The Walking Dead is back!!!
Well it’s been back for a couple of weeks now but as I’ve been busy (something practically unheard of for an arts graduate) I have had to contain all my zombie excitement untill now. The show picked up exactly where it left off, with Merle and Daryl preparing for a fight to the death. When the show broke up back in December I was going crazy, desperate to know what happened next, but coming back 2 months later I realised what a stupid place this was to finish. My suspense had subsided and I’d forgotten details about the last episode, meaning that when we returned to Woodbury I was just confused.
After a scuffle that seemed just a bit too easy Rick and co were left with one huge problem, what to do with Merle. At this point one or two kind words wouldn’t have gone a miss, but Merle was as foul as ever and after some racial slurs and another argument he was left with only Daryl on his side. It was clear that the two of them leaving was never going to last as Daryl has fast become a vital component of the prison hierarchy, yet seeing him desert his make shift family was still a sad scene.
Back in Woodbury things are in disarray. Although watching zombie fight club had fast become the townsfolk favourite form of entertainment, none of them were too keen on the idea that walkers might now be able to invade their walls so they all set off into the wild. Seems sensible right? With the Governor MIA, it was left to Andrea to rally the troops with a speech so cringeworthy I hoped a rogue walker would bite her there and then.
During the mid-season break it was announced that Glen Mazzara was to leave his position as show runner at the end of this series. At first I was unsure about this, but its become glaringly obvious that the show needs a change of direction. Its getting to the stage where the same issues are rehashed time and time again. The witty one liners are becoming fewer and characters such as Glen who once provided comic relief are getting darker. There are obvious reasons behind this, but its pretty dull to watch. The show has become miserable, so much so that I constantly find myself questioning why the characters are trying so hard to survive. It’s not even as if they are trying to re-build the world and return to normality like the people of Woodbury. Rick is so reluctant to trust anyone new that his group is going to get smaller and smaller – at this rate there’ll only be “lil asskicker” left. Quite frankly if I were in the prison I’d be getting so sick of Herschel’s mundane chat that I’d be out scouting survivors just to bring in some fresh bants. This made it all the more frustrating when Tyreese’s group were turned away. However I don’t think they’ll have gone too far.
The start of season 3 focused heavily on Ricks descent into madness, but before the mid-season break there was a glimmer of hope that we might be getting away from this, no such luck. Rick spent most of “Home” scratting about the woods searching for his deceased wife, who occasionally appeared kitted out in a wedding dress far to glam for the prison. Michonne has clearly had enough of him, I’m starting to wish she’d put that sword to good use get rid of Rick and take over as leader. If nothing else it would mean she’d have to actually speak which would make a nice change. It might also mean that we get to see her and Andrea going head to head. Over in Woodbury, the Governor (who’s thankfully got a new, less bloody eye patch) has appointed her second in command. It’s hard to tell if this is because he likes her, is testing her or is simply trying to keep her away from the prison, but something fishy is going on.
Things are going from bad to worse for Daryl. Not only has he been left with his psychotic brother there’s also a shortage of things for them to hunt, which leaves the brothers hungry and cranky. As they wander on their already strained relationship reachs breaking point when Merle realises his father would beat Daryl as a child. This history of child abuse has been hinted at previously, however the big reveal as Daryl’s shirt ripped to display a number of scars seemed very melodramatic and clumsy, not really in keeping with The Walking Dead’s usual style.
The shoot out at the end of Home injected the episode with some much-needed action. It was beginning to look like things might get back on track for Carol, but alas the poor woman can’t even have a cheeky flirt without misery swooping down on her. As the Governor and his men bombarded the prison with gunfire she was left with only Axel’s bullet ridden body to shield herself – that woman cannot catch a break. The walker bomb driven into the prison ground was a nice touch. The first two episodes had been severely lacking in the undead, so it was quite a treat to see the prison full of walkers once again. Despite being caught off guard, our survivors put up an excellent fight, and luckily as things got too much for them Daryl and Merle came to the rescue. This was slightly obvious, but entertaining none the less. However now that he has saved Ricks life Merle is sure to feel like he deserves a place within the group, which will inevitably lead to more boring debates about whether he can be trusted, I just hope they finally come to some sort of decision.