So, it will come as no secret to loyal readers of the PCS that Walking Dead has been in kind of a funk, combining all the excitement of watching a bunch of people wander aimlessly through abandoned countryside with some of the most heavy-handed character development this side of an afterschool special. But this week’s episode promised something a little different, a development that would shock and horrify the blogosphere. Is it enough to shake off the late-season torpor that’s been afflicting cable’s number one drama? Only the nanobots can say for sure.
- Writers are laying the saintliness on Mika a little thick, aren’t they? = -2pts
- Is that fire off in the distance a remnant of Daryl and Beth’s bender? = -3pts (+3pts for the subtle callback, -6pts for reminding us of the ending to that episode)
- “My mom used to say, ‘Everything works out the way it’s supposed to.’” Jesus, guys, why didn’t you just paint a target on Mika’s forehead and call it a day? = -8pts
- Carol, Tyrese, and the kids find their way to an abandoned pecan farm that will in no way transform into a site of unimaginable horror and tragedy by the end of this episode. = +10pts
- Zombie tag! Your bit! = +3pts
- Lizzie’s freakout over the slain walker reminds us why we never really liked her character. = -7pts
- Upon spotting a deer in the wooded area near the cottage, Carol hands Mika the rifle and asks her to take the shot. = -2pts (Because it totally makes sense to stake your ability to eat for the night on the will and aim of a ten year old girl.)
- Zombie burn victim massacre! = +9pts
- Convincing a psychopathic eleven-year-old who just murdered her sister NOT to kill a baby because little Judith “wouldn’t be able to walk” after she turned. = +15pts
- Shooting an 11-year-old in the back of the head. = +25pts
- …But robbing Carl of his rightful kill yet again. = -7pts (See the comic.)
- Tyrese’s forgiveness of Carol for killing his girlfriend is heartwarming, but feels a little forced. = -3pts
Season Score = +244pts
A super eventful episode. Child-on-child violence. The loss of another set of surrogate daughters. Tyrese learning the identity of his girlfriend’s murderer. There’s enough legitimate drama packed into these forty-some-odd minutes to mostly make up for its occasional lapse into ham-fistedeness.
Score Technician: Joe Hemmerling