Down is up, up is down, The Walking Dead is firing on all cylinders.
With last night's episode, the show gave us at least one new character with heretofore unseen emotional complexity and the beginnings of the story line that I had been longing for since Season 1.
And there was no Lori! Best episode ever!
But there was also no T-Dog. Minus two points.
This show followed the escapades of our Lady Zombie Warriors, Andrea and Michonne (whose name I had to look up because they STILL haven't actually uttered her name on the show, and whose pet zombies still haven't been explained, so, to me, until the day that they are explained, they shall be known only as the pet zombies). The girls are just walking through the woods, minding their own business when -- Whoops! Blackhawk down! They run to the scene of the accident and find a steaming pile of metal and a dead man cut in half. Vehicles approach the scene and our Lady Warriors run into the woods and don their magical invisibility suits. I mean, I'm assuming, because there's no way those sparse leaves were hiding the two of them so well that it kept the men from spotting them.
Nevertheless, the ladies were able to hide behind a potted plant or two and watch the men in trucks stab the corpses in the head, which confused and disgusted Andrea. How she and Michonne had managed to avoid figuring out that everyone is infected and all dead bodies turn to walkers over the course of their Zombpocalypse experience eludes me. But anyway.
The men in trucks stabbed the bodies (have to save ammo) and they started to approach the woods. So Michonne cut off the heads of her pet zombies. Which means somehow their heads are still alive, so I'm not sure what this accomplished. The men in trucks could still stab them in the heads or mutilate them, or take them back to their secret scientific labs to study them (which they did).
But beheading the pet zombies seemed all for naught, because the men in trucks could not see Andrea and Michonne beyond the sparse foliage. Phew. Until an old friend walked up behind them and stuck a gun in their faces. It's Bionic Merle, people. And he's back with a vengeance. A vengeance against that butt head Rick,of course. But he never had a problem with Andrea, so he shoves her in a truck and takes her back to Woodbury, the zombpocalypse's premier gated community.
There she receives antibiotics and TLC, all behind a locked door and armed guards. But the windows are not locked, so Freedom. Once Andrea is strong enough to walk around, a Liam Neeson/Edward Norton hybrid called the Governor arrives to show the ladies the sights. "See, here's our giant wall and our heavy artillery and our armed guards, but then over here you'll see our farmers' market and day spa." They have the best of both worlds. Everybody's happy. Everybody loves their curfew. It's a tiny little dystopian paradise.
Or is it...?
The Governor is doing Day of the Dead-type experimentation on innocent zombie corpses, and it looks like he'll be issuing every family in town a toothless, armless, slowly starving zombie pet. Now only $49.99 on QVC if you ACT NOW!!! Their heavy artillery was undoubtedly the shot that took down the helicopter. And when the Governor and his soldiers went to "save" the helicopter captain's friends, they killed the survivors and took their supplies. And when they got home, the Governor gave a big speech about how the soldiers had no walls so they could not be saved and boo-hoo the zombies got them. And all the citizens of Woodbury were like, "You're the coolest, Governor. Thank you for your protection." And then Andrea was all, "Imma tap that by the season finale." And Michonne was all, "I am silent and brooding and skeptical and that is all the characterization you're going to get from me right now."
Finally, the Governor went back into his home, where we were treated to a little insight into the man. He has a concubine and a dead family and a wall of floating zombie heads and maybe a drinking problem. Heavy is the head that wears the zombie king crown.
Bits and Bobs:
- I've read many (too many) of the recent teen dystopian novels and I've always been much more interested in HOW the dystopias came to be. So this new story line on The Walking Dead is right up my alley. I just hope they don't pull a Walking Dead (that's a thing) and somehow turn this into a whole deal about Rick and Lori's marriage.
- The Governor is the most complex character we've seen on the show thus far, and he's injected a shot of Ben Linus creepy magnetism into the show. Awesome.
- Also, his scientist buddy. I want to see more of him.
- This episode just served to highlight how annoying the rest of the characters are. Even Andrea is better when she's out from under the thumb of Sheriff Rick and his goons.
What did you think? Do you trust the Walking Dead writers to carry out this new story with finesse, or will it become Herschel's farm all over again?