The Walking Dead had been on a tear this season, delivering some of the best and most exciting TV last year. While I’m not completely down on last week’s episode, it was probably one of the weaker ones this season.
The Governor decides to put Andrea in charge of the town, presumably so that he can spend his time planning his attack on the prison and also to keep Andrea from interfering with said attack on prison. I am really tiring of Andrea, here she is one of the most capable characters in the cast, and yet she seems so blinded by whatever man she is dealing with at the time, its so contradictory to a character with her attitude. Even after realizing her friends were held captive by the Governor, after seeing the way Daryl was treated, having the knowledge that her friends are still alive, and she is still in Woodbury and still with the Governor. What the hell s wrong with this woman, I find her character so frustrating that I really hope she dies soon.
Back at the prison Rick is still lost in Wonderland as he spends most of the episode ignoring everyone and everything but his hallucination of Lori, in fact he was absent for most of the episode. I don’t like this storyline and I don’t understand it. I know Rick has lost it a bit, but come on man, there’s a whole group of people that need you right now, especially with the losses they’ve had, it almost seems selfish that Rick is going off this way, his admitting to Herschel that he knows Lori is not real only compounded my feelings on this.
Glenn is also losing it and I didn’t like the way that was headed either. He has become a severe hot head making the most rash of decisions, like going on a solo mission to assassinate the Governor. As he’s leaving he yells to Herschel that with Daryl gone and Rick in La-La Land that he is one the one in charge so he’s doing what he wants. All I could think was, you being the top dog now is exactly WHY you need to stay. You are leaving them leaderless to get revenge, and what happens if you die? No there is no one to lead except maybe Herschel. Glenn is my favorite character on the show, by a hair over Daryl, but even I had to yell at Glenn through my TV in a ‘WTF are you doing?!’ manner. Poor Herschel, trying so hard to keep everyone together and those that he looks up to for leadership are really failing him and the rest of the group.
Daryl also realizes he has made a bad decision in leaving the group for Merle. I understood why he did it, I love my siblings to death, but my siblings aren’t as obnoxious as Merle. The brothers come upon a group being attacked by walkers, and as expected, Daryl goes into hero mode. Merle chastises him for doing so, and that’s part of Merle’s character, but it comes to a point where you need to help or just shut the hell up. The breaking point comes when Daryl has to force Merle at arrow point to not steal from those they just rescued. Daryl finally realizes who he is dealing with, and decides he’s better off back at the prison, and he’s definitely needed there more as well. The reveal of Daryl’s childhood scars fell a little flat for me as it didn’t have the emotional impact a moment like that is supposed to have, but nonetheless, Daryl finally makes the right call and leaves Merle.
Back at the prison Axel eats a bullet to the head as the Governor attacks (Good thing there was no black people there.), and the group scramble for safety. The ensuing firefight comes to a stalemate as both sides show accuracy is not a skill they have practiced in a scene that wasted way too much ammo for both sides. That’s when the Governor shows how truly evil he is as he sends a truck into the prison full of walkers. I had a hard time with scene as Rick’s group just sit and wait for something to happen when this truck barrels into their safe haven. If I was in their position I would’ve been doing my best to blow that truck up with a bullet to the gas tank before it could let loose any evil, of course we just saw accuracy is not a strong point so maybe they decided to save their bullets. As it sat there the grating on the back made me think of a livestock trailer and I knew what was inside before the gate dropped. No way in hell I just sit and watch waiting for this truck to loose an attack on us. At least the firefight wakes Rick out of his degrading mental state. Then Glenn shows up to see the consequences of his actions, while he is out hunting the Governor, the Governor is at your doorstep, maybe next time Glenn will think twice.
The highlight of the whole episode goes down here, as Rick is about to be overrun by walkers, a single arrow pierces the most immediate threat to Rick, and here comes the cavalry. Then we get thrown for an awful loop, Daryl is not alone, he helps the group fight back with Merle in tow. Nooooo!! I know everybody had to be thinking it, letting Merle come too has to be even worse for the group then the Governor’s attack, and confused me as Rick’s refusal to let Merle join them the week before lead to Daryl’s leaving the group, so why let him come now? Afterwards they survey the damage and see that they have now lost the yard, not the prison yard, the green grass yard.
Overall, while not a horrible episode, it didn’t deliver on the level this season has been delivering on. All shows are allowed a misstep from time to time, or in the case of season two, a whole second half of the season, but I was disappointed given how season three had been firing on all cylinders. Hopefully we can get back to what makes this show great next week, Rick leading this group and making the tough decisions.
3 out of 5 nerds
Follow Christopher on Twitter @AUDone44 and The Nerd @nerdfollowing