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There’s No Coming Back, The Walking Dead: “30 Days Without an Accident” 

Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

The season four premiere of The Walking Dead was not what I expected it to be. There was no Governor. But there still managed to be some action and it set up something new and deadly the characters will have to face. It already makes me scared to think of who we’re going to lose before the first half of this season is through. Some thoughts on “30 Seconds Without an Accident”:

-Life continues at the prison. Rick is farming, growing food. He’s not going out on the big run of the episode, he’s sticking close to home, which is strange. He’s kind of turned into the prison’s very own Charles Ingalls. Hershel even says they need to find him some overalls. I adore the way the Hershel and Rick friendship has evolved.

-And, by the way, Hershel’s walking on two legs — did someone make some sort of prosthetic for him? Explanation please. Did I miss it?

-I really like the beginning of the episode and how we see Rick at work and he’s listening to music so loud that it drowns out the sounds of the zombies. But that roar is ever present. I don’t know how they put up with it.

-As we know, there is no more Rick Dictatorship. It’s more of a democracy. There’s a council now that’s made up of of Hershel, Carol, Glenn, Daryl, Sasha…and Rick? I can’t tell. I’m wondering if he’s completely out of the making decisions game. I wouldn’t blame him if he took himself out of a leadership role altogether. He wasn’t operating on all cylinders last season.

-Another reason why Rick may not be part of that council — they’re keeping things from him. Like that “storytime” that Carol holds for the kids. It starts out all normal but then transitions into teaching the kids how to knife zombies. Which is useful. But when Carl catches them in the middle of Carol schooling the kids, she tells him not to tell his father. Ruh Roh.

-That crazy woman that Rick gives food to and ultimately kills herself — she looked like she was practically a zombie…but she was alive. When she started talking I was stunned. Not surprisingly, she ended up being so far gone. Her husband had turned but she was treating him like he was still the husband she’s always known. Rick had to sympathize with her plight. If he had been on his own. If he didn’t have his son and daughter and his new family, this could have been him. He did come back. But did all of him come back? I’m not sure.

-I’ve always liked the bond between Carol and Daryl. They seem much closer now. However, I’m not sure if calling him Pookie was in character. Or if I liked it. The jury’s out. I must process.

Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

-Maggie tells Glenn she’s not pregnant. While I love, love, love this couple, having a baby would probably not be the best thing right now. There are so many characters needing facetime right now. I could have done with more Maggie and Glenn. And Michonne too. But loved that she snagged an electric razor for Rick: “Your face is losing the war.”

-I’m totally cool with Tyreese and Karen. But Tyreese, man, he needs to embrace this zombie existence. He doesn’t want to stake the zombies at the fence. He doesn’t want to go out on the runs and face the zombies there. He won’t kill people for the Governor. What will he do? Maybe he’s a lover not a fighter.

-We see a lot more Beth. And I actually don’t mind. She’s become desensitized to what’s going on. She loses the guy she’s with in that Big Spot run (Kyle Gallner, Veronica Mars‘ Beaver Casablancas, Bart Allen from Smallville) and the way she reacts is a bit unexpected. No tears. No breakdown. It makes sense, however. In this new world, you lose people over and over again. At a certain point, the tears dry up. I’m looking forward to seeing more of Beth.

Rewind and Repeat Moment: Suspended Zombie @ The Big Spot: The minute the shelves of wine tipped over onto newcomer Bob Stookey, you knew it was zombie attack time. I loved the walkers falling through the roof. The one tethered by his intestines — so gross but so cool. I’m pretty squeamish but I loved that moment. I had to rewind and watch it again.

-However, the shot that’s probably going to stick with me and invade my dreams is the very last one of the episode. Carl’s friend Patrick had been feeling ill. He even left the storytime session early. That night he was coughing and he got up to take a shower. That’s when he collapsed. There was a close-up shot of his face and his eyes suddenly popped open. I knew it was coming and it still scared the hell out of me. But what in the world is going on with him? Some sort of flu-like virus? Are we about to get an outbreak? And how does it spread? Because Daryl did shake Patrick’s hand. And now there is a walker inside the prison. Guh. Next Sunday needs to happen now.

The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.

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