The end is nigh, after a whole season build-up, this is it, etc… In short, it’s the final episode of The Walking Dead season three. The prison crew (led by recovering crazy man Rick) and the Woodbury crew (repped by worsening lunatic The Governor) finally have a big showdown, and there will be death!
Just… maybe not as much as we expected. Spoilers, obviously.
Cautiously Optimistic Murder
My natural instinct is to give the writers a few points for surprising me. After all, my prior experience with this show led me to expect a Governor/zombie attack on the prison, leading to a bloodbath in which a few regular characters die and our remaining heroes stagger out the other end, wounded. And they didn’t do that – hell, we did lose a couple of people, but the final moments of this episode are even cautiously optimistic.
And there are some good scenes, especially starring Andrea, who makes a stab at vindicating the odd decisions she’s made this year. Despite getting quite annoyed with her in the past, I felt sad when she died, so maybe it worked too.
Similarly, Rick’s acceptance of the Woodbury refugees at the end, to show his son that there is hope, does represent genuine progression for a man who was casually slaughtering everyone he met earlier in the year.
If Only It Wasn’t The End…
If this had been a mid-season finale, or a late-in-the-run episode, this would get high praise, but… the decision to spend week after week teasing the Governor battle, only to let it trail off was just too odd. Yes, he’ll probably be back next year, but this specific effort couldn’t help but feel anticlimactic.
If this season had been bursting with throbbing veins of incident, the Governor’s storyline being only one of those, it would be kinda different, but for weeks now, we’ve been presented with nothing other than the promise of this non-confrontation. If Rick had talked the Governor down, or taken him out non-violently to show how he’s grown, it might’ve worked, but having the Gov mess up one attack, then just wander off vengefully seems disappointing. Sorry.
Still, as an episode of The Walking Dead, it wasn’t bad – it didn’t suffer from the tedious or illogical sequences ehivh often plague this show. Just a shame they couldn’t make it work better as a finale too. And that’s it for another year! Join us next time, as the zombies bring in yet another new showrunner!