Posted by Mark Bridge On February - 10 - 2014 0 Comment

The survivors of the zombie apocalypse are back after the mid season break.  They have lost the prison as there safe haven, and to make it worse, they have all split apart from each other.  With the crew being scattered, it looks like the first few episodes will focus on each member of the group separately.  This episode was all about Carl and Michonne, and to a lesser extent, Rick.

One thing we are reminded of in this episode is that Carl is a teenager and going through all baggage that goes along with being one.  He now has that sense that he’s a man now and doesn’t need his dad anymore.  With Rick seriously injured after the beating he received at the hands of the Governor, it was only a matter of time before Carl is left to fend for himself.  The scene before Rick passes out shows the kind of anger Carl has for him.  At first I was taken aback by what I perceived to be total disrespect for Rick, but telling Carl to watch his language given that they just survived a zombie herd attack did seem meaningless.  Although I think Carl overreacted by shouting more profanity, I could see where he was coming from.  Carl’s stab at Rick by evoking Shane’s name was a pretty low blow.  But again, signs of being a teenager.

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I felt for Carl as he gazed at the HD TV with X-Box games and DVD’s for days, knowing he can’t sit back and enjoy it like a normal boy his age in a normal world would be doing.  I’m trying to remember if electricity still exists outside of generator powered facilities.  If it did, he could have at least gotten a game in or two.  No?  Ok, moving on.  Carl goes on a scavenger hunt around the neighborhood while Rick is out of commission.  There he encounters a number of zombies, which he narrowly escapes.  One even gets a hold of his shoe. Poor shoe never had a chance.  Oh and Carl gets to eat a whole bucket of pudding.

Carl’s adventure ends with an emotional scene in which he think Rick has join the ranks of the walkers.  Poised and ready to put Rick down, he realizes that with all the losses he’s suffered, he’d rather be eaten by his dad than face the world alone.  Of course Rick was still amongst the living and Carl and Rick’s relationship now has a sense of renewal.

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Over on Michonne’s side of the tale, she returns to the prison to snag herself a couple of zombie pets, just like the ones we saw her with when we first met her.  We also get to see poor Hershel’s severed head now completely zombiefied.  Luckily Michonne was there to put zombie Hershel’s head out of its misery.  We get to see, albeit in a dream state, a little about Michonne’s past.  We now know who her two zombie escorts were,  One was her “lover” and the other was a friend.  The evolution of the scene and its effects were astounding.  While Michonne kept up a positive appearance, as the scene furthered you saw the two men change to match their devastated surroundings, then ends with their arms severed.  It was as if she was in a different scene than her two costars.  We also got confirmation that she had a baby, harkening back to an earlier episode when she broke down holding Judith.

Michonne’s arch in this episode saw her regressing back to her guarded zombie like self with zombie pets an all, then realizing that was no way to live after facing a zombie doppelganger of herself.  The scene had her going full samurai on a horde, leaving her the last man standing.  The moment she approaches the house that Carl and Rick are in, and sees them eating and talking, I felt just as emotional as she was in that scene.  To see her cry tears of joy and relief shows just how much her character has grown from a Samurai sword wielding killing machine into a fleshed out three dimensional character.

The approach of first couple of episodes being character focus is a wise one, and I hope they all end with the crew finally reuniting at the end of each.  This was a tense and emotional episode that continues an already strong season of The Walking Dead.

Rating: ★★★★½ Great

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Categories: TV Reviews