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Walking Dead: Too Far Gone

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Walking Dead Too Far Gone

Walking Dead came this close to losing me as a viewer this week, and not the for the reasons you might think.

Last week I complained that the Governor’s two-episode arc was a huge waste of time that drove the story around in a big pointless circle. This week’s episode was even worse because it drove the entire season in that same stupid circle.

See, at the end of last season we dealt with the Governor’s massive assault on the prison. Exactly where we ended up this episode. It really started to feel like Walking Dead was just going to be Gov attacking wherever Rick lives over and over forever. Michonne killing the Gov was the saving grace that has me hopeful things might go in more interesting directions when the season resumes in February. February? Ok.

There was a bunch of other stuff that bugged me in this episode too. For instance, everyone on this show is a crack shot, able to consistently head shot zombies at almost any distance with any firearm. But Rick draws and fires at the Governor from about ten feet away and only wounds him. Which of course leads to a ridiculous fistfight between the two of them. The jump cuts made this fight honestly, genuinely hilarious. Rick would be on top punching away, then they’d cut to the Gov punching Rick, then another cut and they’re rolling around in the grass. This fight was of Roddy Piper versus Keith David in They Live proportions. And do I need to point out that grown men who punch each other in the face do serious damage? Rick looked pretty messed up afterward, but he would have been in a coma.

Also irritating: toy bullets. People hide behind cars, barrels, wooden poles, even zombies, and they all stop bullets cold. That’s not how bullets work. Actual bullets go through entire cars (all those people on the bus are dead), multiple walls, and definitely through rotting corpses.

But fine, if you want to trot out the old “the show has zombies in it, why do you want realism?” argument, ok. But could we at least have decent storytelling? Because the major result of this episode was that everyone had to leave the prison. We know because pretty much every character, at some point during the big battle, yelled, “We have to leave!” at someone else. By the show’s logic, they had to leave for two reasons. First, the tank blew some holes in the prison and knocked down part of the fence. Second, all the noise would draw so many walkers it would be impossible to keep them out.

This is, of course, a big pile of arbitrary crap. For instance, bombs and other battles have previously blown the shit out of the prison, but they always managed to fix it or seal off parts of the prison and deal with it. And a few weeks ago, a horde of walkers took down a huge section of fence, but Rick and Carl, by themselves, shot them all and then apparently fixed the fence (I say apparently because they never showed anyone fixing the fence and suddenly the zombies coming in just weren’t a problem anymore). And all the noise of automatic weaponry didn’t seem like much of an issue either. Not to mention Daryl’s damn motorcycle. Zombies are only drawn by noise when it’s convenient to the writers.

So for completely arbitrary, nonsensical reasons, we have to flee the prison, and everyone’s a bit scattered. Some made it on the bus, some wandered out into the wilderness. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it became clear this season that the story needs the dynamics of movement. But if you’re going to force them out of the prison, do it right! Make the guy with the tank go bonkers so he drives through and destroys the whole place. Justify your story decisions. Go over the top.

Instead we got Hershel being murderer. I don’t like it, but Walking Dead needs to be dangerous. I can accept it. I’d already grown to hate the Gov so much I was glad the little girl got eaten by the buried walker (wasn’t I just theorizing about buried dead a few weeks ago?). What doesn’t make sense is that everyone in the Gov’s posse just went along with that and opened fire, except for lesbian police academy girl (whose girlfriend was shot by Carol’s little girl). Really? You people were sold on this as a peaceful exercise against a bunch of jerks, but when your leader hacks an old man’s head off with a sword, I think maybe you wouldn’t be quite so gung ho.

The Governor proved my point about this being about control. When Hershel outlines some other options for sharing the prison, Gov says, “This way you get to live and I get to…” he trails off. You get to what? Be in charge? Pathetic. I’m so glad he’s dead.

In other news, Daryl seems mad about Rick exiling Carol, but not irrationally mad. Before they can tell Tyrese he shows them a tortured, vivisected rat. And before that conversation goes any further, the tank shows up. So that’s an issue for another day. Although it seems pretty obvious to me that the person dissecting rats and feeding rats to walkers is that little girl. Now there’s a group of feral children with guns running around. They’ll probably find Carol and form a family a uber-survivalists. Possibly cannibals.

The mid-season break usually annoys me, but I think Walking Dead and I need some time apart.

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Posted by on Sunday, December 1st, 2013. Filed under Dark TV, Headline. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.