Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Walking Dead delivers two big deaths -- and a lot of questions

It’s two nights later and I find I’m still digesting Sunday’s big episode of ‘The Walking Dead.’

With ‘Game of Thrones’ currently on hiatus, ‘The Walking Dead’ is my favorite show airing new episodes right now and the action-packed episode this week actually managed to stun me.

I work hard to stay spoiler-free on ‘The Walking Dead’ – mostly because I find I enjoy the episodes a lot more when I don’t know what’s coming. So I had no idea that two of our survivors would die this week.

First up was T-Dog. I don’t think T-Dog dying took anyone by surprise. He had fodder written all over him from the minute he was introduced.

What I did find surprising was that they killed him off before reuniting with Merle. I figured T-Dog would die – I just thought Merle would either do it or be responsible for it in some way.

Still, T-Dog got a great send-off. Once he was bitten, he made it his mission to get Carol to safety before succumbing to his inevitable death. When the duo was closed off in a hallway, T-Dog sacrificed himself to be essentially eaten alive so Carol could escape.

We’ll get back to the Carol situation in a minute.

The second death was Lori – essentially ousting the female lead on the show.

Now, I had no doubt Lori would die. She died in the comics and her portrayer Sarah Wayne Callies made a big deal in the off-season of saying she believed Lori had to die. As she kept saying it, I felt it was like she was saving face and trying to put it out there as her idea. So, I figured Lori would die this season.

I am surprised how quickly they killed her off, though. This is only the fourth episode. That felt like a mid-season cliffhanger – or even a season finale more than anything else.

I was never a big fan of Lori, so when I realized that she was about to die I actually jumped up in excitement. Finally!

When she sacrificed herself to save her unborn baby, I felt a twinge of sympathy for her. Last season, Lori essentially expressed that she thought having a baby in this world would be a death sentence. I’m not sure whether she realized it would be her death sentence, but it was still profound how her original inclination came back to haunt her.

My biggest surprise, though, came at her touching goodbye to her son Carl. She told him to remain good in a world that is anything but good. Is it just me, or is Carl a lot more tolerable now that they’ve had him stop some of the ridiculous nonsense he was doing last year?

Carl’s blank stoicism as he had to put a bullet in his dead mother’s head so she wouldn’t come back as a walker was heartbreaking. The kid never cracked.

When you juxtapose that with Rick, who literally fell apart upon finding out Lori had died, Carl is the one exuding the true strength in that family right now. I was surprised that Lori and Rick never got a goodbye, either. Their relationship felt a little unfinished – which is a lot closer to reality than it would have been otherwise.

I’ll be curious to see how Rick deals with the fact that it was his actions – by callously tossing Andrew out amongst the walkers and not killing him (or saving him) – that led to both T-Dog and Lori’s deaths.

That brings us to Carol. I’m confused how Rick and Daryl just assumed she was dead because they found her scarf on the floor. I think she’s going to turn up – or maybe I’m just hopeful. I’m invested in her sweet relationship with Daryl.

I do want to lodge one complaint, though, and it’s not about the episode. It’s about the ‘Talking Dead’ episode that aired later.

IronE Singleton, T-Dog’s portrayer, was one of the guests. The entire episode was essentially about T-Dog’s death – just because the actor was there.

I don’t know anyone that was surprised by T-Dog’s death. The big death was obviously Lori’s – and for the guests to spend more time talking about T-Dog than Lori was ridiculously inane. I felt let down.

The show did bring up an interesting question, though: Is anyone truly safe?

I don’t think anyone is safe over the long haul of the show. I do think, for at least this season, that Rick, Glen, Daryl, Michonne, Carl and the Governor are untouchable.

Could they die before the end of the show? Sure. I just don’t think it’s going to happen to any of them this season. Rick is clearly the emotional heart of the show, Michonne and the Governor are too cool not to get to know, Carl is a kid and Glen and Daryl are the two biggest fan favorites.

What do you think? Is anyone safe in ‘The Walking Dead’ world?


Blogger Rathamon Kanjanapong said...

The inevitable expansion of "The Walking Dead" universe continues, and I suppose it was only a matter of time before the series ventured into the realm of novelization. Having been a huge Dead fan since the first graphic novels, I have watched the enterprise turn into an outright phenomenon. Having reviewed every other incarnation of the franchise (all of the graphic novels, collectibles, and AMC's television production) READ MORE http://riseofthegovernor.blogspot.com/

November 13, 2012 at 1:11 PM 

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