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The Walking Dead: Seed

Mustache guy: “Holy shit.”

Well, yes, holy shit indeed.

Walking Dead is back and our ragtag group is leaner, meaner and just about done. The very creepy opening with the zombie eye followed by new extra bleak opening credits set the mood. Any illusions about creating a safe space have been firmly crushed by a winter of scavenging house to house and running from increasingly larger herds. Even running is becoming difficult as herds form and join up with each other. The scene at the farm house showed just how desperate the group has become. Carl was ready to eat pet food but Rick wouldn’t allow it. I’m not sure I agree with him. There is a lot of protein in those cans, and is it any worse than eating an owl?

Finding the prison is like hitting the jackpot. There is a possibility of true safety even if you have to sleep in cells. You could work your way through the prison, securing each area as you went and Rick is right there is a good chance that the prison is well stocked. Other living people might make things a bit awkward. It should be interesting.

I found the camera work superb this week. I felt like the acting, the location, the lighting and the camera work went together to pull you in and make you feel like you were moving through those corridors along right with them. Consequently, my anxiety level was through the roof and instead of being bored with one more blank, grey wall, I breathed a sigh of relief. When Maggie and Glenn got cut off I was yelling at the group to go back and get them. It didn’t take them long to realize they were missing and to do just that. Unfortunately, the back tracking may have cost Hershel his life. I really hope cutting off his leg works. Just writing that sentence shows how off-kilter the whole thing is. Ps. Hershel better not die.

A hard winter has shaped the group into a fighting machine. Everyone has a weapon and the walkers have just become a part of the world. The way Maggie walked over nonchalantly to pick up the axe even though a walker was coming shows how accustomed they have become to their presence. They have figured out how they move and how to kill them. Watching the smaller group move into the prison in formation spoke volumes about what their winter has been like and how they have survived. The gender thing still bothers me. I’m not sure why a boy should be checking out a house or going on the hunt for zombies while grown women hold back. I’m not saying that Carl shouldn’t be out there, I’m just not sure why Carol and Beth aren’t.

Rick is the undisputed leader of the group and it looks like Daryl is his second. It was interesting watching how well they worked together. Rick and Lori are not doing well as a couple, which makes sense considering all that has gone on, and she is reasonably terrified about the approaching delivery. Not only does she have to worry about her own death, which is much more likely, considering her health and the lack of hospitals and medication, she also has to be concerned about her baby becoming a walker if it is stillborn. I think that was the creepiest idea in an episode of creepy. It is obvious that Rick is almost done. The look on his face when he finally relaxed in the cell block said that he has to make the prison work.

We also got to see Michonne and Andrea. Boy, that girl can use a sword! They have made it through the winter as well but Andrea is sick with what looks like pneumonia. As with Lori, this wouldn’t have been a problem, before but it may kill her now. The second creepiest thing were Michonne’s zombies. I’m sure they have a purpose. I hope we get to see more of Michonne and Andrea soon. The more kick-ass women, the better.

Bits and Pieces

Carl has a crush on Beth. Guess there aren’t that many eligible girls around.

Everyone is a bit strung out. Loved the lazy “sorry” Carol gave Rick when she almost hit him.

The highlight of the show for me was Carol flirting with Daryl. She’s come a long way from her days with Ed.

The group must have stayed in some awful places. Carl mentions that the prison may be gross but it beats the storage unit they stayed in.

The spray paint was very smart. That place really is a maze.

Quotes

Daryl: “Hey, while the others wash their panties, let’s go hunting. That owl didn’t exactly hit the spot.”

Daryl: “Light it up.”

Carol: “We haven’t had this much space since we left the farm."

Carol: “Rick’s gotten us a lot farther than I ever thought he would, I’ll give him that. Shane could never have done that.”

Daryl: “I’ll go down first.”
Carol: “Even better.”

Rick: “I’m doing stuff, Lori, things, isn’t that enough?”

Andrea: “I won’t have you dying for me. Good soldier, won’t leave your post. Screw you.”

Hershel: “You know who doesn’t give a shit about that. This baby.”

Glenn: “Home Sweet Home.”

9 comments:

  1. Wow. Great review, Doc. I was thinking that "holy shit" would be the perfect opener and clearly, you did, too. :)

    Fans of the show (not so much me, though) were complaining last season that there wasn't enough zombie action. I was thinking the first twenty minutes was the producers' response to that. I've never seen ten people more in need of a hot shower in my life. I was sort of hoping they'd get one by the end of the episode. But instead, leg chopping! OMG.

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  2. Loved it. Such a fantastic, thrilling and gory hour. I couldn't believe the amount of action that they fit into these 40 mins.

    Apparently the prison is iconic from the source material so I can't wait to see what happens.

    And Michonne? Such a badass.

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  3. And yes the leg chopping was brutal to watch. I couldn't believe how many times Rick had to strike poor Hershel. Horrifying and a great contrast to the ease in which they were chopping the undead.

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  4. The prison is indeed iconic from the original comic - but I sure hope they don't take the story-path from it(I won't give anything away, don't worry, I've learnt my lesson).
    At least not without explaining it properly. I'm all for shock value and all, but it has to serve a purpose and be grounded in an established behaviour.
    Cryptic enough?
    Anyway, super psyched for the season, superb opener.

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  5. "The second creepiest thing were Michonne’s zombies. I’m sure they have a purpose."

    One purpose can be seen in this episode: to carry loads (like a mule or a workhorse).

    The primary purpose can be guessed if you remember episode 2 from the first season, when Glenn and Rick were covering themselves in walkers parts to avoid detection.

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  6. I got a lot to say about this ep, but I fear a lot of it would be spoilers both for the show and the comics. I'll just say I loved, and my hope for the show has been revived after being squashed on season 2. I'm also really happy I can read your reviews again, doc. I sometimes enjoy them better than the eps themselves.

    And I'll leave this image:

    http://sphotos-a.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc7/403724_427760623937988_1623404689_n.jpg

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  7. Thanks for the explanations Sebastian. They make sense. Still pretty icky though. I'm also looking forward to the season although I did read the graphic novels during the break and I agree with you Henrik although I will keep any references to them out of my reviews. Thanks for your kind comments Gus and the absolutely hilarious link. If I'd been drinking milk it would have come out of my nose! I think the leg chopping was the most awful thing although I wouldn't put it in the creepy category. Thanks for the comments. It's so much fun to share this show with others.

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  8. Although I'd planned to catch up on TWD over this weekend, I kept putting it off, because my dominant impression of the second season was feeling horribly sad after each episode.

    Somehow, they've fixed that. Terrible things are happening, but there's more liveliness. (Inert zombie joke here.) And the prison is such a great metaphor.

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  9. The gender thing still bothers me. I’m not sure why a boy should be checking out a house or going on the hunt for zombies while grown women hold back.

    It's pretty straightforward. Women make babies; they're a valuable asset if you're trying to rebuild civilisation -- and in the long run, this is going to mean breeding enough humans to eventually overwhelm the zombies. Until antibiotics and at least mid-twentieth-century medical technology become widely available again -- if they ever do -- you're going to lose a lot more women to childbirth, so keeping them relatively safe becomes critical.

    Men are relatively less important, though obviously necessary. And, important as he is to repopulating the world, a young boy /can/ be replaced.

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