The momentum is building toward the midseason finale next week and so far I'm enjoying the ride.
Each of our subplots was moved forward this week, with a little bit of time spent on each splinter group. I'm expecting that next week the Grady will become a bloody destroyed mess mostly at the hands of our little crew. Of course I am wondering what Lamson is going to do. He was working the angles right from the start so he is smart and a survivor. He is still a 'good guy', as much as anyone can be these days but he is likely to gum up the works and his actions will require the fire fight that Tyreese was worried about. If our group is very lucky, Lamson will be trying to institute the plan that Shepherd tried to put forward. My biggest concern is who will die in this next episode as it seems to be working up to that. Will Carol not make it out of the hospital? Then there's Beth and Tyreese. Even though Daryl looked like he was in danger this week I'm not sure that the TV powers that be could afford to lose him from the cast (I stopped reading the graphic novels when one of my favourite characters was killed - yes, I am a baby about such things).
The who will die issue is a problem for each of the splinters. I did have a few difficulties with plot holes this week. Some of the decisions made by the group moved the plot forward but didn't make any sense. Only Sasha was left to guard the hostages and they weren't particularly secured. It was o obvious that Lamson was going to escape. Sasha is smarter than to let someone go behind her. Or why would you leave Maggie alone with a seriously injured man and another who is on the verge of losing it? Not to mention the horde of walkers who might notice them at any time. I would think it would be smarter to split two and two. So I am worried about Maggie.
Finally, Rick left again?! Carl's face as he watched his dad leave was pitiful. You think Rick would want to stay with Judith and Carl now that they have been reunited. It would have been very interesting to watch Daryl and Michonne take point on the hospital thing. Now we have Michonne, Carl and Judith at the church alone, and while I think Michonne and Carl make a formidable team, the preacher has just breached their defenses. Walkers aren't likely to be smart enough to find that hole in the basement, but a human might. This lovely lottery of death just reminds us that in this post-apocalyptic world no one is safe at any time and as Carl says, you have to learn to move and fight or die.
The action in this episode was great and likely to ramp up next week but the overarching themes were also very evident. This episode made it apparent, at least to the characters, that the old world is gone and only the strong and those with an unstoppable survival instinct will last. That doesn't mean that you leave 'the weak' behind. Maggie continues to care for Eugene (who is more useful than he might think) and Carl tries to help the preacher become more of a fighter. Mercy is still something that Daryl and Tyreese try successfully to get Rick to consider. However, he might regret that in the long run. Abraham is someone with that survival instinct. He thinks that he should want to die after having his hopes dashed but then realizes that he actually doesn't want to. You can see the pain on his face as he faces Maggie. It will be interesting to watch how that changes him.
The preacher is an interesting conundrum. I'm not sure if he is supposed to illustrate the futility of religion in a situation like this but he seems more upset about his church being destroyed than about the many deaths on his conscience. I first thought that it was another cowardly act to leave the church and then for a moment thought maybe he felt like a burden and Michonne and company would be safer without him. That didn't last long. I think the preacher is the worst kind of coward, the kind who hides behind religion. He will be an excellent illustration of the ongoing choice between surviving in the new world or dying because you hang onto the old. That rusty nail in the foot is not going to help. I hope he has had a recent tetanus shot.
Bits and Pieces
Tyreese is still a very sweet man. I loved how he tried to help Sasha. If something happens to her, will that be the thing that drives Tyreese to kill?
GREATM = Glenn, Rosita, Eugene, Abraham, Tara, Maggie. Cute.
Why did Dawn give the keys to the drug cabinet to Beth? Is she trying to make her an ally? It certainly looks like she needs them.
Nobody figured out how to filter water before this? Really? I know they had to illustrate how Eugene was actually useful but still...
What I could live without - I said the walker stuff didn't get to me anymore. I was wrong. The walkers melted to the asphalt -napalm? Daryl using the skull as a weapon. The woman walker eviscerated by the preacher. He couldn't end her because she was wearing a cross. He obviously no longer believes in heaven.
How lucky to find guys with netting in their jackets.
Is that a grenade that Tara found in the backpack? That could come in handy.
Michonne: “We all owe Carol.”
Glenn: “What’s... what is GREATM?”
Tara: “Us, group name, solidarity, band of brothers. I’m thinking of getting a tattoo on my knuckles.”
Rosita: “Seriously, my six-year old nephew didn’t pull this shit."
Tara: “Just stay here, guys, don’t get up. There’s nothing for you in Washington.”
Rosita: “That’s not funny.”
Tara: “It’s not not not not funny.”
Maggie: “It’s never gonna get any better than this.”
Michonne: “I just wanted to tell you. I just wanted to let you know. That the things that we do are worth it.”
Rick: “You’re still a cop.”
Lamson: “No. The real ones are all gone.”
Maggie: “Did you want me to shoot you?”
Abraham: “I thought I did but I didn’t.”
Glenn: “You know, the more I think about it maybe it wasn’t completely not not not funny. Hey, don’t even look at it.”