Okay everyone. Settle down. It’s time for the first skirmish between the two survivor groups of The Walking Dead, and it’s the mid-season finale, so mid-level pain could really go down. Will someone die? Will they matter? Will we come out of this excited for season 3.5?
And will Michonne finally develop a personality? Surely not. Also, I’m not sure which exact scene the above picture is from, but it’s the coolest looking promo shot for the episode I could find, okay?
Tyreese – Brings Meat For Zombie BBQ
Well, the gentle teasing is almost over. After five weeks of build-up, part of me feels cheated that the big showdown was a quick in-and-out. The only interaction: a stare-out between Andrea and Michonne, and the cliffhanger, which I’ll get to later. But I imagine this was just the scene-setter, a mere aperitif to make sure all future meetings stay proper hostile.
Oh, and Oscar died. Hard to comment on that, beyond the fortunate timing of Tyreese turning up this week to take the regular black character gig. Played by the excellent Chad Coleman from The Wire, he’s already had more characterisation than T-Dog and Oscar combined, so hopefully is a more substantial role.
He also brings a posse of hangers-on, who will make tasty meat for future zombie attacks. What a thoughtful chap.
The Governor & Michonne – Two Nasty Killing Machines
But anyway. Back at Woodbury, there was a vague shoot-out, which felt weirdly clinical after the usual visceral tearing and hacking. Interesting contrast, though perhaps ran a bit long. The Shane cameo was a nicely played reminder that Rick’s mental problems haven’t just disappeared.
And The Governor. Hm. Obviously, the arc is of an unstable man who managed to create a sanctuary nonetheless, but will now probably destroy it with vengeance crazed lunacy. The pre-eye-poke Governor still swung from Nice to Nasty rather arbitrarily; hopefully this new pure evil version will be more consistent. He never entirely convinced me he had a motivation for killing the prison residents at the start, but I guess the writers have sorted that out.
Killing Machine Michonne, meanwhile, shows a brief crack in her armour plating when she thinks the Governor has a little girl in a cage. It’s a start, I suppose.
Daryl & Merle Dixon – Redneck Mario Brothers
And now I can end on the cliffhanger: the One-Eyed Governator shoves Merle and Daryl into the arena of zombie death. I guess the writers had seen my previous reviews, they knew we all want a Dixon family reunion, and here it is. Now: does he genuinely want the Redneck Mario Brothers dead, or is it a plan to bring them together and get Merle re-accepted by the prison gang, thus becoming the Gov’s man on the inside?
All told, intriguing stuff. Plenty of things to type about, that’s really all I ask from my TV shows, and I really want to see what happens next. Still moments where characters act a little oddly or stupidly to advance the plot (Andrea, what is wrong with you?), but the twists are full-throttle enough for me to let it go. Yeah, I’m looking forward to Feburary alright.