This weeks episode fails to move the gang off the farm, but makes up for it with some tense character arcs, and more zombie killing action. Also, Lori sort of redeems herself for being a dumb ass last week. I enjoyed this weeks episode a bit more than last weeks since they ramped up the action, and overall that helped things feel like they were moving forward more than they actually were.
Let me say that my biggest problem with the opening Lori scene was that I’m curious why only the road walker that she hit and one other walker were there, when it seemed she had been in the car for at least a few hours. None of the other walkers in the surrounding area heard the horrendous car crash, or their buddies getting a free meal on the highway? However, Lori did a good job of taking care of two walkers all on her own, and considering she doesn’t get many action scenes it was a nice change up to see her get to kick some zombie ass.
Plot-wise this episode did squat really. We spend the majority of it watching Rick, Glenn and Hershel try to get out of the town bar without being killed by the, apparently very mean, gang from up north who have come looking for Philly Dave and Philly Tony (more regional discrimination!). There’s a tense standoff/shootout as Rick tells the other members of the gang that he had to shoot their friends, and eventually our guys try to make a run for their truck. The most important part of this scene is the part where Hershel, the guy who wouldn’t shoot a bunch of already dead walkers in his barn last week, does a complete moral 360 and shoots one of the opposing gang members without blinking an eye, and leaves him to get his face eaten off!
Back on the barn the rest of our gang eventually realized Lori was missing (these people need to wear bells or get safety whistles) and Shane goes off to get her. He finds her wandering along the road in the dark, which is obviously a great idea. He also lies to her and tells her Rick and the guys got back to the farm already so she won’t insist on going into town after them. The scene between these two later on where they discuss their time together before Rick showed up and the baby made for some great tension. Both actors did a great job in the scene and I look forward to seeing some of the fallout from it next week.
Things in town with Rick and the boys almost go awry when one of the dumb dumb northerners manages to fall off the roof and impale his leg on an iron fence spike. I’m pretty sure there was a life lesson here about your mom always telling you not to try jumping off the roof. Anyway, there is some debate about leaving him and putting him out of his misery, or try to save him. Of course Rick hasn’t changed that much and he can’t help himself so they wind up saving dumb guy and taking off back to the farm.
The guys return and everyone is reunited. Glenn tells Maggie that he can’t be in love with her because it makes him too concerned for his own safety. Then we get perhaps the episode’s most important scene. Rick and Ms. Rick decide to have a little alone time in their tent and get to talking about her conversation with Shane and how he thinks the baby might be his. Lori, being smart and a bit manipulative, reminds Rick that she has decided one way or another that the baby is his and that Shane is dangerous. She tells Rick that he must do whatever is necessary to protect her and the baby.
I would rate this episode an 88 out of 100
The action was better and the conflicts it set up with both the individual characters like Rick/Lori/ Shane and Glenn/Maggie was good. Also, it more solidly developed the overall conflict between the Rick and Shane camps of leadership, and which one is better suited to be the groups head honcho.
Some notables and quotables:
- Guy who’s leg was impaled on the fence: “Don’t cut my leg off please!” - seriously dude?
- Carl missed out on the sex talk because of the zombie apocalypse
- Daryl and Carol developing a hillbilly will-they-won’t-they!
- Lori: “You killed the living to protect what’s yours”