The Walking Dead – Season Three – Episode 1 SEED – Review

 

Walking Dead is back and the good news is, it seems to have gotten its priorities in order. Someone seems to have realized just because it has a home on AMC does not mean it needs slow burn deep character developing moments and these writers really have trouble with that concept. Its not Breaking Bad or Mad Men, and it seems to really keep its action in its own wheelhouse: ZOMBIES! Between the insanely better group dynamics, all around character improvements, and lovely action sequences this past episode “Seed” has won me back. It had me the moment T-Dawg, the character who usually had very little of substance to say, gets to say one of the more intelligent lines of the night: “It’s like we spent the winter going in circles” which immediately felt like commentary on season 2 when they spent their summer of broken dreams on Hershel’s farm debating life and love rather then… killing zombies. I know they may just be trying to point out that they haven’t left the area of the prison since we left off but it really felt more tongue in cheek about the actual series.

A great vehicle this show used, (No, not the silly advertisement car from the beginning) was the missed time in between seasons. Much has gone down in the winter off-season, and our gang has become something to be reckoned with. Where they used to argue they adopted a military like precision. Where they used to waste time they adopted a siege mentality against the zombies. Everyone is essentially working together with Rick at the master head looking disgruntled and badass. He has also somehow became better with his obviously anger at Lori. She approaches him to “talk” and it appears Rick can barely do that.

LORI – THE WORST WIFE ON AMC
“He hates me. He’s too good of a man to say it but he hates me” -Laurie
Since we last saw Laurie she has gotten much more Prego and lost much of her volume as an annoying lady. She isn’t complaining every three seconds or making pointless pregnancy fears. How sick was it when she talked to everyone’s favorite midwife, Hershel, and disclosed her paranoia about possible carrying a stillborn zombie, or even dying and therefore turning herself during labor. What a horrific thought. She is also hung up on that fact that her husband and son essentially hate her. I almost feel bad but I’m sure she’ll open her mouth sometime in the future and I’ll take it back.

NORMAN REEDUS IS LOVE AND CAROL HAS A GUN
“Hey, while the others wash their panties, lets go hunt.” -Daryl
Daryl is often the fan-favorite character on this show and it is with good reason. He is slick, snarky, and a survivor who doesn’t throw out the same bullshit as anyone else. Seeing him back and just as cool as I remembered was completely worth it. His balance between playing the character as both “giving a shit” and “not giving a shit” really brings everyone’s favorite red neck to life.
As for Carol, no more hiding in the background with Laurie for her, she gets to sniper off walkers in cutesy angles next to Daryl. Even when she nearly shot Rick accidently she just continues on sniping utterly a quick (and hilarious) “Sorry”. This isn’t the same meek lady who was horrible broken by a cruel husband in season 1. This also led to Daryl massaging Carol’s sore shoulder from the rifles kick back, which was the definition of cute. Daryl for all his baddassery really has little game therefore making him and Carol adorable.  Carol cracks that this is all pretty romantic and asks if he wants to go screw around with this smile on her face that I have never even pictured on this character. Daryl, being cool but still having no game, essentially starts making a getaway “I’m going down first” meaning climbing off the car but Carol being the degree cooler quips “Even better” leading to Daryl blushing and spouting out “stop”.

RICK GRIMES, LEADER, COP, CRAZY EYES and CARL THE LITTLEBIG BOY OF DEATH
“That’s his third time around. If there was any part of that (fence) compromised he’d of found it by now” –Hershel about Rick
Rick is in ultra protective mode. When he first lays eyes on the zombie infested prison his eyes nearly fall out as his mind starts counting the possibilities. When it time for battle he delegate’s positions and orders, knowing his group’s weaknesses and strengths, while utilizing everyone. After Daryl calls for everyone to “Light em’ up” after their initially infiltration of the prison Rick makes it into a sniper tower and begins joining everyone is a free for all of shooting walkers in the head. This is the first and only time Rick looks even remotely happy in this episode. He won’t even talk to Laurie but killing on that level and succeeding with everyone alive leave Rick in his fuzzy happy place made of laughter and kittens. Rick, I have never felt this before but I might love you and your leadership now that Shane is all out of your business and you appropriately hate everything except your unborn baby and Carl.
Carl is a part of this machine, shooting and working as a look out rather than running off and getting more people accidently bit. No more bullshit about Carl not getting a gun. He even wields a sick looking homemade flashlight silencer gun in the opening, and between that and his signature hat he is every bit how I imagined him in the comic.  My only grip is: Is Carl really trying to get it in with Beth? How old is he supposed to be? 12? 13? She is blatantly an older teen. I don’t know how I feel there but maybe everyone is just keeping his or her small options open.

OUR NEW HOME
“It’s Perfect” -Rick
The prison is already leagues better than the farm of broken dreams. They have already performed three intense action sequences just to get inside. No more finding waterlogged zombies in the water supply for our players. They are taking what they see as theirs, a new home with more possibilities: Weapons. Food. Water. Medicine. Especially somewhere Lori can give birth.
The second day at the Prison, upon Ricks urging they continue further inward clearing out Walkers and exploring while battling them hand to hand with a special melee group all fighting with their backs to one another. Props to Maggie for not only looking badass, but also making zombie killing look sexy (GIRL!CRUSH). T-Dawg gets yelled at for breaking rank but he retrieves a perfect riot gear shield to use also as a weapon. Just as my mind is racing at the possibilities of what they could do against walkers dressed in riot gear SIX walkers wander out all wearing said gear. Shit. They have to work harder to get passed their shielding and helmets to their rotting flesh underneath. This is where Maggie earns her wings as she battles off a zombie and manages to stab him in the neck. She looks back toward T-Dawg and Glenn all crazy eyed spouting, “Didja see that?!” Then to make matters a little more gross, because that is what this show does, Rick rips off one of their masks taking most of his face off with it leaving a near skeleton snapping and biting at him. Props to the FX department because this level of gore completely makes up for all the CGI blood. The group is rewarded for all their hard work as they move further into the prison clearing out a cellblock to sleep in. Lori smiles and grasps her husbands hand “Thank you”… and he just walks away. Poor pregnant Lori.

WHERE THE HELL IS ANDREA
“If we stay, I’ll die here” -Andrea
As we are introduced to the awesome that is Michonne, the African American lady wielding a sword with an entourage of armless mouthless zombies at her side we also are greeted with this week best zombie kills. As the camera pans passed a tattered American flag she has a quick scene where she is scavenging some packets of single serving Aspirin from a store. Her actually introduction almost comes from her role as a predator. Her steps are quick and precise as she navigates the store off screen as we follow a walker who is trying to find her. She gruesomely cuts off the heads of three zombies, one actually occurring two at a time. How sweet is it that this person seems just as scary as the damned walkers.
Later on we finally find Andrea who is still with Michonne and currently very sick holed up in some sort of redneck deer cooler. They allude to a winter of watching each other’s back and I suddenly really wish we’d seen more of that rather than hear the cheesy lines about it. They continue a very overly scripted discussion about Andrea possibly dying there is they don’t move and her need to not slow Michonne down and therefore cause her death too. So this cute little family, Michonne, Sick Andrea, and two armless mouthless zombies make haste for the woods to hopefully outrun an approaching horde.

MAGGIE AND GLEN DON’T MIND A LITTLE BLOOD and BRAIN MATTER
Maggie is covered in blood and dirt after their last fight so she doesn’t even care that the cell she is sharing with Glenn is covered in blood and brain matter currently. They both sit down on their bed and he lovingly checks her over looking to make sure she hasn’t been scratched. Then they just hold each other enjoying the fact that they are still alive and together. I wonder what Rick thought of that as he begins to get comfortable sleeping very far away from his wife.  This is a couple I actually buy love and romance from these two. Two people who would not be together if not for this apocalyptic mess of reality. It is sweet in this bitter story.

PRISON CLEAN OUT
“That why we have to go in there – Hand to hand – After all we’ve been through I know we can handle it. I know it. These assholes don’t stand a chance” -Rick
The third wave of action the group took at the Prison was an adventure into the darkened passages actually inside the jail. This sequence was less action and more classic horror movie. You just knew someone was going to get hurt. You can feel something terrible coming in the camera angles. The passages were foggy and dark littered with bodies and body parts. Finally after a few clear passages our group finds some walkers immediately turning the group around as they begin their weaving course back through hallways trying to find their exit. Just as they approach the group is cut in half as another group of walker’s spills out in between them forcing Glenn and Maggie to hide in a room. As the group realizes they are gone Hershel tells them they have to go back for them. Hershel is visibly disturbed at the idea of loosing Maggie and what follows is sort of heart wrenching whispering between father and daughter trying to locate one another in the dark maze of tunnels which is interrupted by the one thing we all saw coming and were begging for it not to be Hershel. One of the bodies on the floor, looking quite dead-dead was actually not-not and took a big bite-bite out of Hershel calf muscle. The following screaming allows the group to find one another and carry the old man out of the tunnels of death.
As they get him lying on the floor in a safer area Rick immediately jumps into action looking terrified at what he has to do….

HERSHEL MIDWIFE, VET, FARMER, BEARDED MAN TO BE TRUSTED
“Sing Paddy O’Reilly for me” -Hershel
I had forgotten how much I enjoyed Hershel. He is truly a character they desperately needed. Someone who works like a Swiss army knife while being a truly
simple-living man whom just loves to hear his daughters sing. He notices the soil is very ready for some farming. He is going to help Lori give birth when the time comes. He is truly an integral piece of this little group. Hershel seems ready for even more awesomeness when… oopps.

Yeah he got a huge bite taken out of his leg and lays helpless as Rick jumps into action. He removes his belt and ties off Hershel’s leg below the knee and proceeds to grab a hatchet and hack off the old man leg in three brutal bloody boney blows. If I were sweet enough I would send the shows sound department a fruit basket for how amazing it sounded. Just pain and blood are everywhere and even Rick can’t quite keeping moving with the same urgency he did before as he lets out some tortured sound. As he nearly whispers to the others about Hershel bleeding out Daryl notices figures seemingly approaching. Rick does some cool eye contact and ducks and rolls out of the way so Daryl can obviously take out the walkers that are coming… BUT They’re not walkers. Through some windows five left over prisoners are watching Rick and Gang do what they do best: Play with guns. Cry. Kill walkers. And cutting off old dude legs.
One of our newcomers really said it best: Hole-Lee-Shit

-Sagebeth

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~ by ATOM on October 15, 2012.

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