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The Walking Dead “Hounded”

Photo Credit: AMC

Well, so far this season, the writers have done a fantastic job of switching the plots around in the comic-book series to the point where fans don’t know which end is up.  But, The Walking Dead wouldn’t be based upon the Kirkman comics if everything were changed too drastically.  Tonight was one of those occasions where the television series did match the comic.

Ever since the end of last week’s episode, everyone has been buzzing about that phone call that Rick (Andrew Lincoln) got.  Some speculated it was Carol (Melissa McBride), and I even thought it might be Morgan from season one.  But, it turns out to be none of the above and just a creation of Rick’s imagination, which is what it was it in the comic-book series.  When I first realized this, it almost felt like a letdown.  In my opinion, they could have done so much more with that storyline.  But, then once I saw the end result, I realized that it was something that was desperately needed for the group to survive.  Rick needed closure. He never got to say good-bye to Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) and tell her that he loved her despite of everything that had happened.  He got to do that, even if it was to a ghost, and now, the crazy loon that we saw in him last week appears to be gone.  He’s now back to being the leader of the group, and with the things that are soon to come, his leadership is desperately going to be needed.

After Rick’s encounter with the ghosts of The Walking Dead past, the remainder of the episode was primarily devoted to character development.  I hated Merle (Michael Rooker) in season one, and even with the brief moment of pity I had for him while he was handcuffed to that roof, I still wanted him dead.  The guy was rotten to the core! But, with his reintroduction in Woodbury, I truly believe he had changed.  The writers drew us a picture of a man who was moments from death, and perhaps that near-death experience had made him into a better person.  Wrong.  Tonight, we realize the new Merle is just the old Merle, and we had been fooled.  He kills one of the citizens of Woodbury in cold blood, lies to the Governor (David Morrissey) about it, and then kidnaps Glenn (Steve Yeun) and Maggie (Lauren Cohen) when they are making a run for supplies.  I do believe he cares about his brother, but this sh*t he’s pulling is way out of line.

Next we move on to Andrea.  If the girl is so horny that she just has to have a man, why in the world can she pick a decent one?  Instead, she ends up in bed with the Governor, and honestly, I wanted to puke during that scene (just like I wanted to puke when she banged Shane in season two).  On top of that, she can’t seem to follow any rules at all.  She jumps over the wall to kill a walker when that is strictly forbidden.  Does that bring back any déjà vu for anyone?  You remember in season two when Andrea wanted to be a hot shot and shoot a walker that she thought she saw coming across the field on the farm?  She was told straight up not to do it, and that “walker” turned out to be Daryl (Norman Reedus).  In my opinion, she’s starting to be a threat to any group that she’s in, and it wouldn’t surprise me if she doesn’t last until the season’s end.

Now, finally, for the best part of the episode, and the one that raises some of the biggest questions.  After nearly being killed by Merle, Michonne (Danai Gurira) escapes and witnesses Merle meeting up with Glenn and Maggie and taking them hostage.  I’m not entirely sure why she didn’t step up to try and help (maybe perhaps because she was hurt and couldn’t fight as effectively).  But, she does quickly realize that with all of the zombie guts on her (just like in the Season One episode “Guts”!), she smells like a walker, and so, the walkers leave her alone.  So, she picks up the baby supplies left behind by Glenn and Maggie and finds her way to the prison, with about a dozen walkers in tow. Yes, folks, Michonne and Rick finally meet.  When that happened, I actually got up and started jumping for joy!

Wow, so many questions are raised now, and the writers did a fantastic job putting the pieces of this episode together in a way to where you don’t know anything for sure.  The only thing we know for certain is that Rick’s group will meet the Governor and very soon because Michonne can lead him back there.  That meeting should be interesting to say the least.  The big question is about Glenn and Maggie.  In the comics, the Governor rapes and tortures Michonne, and I’m wondering if the writers are going to turn that around and make that Maggie’s fate.  Man, that would suck some serious ass, but it wouldn’t surprise me at all.

Next week’s episode should be very interesting, and no matter what your schedule is for next Sunday, don’t miss this episode.  As we know, Rick doesn’t let in new members into his group, but I have a feeling that he’ll make an exception for Michonne, and she’s going to become a strong ally for Rick’s team.

Some memorable quotes and tidbits

  •  She, she sent you a bitergram!” – Merle
  • “We having fun yet?” – Merle
  • “She ain’t running, she’s hunting” – Merle
  • “Now, that’s how it’s done!” – Andrea
  • “I liked the fights, but I didn’t like the fact that I liked it”  — Andrea
  • Did anyone else notice that Merle asked the Governor if he had “company” when he knocked on his bedroom door?  Obviously, this implies the Governor has taken multiple mistresses before.  What a creep.
  • YES!!!! Carol is alive! She appears to be injured, but let’s hope she hasn’t been bitten!  I can actually hear the Daryl/Carol shippers squeeing from all over!
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