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The Walking Dead S04E09: "After"


Break's over and the prison's in ruins, finally! Now The Walking Dead can return to the enjoyable (for us, anyway) world outside those barbed-wire fences, a world where our survivors can't just garden all day and then safely tuck themselves into bed behind six-foot-thick concrete walls. Now they'll have zombies nipping at their heels as they try to make it to another sunrise, hoping they'll live long enough to have one more argument over whether or not Rick is a good leader. This is a world full of imminent death and little hope. And I suppose "After" wanted us to be aware of this by focusing on the two characters who've most successfully adapted to life in this dangerous environment, and showing us that they too can see their spirits crushed like a zombie skull underneath a boot. But "After" didn't depict any of the chaos I expected from this new world order; instead, it focused more on the "walking" part of the show's title, and that made the hour somewhat boring, even as the show tried to say something important. Typical The Walking Dead, right?

Michonne and Carl are the next generation of zombie apocalypse humans because they've acclimated to this world easier than others. Proof: Michonne quickly discovered that if you cut off a zombie's arms and lower jaw, you not only create a form of zombie repellent, you also gain a pet! She's also mutated mentally, by putting up emotional walls that no one can climb—an asset when it's time to make important decisions, like bailing when your dumb blonde friend wants to stay in Woodbury. And Carl's adolescence is aligned with the worst thing to ever happen to humanity, so all the changes he's going through physically and mentally have synched up with the horrors he sees before him. (And we thought our own experiences with puberty were rough!) The zombie apocalypse was basically timed to coincide with his Bar Mitzvah, so his accelerated entry into manhood means he has to worry about both blackheads and headshots. Heck, he can even relax and have a bowl of cereal in an unfortified house like it's no big deal, because he doesn't have that much knowledge of any other kind of existence. Carl and Michonne have always seen this new world differently, they've always had a loner tendencies, and as a result, they've always been one a step ahead of everybody else. 


Or so they thought! As we saw in "After," once you take away the comfort of others, Carl and Michonne both break down like big babies, same as everyone else. Not so tough now, eh? Carl, faced with the fact that his daddy might be headed for zombiehood, couldn't bring himself to pull the trigger, and instead resigned himself to being Zombie Rick's first meal. Maybe the reason was that Carl didn't think he could survive without Rick, despite spending the rest of the episode in "I'm a big boy" mode. Maybe the reason was that it's hard to shoot your dad in the head. But at that point, we realized Carl could not do what's necessary to outlasting a zombie outbreak: anything, and I mean anything, to survive. Oh but killing your mom was manageable? I guess we know who his favorite parent is. 

Michonne saw a zombie that shared some of her own physical traits—African-American, long dreads—and, I'm guessing, was so horrified by the prospect of what she could become that she went bananas on a herd of walkers when she didn't need to and then cryfaced when she should've been marveling at her trophy pile of severed zombie heads. Later, when she saw a note that read, "Please do what I couldn't"—written by someone named Joe Jr., who was unable to kill what I'm assuming was his own zombified father when the time came—she broke down over her own past, which may or may not have involved being able to do what she couldn't. I think. I never really know what's going on with Michonne, she could've just been thinking about that episode of Futurama where Fry's dog waits for him.

My complaint about "After"—which is the same complaint I've had about a lot of Walking Dead episodes—is that I'm not sure what stories it wanted to tell. This series really struggles with character arcs that go beyond "Did he get eaten or not?", and anything that doesn't involve that specific question tends to come off as labored, confusing, and potentially boring because the writing just isn't there. Was there another layer to the dueling stories in "After"? Did The Walking Dead need an entire episode to drive home the fact that this is a tough world to live in?  

Watching Rick be mean dad and Carl be punkish teen was annoying because we've seen the same dynamic so many times before; their new just-the-two-of-them situation simply made Rick act like more of an old man ("Slow down, Carl! You shouldn't've done that, Carl! Get off my lawn, Carl!") and it made Carl act like more of an impudent squirt ("Everyone counted on you!" "I hate you, dad, I don't care if you die!" "This pudding is hurting my tum-tum!"). It didn't help that Chandler Riggs didn't really sell his outburst about Rick letting everyone down, and it really didn't help that the whole shouting-at-someone-who's-unconscious cliché is a big snooze. I remember thinking this whole Rick-Carl arc in the comics was a total drag, especially after the carnage of the prison, and the show unfortunately stuck to it awfully close. 


Michonne spent the episode following footsteps and slicing off zombie heads, but for a second we got a dream sequence that shed a tiny bit of light on her backstory. I don't think it was intended to be funny, but it made me laugh. Disclaimer: I hate dream sequences, I think they're a nightmare! But either way, The Walking Dead seems to be making a bigger deal about Michonne's backstory than it's worth. We saw pre-zombie Michonne with a baby in her arms, chatting with her brother (I think?) and her boyfriend/"lover" Mike about how she appreciated real art—which might explain why she liked that cat sculpture she dug out of the cafe from "Clear." Anyway, the dream revealed—or did it simply confirm?—that Mike and her brother eventually became her original pets. Is it wrong that I don't care about Michonne's backstory? Has the show provided any reasons to care about Michonne's backstory? Doesn't everyone on this show have a pretty crummy backstory? Why is Michonne's so special? 

I would not argue with you if you said, "OMG dis ep wuz so BORING!" because large stretches of "After" were, indeed, boring. I wanted to like the episode a lot more than I did, because I think it was making an effort to both deliver a message and reintroduce us to the danger of this world by showing us how it can break even the sturdiest survivors. Otherwise, it was just characters walking around and killing zombies. And even that's starting to get old. 



NOTES

– I did love the shot of Carl eating puddin' on the roof while the zombie hand was reaching out the window. There was something strangely beautiful about that moment.

– Jesus, Rick, let your kid curse a little! He already shot his dead mother in the head, I think he's grown up enough to say "asshole."

– Rick's Batman voice was kind of distracting.


– In maybe the greatest moment of The Walking Dead to date, Carl fought a door and lost. It immediately became my favorite Carl moment of all time. 

– Carl also barfed, and it was amazing. (.GIF coming, because I love puking .GIFs!)


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 4/3/2016

Season 6 : Episode 16

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i usually feel this way about every episode. after talking dead, when the re-airing occurs i'm like
I wish I could go back to before I watched this ep because I want to experience it all over again!
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I love the part where Michonne saw Carl and Rick by the curtain her smile reminds me of Christmas mornings.
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I don't really mind the slower ones when they're away from the prison. Its easier to imagine being in their shoes when they're trying to survive out in the open. If every episode was like this then it would get super boring for sure, but I like the change of pace once in a while.
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Man oh man oh shallow ones.
The two episodes with Rick/Carl/Michone, to me, are among the best in the entire series. Not only is is character development done right, it adds a familiar tone to it.

What you saw as Rick's griping about Karl slowing down and Carl acting snotty is actually incredibly tense. Imagine not only are you living inside their dad/teen skins, but suddenly the roles are reversed. It's unfamiliar and terrifying. How do you tell your previously following son that you can't keep up? How do you face your dad who is falling apart behind you? It was, actually, awesome.

Michone is the best when exhibiting emotions. Usually she's an annoying, snarling semi-drone. Any chance we get to see her being human is a good one.

As for the action (Karl), THAT was actually the weak part. We keep seeing these people get surprised by completely non-stealthy walkers OVER AND OVER AGAIN and it pi$$es me off. Not to mention they seem to have super strength and fantastic teeth, when they are actually barely able to stand up straight. Popping up when the characters least expect them, but we most expect them is the pits. It's like a bad Hollywood movie where you hear scary music just to let you know the monster is here and you scare yourself in advance.

But I digress.

I'm sure we'll be back to high-end action next week. I enjoyed this respite.

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I'm kind of looking forward to the series ending so it can go out with style. This episode felt like a retread of a retread of a retread of a past episode.
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Thank you! I am so sick of people bitching about the quieter episodes. Aka - character development. This show would be boring and shallow if it was literally nothing but a series of mindless action sequences where the characters were not allowed to grow. It didn't feel like a 're-tread' old ground either as, althoughww saw HINTS of this conflict beforehand it wasn't as 'front and centre' as it was in this episode.
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It's one thing to show character development; it's another to show it using the exact same formula as a million times before.
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"My complaint about "After"—which is the same complaint I've had about a lot of Walking Dead episodes—is that I'm not sure what stories it wanted to tell."

Maybe you watched a screener without commercials, but if that's not the case, you would have noticed that what they appear to be doing is catching you up with what happened to each survivor/s in clumps. This episode was Rick/Carl + Michonne (partly because by the end they were brought back together I imagine, and also partly because Michonne is a character a lot of people like...so even though her backstory, like everyone elses, probably IS not terribly relevant, people/fans do probably want to know what happened to her specifically to make her so, well, her...surely you pondered that?).

Yeah I wasn't in love with most of the episode either, Carl being an annoying child, wasting all his bullets, and almost getting killed just so he can realize it's possible again isn't the funnest way to get back into the season, BUT watching Michone kill a bunch of things, and yes, her apparently insignificant (but still interesting to watch if you care) backstory made up for that.

If you've been watching this show long enough, did you expect this first episode to be super energetic? Because I wasn't, I'm sure like always they will be spending the next several focusing on different patches of people, and build up to something cool.
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"OMG dis ep wuz so BORING!"
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I enjoyed this episode a lot more than I expected but there was one thing that had me flummoxed..............how did Carl go from headshot champ to cant hit the broadside of a barn??

I can understand him not being able to put his Dad down when he thought he had turned into a walker given that he already had to do that to his mother and Shane; lets face it the kid has killed more direct family than anyone else out of the original group. That has to mess a kid up just a tad and make him unwilling and unable to do it again. As for the door that was just funny and the chocolate pudding........who buys tins of pudding THAT big?!?!?!

Michonne just seemed to spend half the episode walking around in a daze in the middle of a small herd and managed to be out acted by all of them. When the walker extra's out do the lead character perhaps said character needs a better writer. Learning a bit more about her back story was interesting and it was also kind of creepy seeing her brother and boyfriend slowly inch towards their final end as her puppets when we first met her.

It was an intriguing change of pace and I am glad to see The Walking Dead back.
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Can't wait for next week's episode should be good. Lizzie/ Mika, Daryl/Beth, Ty, Glenn.
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You dont' like, don't watch. Oh wait...you're a tv critic? Well, my bad. Carry on. :)
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Loved Michonne going on a zombie decapitation spree and have to say that the chocolate pudding was the star!!
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I don´t like it very much but is because I don´t like Michonne, and seeing her half of the episode was so boring for me. I know she is one of the favourite characters of the show for most people, but I don´t care about her... I hope next week we can see more characters after the break in
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Boooooooooooooooo!
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Tim, I used to love your reviews, but I think you have become too cynical and critical. This is a series about people attempting to survive an apocalypse; the zombies are only there to remind us that the characters are living in a post-apocalyptic setting. I loved this episode because of the character development: smart-ass Carl tried to do it on his own and loses a fight with a door, is nearly killed repeatedly, and thus realizes he CANNOT survive without his father. Michonne sees a look-alike zombie and decides she cannot face living alone, as she had done before she met Andrea, kills the zombies in a cathartic gesture, and follows the footprints (and the pudding can) to find people she clearly loves. I could watch Carl bonce off that door repeatedly, and laugh at him, because it was a big clue to him how small he really is. And I would watch Michonne looking in that window repeatedly, and cry with her, because she is so relieved to find those she loves, and I am relieved for her.

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Perfect summation of this episode ladyvampire44. I loved how it showed Michonne almost giving in to the hell she's been living in before coming to her senses. Her relief and tears at finding Rick and Carl was a huge step in her character development, she's not just a mindless killing machine, she's part of a family. The smile on Rick's face in the last scene made my day. Can't wait for the next ep though, really need my Daryl fix :)
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I actually was surprised at first because I thought initially the episode was indicating that Michone was looking for them, even when she walked across the road, I figured she maybe wanted to travel off road, but seemed to still sort of be going in the right direction. I guess I was a little bothered because I only really realized the gravity of her decision to move on and NOT follow her friends by the time she changed her mind to do that very thing :P .Oh well.
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9 out of 10!!
realy good episode!

whas realy impressed with carl,hes growning up,did a great best job on this episode.

is there going to mbe more episode of the outbreak we will see how when etc?
or is it a spinn off?
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I'm not sure if I missed something, but what happened to Rick? Why is he so sick and weak and wheezing?
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SPOILER ALERT:
In Episode 4\08 The Governor nearly beats Rick to death, and is strangling the life out of him when Michonne drives the Katana through his chest, thus saving Rick.
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Oh ok, fair enough, thanks. He seemed more like he'd caught some kind of illness to me.
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Dear tim, how come you nitpick on every other show you review "helix, under the dome" but you're giving the walking dead a huge break?!

Why didn't it bother you when Michone was going back to the prison randomly killing zombies, while most were just walking around in the background acting as if she wasn't there?
I mean it was established in previous episodes that zombies would instantly zone in on any survivor they would see, and even run towards them (remember how Otis died when he was with shane? Or when the zombies ran towards Sophia?)

Another weird thing is Michone walking through the zombie horde. I mean I get that smearing zombie smudge all over you makes you smell and look like a zombie and thus offers some sort of camoflage but just because you have 2 zombies next to you that arent atacking, doesnt mean that other zombies shouldnt atack you. And even if that would be the case, how on earth could she possibly have killed 20+ zombies that were all around her without geting one single scratch. I mean at one point the sword would of gotten stuck into one and the ones from behind would of got her.

And there were so many gunshots yet no zombie horde was formed. Why was that? They were clearely in a populated areea that should of had many zombies so why didnt they come out? Were they at a zombie shoe eating convention?

I know this show is about the characters and their personalities, but it is a zombie movie and having some zombie lore that they establish and then STICK ON IT would really help with the imersion.
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The part that stuck out to me; at some point, while Michonne was walking with her new pet zombies, they were leading HER. Fairly confident that shouldn't have worked.
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The thing thas has been making me crazy is that at the beginning, there was a time gap (hours!) before you reanimated as a walker, I don´t remember the time, but I remember the scientist talking about his experiments, and that beautiful scene with Andrea caressing her sister Amy before she "came back"
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yes and how everyone will become a walker even if dying from a non walker death. But in the first season, the hospital and roadways were filled with dead bodies, none of them coming back. It's like changing the rules in the middle of the game.
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Well that is established in the lore that it can take up to days with some people and seconds with others
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it was a good episode, I wasn't disappointed... but I DO miss character development.
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This episode was always going to more downbeat after the last one , a bit like clear with more of back story to Micchone although I am getting a bit fed up of Carl whining. Hopefully next week a few of the survivors will get in trouble , I am glad the governor story finished.
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Walking Dead is at best a mediocre show with glints of spectacular moments but they are too and far between which is unacceptable for a show that is in the final stretch of it's 4th Season. Now let's take a look at a show that has already garnered a ton of praise from press and new fans alike here on TV.com. A show that is still in it's infancy with only just airing it's 4th episode this past Sunday (the best yet by the way). True Detective has had a near perfect 4 episode streak (something that can't really be said with Walking Dead, first half of Season 2 and last half of Season 3 anyone?) with very strong writing, excellent character growth, awesome music and cinematography. I care more for Cohle and Hart than I do anybody on Walking Dead right now and don't get me wrong there hasn't been a ton of action in True Detective but the characters and story are so engrossing I don't care. I know that True Detective is still new and there's some opportunity for hiccup but in the short period its been on the air I can honestly say that I look forward to watching what happens to those two more than what happens to Rick and co.
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So watch True Detective then.
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i really thought something bad will happen to Michonne after she saw carl and rick from the window, the silence and too many horror movies told me for an instant that she will get bitten but im glad the director didnt do it...

anyway, poor episode in action but very important, this episodes are very important to build character and to show us the thrilling and adventure of living in a world with zombies, i remember zombieland, it was awesome for this little small moments going to the market or going to other people houses etc etc

i think this episode was very good
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Hahah, I was really bracing myself at end there, too!
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I didn't mind this episode..a little slow but backstory on Michonne is always appreciated..like someone said below, like Lost..a backstory on each of the main characters would've been a good call.But Lost had 22 episodes it's first 3 seasons.
Plenty of time to get to know the castaways..The thing with Walking Dead's slower episodes is sometimes I feel they are just who focused on one or two characters that we already know. Wouldn't it have been cool to get a Glen or a Darryl flashback? Sometimes I feel the focus is just a little too much on Rick and Carl..anyway Grade for the episode B..
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So many things went wrong because of people stupidity..
-The gobernor had a TANK and the surprise factor, why would he try to negotiate? He knew that rick would never leave the prison.. In fact, the gobernor had so much information about the prison and the guys, that the fact that he couldn't take the prison is due to his incompetence.

-They had the stupid bus plan, but they couldn't agree on a place to meet in case something went wrong?

-No matter what happens, you don't let your kid wander around an unprotected area (i'm not talking about carl, but the little girl.)
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I so wanted to love this episode, but...

I hardly ever find a series boring (well... excluding sitcoms). Frankly - when ppl call a series (or a movie) boring it makes me wanna look closer at it, because often enough it means it has believable, good characters and a daring script (prime examples: Mad Men, True Detective).

but this show - I continue to watch it but.... I STILL DON'T CARE about anyone! The show has no direction (it's like the concept of Seinfeld - "a show about nothing" - taken too litteral. With zombies added), there is no emotional ride. It survives because of some great acting skills, and good directing and editing... but scriptwise... meeeeeeehhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!

season 4B is supposedly the best so far. if its not tru i'm done. most of the time i whish i already were, anyhow.
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Be careful having an opinion Frankjc81 might tell you to go watch Revolution cause you're not smart enough to grasp what the writers are trying to accomplish.
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well... i guess Frankjc81 would be correct. I have not the slightes idea what's going on in their heads. nor have i got any clue how they can fail so miserably with a concept that is spot-on on paper. and i'm completely puzzled why on earth this show pulls Guinnes Book of Records sice viewers.

but the biggest sign of my lack of smartness is why i keep comming back to watch it
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Hahaha right?! I don't know why I keep giving this show multiple chances but I keep holding out hope it won't let me down anymore.
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I will always love this episode because it gave us the best moment yet of the entire series - Carl failing to bust down a door and falling down. Amazing. I could watch that .gif forever.

I actually liked this episode, even though Carl was an asshat for a lot of it. I'm glad Michonne joined them in the end, and I don't mind them having more of a lax episode, because a lot went down and the characters need this time to collect themselves a bit and regroup. Besides, it looks like next week will be a bit more action-packed anyway.
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I was all set to flame this episode for being boring when it dawned on me that this is what TWD is all about. It's not really about the zombies or cool zombie smashing or clan wars or love stories. It's about telling a story about some people trying to survive. And that's just what this episode did. I noticed Tim bashing this episode for being boring, but how is this episode much different from Clear which is presumably Tims favorite episode? They're both about giving us an insight into what these people are thinking. It's much more interesting and relatable to see how they survive and act towards each other rather than how many different ways they can bash a zombies head in. That's just the spice. I absolutely loved the two episodes about the governer, but didn't like the prison outbreak drama much. Character development is always a great thing, at least when done right, and I think TWD is great at that. Great episode.
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That is what I have tried to convey all along! Well said!
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While we were watching The Walking Dead, little did we realize during the broadcast of the Winter Olympics that Bob Costas was turning into a zombie...


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This was my favorite episode in a long time. It was real. All the characters in this episode really connected with me as real human beings. Especially Karl. He had a long day. A day that contained stuff worth a whole season. It was succinct and brilliant.

Up until this episode I thought the title described both parties (Michonne walking among the dead was kind of symbolic) but this one changed it. It was a great premiere of the second part.
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The episode would have felt stronger if we could have actually believed that Rick could die in this show. But, despite all the past impressions, we don't believe it. Hence, it was just about Carl-man-up and stop eating pudding. I liked it, though. The structure sort of made sense. And Michonne backstory matters because we already know Rick-Carl's backstory and they are going to be a family now.
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It was probably a bit much to expect the same consistency in the quality of the series' heading into this second half of the season since the standard setting The Walking Dead's been reliant on for the past season and a half is now behind them, and all of its characters are now on different trajectories.

Carl was painful in this episode. He blames Rick for not protecting everyone, when Rick is obviously one man and shouldn't be accountable for the lives of everyone. He tells Rick he can take care of himself, yet frequently disregards some of Rick's most important rules, like going out alone and using a gun. He tells Rick he's a man, but then cowardly yells at Rick what he really feels when he's unconscious rather than face to face.

I also expected more from Michonne's story. She reverted to her early season three appearances and was an expressionless mute throughout. Her dreams/ flashbacks were heavy-handed, despite providing some important backstory to her character. And her revelation that she didn't want to become a zombie and decided to return to find Rick and Carl seemed too quickly resolved, and deserved some more inner conflict I think.

It did have some great moments though, Rick eating the pudding, like Tim mentioned, being a highlight.
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Carl ate the pudding. It would have been a great scene if Rick was the one eating the pudding, smiling, with his feet dangling off the second floor of the house though.
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Something that's been bugging me a little.. Michones Pets, ok they have no arms or mouth, but why do they not still try to attack? Why do they stop walking when she does? Sorry, but it doesnt make much sense to me. Anyone care to explain?
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I also reacted to that. Any other walker keeps trying to feed until their heads get smashed. They couldn't be so self conscious that they're able to reason "Oh, my mouth and arms are gone. No need to try to attack any more. Let's just be her pet instead."
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Yeah it happens far too soon, I think this or some other zombie show had the zombies actually lose their appetite after their inability to chew or eat and if you remember Bud in Day of the Dead he becomes somewhat docile and even trained to the point where he is like a pet performing small tasks. Guess Walking Dead is a pastiche of zombie lore lifting this or that from the cannon of previous films, comics, stories.
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I really liked this episode. I wish we had the backstory on all the characters, like Lost. Sometimes, I think the fans of this show just want to see zombies eating characters and nothing else...talk about boring! Every time there is a character driven episode, people cry boring or foul. The reason I fell in love with this show was for the story about the a group of people trying to survive a zombie attack, not to watch zombies eating the characters the whole show.

I love seeing Michionne so vulnerable and scared. I related to her more. Chandler Riggs is so good as Carl, I always love him on screen.

I like the zombie action but I LOVE the characters.
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I don't know if it says anything about this episode, but the thing I was most puzzled by was Michones knife rack in the kitchen, that could hold a samurai sword 3 times longer than the rack.

However, this "dream sequence" maybe just was filled with illogical moments just because it was a dream sequence..?
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Anything is possible in a dream sequence. A partial explanation is how the "mundane" in her life evolves from preparation of hors d'oevres with a kitchen knife, to the cleaving of zombie heads with the katana...
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Yeah, I think you're spot on there. It was quite apparent that they wanted to show that it was a dream sequence by adding some strange attributes. But I quite liked that detail :)

Otherwise I pretty much agree with mr Surette. At some point I thought they would kill off Rick (offcourse, that's what they wanted us to believe. And hey, he didn't respond/react at all when Carl was kicking and shouting at him..?). But other from that, I really didn't feel that anything of interest happened.
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Oh boy--- you couldn't immediately piece together Michonne's samarai sword in the kitchen with the fact it was a dream sequence, AND you thought there was a chance Rick had died on the couch? Magicians must love you
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Hey, don't be a hater :) I must admit that I first thought it was more of a memory than a dream sequence and that's when I reacted about the samurai sword. But offcourse it was pretty obvious later on that it was a dream, I still found that detail amusing though :)

I don't find it that amazing to buy into the dying Rick part either. I you haven't read the comics (which I haven't), there's no way to know what's going to happen. Found it very confusing that he didn't react at all when Carl was messing around, and if any show would kill of their (our) darlings without any warning it would be this one.
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Liked the stuff with Michonne, hated the stuff with Carl.
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Tim, are you high? I am no lemming-like fan of TWD, but this was one of its best episodes in a while. I could relate to Carl because I remember snapping back at my dad at 15. GOD KNOWS how much of a teenage dick I would've been if zombies were always chasing us, and he kept treating me like a helpless kid.

The fact there there wasn't a lot of dialogue (and usually TWD is over abundant with talking) was great. I got to see moments (past and present), and not have anyone tell me what's going on.

And Michonne? She had a great life. Beautiful kid, great man (btw, black people don't call mates "lovers." She's "his woman," or he's "her man"), and it all went to shit! And she became the zombie she was fighting to stay alive. Is it really that boring to explore the idea that people actually need to be with people to keep from becoming dead inside?

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That is hilarious!
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Exactly my thoughts, can't have zombies falling through the ceiling every episode, this show has moments of contemplation on survival and plugs you into the character's emotions. The episode with the hitchhiker or even the short webisodes have something other than running from zombies incessantly.

There seems like this base of people that just operate on a literal level and perhaps need constant action or the unspoken part of storytelling elludes or bores them, perhaps the same people need a laugh track on a sitcom so they know what was said or done by the particular character/s was funny.
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I wasn't crazy about this episode, but I appreciated it much more after Talking Dead.
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I did sleep in 15 minutes of episode for a couple of hours. Yes the episode was very slow for the first episode, and there were good moments too. I hope that slowness is over woth this one and we will go with more talkative and moving episodes.
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Not my favourite episode by any means, but I was just so happy the show is back that I could easily live through any 'boredom' there might have been. There are going to be days that pass even in the zombie apocalypse where little or nothing happens but walking around or staying in a home and doing nothing, and while that is not necessarily ideal for TV viewers to see, I didn't think the episode was that bad.
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Ha ha! I have thought about the boredom factor in the Z.A. Can you imagine no electronic devices? Books and conversation are great but only if you have access to them. Imagine being stuck with just one person (like Carl and Rick) with no library nearby? That would be depressing! I would definitely go crazy without music, tv, movies, internet, etc.
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I think that part was relatively well displayed when Carl spreads a huge smile upon finding the big TV with game console attached, and then his subsequent frown when he knows he can do nothing with it but make a door lock. It was also, obviously, meant to contrast his childhood with the budding reality of the ZA adolescence he has been thrust into, but I digress.
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So true. He was all smiles at first.
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Jurassic Bark.
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I love TWD, I really do....but as soon as Carl started WALKING BACKWARDS away from the walkers I knew it was going downhill fast.

I'm glad so many people like this episode, but it just wasn't good television for me.
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So many enjoyed it? I doubt it!
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I highly enjoyed this episode, woud even go as far as to say it was one of my favorites. Thought Miconne did deserve a back story. We found out those two guys she was originally toting around as her 'pets' were her boyfriend and friend; that really confirms how cold and dark Michonne had to become to survive in this world. Also some great scenes in this episode, with Michonne's badass insane zombie beheading showdown and Carl sitting on the roof eating his pudding. So I agree with Tim on that one, it was beautiful in a way (also completely agree about dream sequences; I complain about them all the time!) But I don't agree that this episode was boring, not at all in my opinion.
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The jury is still out on this one, remember she told Andrea they weren't humans to begin with as if they were the devils. Her bf and his friend seemed good folks and the talk that she had with her dead bf, that she still loves him, missing him. So i don't believe they were her pets or the writers screwed up.
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Good point. I actually didn't notice this myself while watching the episode but they mentioned it on Talking Dead, with Danai Gurira herself confirming it. So idk, shrug*... Plot hole?
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I always relate to Carl - and, in this case, also to Joe Jr. - because he's facing an adult reality that he may have to survive his father sooner rather than later.

Carl already shot his mother, he thinks his sister is dead but, in that last moment when Rick was in the shadows, he was back to being a regular teenager afraid to lose his father.

If only Carol would've been here!
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There's no doubt that this is one of the best shows on TV, and I enjoyed this episode a lot, but it's more fun (and easier) to talk about the things I didn't like, so here we go:

* This is far too late to dig into Michonne's origin story. And why bring in a well-known actor (Aldis Hodge) to do only a short dream scene? Are they planning to do more Michonne flashbacks?

* Michonne was pretty dumb to get rid of those two as soon as she was alone with them. She couldn't know if she would need them again an hour later. On the other hand, she was really badass when she rounded them up at the start of the episode.

* It was too predictable that Carl would get into trouble when he lead those walkers away, walking backwards. But I guess we should be grateful that he didn't trip and fall backwards in the middle of the street, and that the walker that appeared behind him didn't come out of nowhere the way they have many times in the past.

* Why is everyone assuming that no one else survived? Seems pretty dumb.

* Don't they have some sort of rendezvous point that they have agreed upon in advance? Seems stupid not to. I guess we're supposed to think that it's reasonable that they didn't, because no other place is safe, but I don't think it's reasonable. They could e.g. have a list of houses that they have previously cleared in search of food. (If such a house has been reclaimed by walkers, they can move on to the next). The rendezvous point could also be on a road somewhere between towns. They don't have to live there. They could have agreed to try to get there at noon every day the first week.
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I do agree about not having an evacuation plan. After the farm was overrun, they should have developed a clear plan for future evacuation with a meeting point, and everyone should have been well-educated on that plan.
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I kept expecting the line "stay in the house Carl". When he doesn't stay in the house, things just go so badly...
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Michonne's dream sequence was pedestrian (as in lame)
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Manipulative and obvious, I'm not calling it art just because it's in a museum.

(Seriously, I really I'm sorry about her kid but he only remind me Judith is missing)
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Is there a chance that Shane might be Michonne's little boy father? lol
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For one, Shane was too busy trying to father Judith back in when

...and I'm still waiting for a definite answer on that one! (Yes, Carl, I do remember Shane)
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Door beat Carl, hilarious, Not that much action but good to see where a few characters are emotionally.
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What some regard as boring about the show, I regard as tension inducing.

Also, if Herschel hadn't been decapitated, he would have risen as Herschel Walker.
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At least we had Hershel's head.

Binus points because neither Beth nor Maggie had to put it out of its misery.
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Wow !! This espisode was AMAZING ! It was exactly what we needed after what happened. It had emotion and a little hope. Love it !
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I think this was a perfect episode. We finally know where Carl's head was/is at.
Why he thinks what he thinks and why he does what he does. He is a teenager that never had a chance of growing up normally. Most adult's live by the rule of having humanity and morals to guide them. This is what Rick is try to relay to his son. Carl is growing up in a very different world where survival and to saves those close to you is what counts. I don't know if there is any humanity or even morals left in this Zombie world but each Rick and Carl have a lot to learn from each other. As for Michione, we are just now starting to see where she's coming from and what her inner torture is all about.

People forget, the show is not about killing Zombies only. The show need not be about action and bombs and guns and so on all the time. The show is more to do how we as people would react in this kind of apocalyptic world. As it has been said so many times. TWD is a character driven show.
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Yes, very much agree with you there. Carl did show how a kid has to grow up in this world but I also liked the little bit of innocent childish humanity still left when he wrote on the door "walker got my shoe but didn't get me". Must be nice to have something that could make you smile in that world and I'm sure someone coming across that door and reading that would be able to smile. Very eager to see how the season plays out and finding out who is stuck with who and how are they going to survive now.
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Next week on The Walking Dead: Someone needs to learn how to drive a bus.
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I'm genuinely astounded by the level of vitriol towards the author of this review. If people are so unhappy with the quality of his reviews, perhaps someone should canvas general opinion and devise a poll of some sort. That way the situation gets dealt with rather than being left to fester.

As to the episode, Herschel's head was nice surprise, he really was well liked on the show. I did'nt find it as boring as the review made it sound mainly because the characters it focused on were of interest to me.
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Just a thought: with Netflix we can roll right through a whole season and series in a matter of days. An episode that slows down and develops the characters would be no big deal, since we could just continue watching and get our fill of action. But watching a weekly series means that 1 show is all we get for 7 days---so I can see how people get a little bummed out by "boring" episodes.
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Yes.....binge-watching does have a tendency to mask shows which are'nt above average.
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I've been binging on this show for a week, but I still think I loved it :)
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