Running on fumes
Howdy-hey folks, Jerry here. Just watched the season finale of The Walking Dead and I liked it. Be warned before you read further: this post contains spoilers and claptrap.
I won’t bother to recap the episode, other than to report Hershel Greene (Scott Wilson) and his daughters lost the farm to the biggest herd of walkers this entire season. Our ever-diminishing group of survivors is once more on the move. Of course, now the group is in just three vehicles, including the chopper ridden by Daryl (the excellent Norman Reedus).
The bag of weapons and ammo is also gone, picked up at the last moment by Andrea (Laurie Holden). Poor Andrea, believed to be a casualty of the farm catastrophe, fights her way alone through the woods, out of ammo and energy, rescued at the last moment by a machete-wielding person in a black, hooded Death costume, chained to two other dubious individuals.
Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) led the rest of the survivors away from the overrun farm, only to stop by the side of the road because his vehicle was just about out of fuel. During a tense evening around the campfire, Rick reveals two things. First, they are out of marshmallows. No, just joking. He had to kill his best friend Shane (Jon Bernthal) because Shane wanted to murder him. Second, the reason Shane came back as a walker so quickly — and without a bite from anyone infected — is that all the survivors are already infected. (I think I suggested this in our most recent podcast.) This second tidbit fills us in on what Dr. Jenner (Noah Emmerich) whispered in Rick’s ear in the season one finale.
The episode ends with Rick telling the group that they are no longer a democracy; Rick will make the decisions, the others will follow — or they are free to vamoose. Considering how hard Rick has worked on behalf of this ragtag bunch, I’m surprised at the sudden anger they feel toward their fearless leader. Even wife Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) and son Carl (Chandler Riggs) are upset with Rick. It’s at this point Rick breaks into a heartfelt rendition of the Allman Bros.‘ Whipping Post. (Of course I’m kidding.)
Finally, the camera flies up and we see that just across the river is Rick’s dream — or pipe-dream — of finding a safe haven. I think the fortified building shown is an old prison. Obviously built to keep dangerous people inside, it could have been turned into a fortress to keep walkers out. Any guesses as to where Andrea’s saviors come from? Any guesses as to what sort of mad society exists inside those cold stone walls?
As I’ve said before, the quality of each series produced by AMC is startling. While I don’t watch Mad Men or The Killing, I am devoted to The Walking Dead, Hell on Wheels and my fave-rave, Breaking Bad. For commercial-ridden TVland, AMC is creating surprisingly fresh, well-written, well-acted, well-produced programs. Keep it up, AMC!
Season three of The Walking Dead will rise from the damp, mouldy leaf-litter sometime this autumn. In the meantime, expect the season two DVD set to lurch onto shop shelves soon. Cheers all.
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