One is the Loneliest Number

Season 4 Episode 13 “Alone”

The Episode

To be alone or not to be alone. That is the question with this episode. Our friends struggle in various ways with loneliness. There are many questions posed by them such as, “Would I be better off alone?” and “What do I do now that I am alone?”. Questions we have in our own lives at times.

I’m going to start with Bob because he has a major influence on Maggie and Sasha this episode. The episode starts with a flashback to Bob before he meets our friends. Bob had found himself alone after losing several groups and was wandering the roads of Georgia. He was drained of any lack of motivation or desire to do anything but something was driving him to keep going even if he was miserable. We get to see why he talked in previous episodes about wanting alcohol for “when it gets lonely”. In this episode we see him chugging a bottle of cold medicine.

Bob’s reaction to being alone was one of despair. He didn’t want to be alone and found it to be a miserable thing. Which is why he tries so very hard to keep Maggie and Sasha together. He knows what it is like to be on your own and he doesn’t want them to go through that. Nor does he want to be alone again. While Sasha and Maggie have very logical reasons for wanting to go it on their own, Bob has come to understand that staying together is more important than making the most logical decision. When Bob is picked up in the flashback by Glenn and Daryl on the road they ask him if he wants to know anything about them. Bob says it doesn’t matter. And it doesn’t really matter to him. Being alone to him is not worth it. He would rather take the risk with two strangers than stay alone.

Maggie and Sasha have slightly different motivations. When Maggie overhears Sasha talking about how it’s not worth it to keep looking for Glenn, she decides that she is going to have to find him on her own. Maggie tries to go it alone for a little while to avoid what she feels would be being alone forever. Sasha has her brother Tyreese she could be looking for, but seems to be afraid of the worst-case scenario if she tries. She chooses to leave Bob and stop looking for Maggie to settle down in an abandoned building. Not a choice I would probably make. It also seems to backfire on Sasha because once she is by herself she cries. I think she is crying because she’s made a choice she is not happy with. She didn’t want to be alone but she chose it to protect herself from worse. I also think that Sasha is generally such a strong person that she just could not cry in front of anyone and finally had a chance to let her guard down. All three end up back together though and realize that they are 100% percent better off with each other than without.

And then there’s Beth and Daryl. Beth and Daryl are now closer than ever. Daryl is giving her piggybacks and listening to her sing. Daryl even presents the possibility of them staying in the house they find. Just the two of them. I wouldn’t mind if they did that. Not one bit. Side Note-What’s with this house? I mean it’s clean, stalked with food and there’s no one around. It’s just a little suspicious. It’s never talked about on the show but I think it was a trap house. I think the people who took Beth were using that house to lure people in so they could kidnap them. Cuz it was too nice of a setup. I even think the dog was in on it.

But like all good things they must come to an end. The two are surprised by walkers at the door and Dtough guy bikeraryl tells Beth to get out while he fights them all which is so Daryl. But Beth runs right into the hands of more trouble when she goes outside. A strange dark car picks her up and drives off with her. Daryl tries to chase it down but has to stop when he comes to an intersection and loses the trail. As he sits on the road in despair, he is approached by our villains who are after Rick, Michonne and Carl. There’s a tense stand-off but the leader seems to like Daryl’s spunk. Not the last time that will happen. Daryl has a choice to make. He can either now kill this guy which will get him killed and it can all be over. Or he can join them. After losing Beth who was the last person keeping him grounded, he chooses to join them. Unlike Bob I think it matters to Daryl who he chooses to hitch his wagon to. But Daryl is in a unique position of having been down this path. These are hard living men used to being outdoors much like he was in his past life. He could very easily become one of these men, probably the most dangerous of these men, if he really wanted to be. But supposedly Daryl isn’t like that anymore. He admits in this episode that Beth has changed his mind about a lot of things and has helped him leave that world behind. Which side will win out? We can take about that when we get there.

Whether being alone is their choice or something forced upon them, the message that appears to be on display this episode is that we’re not at our best on our own. Things are either a little sadder or a little more desperate without people to share them with. There’s a longing for something there and it seems to be human connection.

Best of the Episode

The fog walkers. Maggie, Sasha and Bob’s skills are on full display as they form a circle foggymanback to back to cover all angles while walkers attack them through the fog. We can see nothing through the thick fog like them until the walker is right there in front of the screen about to attack. Pretty cool setup.

Daryl and Beth fall in love. Ok, not exactly but yes they did. Let’s face it, if Daryl wasn’t in love with Beth he wouldn’t be carrying her around everywhere. He’d make her limp her way to the table. There’s only two people I think he’d do that for, Carol and Beth. And the visual of him carrying her into the room makes us think of women being carried across their front doorstep after their wedding…just a tad. That unspoken connection at the table when Beth asks him why he changed his mind about their being good people left and he is just like, “you know” and Beth replies with recognition, “oh”. That part gets me every time!

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RIP Scott Wilson

 

When I went to Walker Stalker Con in 2017 back in Boston, MA, Scott Wilson was one of the guests. In hindsight, I should have waited in the massive line to meet him but I did not. I will regret that forever. I did however, watch him speak at a panel. He came across as a thoughtful, humorous and goodhearted man, to which I have no doubt he was also in real life. He regaled us with stories of his life that make one say “I hope I have such wonderful things to say when I am that age”. Scott had an amazing career to which I don’t even know the half of. I have seen him appear in an episode of the X-Files and more recently a show on Netflix called The O/A. He was nothing like Hershel which is a testament to his acting abilities.

My deepest condolences to his family and friends. The Walking Dead community grieves together. Thank you, Scott Wilson, for everything.

tiny flowers with yellow sunburst

Peach Schnapps and Other Matters

Season 4 Episode 12 “Still”

The Episode

If you were not in love with Daryl Dixon before this episode, you absolutely will after. I hear this is one of Norman Reedus’ favorite episodes, and that is clear based on his performance. With just a cast of two the entire episode, Daryl and Beth really give us a good show of two lost souls trying to figure out what’s next for them.

Daryl and Beth begin the episode in silence. The two are going through the motions of survival but remain relatively quiet. This is in stark contrast with them towards the end of the episode where the two have a really deep and heartfelt conversation. We don’t really see it much on-screen, but I like to imagine that Beth and Daryl are closer than they appear. One reason I think this is back to that moment they hug at the prison when Daryl tells her Zack, her boyfriend, is dead. Beth also seems to care quite a bit about whattree trunk with heart carved in it Daryl thinks of her. When she is yelling at him, she wants him to understand her and why she is doing what she is doing. And I do not think Daryl would put up with some of Beth’s more juvenile moments if he didn’t actually care about her. I’ve always been much more of a cheerleader for the “Bethyl” shipping over “Caryl”. But honestly, I really appreciate the fact the show has not paired him with anyone because him as the eternal elusive loner is much cooler.

The two get to evolve significantly during this episode. They work some of their stuff out. Beth’s motivation at the beginning of the episode is to have her first drink. She’s grasping at something to keep her going and doing something she’s never done is as good an idea as any. Daryl is not supportive at first but before she can make some peach schnapps her first drink, he smashes it and takes her to a shack he knows has a bunch of moonshine stored in it. Daryl talks a lot about his past. He came from nothing and never had anything except Merle. It’s not surprising that he feels inadequate and judged when the two play Never Have I Ever. The two have a nice big fight and throw hurtful words around, but in the end they simmer down and make up. I think that a good verbal argument between people who care about each other can be cathartic. Not the kind of fights that are abusive, but those fights where people are trying to display they really eerie houseactually care and want what’s best for you and they can’t do it any other way but to yell to try to get it through, those kind of fights. After the fighting is over, they have that time where the walls inside of them have been knocked down and they can be real. This is when Beth gives Daryl a gift of sorts. She gives him permission to put his redneck past behind him. That he can let it go. They turn this into a symbolic event when Beth says they should burn the shack down. It was something that reminded Daryl of his shitty upbringing and by burning it down and giving it the finger he can release his past.

By the end of the day, the two are closer than ever and I think better off mentally. They are helping each other heal. The two are surprisingly well suited for each other. Beth is quiet and a bit shy but she’s strong inside will speak her mind when she needs to. And this is true for Daryl as well. He’s got some real self-esteem issues but he’s also stronger than he thinks. The two may not say much but there’s a lot of heart between them.

I must also talk about the predictions given by both Beth and Daryl. Because at the current time, one has come true and I think the other still will. While the two have a fight, Daryl angrily throws it out that Beth is never going to see Maggie again. Although Daryl was just trying to be cruel, this actually comes true. Beth’s with us a bit longer, but she will never see her sister again. That still hurts me to think about. Beth’s prediction for Daryl is that she tells him he’s going to be the last one standing. We don’t really know if this is going to be true, but as the show enters it’s ninth season, he certainly appears to be hanging on as the rest of the original cast is making its exit. My personal feeling is that this prediction will come true if only because I will still riot if he dies.

Best of the Episode

The country club. A lot of good moments happen at the Pine Vista Country Club. Beth gets a new outfit which is practically immediately ruined by Daryl when he takes his anger out on a walker with a golf club. He ends up spraying guts all over her new clothes while she is standing there waiting for Daryl to be done. Daryl gives us a tad more comedy when he picks up some darts and instead of throwing them at the dart board he throws them at the faces of the country club members hanging on the wall. A subtle punk rock moment. And his third great moment comes when he takes the bottle of peach schnapps away from Beth and tells her her first drink “ain’t gonna be no damn peach schnapps”. I prefer peppermint myself.

Never Have I Ever. Probably the most awkward game played between two people alone in a shack during the apocalypse. Daryl of course has never played and doesn’t even get the point of a drinking game. He comes off with another perfect one liner when he says he’s never needed a game to get drunk before. Cheers to that. But the game gets personal when Daryl feels like he’s being judged. It brings out that wild angry guy inside of him and the moment escalates into their fight. The moment contrasts the differences between these two, in particular their pasts. Beth had the loving family, got to travel, never got in trouble. Daryl didn’t have any of that.

Got Me In My Feelings

Season 4 Episode 11 “Claimed”

The Episode

I don’t know about you all but it was super exciting news this week to learn that The Walking Dead universe is going to keep going far into the future and that there might be movies coming. Bring it on! This adventure continues this week with a look into Glenn and Tara’s new friends, a revealing bonding session for Michonne and Carl and a rude awakening for Rick.

We get an introduction to the redhead and his companions. The redheaded fella is Abraham Ford. The female is Rosita Espinosa. And the man with the mullet is Dr. Eugene Porter, who apparently knows the secrets of the outbreak and needs to get to Washington D.C. to meet up with his fellow scientists and save the world. This little fact is buried into the episode like it’s nothing. Glenn and Tara also seem not s interested but I’m like, “um excuse me…can we take a step back for a second?” Not gonna lie, I really believed Eugene could save the world. As we find out down the road, it’s a big fat lie. Just the first of many disappointments from Eugene. Abraham comes off as used to being in charge and kind of dick. His language is as colorful as his hair and even though he’s a bit scary, I like him. Rosita is mostly quiet but she’s good with a gun and definitely has some gusto. Overall, these three make interesting additions to the show even if it is a rough start. After Eugene breaks the truck, they all decide to follow Glenn back to go find Maggie and eventually try to get back on the road to D.C.

Carl and Michonne got me in my feelings with their bonding time. Carl sets the tone when he mentions preferring Judith’s formula to soy milk. It reminds him of losing her and he becomes upset. Michonne tries to help him by going on a scavenging trip with him. When her jokes fall flat, she opens up to him about losing her son. It’s the first time she has told anyone about her son. It’s really touching to see her open up about her past. plant covered old sunroomIt’s a sign that she is no longer that loner who couldn’t speak when she first met up with our friends at the prison. She’s now able to talk about one of the most traumatic memories of her life to a young and curious boy. Their time together is even more heightened when after they have spent some time searching a house, Michonne comes across a pink girl’s room with an entire family dead inside. What you may or may not have noticed while they searched this particular house was how neat everything still was. Unlike the other houses they had been in, this one was not a ransacked mess. The rooms were clean and except for a layer of dust on everything, it still looked like a nice home. But then Michonne gets to the little girl’s room and it becomes clear that the reason for that is because this family chose to opt out early as a family together. It’s a very moving scene especially after the conversation Michonne and Carl had about their dead loved ones.

With Glenn and Tara we got a bit of adventure and comedy with some of the statements from Abraham and Eugene. With Michonne and Carl we get the drama. And then there’s Rick. With Rick we get a bit of a thriller. He’s supposed to be resting but is interrupted by loud voices downstairs. A man is begging for his life but it doesn’t work and we hear screaming. Rick hides under the bed he was in which was a good idea because one of those men comes upstairs and gets in the bed. I was sweating right along with Rick as he hid under the bed. His day gets even worse when that man is awakened by another man who wants the bed. They get in a fight and one of them ends up being strangled to death on the floor while he stairs into Rick’s eyes. These people are bad news. So far two of them have murdered each other so it’s a little concerning for Rick not being one of them. There’s also a reference to raping the woman who returns for her washed shirt. After torturing us with Rick moving from room to room trying to escape, he eventually escapes out a window and drops down to the ground. But when Michonne and Carl are seen in the distance, he knows he still needs to act or they are going to be in trouble. But the three are saved at the last second when one of the dead people returns to life and starts attacking these bad people. Due to the distraction, the three are able to run away without being seen, sort of. Back on the road, they come across a sign for Terminus. So we now know of two groups who are heading there and it seems like a reunion is in the works.

Best of the Episode

Rick’s fun-house adventure. It was a twisty-turny thriller of a sequence. One of those intense scenes where you think the person is going to get caught any second. The best moment comes when Rick winds up in the bathroom and we all think he’s found a good hiding spot until he looks to the toilet and there’s one of the men sitting on it. Rick has to strangle the man to death without anyone hearing. And then so strategically leaves the door slightly ajar so that when he returns the walker can get out of the room and attack his buddies. Super smart Rick!

Eugene. Not to disregard Abraham’s brightly colored language but Eugene’s delivery with his one-liners is spot on. When Abraham asks him how he managed to shoot the truck dead, he matter of factly replies it was adrenaline and lack of knowledge. When Eugene decides to go with Glenn he tells Abraham with a straight face to trust him because he’s smarter than him. He sure seems like something of an anti-social scientist guy…but that mullet.

Connections

Season 4 Episode 10 “Inmates”

The Episode

This episode brings the stories of the remaining characters to us. We have Beth and Daryl paired up. Tyrese is watching over the children alone until Carol joins him. Maggie, Sasha and Bob are trying to find Glenn. Glenn has found Tara and together they are about to try to search for Maggie. The paths of our friends overlap each other as they try to recover from the aftermath of the prison. With the characters broken down into these smaller groups, they begin to connect in new ways even though they are trying to reconnect with their loved ones. It’s a journey that bonds everyone very tightly.

Beth and Daryl together is one of my favorite shippings of the show. I like it so much more than Carol and Daryl, mainly because Carol and Daryl sound too much alike. Of course, it never happens, but this short time they get to interact alone together has so much chemistry. They are both brokenhearted over what has happened. It makes Daryl shut down but he still feels an obligation to make sure Beth is alright. Beth is young and doesn’t know what to do with her sorrow so she tries to keep them busy by trying to track the others. But she is quickly overwhelmed by her emotions when she is confronted with a group of walkers eating people. It may seem like Beth needs Daryl more than he needs her but we will see later what happens to Daryl when Beth is not around.

Beth’s sister Maggie reacts in a very similar way to her. She is on a mission to find Glenn. She needs to stay busy and stay focused on something good so she doesn’t fall apart. front windshield of school busSasha and Bob are along for the ride but really Maggie would probably be dead if Bob didn’t insist they go with her. She was being reckless and would have gone head first into the bus full of walkers if Bob didn’t slow her roll and make them do it the smart way. Maggie also gets overwhelmed with emotion at the bus after she kills everyone on it and still no Glenn. Probably a bit relieved but also sad because she now has no idea where Glenn may be. Both sisters crying…coincidence? Maybe, maybe not. Could be me reading too much into it but I think it’s another one of those little special touches the show likes to do to pull at our heart strings.

There are two people we find alive in this episode that make us rejoice. Judith and Glenn. We learn Judith is alive and sort of well with Tyrese, Lizzie and Mika. Those four are also reunited with Carol. I guess we could say there are three people to rejoice about. Carol is now back as well. But it’s an awkward reunion to say the least. Carol isn’t sure if Tyrese knows what she did and is taken aback when Tyrese goes in for a hug. She learns that he has no idea and even thought that she was with them at the prison.  But this fact will come out eventually.  As we wait for that moment, we can also wonder when Rick and Carl will get reunited with Judith, and that’s a happy thought.

It’s also happy to see Glenn alive. It looks like a blast from the tank or a grenade knocked him unconscious and left him dangling off one of the prison bridges that was blown away. Once he sorts himself out, he gathers supplies and his polaroid of Maggie and heads out presumably to find her. But before he can leave the prison he comes across Tara sitting depressed in a fenced off corner. Glenn goes to her and decides he wants her help. I’m going to break this down a little because it really exemplifies Glenn’s good guy persona. At first, Glenn goes to walk away from her when he sees her but he stops and goes back. The way he goes back is important. He knows she was on The Governor’s side but he doesn’t approach her with anger.  He just goes over and takes a look at her gun which is key here. He observes the weapon is still fully loaded and asks her if she used it and Tara says no. In this seemingly minute observation, Glenn assesses that Tara is a good person and worth living. In his words he claims that he just needs her help, which is partly true, but if Glenn thought she was a p.o.s like Tara describes herself, he wouldn’t be bringing her along. Glenn knew that Tara could redeem herself and with Glenn believing in her she will. Oy, it’s bad when I write these things and they make me tear up!

So, this episode is about connecting and also not connecting. There are many instances where our groups cross paths and it’s like torture to see. Beth and Daryl are tracking in the woods, which we later learn is Tyrese, Lizzie, Mika and Judith. The two walk right through where they found grapes and Lizzie killed some baby rabbits. When they come across the walkers eating people by the railroad tracks, Daryl is walking away facing the opposite direction that Tyrese and the others head hours above. This leads us to believe they are about to head away from them. Darn it! Tracking really failed them this time. Glenn also crosses Maggie’s path when he comes by the “hitchhikers may be inmates” sign hours after she has. So close yet so far away! More of this continues to happen in future episodes. I like it in particular because even when re-watching it makes it fun to try to find something new.

abeLastly, we get some new faces this episode. And it’s not clear yet whether or not they are good guys or bad guys. After Glenn passes out from killing walkers, Tara is approached by a large military vehicle and three people get out. A large red-headed man, a small woman with surprisingly short shorts and well-shaved legs and a heavy-set guy with a mullet. They look like an interesting group.

Best of the Episode

Judith and Carol. It was very exciting to me to see Judith alive although it wore out fast when all she did was cry. And when Lizzie tried to make her be quiet by almost smothering her to death, it was a little insane. And Carol joining them as well. Carol is back with the kids again, and also with a man who would probably murder her right now if he knew what she did to his girlfriend. I’m on the edge of my seat.

Glenn on a mission. That moment when Glenn busts out of the prison in full riot gear right into a swarm of walkers and fights his way through them with the intensity of a man that can’t be stopped…oh man. Glenn is the best.

Inner Turmoil

Season 4 Episode 9 “After”

The Episode

We get a taste of something new with the back half of Season 4. Rather than a large group story, we have a series of mini-stories with the groups of characters that became separated after the fall of the prison. It’s a great concept and refreshing to see that the show didn’t want to become stale with the same old patterns. It really allows us to get deep with the characters after such a traumatic event. One thing that this show consistently does well is put us in the shoes of our friends. By not knowing what everyone is doing from week to week, we can connect more with how it would actually feel for these people. We get to feel the same anxiety, despair and fears that they are having.

It begins with Michonne, Rick and Carl. A story that has been building so slowly for an entire season and a half now. Michonne is in a depression. She has lost everyone again. forest of treesShe wanders the woods in a funk. Some of the more telling signs of her unhappiness are the creation of her new walker pets. She also ignores footprints in the mud and chooses to go in a completely different direction. Michonne is not ready to reunite yet. She has quite literally returned to her old ways. Hiding herself among the walkers which assures no one can get close. We also get a surreal glimpse into her previous life during a nightmare Michonne has. She had a beautiful apartment, went to art shows, was in love and had a young boy. This beautiful life slowly melds into the present with her boyfriend and brother turning into walkers and the young boy disappearing. After wandering alone for several days, basically the same amount of time that Rick and Carl are off together, she comes out of her funk when she cannot stand looking at another walker that looks like a version of her. She decides she doesn’t want to be that and kills all the walkers around her. She then goes back to the footprints and follows them.

I am happy that Michonne chooses to try to reunite with people. As a character that has been so deeply wounded over and over again, it is pleasing to see that she can still have hope. She’s not ready to give up on herself and sees brighter days ahead.

Rick and Carl are together but not happily. Rick is near death and Carl has a chip on his shoulder directed largely towards his father. The two work uncooperatively to find food and a place to recover. At one point, Carl even throws out Shane’s name, ouch. When they do, Rick passes out for a large chunk of the episode and we are left to see what kind of trouble Carl can get into. Carl really gets a moment here. At first, he is super annoying to watch. He taunts a couple of walkers away from the house and doing probably one of the top five things to never do around zombies, walking backwards. You just don’t do that!!! Of course, he falls and almost gets bit. Then he decides that yelling at his passed-out father is a good way to express himself. He says some really hurtful stuff about failing everyone and that he doesn’t need him anymore. Carl does not hold back and it seems really cruel. I really dislike Carl at this point and I almost hope he gets bit. He continues to get into more trouble the next day when another walker almost gets him. Side note-If you watch this episode, you’ll notice the door has a sticker on it that says “Sam”. Obviously, the boy whose room it is, but it’s also a future character’s name. Something to keep in mind. And then there’s that classic scene of Carl eating the giant tub of pudding. As much as Carl doesn’t think of himself as a kid still, this is a total kid moment. A bit of comic relief for us during a really tough episode.

Carl’s tough façade comes crashing down when he thinks his father is becoming a walker and he is faced with shooting his dad. He can’t do it and is ready to let his dad get him. And I really don’t blame him at all. Carl has already had to kill his mother and lost his sister, having to also now kill his father would be too much for anyone. But thankfully Rick is not dad and starts feeling better the next day. The two sit together as father and son on the same side again. Rick tells him he’s a man now.

This story has a happy end of sorts by the three finding each other. Michonne appears close up of distressed white door and handlerelieved to find them and Rick also smiles when he sees her. He tells Carl it’s for him.

Best of the Episode

Carl poppa. Our young friend does a lot of growing up this episode through a series of stupid incidents, acting out and intense emotions. Carl becomes an amusing YouTube video because of this episode. He’s a young man with a lot of feelings. He just lost everything….again. He does a lot of stupid stuff and it’s really aggravating.  But then the pudding scene also makes up for a lot of it for reasons I’m not really sure of. And then he further makes up for it when he breaks down and holds his father’s head in his hands and says he’s scared.

Into the Fire

Season 4 Episode 8 “Too Far Gone”

The Episode

You’ll have to pardon me for being tardy with this post. I’ve been moving the past two weeks and internet access and energy really got in my way. And this episode was far too important to do a half-ass job on. The entire show and the characters are changed by the events of this episode. It is in my opinion one of the most important episode of the entire series.

Everything comes to a head between The Governor and the prison. Several don’t make it out alive and those remaining are permanently changed. After last seeing The Governor aiming a gun at Michonne and Hershel, we now know that instead of killing them he kidnaps them and takes them back to his camp where he uses them to convince his people to try to take over the prison.

Hershel tries to talk The Governor out of attacking by telling him he’s changed and that they can all live together. In some ways, yes, The Governor has changed. But at the heart of him, he’s still the same old psychopath. As we’ve seen over the past few episodes, he’s still very quick to kill and still only sees blood when it comes to Rick. We also catch him in a lie about his daughter. In riling up his camp to fight, he lies to them that the prison group killed his daughter, his daughter who was a walker. But then when he speaks to Michonne he says he knows his daughter was dead when Michonne finished her off. He’s willing to say whatever to stay in control, something he did throughout Woodbury.

Rick on the other hand shows real signs of trying to be a better person. He really means his offer of compromise. He was willing to set aside all that happened, and let The Governor and his people live inside the prison with them. Rick’s change is also evident at the end of the episode, when the British woman who Rick met and killed herself appears with a herd of walkers. We finally learn Rick honored her wishes and let her turn so she could be with her walker husband. A kindness that only one with real humanity still in them could give. The Governor is incapable of such kindness as we see with Megan who later arrives dead in her mother’s arms at the end of the fight. Immediately shooting her in the head. The Governor refuses to believe in a better world and does the most traumatic thing to all of our friends by cutting Hershel’s head to the bone and later on completely off.

Maggie, Beth, Rick and everyone lose it over this. The battle ensues. This is the fight we didn’t get at the end of Season 3. It’s a real battle with massive gunfire, grenades, tanks and plenty of bloodshed. Rick gets shot in the leg and has a bloody fight with The Governor which he almost loses. As the main characters fight, the rest of the prison survivors frantically run for their lives. Some pile onto an escape bus which ends up leaving without a lot of our friends.

I don’t believe there was anything Rick could have said or done that would have ended any better for them. It’s clear The Governor was never going to be happy and it’s safe to assume that if the group had left the prison, The Governor would have hunted them down anyways claiming them as a threat. The compromise was the best option and almost worked, but The Governor could not help himself.

black roseOne of the saddest parts of this episode is the final separation of the Greene family. Hershel has just been decapitated in front of his daughters. But also, Maggie orders Beth to load people onto the escape bus, uttering in a frantic way to her nervous sister, “we’ve all got jobs to do.” Words of her father which is emotional enough on their own but as we will come to learn, these are the last words she will ever say to her sister. At the end of this fight, Maggie will be alone in the woods with Sasha and Bob, separated from both Glenn and Beth. Beth will be off in another direction with Daryl. The two sisters will never see each other alive again. When I came to that realization the first time, it made me incredibly sad. As we often find, our characters do not always get a nice goodbye. But Maggie seems to be the unluckiest of all, as she doesn’t get a nice goodbye ever, not for a single member of her family.

In the end The Governor, Hershel and Megan are dead. Baby Judith is missing and presumed dead. Tara is alone and regrets her decision to fight. The prison has fallen. And we have a lot of unknowns about the rest of our separated friends. The last time they were all separated, our friends found each other on the highway the next day. Unfortunately, things will not go that way this time. When I say this episode changes everything, that’s a realization that comes with time. There’s obvious immediate changes that we will see, but losing the prison is a slingshot into a whole new world.

Best of the Episode

Daryl’s grenade drop. As only Daryl can do, he gets one of those moments that make us all giddy with his bad-assery. In a single motion, he plows down a walker with his crossbow and dumps a grenade down the end of the tank. And to finish the moment off, shooting the tank guy in the heart with an arrow. Pure legend.

The Governor and Rick showdown. A fist fight for the record books. With Rick already shot in the leg, The Governor has the upper-hand in this fight. Rick is beaten to a bloody pulp and we think it’s the end as The Governor strangles him to death. But Michonne saves the day with a surprise katana through the chest from behind. Rick is saved and they both leave The Governor to die in pain.

Lizzie and Mika. Surprise surprise, these two youngsters follow in Carol’s footsteps and save Tyrese by shooting two attackers in the head. Don’t ever underestimate children in the zombie apocalypse, you will lose. But wait, weren’t these two taking care of Baby Judith?

Little Asskicker goes m.i.a. Rick and Carl find each other and then go to find Judith. But instead they find a bloody and empty car seat with nothing in it. They assume the worst and have an epic cry together. Surely all that didn’t just happen AND they lose Little Asskicker? Too much!!!

Rick’s speech. Rick uses every word he can muster to try to find a compromise with The heavenly white skyGovernor. We see Hershel’s face as he talks about living together, and he smiles. It’s pleasing to know that Hershel was able to accomplish something in this world by helping a broken man stay human. The speech seems to work….for a moment. But The Governor snaps out of it and the worst case scenario happens.