The Walking Dead: Internment

In the coming weeks, Ms. Hillary Bauer will be offering Episode-by-Episode reviews and recaps for TV’s most beloved Zombie Apocalypse Thriller: The Walking Dead. As an aside, this blog is in no way endorsed by the corporate fat-cats at AMC… But it probably should be! *Wink!*

Here’s Review #5:

Hershel, Hershel, and more Hershel.  I would actually like to know what percentage of the screen time for this week’s episode of The Walking Dead the man actually took up.  Although, that does kind of make me nervous for him.  This episode felt an awful lot like a swan song, so it may have been his Emmy push.  But before we get into that, let’s go kill some more people of Woodbury, finally knock down that stupid fence, and talk about why I’m not at all excited about the cliffhanger of the week.

I’m still so mad at Rick!  I don’t feel bad for him looking all tortured in this artsy driving shot (that The Walking Dead has used kind of a lot this year).  In fact, it makes me angry in a way which I don’t think that the writers intended.  Rick is too smug in his torment.  It’s like he wraps himself up in it like a cozy blanket of depression that people comment on, but still deal with.  The only thing I will say for Rick, he’s the least terrible driver on the show.  Not even a mangled zombie being eaten by feral dogs on the side of the road can distract him.  I see a dead squirrel in the middle of the road and the life of everyone around me is in danger.  Maybe Daryl and I can take lessons together.

Back in the death flu clinic, what’s left of the council has moved on to intubating the patients which seems really useless to me.  I realize the point is to reinforce Hershel’s never give up, never surrender attitude, but this is just an exercise in futility that nobody would realistically go along with.  “Here, Sasha, now just pump this bag for literally the rest of that guy’s life.”  Plus, they appear to only have one unit.  Why are we even pretending random curly haired kid is the lucky one when we know that thing is ending up down the throat of a main character?

Hershel makes some cheesy dad jokes about moving spaghetti night, right after they find some spaghetti.  His attempt at levity is entirely unsuccessful since, unfortunately, a room full of terminally ill people is a tough crowd.  Hershel and Glenn go on rounds, which appears to just mean walking around and looking at increasingly gross people.  They find someone that they didn’t get to in time with the magic intubation bag, but Hershel won’t let Glenn off him in Gen Pop.  I get the impression that Maggie and Beth sent some dogs to a farm upstate when they were kids.

Creepy Lizzie shows up and makes me more uncomfortable than any zombie on this show can.  She catches the undertakers wheeling dead Woodbury resident away to “someplace quieter.”  Heaven?  I basically assume everything that comes out of Hershel’s mouth is religious in a way that goes over my head.  He tells Lizzie to go get his copy of Tom Sawyer and read it by the end of the night.  Um, I have a feeling that she hasn’t been able to practice her reading for a while, so she might be a little below her grade level.  Plus, I know they’re in the South, but I’m pretty sure kids get a conversation about racism and historical mistakes nowadays before they get that assignment.

Maggie and Hershel come to the magic window of revelations, where I realize that Maggie is the only person on this show that gets increasingly attractive the more screwed up her hair is.  Hershel gives her one of his less impressive wisdom speeches, but does convince her she can do more good outside of the death flu clinic.  As Hershel leaves, he finds Glenn who lied so that he wouldn’t have to talk to Maggie.  I wanna slap this boy up the back his head!  I hate when characters pull the total BS of keeping their distance so that they don’t hurt their loved ones.  It’s not your decision and you’re hurting them already.  Now go talk to your fiancé!

The next day, Maggie is out at the fence poking zombies by herself.  Is there anyone left not in the death flu clinic?  If so, why aren’t they helping her?!  This stupid fence drives me crazy.  They have offered no good reason why they don’t have everybody down there at all times taking out walkers.  Lame ass plot device…

Rick arrives back alone (raaaaage!) and just starts yelling names in the most frantic way possible, confirming once and for all that Woodbury can eff off since he doesn’t ask about them.  Seriously, he had a pretty long car ride to figure out an entrance and this is what he lands on?  Maggie will surely side with me about everyone’s buddy Carol.  No, Maggie!  He was not right, and not even your perfectly tousled hair can convince me otherwise.

Rick swings by the quarantine daycare to check in on Carl and the other invisible children, and to drop off snack time.  Today the kids are having fruit leather, but only if they brush their teeth after!  Is this why Rick is running around like a chicken with his head cut off?  It’s not like he has actual medication to get to the clinic.  Anyway, Carl calls after Rick to ask when he can come out and play but Rick is still not having it.  Then he drops a douchey exit line about how he may not be able to protect Carl, but it’s still his job to try.  I swear, smugness oozes from this man’s pores.

The clinic has become Hershel’s playground where he’s romping around pretty well on his peg leg.  He goes to check in on Doc S, who has certainly looked better.  Doc S must know he’s having a bad hair day because he is in a crap mood.  If he turned into a zombie right this minute, he wouldn’t want to eat Hershel; he would just want to hurt his feelings.

Doc S was always a little pudgy, but relatively attractive.  This “face exploding” look really isn’t working for him though

Doc S was always a little pudgy, but relatively attractive. This “face exploding” look really isn’t working for him though

Doc S blurts out his opinion on the issue everyone has been tiptoeing around: knock it off with the damn tea and intubation bag and let some bodies hit the floor.  He even has a shotgun hidden under his bed to make sure he gets to be a complete bummer before he dies.  “The Hippocratic Oath” is probably not going to be his dying thought, unless there’s a “fuck” in front of it.

Right after the uplifting words of wisdom from Doc S, Hershel goes to tuck everyone into bed for the night.  A man stumbles out of his cell and dies in front of everyone, which obviously upsets Hershel.  Getting these dying people to stay in bed is like trying to keep down a bratty toddler!  Also, this is what he’s been trying to avoid this whole time.  He wheels the man’s corpse out of Gen Pop and, after a moment of hesitation, stabs his first lost patient in the head.  But where does he happen to be standing?  The magic window of revelations!

Unfortunately, Hershel is only having depressing revelations this week.  Rick happens to be standing behind him and they have a pretty bummer conversation about burning bodies (which they should have been doing all along), Steinbeck quotes, and the world never going back to the way it was before.  When it boils down to it though, Hershel is still very vehement that there’s a plan.  Except Rick, being the jerk that he is, decides to pick a moment where Hershel’s last sliver of hope is very exposed to tell him about Carol.  I think Rick actually enjoys bumming people out.

Maggie and Rick are outside finally trying to do something about the fence.  I’ve been begging for this all season so I should be happy; but I was not begging for THIS.  Whose idea was it to bolster the fence with wood that they’re propping up on a gravel path?  Not to mention that third graders have a better understanding of angles than these two.  Some of those logs are practically lying on the ground.  Humph, let’s just break the damn fence and get it over with.

Things are starting to look pretty grim in the death flu clinic.  Hershel finds Sasha passed out in her cell and takes a little while to get her conscious again.  While he’s with Sasha, other people are dropping like flies.  A zombie barrels out her cell and gets the jump on Hershel which draws several people out of their cells to help: a young blonde who saves Hershel’s life and is promptly shot for her trouble by a man being bitten by his dead son.

Meanwhile, the man Glenn has been helping with the useless intubation bag has proven said bag to be useless and dies.  Glenn conveniently begins to decline quickly at that exact moment and passes out next the newly made zombie.  Lizzie helps Glenn in the creepiest way she can come up with and decides to lure the walker out of the cell by talking to him like he’s a dog.  She did save Glenn just now though, so I’ll give her a break this time.

Look at that sassy pose.  It’s almost like a creepy dance off.

Look at that sassy pose. It’s almost like a creepy dance off.

The fence crew hears the gun shots and Maggie runs inside to help the death flu clinic, but misunderstands how doors work in quarantine and is surprised by the locked door.  She eventually shoots her way in and helps to save her betrothed.  Hershel swings by Doc S’s cell to get the shotgun, but finds that the good doctor has become a zombie in the cell with the only weapon.  Take this knife to the eye as a parting gift.

Once inside the cell, Hershel actually throws the Bible out of his pocket so he can fill them with shotgun casings.  Maaay have just gotten a little heavy handed there, guys.  They manage to get the clinic under control and save Glenn (but damn if they didn’t scare me on that one).  Lizzie comes to the cell where Glenn and Maggie have just reunited and asks if it’s over.  Maggie confirms and Lizzie responds by drawing circles in Glenn’s blood with her boot.  Take a second to read that last sentence again.  Forget what I said before about giving her a break.  I am terrified of that little devil child.

On the fence, Rick has recruited Carl to try and hold up the Hoover Dam with toothpicks.  They obviously fail and DING DONG, THE FENCE IS DEAD!  But there is the problem now of the zombie flood coming at the Grimes men.  Luckily, machine guns are apparently easy enough to use that a thirteen year old can learn how to use one in eleven seconds.  (Disclaimer: I have no idea if they’re technically “machine guns.”  Not a big gun person.)  The boys come back and finish off the herd while they do a little father-son bonding over zombie poking.  Why didn’t they just take out the fence herd this way before?  I know they avoid firing weapons when possible, but this looked like it couldn’t have taken more than fifteen minutes.

The fighters (remember them) are back with the medicine, so now we can cure everyone who’s left with magical antibiotics.  Seriously, antibiotics just have to be in your general vicinity to work immediately.  With everyone back in the prison, Hershel is off duty for the first time in a while.  He goes back to Doc S’s cell and closes the eye that he didn’t stab him through earlier.  Sitting over the body of his dead friend, Hershel picks up his Bible and opens it.  He just starts crying and I can’t even handle it!  It’s like if you see someone break down for the first time and freeze up.  Is this a pat on the back or pour a shot moment?!

Of course they deprive us of Rick telling Daryl about Carol for the week, so all that’s really left is the cliffhanger of the week.  Hmmm, I wonder what that creepy music as we pan back to the perimeter could mean.  “The Governor?!  I thought he was gone forever,” said no one.  They are really going to have to win me over this time around.  His first pass around, The Governor really irked me, because he was just evil for the sake of being evil.  But I will try and keep an open mind moving forward, and see if they can round him out a little bit.

Until next week, my friends!

Check out Hillary’s Previous Posts:

S04 E01: 30 Days Without An Accident Review

S04 E02: Infected Review

S04 E03: Isolation Review

S04 E04: Indifference

Advertisements

5 thoughts on “The Walking Dead: Internment

  1. I have a few gripes about this episode, many of which you’ve already detailed. But I want to reiterate the biggest offense, which is that many points in this plot felt way too contrived and convenient. Most of it just didn’t do it for me.

    Although I did sort of like how casual the “machine-gunning” scene was. It almost read to me like a game of post-apocalyptic father-son catch. Only instead of a baseball, it was a series of bullets in rapid succession. And instead of catcher’s mits, it was zombie heads. So basically the same thing.

    Lizzie continues to be creepy in a way I love watching. I’d like to hate Rick as much as you do, but he’s just so damn pretty. It’s hard to stay mad at that face. But I WAS hoping for something more than an outright confession regarding Carol. That seemed a bit lazy on the writers’ part. There was so much dramatic potential there and instead he’s met with total unquestioning agreement? Forget believability, that’s just lame.

  2. ” His attempt at levity is entirely unsuccessful since, unfortunately, a room full of terminally ill people is a tough crowd. ” This line made me crack up. Excellent recap, and I love your humor. Creepy Lizzie is fast becoming my favorite character, especially since they are steering away from Carl being a psychopath. And everything you said about their inability to manage the fence zombies is correct.

    Check out my blog post for an in-depth look at all the unnamed redshirts this episode featured!

    http://piecesofdarkness.wordpress.com/2013/11/11/tidbits-of-the-dead-internment/

  3. Great post…funny and edgy and lots of good points…love the pic of Henry Walker and Lizzie’s “strike a pose” dance-off! I had a hard time capturing the blood stream from Doc S’s eyes on my phone! Am waiting for someone out there to build a site just compiling lots of great shots of each WD episode so my lazy ass can just go there and find them for my posts…until, DIY-style on the phone, taking screen pics and loading them in… 🙂

    • mamabau says:

      I wish! I’ve spent so much time just letting AMC run commercials in the background of whatever I’m doing so I can get the screengrab that I want.

  4. I also thought this would be Hershel’s swan song. Based on previous seasons, I’m a little suspicious when an underused character steps into the spotlight and gets some good moments.

    “Why didn’t they just take out the fence herd this way before? ” My thoughts exactly. Did Rick really think those twigs could hold up the fence?

    I’m looking forward to the Governor’s return. I do agree his backstory needs to be fleshed out but his hatred of the prison group is pretty well established.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s