Fellow Walking Dead fans, next week is the mid-season finale.
Carl is an interesting character. He’s shown the most adaptability this season, morally, from the compassion and strength it took to kill his mother, to his very polite, “Dad, do we help her?” when he sees Michonne at the fence, and then his decision to open the gate without Rick responding. He knew they should help her, so they did. Listen to the kid, Rick. The boy is doing pretty well, considering. Still, maybe you should just listen to him, not insultingly put him in charge of the other grown-ass adults in the prison when you go off on your cowboy rescues. I mean, come on. Carol and Hershel are adults. Carl is ten.
Rick offers Michonne the same opportunity he’s offered other people they’ve come across. Some momentary safety, provisions, and medical care. But he’s not willing to take her into the group until she tells them about Mayberry, and the likelihood of their friends being there. The little jaunt the foursome takes through the woods is just filler on the way to next week’s episode, but what a great little bit of time wasting. Michonne’s willingness to kill the weird survivalist without any sign of hesitation seemed to surprise even Daryl, and I think the tossing of his body out of the front door might have been one of the coldest things done on the show. But that’s where we are at this point.
The fabulous @quesarahsarah, my regular Sunday Night texting partner, points out that Judith, the name finally given to baby Ass-kicker, is also a Slayer. Let’s talk about the perfect namesake.
No picnics this week. All we do is look at the ugly underbelly of life in faux-reality. (My daughter calls Woodbury “No-Utopia.”) Merle is the piece of shit we’ve always known him to be. Even in Daryl’s hallucinations, he was a total jag. He makes racist comments, says he hopes T-Dogg died slow, and then sics a walker on Glenn.
Glenn, of course, is the total badass we know him to be. People seemed shocked or surprised at his tied-chair take down, but he was on Rick’s advance team for the last so-many-months, and we’ve seen him react swiftly and brutally other times when he’s been threatened (see: Maggie at the drug store). This scene is really fantastic, definitely high on the best fights we’ve seen this season list, but what I really loved about it is where it cut off. Instead of ending on Glenn’s scream of triumph, the camera lingers a moment longer, until he slumps against the wall and exhales in exhaustion. The fight is never over in this world.
This brings us to the other brutal thing that happens in Mayberry this week — the Governor’s”‘interrogation” of Maggie. My stomach was twisted up during the whole scene. I’m over rape being used as a constant plot point in popular culture, and I was dreading what I was sure to be the ultimate outcome of the scene. But listening to Maggie spit out “You do what you’re gonna do. And you go to hell.” I couldn’t help but believe that this was the type of character Andrea was meant to be. That’s real bravery. We see, too, what kind of man the Governor is. I don’t mean his shitty rapist tendencies, but the obvious reason he didn’t go through with it – because it wouldn’t terrorize Maggie enough.
What did other people make of the expression on Merle’s face when he backed out of the room where Maggie and Glenn were? It was curious.
I had an internal debate about using this picture for obvious reasons, but I really felt the need to point something out. Andrea is totally and absolutely the type of woman who would wear lacy thongs during the apocalypse. Let’s just ponder the realities of that for a minute. She is wearing lacy, pale pink underwear and pristine white bra, all of which fit her, look brand new, and somehow are not sweat stained or covered in old zombie blood. It seems to really encapsulate this side of Andrea we’ve seen since they came to the town.
There’s a part of her that seemed to thrive in these conditions – she wanted to be strong, she was willing to fight, she had strong ties to her group. Something she did over the eight months she and Michonne were together let Michonne trust and care for her, and it’s obvious that is a rare thing. But as soon as they get to a place that even plays at being “how things were,” Andrea switches into this person that feels entitled to everything. She regresses. Of course, she’s sleeping with the guy in charge – she deserves it. Of course she leaps over the wall and puts herself at risk with a walker – that’s what she wanted to do. Of course she’s wearing a goddamn thong. Of course she is.
Going along with this refound place in the social order, she is absolutely rude and dismissive to those she feels aren’t as smart or worldly as she is. She was kind of a cock to the archer on the wall. She looks down her nose at the scientist with his soul experiment, but doesn’t bother to tell him that she had a goddamn presentation at the CDC where a scientist outlined – with graphics! – what happened after the zombies came back. Just enough brain function to make them walking eating machines.
When push comes to shove next week in the Prison-Mayberry showdown, I assume she’ll side with her former group, but the way she’s been acting, she really seems like she’d be Team Mayberry.