I have to admit that I have mixed feelings about AMC’s undead flagship.

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Pssst! Rick! Behind you! Image courtesy of AMC.

I’m dreading the emotional drain I know is coming. I’m dreading the hopelessness, the bleakness.

I can’t go straight to bed after watching an episode of TWD. Seriously. And no, it’s not because I stay up to write my recap (Catch up on TWD by reading ALL my recaps! They’re clearly marked. Don’t be lazy; just scroll and click!). It’s because I can’t stand the thought of going to bed with such a sense of  despondence weighing on me. It’s like a physical pressure on my chest. I usually have to catch a sitcom rerun or watch a snatch of something fluffy to snap out of my TWD funk.

That being said, I AM pumped about the return of Over-the-Cray-Cray Rick, B.A. Carl, Dreamy Daryl, and the piece of Swiss cheese they call a prison (Oh, yeah…totally safe! I mean, there’s giant holes EVERYWHERE, and walkers shamble in at an alarming rate, but it’s fiiiiiiiine. Just fiiiiiiiine. ). There’s Michonne, too, and Carol. And let’s not forget about the quietest baby ever to be born: Judith! (Seriously, have the writers ever been around a newborn? I think not!) Hershel, Glenn, and Maggie, too, I suppose. My interest in them is waning, though. Frankly, I’m surprised Hershel has made it this far.

Prediction: Hershel is not going to make it out of this season alive! I don’t really have much to base this on other than a general gut feeling and the need for something else to torment Rick…besides burgeoning B.A. Carl. You read it here first!

AMC has been releasing webisodes on and off, and that’s been nice. Their latest was last week’s “The Oath,” an uplifting (not really) three parter. Check it out:

Turns out the hospital with the Angel of Death was the same in which Rick woke up in at the beginning of TWD. Nice Easter egg. However, it begs the question of why the creepy doctor didn’t find Rick and abandon him to the same fate as Paul.

Details, details.

TWD returns this Sunday, Oct. 13, at 9 p.m. on AMC.

 

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The Walking Dead Season 4 Trailer

I knew this came out. I was procrastinating, honestly.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m excited for season four of The Walking Dead, but I’m also dreading it! You may find it silly for me to think this way, but I’m truthful when I say it takes an emotional toll on me each time I watch it. The survivor’s struggle is just so…hopeless. It’s draining.

Watch the trailer, then circle back around, and we’ll talk about it.

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Listen up, children! The pointy end goes in the walker. Any questions? Image taken from video.

So, all the leftovers from Woodbury have taken refuge at the prison, and our intrepid band of misfits are doing their best to make it work. Did you see Carol giving knife lessons to the children? Geez. And that little girl who takes her hand by the chain-link prison wall? Totally a stand in for Sophia.

Speaking of children, there are so many more children, now! Criminy! Maybe it’s because I have two of my own, but when they start killing the kids left and right, I will have to leave the room. Seriously.

 

Also…Tyreese. I’m calling it now: Tyreese’s sister, Sasha, is toast. Also, maybe Tyreese. There’s a scene in the trailer where Tyreese, who is looking totally shell shocked (after what I’m guessing was finding his sister dead…you know the scene, I mean…he walks out of a door with flowers and is confronted with what I’m guessing is Sasha’s body. Plus, she’s not in the rest of the trailer! Just sayin’.), is surrounded be walkers and looks like he’s about to be overrun. But, probably not. I’m sure the others will come to his rescue at the very last moment.

(Remember, I haven’t read all the comic books, so I’m making wild assumptions, here. BTW, if you have read the comics, don’t spoil the story for me and others!)

And the prison is being overrun, because someone keeps letting in the walkers! And someone’s a traitor! And someone’s been “feeding” the walkers (what?)! And maybe they’re safer on the outside than in the prison (Oh, wise Hershel)!

The trailer ends with a hint of “Sanctuary.” Daryl, Michonne, Tyreese and another dude we haven’t met, yet, are in a car, and the radio is working. “Sanctuary,” a female voice says. “Those who arrive, survive.” Another wild goose chase for those desperately seeking a safe place?

Most likely.

What do you think? Excited for season four of The Walking Dead?

Catch up on season three with my recaps, which can be found here.

The Walking Dead returns to AMC Oct. 13 at 9 p.m.

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First The Walking Dead Season 4 Art Released

So, THIS:

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AMC released the first poster for season four today. The banner will be displayed at San Diego Comic Con.

First impressions?

My first thought is that they are definitely catering to fan favorites. I do like me some Rick and Daryl, though, so I’m good with it! Tyreese and Michonne are pretty kick-butt, too.

The Walking Dead is set to return this October on AMC.

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The Walking Dead: A Week Later

Be warned: There are some SPOILERS below as I whine about The Walking Dead! 

Last week, the world watched as NOTHING really happened to The Governor (TG) on The Walking Dead. Sure, he killed a bunch of people and stuff; but he tore off into the sunset with his two loyal lackeys, fleeing to fight another day.

The disappointment was palpable and predictable. I mean, you had to know the showdown between Rick and TG wasn’t going to happen so soon! They’ve only really had one interaction so far, and TG is just too good of a villain to get rid of that quickly.

“Welcome to the Tombs” was a pretty good ending to season three, tying up some loose ends that I was not loathe to see go (I’m looking at you, Andrea) and giving us some fresh new problems for season four.

But, with the end of season three, there is now a big hole in my Sunday night. The horror! (Don’t get me wrong; there is something to be said about getting an hour of your life back, amiright?) I’ve grown accustomed to being grossed out on a weekly basis, and I need something to tide me over until season four starts next fall.

(Speaking of being grossed out, was it just me or did the gore seem to get more and more unrealistic and gratuitous this season? By the end, things started to look like vaguely human Hefty bags filled with tomato juice! Gore has it’s place in this show, true, but I firmly believe it should also have a POINT. But, that’s another article, I suppose.)

I’ve been seeing things pop up on the Interwebz that will help me get though the long, walker-less dry spell we’re facing. Hopefully, you’ll like them, too! Enjoy!

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Charming! A great way to check off all the needed items on your zombie preparedness list, right? Image courtesy of PlayBox.

I MUST start with a set of photographs posted on The Walking Dead’s Facebook page. “Norman Reedus by Terry Richardson” is WELL worth your time, folks. Daryl never looked so good! Check it out here.

I’m really a fan of the hipster pose. Don’t ask me why.

And don’t judge me!

I saw this Zombie Plan charm bracelet pop up last week, and since then, every geeky-themed website and Facebook page has passed it around. Personally, I love it! What’s not to love?

While you’re on Etsy, check out this necklace by LaughingVixenLounge. Clearly inspired by The Walking Dead, the little charms include a sheriff’s hat, gun, and badge! My favorite part is the little greenish rock (Magnesite bead) that looks like a bit of zombie flesh or even a brain.

Braaaiiiinssssss (Don’t you wish the walkers moaned “Braaaiiiinssssss?”)!

Have you seen the latest McFarlane Toys line for season three? They’re pretty amazing! Here they are on Amazon. I think my desk at work needs a Michonne, don’t you? For that matter, I’m sure  your desk/dresser/table/what-have-you needs one, too! And how about that Merle? Great detail.

What awesome The Walking Dead-related swag have you found floating around the Internet? Post in the comments, so we can all gather and console ourselves until the next season starts!

 

[[Featured image courtesy of The Walking Dead’s Facebook page.]]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Welcome to the Tombs”

So, this is a recap for a season finale. Yeah, there will be SPOILERS.

Andrea finally paid the piper for all her stupid decisions this season! YES! Honestly, I wasn’t sad to see her go. I’m sure I’ll find someone else to yell at during next season, but for now, I am satisfied. Ghoulish? Not really. I have my reasons! Read on!

“Welcome to the Tombs” opens with The Governor (TG) beating the crap out of Milton. TG is pretty ticked that Merle got the drop on him and his men and that eight of the group were killed. Of course, Milton is to blame for that! Plus, Milton let Andrea go!

But, TG, ever the understanding despot, offers Milton a chance at redemption –one TG knows Milton will never take.

TG leads Milton into the room where Andrea is handcuffed to the dentist chair and tells him that she will still be useful. TG orders Milton to pick up the terror tools, and the subservient little weasel trudges over, clearly in pain from TG’s tender touch. Milton drops the tools and gets yelled at, and as he’s picking them up, he leaves a pair of pliers behind Andrea. As TG and Milton ready to leave, TG suddenly stops and pulls Milton back into the room, telling him that he needs to kill Andrea. TG gives Milton a knife and tells him to prove himself and earn redemption in TG’s eyes (or, eye, I guess…).

Milton takes the knife and aims a swipe at TG (something TG was surely counting on)! TGgrabs the knife and redirects it, stabbing Milton several times. In true villain style, TG twirls his non-existent mustache and tells Milton that now he’ll turn into a biter and kill Andrea, anyway!

(I was hoping we’d finally learn Milton’s connection to TG in this episode. Brother-in-law? That’s what I wanted. The closest we got was when Milton asked TG what Penny would think of her father, now. She’d be afraid of me, TG says, nonplussed.)

At the prison, Rick and the gang are loading up their possessions and (I thought) preparing to get the heck out of Dodge. But, Carl’s being a moody teenager, and I had no idea why. He wouldn’t let his dad touch him, and he was stomping around. Was he mad that they were leaving? Weird.

Skeptical Tyreese and Sasha are skeptical.

Skeptical Tyreese and Sasha are skeptical. Image courtesy of AMC.

Cut to Woodbury! TG is whipping his conscripted soldiers into a frenzy! They killed our men, and they’re not going to stop until we’re all dead, he tells the mixed group. Off to the prison! They start to pile in vehicles that are loaded down with all manner of heavy artillery. But, Tyreese and Sasha are having second thoughts. Tyreese tells TG that they want to stay and protect the town, because they don’t want to fight people…only walkers. TG gives them the evil eye, but grabs a gun and shoves it into Tyreese’s hands, thanking him for volunteering to stay behind.

Tyreese and Sasha exhale. Shwew! TG’s not going to kill them! Yet…? They think they might have to slip out of town later, though.

Before long, TG and his small army are at the prison, blowing up the guard towers and barreling through fences. They make their way into the prison and can’t find anyone!

YES! I cheered! Rick’s group was smart and left!

TG leads his army into the part of the prison known as the tombs after hearing noises. Well, of course there are noises! There’s a giant hole on the back of the prison, and walkers wander in all the time! But, I guess TG didn’t know that.

I was just saying to my husband that they should have left booby traps for TG, when BANG! Smoke grenades and sirens start going off! TG’s people start screaming and scattering. He tries to get them to calm down, but they don’t listen and run for their trucks. When they get into the prison yard, Maggie and Glenn pop up in full riot gear, shooting at them and causing more panic. They tear off, terrified!

Now their plan was clear to me. Rick’s group had cleared out to make it look like they had abandoned the prison! But, Maggie, Glenn, Rick, Daryl, and Carol had stayed behind to reek havoc on TG and his raiders! Carl was upset because Rick didn’t let him stay and help. Instead, Carl, Hershel, and Beth were on the edge of the woods, watching from a distance.

At the edge of the woods, one of TG’s men stumbles upon Carl, Hershel, and Beth. Carl, still smarting from being left out, was quick to draw on the guy, who was really just a teenager. The teenager surrenders and tries to hand over his weapon, but Carl shoots him!

We got a great shot of Hershel’s horrified expression. Uh-oh! Seems to me that Carl is trying to prove to dear old dad that he’s an adult! Ugh.

Back at the prison, they decide to go to Woodbury to finish the fight. Hershel tells Rick what happened, but, Carl denies shooting down the kid in cold blood. He drew on them, Carl insists. Hershel disagrees, but Rick wants to believe Carl.

On the road back to Woodbury, TG’s army is hurrying on its way. But, TG speeds up and gets in front of the line, forcing the trucks to stop. They all pile out and start arguing with TG, saying they should just leave the prison alone, it’s not worth it, etc. TG is most displeased. So displeased in fact, that he goes quite nuts and mows everyone down with a gun.

Ratta-freakin’-tat-tat!

TG makes sure his townsfolk wouldn’t rise again, popping them in the head. But, he misses Karen! Somehow, she managed to avoid the gunfire, and is hiding under someone else’s dead body. For some reason, TG doesn’t shoot the body’s head. Lucky Karen!

Martinez and Shumpert (Shumpert? I totally had to look this guy’s name up. Tell me I’m not the only one who had no idea what his name was!) are quite shocked at TG’s behavior, but they don’t seem TOO distressed, because they hop right into the truck when TG gives the signal and leave!

Seriously, guys? Why didn’t Martinez just pop TG right there? It would have been the perfect opportunity! You can’t tell me that they’re comfortable with this psychopath. I mean, I actually found myself liking Martinez a little bit when he and Daryl bonded over a cig at Rick and TG’s initial meeting. Now, I gotta wonder what he’s after by staying with TG. Maybe it’s because TG’s the biggest, baddest dog in the junkyard? It’s better to be a servant of the Devil than be in his way? Hmmm.

Oh, hey! Remember Andrea’s plight? Yeah, Milton is about to turn and eat her face. But, what is she doing instead of trying to free herself? She’s monologuing. Milton is barely alive, and Andrea is trying to keep him coherent. She can’t do that and try to free herself at the same time? Fine, then. She deserves to be eaten, I say! 

As she rambles on, she admits to the fading Milton that she stayed in Woodbury because she wanted to save everyone by herself. It didn’t work. And it wouldn’t, would it? After all, the main theme of this season is that you can’t do anything on your own! And there she was, trying to do it on her own; she was doomed to fail.

Milton finally dies, and Andrea flails at the pliers with her feet. Milton’s fingers twitch!

At the prison, Rick, Michonne, and Daryl prepare to head to Woodbury. The others are have decided to stay and guard the prison. Not a bad idea, guys. Rick confronts Carl and asks about the kid his kid gunned down. Carl becomes defensive and tells Rick that he did what had to be done, throwing back in the former lawman’s face several times when the trigger hadn’t been pulled, and there had been dire consequences (Dale, Lori, and Merle’s deaths).

I totally agreed with Carl. I mean, killing TG’s teenaged soldier may not have been the best thing, but can you blame him for not wanting to take a chance? However, I think there was more at play than simply “a chance.” I think Carl was mad that he wasn’t included in the prison defense, that he wasn’t being treated like an adult.

Rick, Michonne, and Daryl strike out, following the road to Woodbury. It isn’t long before they come upon TG’s roadside slaughter. Walkers are busily munching bodies, and the prison trio get out to clear them. Then, they find Karen! She hid in the cab of one of the trucks and begs for help.

Back to Andrea! Milton has completely turned and is shuffling toward her. Oh, no! (Yay!) Andrea manages to get her hands free at the last minute, but not before Milton is on her!

Did he bite her? Did she kill him? We don’t see! But, we hear screaming!

By now, it’s night, and Tyreese and Sasha are still guarding Woodbury’s walls when they catch Rick’s group sneaking up. They fire on them, and it isn’t until Karen makes herself known that Tyreese is willing to listen. Karen explains what happened and that TG went nuts and shot everyone. Tyreese doesn’t seem TOO surprised, but he is shocked to learn that Andrea may still be in Woodbury. Rick tells him that she never made it to the prison.

So long, and thanks for all the fish! Image courtesy of AMC.

So long, and thanks for all the fish! Image courtesy of AMC.

Rick, Michonne, and Daryl lead the way back to the rooms where Maggie and Glenn were held. Tyreese goes with them, and they find a door with blood pooling from beneath it. It is opened to reveal Milton’s body and Andrea huddled against a wall. She’s been bitten and isn’t long for this world. It’s sad, of course, but I wasn’t sad to see Andrea go. I was sad for Michonne’s loss. The secret ninja is crying and trying to believe Andrea will be okay. But, she know’s that’s not going to happen. Andrea is paying for her mistakes, while emphasizing this season’s theme of you can’t do it on your own.

Andrea shoots herself while she is still able. They didn’t show it, though. I watched Rick, Daryl, and Tyreese wait for the gunshot on the other side of the door.

BLAM. Fade to black.

After, Rick and co. head back to the prison with a bus. A bus? Yeah, Rick’s taking in strays, now. Since all (most, anyway) of the able-bodied adults have been slaughtered, the bus is full of older folks and kids.

Carl looks murderous and asks what’s going on, and Rick tells him that they’re taking in the people left from Woodbury.

It’s the right decision. How do we know it’s the right decision? Rick looks up at the catwalk, and pregnant ghost Lori isn’t there, anymore! Has Rick left Crazytown for good? Let’s hope so!

End of season three!

Why didn’t Rick just take over Woodbury? My first guess is that TG knows the town too well. I mean, there were secret torture rooms! Plus, the place just has too much history, and moving to the prison is the start of a new life. That life will be vastly different, no doubt, but it’s new nonetheless.

So, loose ends and/or issues that occurred to me:

  • TG, Martinez and Shumpert are still out there somewhere running amok. Are they going to raid the prison? Ummm, prolly. TG’s too big of a villain for him to just disappear. He’s the bogeyman.  
  • There are tons of new mouths to feed at the prison. You can’t tell me that they’ll be able to forage enough for all these people! I mean, Daryl’s a good hunter, but come on! They’re going to have to start farming in earnest, methinks.  
  • Carl’s becoming a hardened killer (is this a bad thing?). It’s a sign of the times, yes, but how far should Rick let Carl go? Can he even do anything at this point?
  • There’s a giant hole in the back of the prison. They should probably look into this, yeah? Especially now with lots more people in the prison. 

The title, “Welcome to the Tombs,” could be taken in several ways, I thought. The first that occurred to me was it was a greeting for the former Woodbury residents. The prison, for all its worthwhile security in bars and fences, still has the dark, close feeling of a tomb, don’t you think?

“Tombs” is the name the prison group uses to refer to the passages overrun with walkers. So, I thought it was kind of a clever greeting (“Welcome to the Tombs”) for TG and his army as they entered the hallways in search of Rick and his group and were met with smoke bombs and sirens.

What did you think of “Welcome to the Tombs?” Of season three? Hit me up in the comments!

 

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-16-prison.php.]]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “This Sorrowful Life”

SPOILERS, mates. Plain and simple. Thar she blows!

What happened this week? Well, Rick made a bad call, and Merle paid for it with his life in an effort to earn redemption. BAM! RECAP OVER!

No, not really. But, that’s really what happened! After the show was over, my husband looked at me and said, “Well, there goes one of my main reasons to watch this show!”

“This Sorrowful Life” opens with Rick confessing to Daryl that he plans to offer Michonne to The Governor (TG). See, TG told Rick that if they gave up Michonne, Woodbury would leave the prison folks alone. I thought Rick saw through TG and his plan. In fact, I was sure he did. But, the former lawman seems to do a bit of a flip flop and is now fine with offering Michonne up in an effort to escape the wrath of TG.

Daryl, along with the ever-present hover-bot that it Hershel, is uncomfortable with the plan, but Rick has made his mind up.

But, who will help Rick? How about the black sheep of the group, Merle? Brilliant! Rick approaches Merle with the plan as the elder Dixon brother is tearing apart mattresses in search of drugs. When Rick tells Merle TG’s deal, Merle doesn’t think Rick will go through with it. But, he  advises binding Michonne with wire, and it’s later as Rick is looking for wire, that he gets a flash of conscience in the form of pregnant-ghost Lori. When he sees her, it’s all over; he can’t give up Michonne! (But, that’s later.) Merle totally called that one!

The prison is making fortifications against further attacks from TG’s Woodbury douchbags. They put down some barbed wire in the road, so no one can just drive up to the prison, anymore. Nice, guys. When Rick compliments the move, Daryl gives him a look and tells him it was Michonne’s idea (This was before Lori appeared to Rick, so we got to see the guilt play out and Daryl’s disapproval of Rick’s plans.).

Michonne interjects that they don’t have to win in a fight, they just have to make it really difficult for Woodburyites to bug the prison people.

In the common area of the prison, Carol tells Merle to grow a pair and pick a side. Everyone knows Merle is just there for Daryl, and Merle is acutely aware of everyone’s feelings toward him. He looks like he feels bad about it but isn’t quite sure what to do about it. (What I loved about this scene is the rare Judith sighting. Can I just say again how shockingly quiet this baby is? Shockingly!)

Outside, Daryl approaches Glenn and asks him to forgive Merle, believing that’s all that is needed for Merle to finally assimilate into the prison group. But, Glenn won’t budge; the hurt is just too strong and fresh.

I had to wonder if Glenn (and Maggie) had actually forgiven Merle if things would have gone differently. Can we lay Merle’s death at Glenn’s feet? Would Glenn’s forgiveness have been the bridge to Merle’s redemption? Interesting.

Daryl goes and finds Merle, who is in the boiler room supposedly still looking for drugs. Daryl tells his brother that he must do something to make up for torturing Glenn and Maggie, but Merle doesn’t believe anything can make a difference. Merle tells Daryl that people like Rick and TG always need someone around to do their dirty work, and that he’ll (Merle) never truly fit in at the prison.

After Daryl leaves, Merle grabs a phone and shoves it into a bag. He was totally getting the wire ready to restrain Michonne! That was my guess, anyhow, and it proved to be spot on.

Perhaps it was dredging up what Merle did to Maggie and Glenn that makes Glenn consider his relationship with Maggie. He’s ready to take the next step and go steady! Glenn goes and speaks with Hershel and asks for Maggie’s hand in marriage. Awww!

Then, comes the most romantic moment of this ENTIRE show! Glenn goes ring shopping! He goes to a section of fence and pulls off the fingers (and ring) of a snarling walker. Nice. But, what else is he going to do? Gross. I hope he washed it REALLY well.

Merle decides to take matters into his own hands and doesn’t wait for Rick to tell him to go ahead and grab Michonne. He lures her into the tombs and cracks her over the head. We then see him pull her to the boiler room, where he puts a bag over her head! Next we see the pair, they are on the road, with Michonne’s hands bound with telephone wire and Merle following behind holding a length of her wire like a leash. Dun, Dun, DUN!

At the prison, Rick has just had his revelation from ghost Lori and rushes into the common area to find Hershel, Maggie, and Beth gathered around a Bible. Hershel comes over and starts to dissuade Rick again from going through with the plan to give Michonne to TG. Rick cuts him off and says that he’s definitely changed his mind; they can’t give Michonne to TG!

But, HE CAN’T FIND MERLE OR MICHONNE! Oh, no!

Rick and Daryl look for Merle and Michonne, but can’t (obviously) find them. So, Daryl takes off after them, intent on saving Michonne and his brother.

Nasty skinny walker wants a taste of Michonne...nom, nom! Image courtesy of AMC.

Nasty skinny walker wants a taste of Michonne…nom, nom! Image courtesy of AMC.

Back to Merle and Michonne, who have made their way to a motel. Merle hotwires a car, and they escape just in the nick of time! Of course, walkers were closing in because OF COURSE the car Merle chose has an alarm. Seriously? An alarm? Did you guys see this thing? I can’t imagine that car having an alarm!

So, down the road they roar, all the while Michonne is trying to convince Merle to let her go and return to the prison. She tells him that this is his chance, that he has an opportunity to finally redeem himself and become an asset in the prison group.

Michael Rooker is a phenomenal actor. The emotions played across his face, and you could see the pain and rejection he felt, that he had felt his entire life! He thought that he had found his niche: the guy who did the dirty work that others couldn’t do. But, now he’s not so sure. Does he want to be that guy, anymore? But, how can he change? Is it even possible?

Merle stops the car and lets Michonne out, telling her to go back to the prison. He says there’s something that he needs to do by himself.

On her way back to the prison, Michonne runs into Daryl. She tells him what Merle said, and Daryl takes off after him.

Meanwhile, it’s all about love at the prison! Glenn gives Maggie the ring and she says, “Yes.” Of course! Then, they meet up with the others for a session with our beloved leader, Mr. Crazypants. (It’s totally manageable, now, though! I mean, he told pregnant-ghost Lori that she wasn’t real! … He still listened to her, though.)

Rick confesses what he was going to do to Michonne. He says that he reconsidered, but it was too late; Merle has already taken her, and Daryl has gone after them. Rick tells the group that he can no longer lead as a dictator, that they would all have a say, a vote.

In Merletown, the elder Dixon parks in front of a store and starts blaring music to attract walkers. He’s got some liquid courage, and I knew right then what he planned to do. Moving at a slow pace, Merle leads the walkers to the meeting site where TG and his men await Rick and Michonne (they think).  Then, he jumps out of the car and lets it continue, bringing the walkers right to TG’s men! In the ensuing confusion, Merle ducks into an outbuilding and starts to shoot TG’s men. He almost gets TG, but Ben (Allen’s son –from Tyreese’s group), steps in the way at the last minute.

Darn! (But, it’s not like they would have let that happen! I mean, Rick has to have that showdown!)

Merle gets in some good shots before a walker wanders in (Why didn’t you close the door behind you?!), and Merle has to fight it off, revealing his position. Almost immediately, Martinez and some other TG guys jump on Merle. But, TG is the one who wants to finish him off!

They fight, but TG gains the upper hand. Merle tells TG that he won’t beg, but TG isn’t interested in even hearing that. With a look of manic glee, TG shoots Merle! Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

Oh, also, in the TG/Merle fight, did I mention that TG FREAKING BIT OFF TWO OF MERLE’S FINGERS? Gross!

Ben was young! Tender and tasty, right, Merle? Image courtesy of AMC.

Ben was young! Tender and tasty, right, Merle? Image courtesy of AMC.

When Daryl finally gets to the meeting scene, TG and his men have cleared out. Daryl picks his way through bodies and munching walkers before finding…WALKER MERLE! Merle is eating Ben, but pushes him aside when he sees Daryl…fresh meat!

Daryl, in tears, has to put down his own brother. It was sooooooo sad! And even in death, Daryl shrank back from his brother. For a different reason perhaps (Nom, nom), but it was a brutal depiction of what their relationship kinda was in reality.

“This Sorrowful Life” ended with Rick in the prison’s watch tower, peering through the scope of his rifle at Michonne as she made her way back.

I usually harp about the theme of you can’t survive alone, and I’m going to do it again! In this episode, Merle was faced with an impossible path to redemption. He realized that he doesn’t fit in this world of group living. He’s a loner, and he doesn’t think he can change like Daryl did.

But, still, he sought acceptance from his brother, from the prison group, and Merle did the only thing he knew how to do: he struck out on his own. And he died. Because you cannot survive alone in this world.

What did you think about “This Sorrowful Life?” Overall, I thought it was much better than last week’s episode, but I was really sad to see Merle go!

 

[[Featured image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-15-merle.php.]]

 

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Arrow on the Doorpost”

This is a recap. There will be SPOILERS. You’re my best friend.

Glenn finally made nice with Maggie! Emphasis on the “nice.” (Bow-chicka-wow-wow!) He got to step up and be the leader he so desperately wants to be. In this world, one’s mettle is often shown in the physical realm. Having brains to back it up is a must, but sometimes it’s not until a show of force that characters taken seriously. Last week, Morgan pointed out that the weak have inherited the earth, and that is (or will be) true eventually. But, not until everyone else it dead, right?

But “Arrow on the Doorpost” really wasn’t about Glenn and Maggie, was it? They had several scenes that really stuck out, though, and I was pleased that Glenn got to “prove” himself in a manner he obviously wanted.

On to the rest!

There was a lot of measuring going on in this episode, but something that really piqued my interest was a theme of “twos.” One of the over-arching themes of this season is that you can’t survive alone (without going crazy, anyways). That larger theme was reinforced by the obvious pairs throughout “Arrow.”

(An aside: When the episode was finished, I looked at my husband and said, “Why the heck was it called ‘Arrow on the Doorpost?'” Utilizing Google-Fu, a totally legit, for-realz martial art, we discovered it to be an allusion to “Blind Willie McTell,” a song by Bob Dylan.

Go ahead. Make fun of me for not knowing!

The first part of the song is:

“Seen the arrow on the doorpost
Saying, “This land is condemned
All the way from New Orleans
To Jerusalem”

Nice. This land full of walkers and the walking dead –the “live” inhabitants– is indeed condemned.

From the last verse:

“Well, God is in His heaven
And we all want what’s His
But power and greed and corruptible seed
Seem to be all that there is”

Does The Governor (TG) fit this? I think so. And Rick? Perhaps.)

“Arrow” was another ping-pong episode, jumping back and forth between the prison and the meeting between TG and Rick. I’m going to follow the storylines as it makes sense, without necessarily keeping to how they edited the show to air.

Rick doesn't really trust The Governor. Good decision, Rick. Image courtesy of AMC.

Rick doesn’t really trust The Governor. Good decision, Rick. Image courtesy of AMC.

“Arrow” opens with Rick, Daryl, and Hershel arriving at a farm. After Rick and Daryl scope out the surroundings (Hershel stays with the vehicle until later), Rick enters a barn/storage shed, and we see a table with two chairs set up on a raised platform. TG enters, and we find out they are there to negotiate. (Ooo! I found out that they’re meeting at a feed store! Really? Huh. Looks more like a storage shed to me…)

Negotiate what? That’s to come…

TG makes a big show of taking off his gun, but we see another duct-taped to his side of the table. Rick wisely doesn’t remove his at all. Go, Rick!

The pair are the first of the “twos” theme.

Andrea has arranged the meeting, and she, Milton and TG minion Martinez arrive a bit later. Daryl and Hershel are standing guard outside the barn, and Andrea is surprised when they tell her that TG is already there. She rushes into the barn to facilitate the meeting, but, it’s already underway, and both TG and Rick make it quite clear that Andrea has no business being there. I got a very apparent “let the grown-ups talk” vibe as they dismissed her. (Teehee!)

She leaves and sits down in a huff outside.

At the prison, Glenn is leading a fortification effort; tons of guns and ammunition are on the common room tables. Merle looks on and says that they should instead go and kill TG while he is distracted at the negotiation. I totally agreed with Merle, but Glenn doesn’t know what I know about the comic books, and told the elder Dixon brother no. It was another thematic “twos” pairing and an opportunity for Glenn to prove himself as back-up leader. He argues that an attack could put Rick, Daryl, and Hershel in danger. Merle is displeased.

Later, Merle fills a bag with weapons and starts for the door, intent on killing TG at the negotiation. Again, Glenn tells him no, but this time, Merle isn’t going to listen. Glenn blocks his path and the two start fighting! Maggie and Michonne lend aid, but it’s not until Beth discharges a gun that the scuffle breaks up.

(Oh, Beth…what do you do all day? Take care of Judith? Who, by the way, is the quietest newborn EVER.)

When Glenn is in the cage (that fenced in area around one of the doors to the prison yard), Maggie comes out (“twos” theme) and they finally talk about the awkwardness that followed their time in Woodbury. Glenn apologizes for making the situation about him (THANK YOU!), and Maggie reassures him that she’s on his side. Always.

They have prison concrete floor sex (ouch!), and it’s all better.

In the common room, Merle and Michonne (more “twos” theme) discuss Merle’s wish to go kill TG. He wants her to help, but she declines. (Come on, Michonne! You know he’s right! I mean, I know he’s right…)

Back at the negotiation, the theme of “twos” resurfaces as Daryl and Martinez measure each other up and compete to take down a small batch of walkers that wander into the area. Andrea gets in on the walker clearing with the first kill, but it’s largely the two men who show off for each other (more measuring).

wdseason3ep13b

I can kill walkers better than you! Image courtesy of AMC.

It was interesting to watch their competition turn into an honest chat, though. After killing all the walkers, Daryl offers Martinez a cigarette (which he initially refuses but later accepts) and the pair bonds. But, they come to the unsettling conclusion that the two groups (another “twos” theme reference) will most likely never be able to peacefully coexist.

Milton, who introduced himself to Daryl and Hershel as TG’s advisor, is spending his waiting time by writing down historical moments. Hershel sits beside him, and we see another pair in the “twos” theme. They seem friendly and companionable…even to the point of joking around. Since Milton is writing down their history, he is interested in seeing Hershel’s leg and the site of amputation. Hershel jokes that he can’t believe Milton would even ask that without buying him a drink beforehand.

It’s obvious that without the rabble-rousing and personal vendettas between the two leaders (mostly on the side of TG), that Hershel and Milton and even Daryl and Martinez would probably get along just fine.

In the feed store, TG and Rick flop ’em out and measure, both men posturing and trying to intimidate the other. TG makes it clear that he’s not really interested in negotiation at all. He’s there to accept Rick’s surrender. Rick doesn’t take to keenly to this and the two go back and forth. But, TG’s tactics change as the meeting goes on, and he does several things designed to loosen Rick’s guard: he brings whiskey and he opens up about his wife’s fatal car accident (which happened prior to the walker apocalypse). At first, Rick refuses the whiskey, but I was disturbed to see him drink after TG’s wife story.

(Don’t fall for it, Rick!)

Finally, it comes down to what TG really wants: Michonne. In a dramatic moment, TG removes his eyepatch and tells Rick that the fighting can end if he simple surrenders Michonne. TG says Rick has two days to consider.

Outside, Andrea asks Hershel (he’s no longer sitting with Milton) what happened with Maggie, and he tells her simply that TG  is a sick man. She tearfully tells him that she can’t stay in Woodbury, and Hershel tells her that if she comes to the prison, her decision will have to (must) stick. No more waffling!  But, when TG and Rick come out of the feed store, Andrea, after giving Hershel a look, still gets in the vehicle with TG!

WHAT?! Gosh, I hate you, Andrea.

When TG, Andrea, Milton, and Martinez get back to Woodbury, TG tells Milton about the deal he offered Rick and how it’s false. Of course! TG says they’re going to have to kill Rick sooner or later, anyhow, so, if he or anyone from the prison shows up, they are to be shot on sight! Except of Michonne, that is. She is to be brought alive to TG. (So, he can do all manner of evil things to her before killing her, I guess.)

Milton seems surprised at TG’s savagery (really, Milton? Gah.), but does little in the way of protesting. The short scene was yet another powerful “twos” theme pairing.

After he’s finished with Milton, TG calls out to Andrea and thanks her for setting up the meeting. She seems skeptical, but accepts his thanks, and they part ways. Oh, and another “twos!”

Oh, Andrea. Sigh.

When Rick, Daryl, and Hershel get back to the prison, Rick tells everyone that there is no deal, and that TG wants to kill them all. (I wondered at that point if Rick was the one who wanted a war, or if he actually saw through TG’s crap.)

Later, Rick is on the fenced-in catwalk that he always seems to drift to when contemplating things. As he stares soulfully into the distance, Hershel hobbles out (“twos” theme alert!), and Rick tells him of TG’s offer. But, Rick also allows that he knows TG will likely kill them all, anyway.

But, Rick is faced with making the call on whether or not to give Michonne up. Would Hershel be willing to sacrifice the lives of his daughters for Michonne? It’s a hard question, and Rick indicates that he’s considering giving her up.

And why did he lie to the group? Rick tells Hershel it’s because they need to be scared to face what’s coming. (What? Giving up Michonne? Defending the prison? Both?)

When Hershel asks why Rick has told him the truth, Rick says, “Because I’m hoping you can talk me out of it.”

Whoa. No pressure, Hershel!

What’d you think of “Arrow?” Did I read too much into the “twos?” And how about that title and the song it references? Hit me up in the comments!

 

[Featured image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-13-rick-governor-2.php.]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Clear”

I won’t insult your intelligence by telling you that there are SPOILERS in this article. I mean, you’re a smart person; you see the word “Recap,” right? So, you don’t need me to tell you something obvious. But, yeah…SPOILERS!

We got to reconnect with an old flame during “Clear!” And by “reconnect,” I mean almost die from an attack. And by “old flame,” I mean a guy that saved Rick in the first episode of “The Walking Dead.”

“Clear” followed Rick, Carl, and Michonne as they made a weapons run back to Rick and Carl’s hometown. It was a singular episode in that we didn’t have to jump back and forth between multiple groups and storylines. Seriously, sometimes I get dizzy by how many times we leap about between the prison and Woodbury. Last night was refreshing in its cinematic simplicity.

As they are traveling, Rick, Carl, and Michonne pass a man on the road. He’s alive and starts screaming and yelling for help. Shutup, dude! Don’t you know this is the zombie apocalypse? Gotta be quiet! Michonne, who is driving, doesn’t spare him a glance as she speeds by. The other two don’t look too affected, either. Even Carl, who is sitting in the backseat looks unmoved.

It makes me a little sad, but I suppose it’s a brave (cowardly) new world, eh? They have to protect their own, and who’s to say the guy’s not bait?

A bit down the road, several vehicles block the way, and Michonne goes off the road to get around them. However, the ground is soft, and she spins out next to a walker trapped under a vehicle who is doing its darndest to scrabble out and get them. Carl gives Michonne a death glare, and they all just generally looked cheesed off. The audience is supposed to be focused on the trapped walker, so we won’t see the cheap scare coming.

I totally saw it.

Suddenly, several walkers are clawing at the windows (which are wisely up). Again, everyone just looks bored and irritated at the interruption. The walkers are dispatched post-haste, and Rick sets about showing Carl how to get the SUV out of the mud. But, Carl, who is barely paying attention, is more interested in complaining about Michonne. Why did they have to bring her? She’s not even really part of the group!

Rick tells Carl that they share a common goal and that Michonne is a valuable resource to have with them. Carl looks disgruntled. Are we a moody teenager already? Ugh. Oh, and Michonne totally heard the exchange between father and son. Classy.

The man that hailed them for help earlier comes into sight and starts yelling. He’s running toward them, but Rick, Carl, and Michonne pay him no mind. They just get back into the SUV and leave. Heavy.

When they reach the town, they discover painted messages (vaguely crazy and warning) and arrows, and it looks to be generally deserted. After parking the SUV, Rick leads them to the sheriff’s department, where he expects to find a weapons cache. It’s predictably empty, but Rick seems to be surprised and angry about the lack of weapons. (Because, you know, they need all the weapons they can find for the upcoming war with The Governor.)

Rick decides to venture further into the town in search of more weapons. He knows some of the businesses had weapons and wants to get them. Michonne isn’t so sure it’s a good idea, and Rick, sensing dissension, calls her on it immediately. She backs down and gives him one of those soul-searching looks that she’s so good at. (You know the one, I mean! Where she looks at a character and sees right to his or her core! She’s really good at it.)

Rick, Carl, and Michonne enter the clearing zone. Image courtesy of AMC.

Rick, Carl, and Michonne enter the clearing zone. Image courtesy of AMC.

As the trio continue on foot, they come to what appears to be a main street. It’s blocked with barriers made of sharp implements, ropes, burned out vehicles, and various other bits of crap. There are even caged pigeons and rats scattered about. It quickly becomes clear what the road blocks are for as a walker gets trapped, and Michonne stabs it through the face. (Oooooh! The caged animals are to draw the walkers, right? They’ll eat animals, after all.) There are also more painted messages on buildings, fences, and banners warning intruders away. But, our intrepid trio continues on.

Suddenly, a man on a rooftop commands them to drop all their weapons and supplies and leave. He’s got a scoped rifle pointed at them, and he’s wearing a helmet. Rick, Carl (who is told to get away), and Michonne scatter, and the man (who was obviously trained by the Galactic Empire) fails to hit any of them. Michonne ninjas her way up to the roof, but the man is already gone.

Oh, no! Now, he’s on street level, shooting at Rick! Rick dives behind a series of conveniently placed vehicles and trashcans as the man moves closer, shooting as he comes. The man is only several feet away from Rick when Carl steps around a corner and shoots the man in the chest. BLAM at close range!

Rick lightly scolds Carl for still being on the street, but it’s plain to see he was glad his son was still around. However, Rick does feel a little bit of guilt that Carl had to shoot a “living” man.

But, the man isn’t dead! SHWEW! Rick pushes aside his shirt to reveal a bullet-proof vest, then removes the vest to reveal a giant bruise where Carl shot him. The man is still alive, but he has been knocked out. Rick removes the helmet to reveal…MORGAN! Remember Morgan? Back in the first episode of The Walking Dead, Morgan rescued a newly awoken Rick. He saved Rick’s life and let him stay with him and his son, Duane, before Rick left to find his family.

Unsure of how to proceed, Rick at least wants to get Morgan off the street. Plus, Rick knows Duane should be around somewhere. So, they find where Morgan lives and take him to his rooms, avoiding several quite nasty booby traps along the way.

Morgan’s rooms hold tons of guns and ammo, and Michonne and Carl set about looting what they need. But, Rick stops them, conflicted about the state of his former rescuer and friend. Morgan’s rooms are covered with writing, detailing people who have turned, supply lists, and other scribbling. Every so often, the word “CLEAR” is written, most often after names (I noticed).

Rick decides they will stay until Morgan wakes up. He wants to talk to Morgan, and see how he is. I kinda got the feeling he wanted to take him back to the prison, too. Having an ally and friend like Morgan around could do a lot to settle Rick’s mind and recent brushes with insanity.

Carl declares that he needs to go on a run to get a baby crib for Judith. There’s a baby store right around the corner, and Rick agrees to let him go when Michonne offers to accompany him. Rick stays with the unconscious Morgan, and Carl and Michonne head out. Carl tries to give Michonne the slip while she kills a walker, but she quickly catches up with him. He tells her that there’s something he has to get for Judith, and Michonne makes it clear that he won’t be going alone.

(A little aside, here. Okay, Carl, I get that you’re basically a grownup and able to take care of yourself. I mean, you had to shoot your mom, for goodness’ sake. But, don’t knock a willing ally! Someone to watch your back is ALWAYS a good idea!)

Carl leads Michonne to a restaurant. I still had no idea what he was after. At first, I thought he was going to go to the old Grimes house and get a teddy bear or something like that. I had no clue what he could be after at a restaurant!

The restaurant, called the King County Cafe (I think…something close to that, right?), was filled with trapped walkers. Apparently, they were all there, having a bite to eat, when the walker plague struck. Or maybe someone trapped them in there. Seems rather odd to me. Anyhow, there’s a ton in there.

Michonne helps Carl sneak in by sliding some of the caged animals in through the cracked doorway. While the walkers are busy trying to get at the terrified animals, Michonne and Carl dart in and back to the bar where a framed picture of Rick, Lori, and Carl hang. (Oh, it’s one of those hometown places! Ooooh!) Carl hops up on the bar to get the picture…and is grabbed by a walker who was on the other side! But, Carl keeps his head, and Michonne quickly stabs the walker…quietly. They start to ease their way back to the door when a scared rat runs toward them followed by the mini-horde! (I don’t understand how the rat would have gotten out of its cage and away from the walkers, but…okay.)

They have to fight their way out and manage to barely escape (of course), closing and leaning against the front doors, which happen to have nice big panes of glass that allow us to see the walkers pawing and trying to get them. Nice. But, on their way to the door, Carl dropped the picture. REALLY, Carl? He is devastated, explaining that he wanted Judith to have a picture of Lori, and that’s the only one he thought was still in existence. Awww!

Carl declares he has to go back for it, but Michonne tells him to stay put. He reluctantly agrees and she disappears behind the corner of the building. She’s a ninja, because moments later, she reappears with the picture and an ugly cat statue. Making a light moment, Michonne tells Carl that she had to go back in because the cat statue caught her eye.

And, poof, Michonne has won over Carl!

Back in Morgan’s rooms, Rick is looking at all the writing on the walls and feeling bad for Morgan. He comes on some script saying Duane has turned, and he knows Morgan’s son is dead.

Suddenly, Morgan attacks! Rick had zip-tied Morgan’s hands, but Morgan freed himself with a hidden knife. They scuffle and Morgan stabs Rick! All the while, Morgan is babbling and accusing Rick of wearing a dead man’s face. It’s clear that Morgan has had a rough time of things and is not all there.

Sad Morgan is sad. Image courtesy of AMC.

Sad Morgan is sad. Image courtesy of AMC.

Rick finally gets the upper hand and disarms Morgan, pushing him down. Morgan realizes who Rick is and basically goes to pieces. (In the first episode, Rick told Morgan he would be on a radio every morning at dawn. Rick kept his promise for as long as he could, but as his group moved farther away, the signal wouldn’t reach anymore. Apparently, Morgan kept trying.) Rick learns that Morgan failed to kill his walker wife, and that Duane had been attacked by her. Morgan blames himself and has decided he was left alive to “clear” things. It becomes apparent that Morgan believes he has to clear out the walkers from the town, hence all the walker traps.

Rick tries to convince Morgan to come with them back to the prison, but Morgan refuses, saying he must clear the town.

It’s a heart-wrenching scene, really, with powerful acting. Your heart breaks for Morgan and what he’s gone through. If you haven’t seen it, go find it and watch it; I count this episode as one of the best so far. It goes to a solitary place of despair and looks madness in the eyes, and as the character of Morgan looks back, you shiver. He’s justified in his feelings, in his emotions, but he decided on a task, on his form of redemption: to “clear.” It’s moving as he considers throwing over that task and equally moving as he remains steadfast in his choice.

When Rick leaves Morgan’s rooms, he finds Michonne and Carl just returning from their run carrying a baby crib (pack-n-play, actually). It looks like they found some other supplies at the baby store, too.  As the trio pick their way back through Morgan’s clearing zone, they see the man removing walkers from spikes and strapping them (after they’ve been killed, of course) to a gurney. Carl calls out to him, apologizing for shooting him and begging him to understand that he had to do it. Morgan stops what he’s going and approaches, a little wild-eyed.

“Don’t you ever apologize,” Morgan tells Carl.

Morgan knows the consequences of hesitation and failure to “clear.” He wants to impress upon Carl the necessity of doing the necessary.

When the trio reaches the SUV, Carl tells Rick that his run had been successful and that Michonne was “one of us.” Rick looks a little surprised, but also somewhat pleased. (It seemed like he was looking for a reason to let Michonne stay, and Carl’s words gave him that needed push.) After Carl gets in the SUV, Michonne helps Rick load the rest of the supplies (Morgan let Rick take some guns and ammunition). She tells him that she knows he’s been seeing things (Uh-oh! Is there going to be a showdown?) and says it’s okay. Whaaa? Michonne confides that she spoke to her dead boyfriend for a long time, and that it’s okay to grieve.

Rick asks Michonne if she wants to drive, and she says yes, but asks why. With a smile, he says it’s because he sees things. Levity! How refreshing!

On the way back to the prison, they have to go around the vehicle pile up again. This time, Michonne goes around on the other side, and they don’t get caught. As they drive, they pass fresh blood and man bits. It’s the guy that was yelling for help…sad panda. Of course, he wasn’t being very smart by yelling, was he? Gah. They pass only to stop, back up, and pick up his pack.

It’s always about the resources!

So, what did you think of “Clear?” Hit me up in the comments!

 

[Featured image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-12-rick-3.php.]

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The Walking Dead Recap/Review: “Home”

Spoilers, yo, and lots of them! You’ve been warned. (It does say “recap” in the title…just saying.)

I was seriously JUST starting to like Axel. Dang it! Now, all of the prisoners are dead, and the prison truly belongs to Rick’s group. (Crazy people running the asylum, anyone?) But, is it even still Rick’s group? Or is Glenn trying on some britches that are a couple of sizes too big? That’s the thing about wearing big pants; you’re going to trip and fall on your face.

“Home” opens with Rick seeing Lori in the prison yard. Still dressed in white, Lori’s back is to him as she stands before the graves. He runs to the graves only to have her vanish and reappear beyond the prison fence. Not recognizing the symbolism of running through the gates away from safety and into the wilderness of crazy, Rick dashes by Michonne and meets Lori on a footbridge. (Michonne appears to be living in an overturned bus in the prison yard. Or, if she’s not living in it, she at least crawled out of said bus. Rick did say they would be kicking her out of the prison as soon as she was back on her feet. Is this as far as they’ve kicked her?) Michonne wisely closes the prison gates behind him.

Lori and Rick share a moment as she gently strokes his face. Aww! Poor Rick looks miserable and elated at the same time.

But, Michonne looks on in disbelief as Rick cuddles into open air, because, obviously, Lori is not there!

In Woodbury, The Governor (TG) pays Andrea a visit, and I was glad to see that she wasn’t shacking up with him. Although, it was never clear that she ever was, I guess. They just shagged, and she left. How elegant!

He compliments her inspiring speech to the townsfolk following the break-in and biter attack and encourages her to step into a leadership role. See, TG thinks he hasn’t lived up to the mantle of power and wants Andrea to take over.

Right…

He loves me? He loves me not? Image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-10-andrea.php.

He loves me? He loves me not? Image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-10-andrea.php.

Blah, blah, blah…you know he’s lying through his teeth when he says he’s going to take some time to sort things out. And you REALLY know he’s lying when he assures Andrea that there will be no retaliation against Rick’s group at the prison. But, she buys it, because she’s Andrea.

TG leaves her and goes to see Milton. The man is visibly scared by TG, but he also wants to prove his loyalty to the one-eyed pirate. TG has a strange hold over the people of Woodbury; it’s interesting to see the desperate need for leadership and the willingness to latch onto someone in power. You see it in Milton, and you can see it in Andrea, too, to a certain extent. The world has gone mad, and people need some semblance of order, even if that order is through brutality. They need a “home” (See how I worked the title in there? I’m so smooth.).

TG verifies Milton’s allegiance and then tells him to keep an eye on Andrea. He’s not so sure she’ll side with Woodbury, after all. It’s rather a different story from the crap he just sold Andrea, but that’s our TG, and that’s why we love to hate him!

When Andrea is looking for TG and several other of Woodbury’s known fighters (all the scary dudes who carry the big guns and do TG’s bidding) later that day, a woman on the wall, Karen, won’t give her a straight answer. Andrea sees Milton and asks him where TG is, and Milton is also coy, saying TG is on a supply run. Andrea doesn’t buy it, and Milton doesn’t appear to really care that she doesn’t buy it.

Do you think Milton knew where TG had gone? I mean, I knew! Seriously, how could you not know? But, TG did tell Andrea that there would be no retaliation against the prison, so she was left to wonder.

But, she had to know, right? Come on! The illusion of safety and normalcy at Woodbury was shattered, and while she’s desperately grasping at the loose strings, Andrea has to know there’s something truly rotten in Denmark.

We got to check in on Daryl and Merle a couple of times during this episode before they were drawn back into one of the sure-to-soon-be-feuding camps (Woodbury or the prison? Which one will they end up with? You’ll have to keep reading to find out!). The brothers were struggling to adjust to one another while fighting for dominance (on Merle’s part) and respect (Daryl’s goal). Daryl’s time with Rick’s group had changed him, and the knowledge galled Merle. So, the elder Dixon picked at Daryl, maligning everything from his hunting skills and sense of direction to his loyalties.

Daryl readies to save folks in need. Image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-10-daryl.php.

Daryl readies to save folks in need. Image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-10-daryl.php.

When Daryl and Merle come upon a Hispanic family being attacked by walkers, Daryl immediately wants to help. He hears a baby and must think of little Judith back at the prison. Merle, on the other hand, doesn’t care and is content to let the family get eaten. But, Daryl comes to the family’s rescue, shooting and knifing walkers. Lo and behold, Merle wanders in behind him and kills a few, too.

I loved Merle’s face during this scene! It was a mix of consternation and awe as he watched his little brother handily dispatch the walkers and save the family.

When it was all over, Merle decides they are owed payment for their services and starts to rob the family, tossing out a racial slur in lovely Merle fashion. Daryl tells him to stop, but Merle doesn’t listen. It’s not until Daryl threatens his brother with his crossbow that Merle backs down. The family leaves, and the Dixon brothers realize just how different they’ve become.

In the woods, they get into a small scuffle, and Merle rips Daryl’s shirt, revealing old scars left by their father. Merle is shocked and tells Daryl he had no idea about the abuse. But, Daryl really doesn’t believe him and decides enough is enough. It’s time to go…(Ready for it?)…home. He sets off for the prison, leaving Merle, who swears he can’t follow, not after his history with the group.

As Daryl strikes out, he leaves his brother with “I might be the one who’s walking away, but you’re the one who’s leaving…again.” (Or something close to that.) His voice cracks, and you can tell he’s choking back tears.

As Daryl disappears into the woods, Merle is torn between a new found protective streak for his little brother and saving his own skin. As he waffles, the indecision is plain on his face as he weighs the consequences of the only decision he can make before following Daryl.

It’s a great stretch of acting from two great actors!

At the prison, Glenn’s got his big-boy pants on and is assessing the perceived vulnerabilities of the compound. He’s going over with Carl and the others how Tyreese’s group and walkers got into the depths of the prison, known as the tombs. But, Hershel thinks the possible attack/retaliation by TG is more pressing and says they should leave the prison. Glenn adamantly disagrees and then comes up with the idea that he and Michonne should sneak back into Woodbury and just kill TG. Not too bad of an idea, really, but no one but Michonne goes for it.

So, Glenn settles for a foray into the tombs to clean out walkers. Later, when he returns (looks like Carl went with him), he wants to take a vehicle to look at the back of the prison to see how bad it really is (It’s pretty bad, remember?), but no one really wants to go with him. Glenn declares that he’ll take Maggie with him, but Hershel isn’t so sure she’s willing, either, and Glenn goes to find her. She’s lying down in her cell and doesn’t react too kindly to Glenn, something that really puzzles the man.

And why is she acting this way to Glenn? Isn’t he trying to protect her, to avenge (in a roundabout way) the wrong done to her? Not really. Actually, he’s just trying to make himself feel better. See, he really didn’t even know what TG had done to her. In his mind, the worst thing was that Maggie had been raped. She wasn’t, and she told him that. But, instead of treating her like an equal who had done the necessary to save Glenn’s hand (TG threatened to cut it off if she didn’t cooperate.), Glenn put himself in the role of her protector and insinuated his own feelings of powerlessness over her feelings. By doing so, he made the situation about him. It turned into something that HE had to fix, that HE had to avenge, because she was HIS woman. Now, he’s on a quest to prove himself capable of running things without Rick and Daryl. He’s obsessed, and Maggie is disgusted.

After Maggie rebuffs him, Glenn decides to go look at the perimeter by himself. He meets Hershel in the prison yard, and the older man again says they should leave the prison, but Glenn isn’t having it. He pitches another hissy fit, stomping his feet and holding his breath (not really). Since Daryl’s gone and Rick is “wandering Crazytown (He actually said “Crazytown!” Someone was reading my recaps and wrote that into the script, right? HA!),” Glenn is the next in charge, dang it! Or so Glenn thinks. He hops into a giant truck and roars away.

Hershel hobbles down to the outer fence to look for Rick. The former lawman comes out of the woods looking paranoid and rather deranged but sound in body, overall. Hershel tells Rick about Glenn and asks him to come back to the prison. But, Rick isn’t ready, yet. He confesses his recent delusions, but tells Hershel he knows they aren’t real. At the same time, though, he has to believe there’s an explanation.

Yeah, you’re nuts!

But, Hershel is nicer than me and gently prods Rick to come back to reality. This was a great scene visually with Hershel on the inside (reality) of the prison yard and Rick on the outside (Crazytown), clutching at the chain link as he is clutching and searching for sanity. Nicely done.

Closer to the prison, Carol and Axel are getting ready for what they assume will be an assault from TG. The pair are setting up cover and chatting, flirting a bit and getting to know one another. Beth and Carl are also outside wandering about, and Michonne is down by her bus.

I had to cheer for Axel. I mean, he thought Carol was a lesbian, but once he found out differently, he’s quite the charmer!

But, this is The Walking Dead, and AMC doesn’t want me to forget this world is terrible.

A gunshot rings out, and Axel is shot in the head! TG shot him, and we see the self-satisfied smirk below his eye patch as he lowers the gun. TG and some goons are outside of the prison fence shooting up the place, and Rick and Hershel dive for cover as they come under fire, too.

Umm, can someone tell me how a guy got into the prison tower? Yeah, because a TG dude is up in the tower shooting at the group, too! I have no idea how that could have happened.

Carol is crouched behind Axel’s dead body, remarkably unscathed even though Axel is still being shot…a lot. (Not one of those bullets would go through Axel’s body? Huh. I have my doubts.) Carl and Beth take cover, and Carl whips out his gun to return fire because, yes, Carl’s awesome, now. Maggie runs out of the prison with extra guns, and they are able to cover Carol as she runs away from poor dead Axel.

Everybody’s shooting and no one’s hitting anything! But, TG is delighted and gleefully sprays bullets into the air several times. It’s clear that they are not only trying to kill the prison group with bullets, but they are also making as much noise as possible to draw walkers.

But that’s not enough for TG. A delivery truck races up the road and plows through the prison gates to release walkers into the yard. A figure jumps out and runs back to TG’s truck. The person was wearing all black with a helmet,  but it looked like a woman to me. My money’s on Karen; she was totally shifty with Andrea. (Had TG and his group already left when Andrea spoke to Karen? Were they just getting ready to leave? I dunno, but Karen definitely knew something! And I’m not going to be surprised if we find out she was involved in the prison raid.)

The walkers are released right around where Hershel is hiding in the grass. The old coot’s got a gun, but he won’t last long, that’s for certain.

Then, someone finally nails the douche in the prison tower, and TG decides it’s time to go. He and his minions jump in their truck and speed away, passing Glenn on the way out. (It’s about time, Glenn! Where the heck have you been? It took you THAT long to drive around the prison?! Pfft!)

By this time, more walkers are wandering into the area surrounding the prison, drawn by all the noise. Rick, who has used all his bullets, is set upon by a pair of hungry walkers! Oh, no! But, at the last minute, an arrow erupts from the walker’s forehead, and Daryl rides in on a white horse! Okay, there’s no horse, but he and Merle wade into things and save Rick’s butt.

Glenn picks up Maggie in the truck, and they rescue Hershel, while Michonne slices her way through too many walkers (Seriously, this woman is a machine!).

The tragedy seems to bring clarity to Rick as he surveys the damage. A hard, determined look comes in his eyes, and you know this means war!

Dun, Dun, DUN! (Dramatic flourish)

Jeez, what a mess! Axel’s dead (RIP. We hardly knew ye!), Merle’s at the prison, and Rick’s teetering precariously on the edge of insanity. His high-wire act isn’t going to be helped by Glenn’s desire for vengeance. Heck, no! Rick’s going to be out for blood, now. TG has defiled his HOME.

Meanwhile, TG is trying to keep Andrea under his thumb and convince her he’s not a monster, while wiping out her long-lost friends at the prison! At least this time, she’s suspicious of him. (Gosh, she’s thick.)

But, the thing about Andrea is that I know she wants to be thick. She’s not stupid, she just willingly deluded. She wants to believe there’s still a nice little town like Woodbury in the world. But, she’s finally starting to come out of it, and that spells trouble for her stay in TG’s good graces.

What did you think about “Home?” Hit me up in the comments!

 

[Featured image courtesy of AMC and found at http://blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/the-walking-dead-season-3-episode-photos/episode-10-governor-2.php.]

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The Walking Dead: An Eye For An Eye

Yesterday, AMC released the midseason poster for The Walking Dead. Behold!

WDmidseasonposter

Image courtesy of AMC

If you’re into the comics at all, you know that Rick isn’t likely to lose an eye. (Unless the showrunners take us for a little ride away from the original story!) But, I love how the poster art cuts his face in half to hide his left eye! (Not so for the larger graphic that we used as a featured image, but you get the idea.)

Retribution and revenge is sure to be on the slate for the second half of this season. You knew it was coming, but the use of “An Eye For An Eye” definitely confirms it.

Let’s review a little bit, shall we? Michonne re-killed The Governor’s (TG) dead daughter, Penny; TG found out that Merle lied about Michonne’s death; Andrea will probably be stupid and want some kind of comeuppance for Michonne’s actions (re-killing Penny and stabbing TG in the eye with a shard of glass); Glenn and Maggie were held and tortured in the bowels of Woodbury; Rick, Daryl, and Oscar (RIP…such a shame AMC will only allow one major black guy on the show at a time. Since Tyreese and company arrived at the prison, Oscar had to be offed.) rescued Glenn and Maggie; some Woodbury folks were killed during the rescue.

And so much more! Check out my recaps for more goodies.

TG is obviously going to reveal his evilness. I mean, we all knew he was a bad seed, right? Walker heads in fish tanks, slaughtering soldiers, doling out death sentences…tends to make me think he’s a pretty bad dude.

But, there was always something holding him back from complete evil: Penny. His undying hope that his dead daughter could somehow be saved or taught to be un-walker-y kept him in line. Now that she’s gone for good, there will be nothing standing in the way of TG’s complete spiral downward.

I CAN’T WAIT!

The Walking Dead returns Feb. 10 at 9 p.m. on AMC.

 

[[Featured image courtesy of The Walking Dead Facebook page]]

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