This episode left me satisfied, yet a bit disappointed at the same time. Fans of the comics might know why I’m a bit disappointed, but if you’ve never read the comics, then this episode should have left you with a pretty good taste in your mouth. I’ll get to my reasoning why I’m a bit disappointed in a minute, but lets run through the episode really quick first.
We open with a new group of survivors fighting their way through the forrest as the rain pours down on them. Lead by Tyrese, the group is desperately seeking shelter and an escape from the hordes of walkers that are following them. Just as they find shelter, one of the women in the group is bitten on the arm. Not being one to leave people behind, Tyrese motions to bring her into the prison, as they crawl through the fence and into an area not inhabited by our favorite group of survivors.
At this point the story jumps to Woodbury, but I’m just going to go out of order and discuss what happens at the prison, then I’ll jump to the Woodbury stuff. So Tyrese and company make their way into the prison, not knowing that there is another group of survivors inside, and obviously not knowing that, that portion of the prison is still overrun with walkers. There’s a pretty funny/creepy exchange between Axel and Carol in regards to Axel asking Beth how old she is. There are a couple scenes in the comic books that start out similar to that conversation, and lead to some pretty nasty stuff happening, so I was just praying that they weren’t going to go there… it’s seriously brutal. Thankfully all that happens is Carol pulls Axel aside and questions him about his interaction with the kids, to which he responds that he’s been locked up a while and hasn’t really seen any females, and with Maggie taken and Carol being a lesbian, it doesn’t leave him with many options. Obviously Carol isn’t a lesbian, but he just deduced that based on her haircut which was kind of funny.
It’s shortly after that, that Carl and Hershel hear screaming coming from inside the prison. Carl loads up his gun and gets Hershel’s blessing, because at this point they don’t know if the other guys are coming back or not, which leaves Carl as the man of the prison basically, as he heads to see what the commotion is. Carl has definitely become a lot less of a pussy as the show progresses. Once he shot Shane to protect Rick, everything changed. He realized that he had to do what was necessary to protect the people he loves. And with all the other guys gone, Carl has to step up and see what’s going on. He stumbles upon Tyrese and company in the generator room as they are becoming overrun with walkers. Carl takes out a few of them and then beckons for the group to follow up back towards their cell block. Just as Rick and Daryl did with the inmates, Carl locks the group in the area just outside of the cells for their protection. They don’t know these people, so they can’t trust them quite yet, although, unlike the inmates, these guys don’t seem to be much of a threat. Obviously some of the people in the group aren’t too happy being locked up and treated like animals, but Tyrese doesn’t blame them as he calms the group down leaving only one last order of business… hammering the shit out of the woman who’d been bitten.
Meanwhile, back at Woodbury, Glenn and Maggie are still being held captive as Rick, Daryl, Oscar and Michonne make their way into the town through a back entrance. It seemed a little odd that it would be so easy to gain access to the town, but I guess walkers don’t really open doors, so there was no worry there But still, with all the emphasis on security and The Governor being the way he is, you would think that every last back door would have been locked/borded up. Oh well, makes it easier for our group to make their way inside.
They quickly knock out a man who saw them walking around through a window, but not before they could question him on where Maggie and Glenn were being held… obviously he’s no help because The Governor doesn’t tell all the people of the town everything that happens. But no matter, because gun fire is heard from the sheds where they are being held captive. Glenn, being the resourceful guy that he is, realizes that despite the fact that there was no furniture or anything else that could be used for a weapon, in the room where they were being held, there was a walker… and walkers have bones. At first I thought it was a little unrealistic that Glenn would be able to rip off the walkers arm, but given the state of the decaying bodies, it’s pretty plausible that a man could dismember one of them with his own bare hands. So now that they have weapons, they are prepared the next time the door is unlocked, which doesn’t take long.
Merle and another man (can’t remember his name at the moment), open the room as Glenn and Maggie rush them, the one man gets a bone through the throat as Glenn wrestles with Merle. Maggie gets a hold of a gun and it seems like the two of them have Merle right where they want him… until Maggie has a gun to her head. I mean, what were they really thinking? Did they really think that it would just be two people within earshot of the holding room? I understand they had to do something, but a little better planning should have been in order.
So now Rick and company know where Glenn and Maggie are being held, and The Governor has given the order to throw them in the “Scream Pit”(?) So obviously Glenn and Maggie are about to eat it… As they are being lead out of the room, Rick and company throw some smoke bombs and manage to grab the two in the commotion. A gun battle erupts as they make their way towards the wall and start to climb over. Daryl stays back to give them some cover fire, but it’s not enough as Oscar takes a shotgun blast to the stomach, resulting in a bullet to the head from Maggie (gotta make sure he doesn’t come back). So Maggie, Glenn and Rick make it over the wall, but Daryl ends up getting captured (we don’t see how). Now, if you’re wondering where Michonne is… this is the part I was a little disappointed in.
Michonne left the group early on as she had her own agenda… killing The Governor. Now in the comic books she has a rape-load of reasons to want to exact revenge on him, but her only real motivation in the show is because he sent Merle out to hunt her down and kill her. Obviously still a good reason, but in the comics, her, Rick and Glenn are the ones being held captive in Woodbury. Glenn and Michonne are in the rooms next to one another, just as him and Maggie were in the show. But if you thought it was creepy/weird/fucked up, that The Governor had Maggie take her shirt off, then you would have gone crazy if he did to Maggie what he did to Michonne in the comics. Michonne gets tied up and repeatedly raped on a daily basis, and it’s just as brutal as it sounds. So you’ll have to forgive me when I say that I don’t think her reasoning for revenge is as convincing this time as it is in the books. Not to mention that her revenge in the books is far more satisfying. So Michonne is now waiting in The Governors apartment when she hears a noise from the other room. She breaks down the door to find the aquariums full of heads as well as Penny. Not knowing what Penny was, she unchains her and removes the bag from her head. It doesn’t take long for her to realize what is going on there, but long enough for The Governor to find her and have a gun at her head.
The Governor has a soft side for his daughter, why else would he have kept her alive, so when Michonne threatens to kill her, he puts his gun down and slowly makes his way towards her, pleading with her to let Penny go. Yeah, that obviously wasn’t going to happen. Michonne puts her sword through the back of Penny’s head and out her mouth as The Governor flips out and attacks her. A fight ensues and many zombie heads become casualties of the struggle… but that’s not the only casualty. Michonne ends up putting a shard of glass through The Governors eye as she manages to escape, most definitely leaving him blind in one eye. And that was a little disappointing for me. The “fight scene” between Michonne and The Governor is a touch more brutal in the books than in this episode, but, like I said, the reasoning behind the revenge was a lot different between the two. In the comic books, Michonne knocks out The Governor and ties his arms outstretched in either direction, just as he had done to her. But instead of raping him, as he did to her, she nails his penis to the floor and proceeds to torture the hell out of him. First she pulls out all of his fingernails, then hacks one of his arms off, then cauterizes it with an iron. And if that wasn’t enough, she then shoves a spoon up his ass, then uses that same spoon to scoop out his eyeball. So yeah, when I say that the comic was just a touch more brutal, I mean a shit-load more brutal. She’s interrupted before she can kill him and has to escape out the window, but I really would have liked to have seen a little more of the brutality in the episode than they gave us.
Now, as I mentioned before, Daryl got captured at some point as Rick, Glenn and Maggie escaped over the wall. The Governor then holds a town meeting to address the people about the “terrorist” that shot up their town. But rather than tell the truth about why they were there in the first place, he blames Merle for leading them to Woodbury. He tells the people that Merle is one of the “terrorists” and can prove it… enter Daryl. Now this is obviously the first time Daryl and Merle have seen each other in a while, not to mention that Merle is probably a little bit angry at The Governor right now. The episode ends with The Governor giving the big speech to the townspeople asking them what they think should happen to the two brothers, and naturally the town wants them to die… cut to black.
So I definitely thought the episode was good, but having read the books, I was hoping for a little bit more. I’m definitely glad to see Tyrese, he’s a great character in the books and I’m glad that The Governor lost his eye. I wish Andrea would stop being such a whiney bitch all the time, she’s a lot more likable in the books, and more of an asset. I’m curious to see how she’s going to react to the realization that she was shooting at her original camp. I wonder if she’s going to side with The Governor since the original group just left her for dead at the farm. The other thing I was disappointed in doesn’t really have anything to do with the show itself, but with AMC. Why would you show those clips for the 2nd half of the season? You pretty much ruined the cliffhanger you setup at the end of tonight’s episode… I’m not going to give anything away, but if you want to be surprised by what the outcome of the Woodbury cliffhanger, don’t watch the scenes after the episode fades to black. I will say this though, if they kill off Daryl, they are going to have a lot of angry people on their hands haha.
So what did everyone think of the mid-season finale? For those of you that read the books, were you slightly disappointed like I was, or was this good enough?