Frank Darabont has revealed what he would have done for his second season Walking Dead opener. In doing so, he has totally undermined my idea that him leaving wasn’t a big deal. I admit I’m wrong, okay! Fuck! It’s okay, it’s cathartic for me.
Invariably, everything that AMC does from here on out that pisses me off is going to be contrasted with their decision to let Rubicon die. Walking Dead sucks!, Rubicon died. The Killing sucks!, Rubicon died. They’re making a fucking GoodFellas TV show!…Rubicon died.
Here it is folks, the mid-season finale of the Walking Dead. We start out with Glenn’s trademark speech craft ability. Glenn announces that the barn is full of walkers. This of course causes a panic amongst the survivors. This revelation presents a few problems for everyone. For Rick it means that he has a new complication with Hershel. For Glenn, it’s the betrayal of Maggie’s trust. For Shane, this is a security threat. The lion’s share of this episode is going to be focusing how everyone handles this new development. I love how the opening ended with a throwback shot of the barn door bulging slightly as Shane got near. Reminded me of the hospital shot during season 1.
Last week we left Glenn and Maggie in a barn full of walkers. If you didn’t watch it, its not what you think Hershel is keeping them there with a purpose. This week we pick up with Carl and Lori feeding chicken, discussing philosophy. Carl’s utterance of the line “Everything’s food for something else” feeds into Lori’s doubt about giving birth to a child in this world. Its an interesting view of how a child adapts to the situation he’s been put in. There’s no moral dilemma, there’s no internal conflict. Its just a simple transition. “Oh, people turn into flesh eating monsters and we have to kill them … ok.” Change doesn’t affect children as much because they have less of a routine. This whole episode deals with people at different stages of their lives and how they’ve adjusted.
We start this week’s walking dead with more flashbacks. I don’t know if I’m softening or if its getting a little better, but I didn’t hate this flashback. Of course it could be because it involved one of my fantasies, firebombing Atlanta. So we’re treated with a little prequel about how our merry band started and then is off to the land of the dead. Oh, almost forgot to add the heavy handed reminder that Shane banged Lori and told her and Carl that Rick was dead. Can’t forget that, it might come up later.
We’re greeted this week with a change from the norm. No shitty voice overs, no terrible flashbacks, no cryptic visions of the future. Our survivors converge and unite at casa de Green and hopefully puts an end to the jump cuts we were put through last week. If this recap seems barebones compared to my others, its because nothing happened this episode … NOTHING!! Seriously … if you have a friend who has not seen anything of Walking Dead, get them into the show, and when you expose them to season 2, skip this episode, they won’t know.
We start this week’s episode with a simple scene. Shane is shaving his head like it’s his first day in Leavenworth and he wants to suck up to the white supremacists. Its short, it’s concise and it sends a clear message; “This is where the episode will end up.” Then we are greeted with another voice over. Rick is telling Lori a story about how Shane was a pimp in high school and he got all the ladies. Great, he was O’Bannon, we get it, stop with the voice overs, you’re not Michael Westin. This episode dealt with more storylines than any previous ones, so there was a lot of jumping around. Because of that, this write up will also be jumping around, try to keep up.
The Walking Dead isn’t a good show. It’s not! It was awesome. Then it was awful. This season it’s been tepid. Hopefully it’ll figure itself out and return to its (short, short) glory days. AMC has announced the show will have even longer to find its stride again, renewing it for a third season.
This week’s episode starts with a flashback. It takes place on the same day that Rick gets shot. Initially this scene disturbed me. Not because I’m emotionally invested in the characters. Not because I felt for Lori as she has to tell Carl that his dad was shot, and then explain the possible consequences. Its because I don’t want Walking Dead to be like LOST. I don’t want flashbacks.
(Before we start, I know what you’re probably thinking. “Whoa Dude, first Fear Fest and now Walking dead recaps? Are you taking over Omega Level?” Well, no, the Brothers Omega will return with more regular postings when their daily lives are more settled. And shame on you for suggesting otherwise. Sometimes Superman and Batman have to put in time on Clarke and Bruce. The same rings true for Caffeine and Rendar. I was tasked to write the recaps because of my familiarity with the source material, and my deep knowledge of zombie arts.)
We start season two with a woefully written message that serves as a reminder of what happened in the last episode of season one. We are reminded of the CDC and Dr. Jenner, who I’m surprised they didn’t just name Mac Guffin. I’m not the goodest writer. I can however recognize lazy writing. The last three episodes were rife with it last year. The first five minutes were harrowing. Will the bad writing continue? Did they bad writers stay when Darabont left? The answer is no, the bad writing will not continue. I look at the terrible exposition as an example of where the show could have gone but won’t. Season one may have collapsed like a certain baseball team I follow, but I can hope and dream that season two will swing for the fences again.