Mar 12 2012 4:00pm

The Walking Dead S2, E12: “Better Angels”

The last thing I wanted to do on Sunday night was watch another mediocre-to-sorta-good episode of The Walking Dead. Doing my taxes, rearranging my closet, folding my socks, staring at nothing, really anything at all seemed like a better option than spending yet another hour on this show.

And then came “Better Angels.” Holy crap on a spatula, that was a great episode. Visually, storywise, overarching plotwise, characterwise, everything. We’re talking series premiere good. I have no idea what the heck happened between last week and this week to make this so much better than prior eps, but I hope it keeps happening. This version of TWD is one I can get behind.

We need to talk about Shane. (This part is going to get a wee bit spoilery with the comics, nothing majorly overt, but just a head’s up.) He has always been a terribly problematic character, second only to Lori in sheer irritatingness and inconsistency. Apparently Frank Darabont didn’t like how quickly Robert Kirkman killed him off in the comics — quick enough that he becomes a “blink and you’ll miss it” character — that he decided to keep him around indefinitely. A show like The Walking Dead needs someone like Shane. The zombies aren’t any more villanous than a plague of locusts. They suck and make life infinitely more difficult, but there’s naught to be done except to do your best to work around them. A Big Bad actively fucks your shit up. She or he goes out of their way to ruin your day and wants to see you beaten, broken, and destroyed. They also push the plot forward and give the other characters — especially the protagonist — something to react to and plan against.

That was what Shane was supposed to be. Instead he spent most of his screen time as a Medium Sized Tool who occasionally rose to soap opera levels of psychotic behavior triggered by incessant head rubbing. In “Better Angels,” Shane finally put on his supervillain face. He went from being an instigator to a full on Bond villain. Take the cold open for example. While the gang were killing zombies on their own, they all went for the headshot. Then Shane set his sights on a walker and beat it up. His violence sparked the animalistic side in the others and they all started kicking the goo out of it until Shane’s bloodlust peaked and he killed it. That was pretty much the antithesis of Dale’s message, and it’s poignant that it happened during Rick’s Big Speech. (It was also about as understated as Daryl’s hog, but that’s a complaint for another time.)

Ah, the ole’ Chekhov’s Gun routine. Like last week with Dale and Andrea getting chummy, the writers psyched the comics fans out with Shane giving Carl the gun. Well, sorta. Shane has had an expiration date stamped on his forehead since day one, so his death wasn’t surprising. What was surprising was how well the whole thing played out. Though Dale’s death is the only drastic change between last week and this week, it’s not the absence of his character that improved the show. Instead, it was a combination of better writing (you won’t get a “great” out of me on that score until someone teaches the writers the meaning of subtlety) and a catalyst. His unexpected execution by mud zombie became the fulcrum around which the group united as an effective and productive team. Except for Shane. Loud, crass, cruel, stupid Shane. He’s the broken spoke, the squeaky wheel if you will (and if you won’t, here’s a scene of Shane fixing a squeaky windmill which moves in a circle like a wheel, just in case you weren’t clear on the metaphor).

Where “Judge, Jury, Executioner” took place almost entirely at dusk, “Better Angels” starts the following dawn. As I said last week, the time of day is a quick and dirty writer’s cheat for establishing tone. Following in that tradition, dawn is a time of promise and renewed hope. We make plans at dawn because the whole world is there just teeming with possibilities. Dawn is when a horror movie ends. Ghosts, vampires, and things that go bump in the night skitter away with the dawn and the handful of survivors step into the morning sunlight joyful to be alive. We saw that with the funeral service and Rick’s eulogy/call to arms. Andrea, T-Dog, and other second stringers (and Shane) went out and actually did something about the cattle-killing lamebrains instead of lamenting about it and glaring at each other for 42 minutes. Rick made a decision about Randall, a real decision, not one he picked based on the arbitrary whims of other people, and stuck to it. The other characters talked to each other.

Let me reiterate that last point. The other characters TALKED TO EACH OTHER. They all had personalities (not counting Carol or the rest of Hershel’s family that aren’t Maggie). It’s like all of a sudden they’re three dimensional people with complex opinions who talk to each other like human beings instead of plot points. Even Lori wasn’t a cipher or a harpy or a crazed Lady Macbeth. And who knew T-Dog was actually funny? Where was this guy the last 18 episodes? I like this guy. Can we have more of him? Maybe a snark-off between T-Dog and Glenn? It’s nice having characters not only engage with each other, but to have characters that never get the chance to interact (like Glenn and Andrea, Daryl and Rick, Glenn and Daryl, Lori and Hershel, and T-Dog and anyone else) relate to one another as people with a shared goal. The group isn’t just unbroken, it’s completely whole. They are a civilized society with a plan for the future.

Then came nightfall. It’s important to note here that we don’t actually see sunset. We got our fill of foreboding last week. This week is all about hope and the inevitability of the death of that hope in the face of reality (insert joke about the upcoming presidential election here). The gang might have thought they had come out the other side, that the worst of it was behind them and they really could get through this thing. But as Rick pointed out later to Carl, everyone dies eventually. They aren’t living some horror movie that ends when the sun comes up. For them, for all of us, the sun always goes back down again and we’re left to face alone the endless darkness and its malevolent inhabitants. And just because a new day makes us feel fresh and clean doesn’t mean we actually are. Rick will have to carry around Shane’s murder for the rest of his life — however long or short it may be — and there’s no doubt he’ll feel it harder than Shane felt his own guilt over Otis. It’s also a turning point for Carl. Last week he was practically begging to see a killing up close, and now he’s done it himself. There’s no way that kid grows up normal. They’ll be lucky if he even ends up sane.

Final Thoughts

  • “He said this group was broken. The best way to honor him is to unbreak it, set aside our differences, and pull together. Stop feeling sorry for ourselves. Take control of our lives, our safety, our future. We’re not broken. We’re gonna prove him wrong.”
  • “Randall’s not the only threat out there. Keep an eye out for each other.” Ah, there’s the heavy-handed subtext I know and loathe.
  • “This was you, not me! Not me!”
  • “The Governor called, you’re off the hook.” Heh. T-Dog wins best line of the night.
  • “He died, Dad.” “Yeah. Yeah. Feels like a lot of that going around.”
  • OH MY GOD. T-Dog had lines. Several lines. In different scenes. And he made jokes. It’s a Christmas miracle!
  • First Sophia, and now Dale. They keep saying things like “it didn’t feel real before, but now it does.” They do remember there was a whole first season, right? I mean, like, 6 other group members were killed off last year. This isn’t some new thing they’re experiencing.

Alex Brown is a research librarian by day, writer by night, and all around geek who watches entirely too much TV. One of these days she will go out and have a life, but the daystar, it burns. You can follow her on Twitter if you dare.

1. emeraldcite
You won't get subtlety out of this show until you lose a large number of viewers. The show is too popular to couch story behind nuanced acting. Not going to happen.

They've turned Walking Dead into a soap opera with zombies and got a big ratings kick out of it. That won't change, sadly.

On the bright side, it's a decent enough show if you just treat it like candy. Overly simplistic candy.
nicole rich
2. nrich
I really, really liked this episode. I loved watching Shane try to psyche himself up to get started (head slapping and all), loved the whole- walk behind the trees to snap whatshisname's neck thing, loved the look of the pan back from Rick, Carl, and dead walker Shane to the mob of walkers coming out of the woods, and I really loved that look on Rick's face as they walked through the woods and it dawned on him that Shane was there to kill him. His calm and acceptance of the situation was chilling.

What I didn't like was the convenient setup of the shooting in the field. The field that just happened to be in clear view of the house. The field that Carl just happened to be scanning with binoculars at that moment. Yes. They walked through the woods for however long and this is where they ended up for the final showdown.... good.

THEN. Conveniently, a horde of walkers just happen to be passing by and hear the camotion despite the fact that the farm has always been populated by a huge cast of living people (who that very same day, decided it might be a good idea to start boarding up some windows) and T-Bone. These guys blast away with target practice, have barn killings, rev motorcycles, yell at each other, burn dead bodies, stumble around in the woods at all times of the day and night, sleep in tents, and slam the screen door like in some old-timey Lemonade commercial, and nothing. But just in time for the cliffhanger, they show up, not singly, but all together like Sherman marching to the sea. I understand you have to suspend belief (duh) and whatnot, plus they had to leave us with a climax, but jebus.....

Still, for all its gimmicky setup. I liked it.
Jim Burnell
3. JimBurnell
OK, so I can't seem to change the text to white to hide the spoilers, so be warned, there be spoilers here

No comments about the most key reveal of the episode: dead people walk, even if they haven't been bitten?

I haven't read the comics, but after Googling a bit, it seemed to confirm my guess about the details concerning the fates of Shane and Randall (the virus is airborne, and everyone is infected), and it seems like a revelation that will make the survivors even more depressed about the future of humanity. I'm guessing that it's also the answer to what Jenner whispered in Rick's ear before the CDC exploded.
Alex Brown
4. AlexBrown
@emerald: I beg to differ. You can have both great subtext and big ratings. Lost is the perfect example for network tv. And if you factor in the lower ratings that cable brings in, just look at Deadwood, Justified, or, to get on the AMC train, Mad Men.

For that matter, look at the settings in TWD for subtlety. The usage of different times of day, the huge full moon between Shane and Rick, letting Randall get killed suddenly behind a tree, that is the best of both worlds. Shane smacking himself around is bad acting, and Rick's heavyhanded dialogue is just bad writing.

@nrich: I KNOW! It was sooo good! I felt like I wasn't watching the same show.

I was also bothered by the field itself. I get that they were sticking close to the woods around the house because they thought Randall hadn't gotten that far, but really? They're that close? And wasn't Carl supposed to be locked up tight in the house? How did he sneak out of a now completely boarded up house without anyone noticing the ONE KID wasn't there? And how did he know to go to that particular field when the house is surrounded by farmland? And why was he out there in the first place? Rick and Shane weren't yelling loud enough to reach the house, and it's not like anyone in the house could see them (or would be looking for them). So what the hell, man?

I think the thing with the zombie hoarde is that Carl has basically fucked it up for everyone. He brought Mud Zombie back to the property, and it then churned up a whole bunch of blood. Any walkers in the general vicinity would've picked up on the scent and wandered in, and any lamebrains would've gone along for the ride. They were probably Atlanta/city zombies who were slowly making their way out of town while looking for noms. It's been a few months now, so the walkers would've had to go out hunting. It's like a herd of cattle: when you want to bring them back to the barn you just use a little food to get the attention of a few cows and the rest follow the herd. That is less problematic than Carl's magical reappearance at just the right moment.

@Jim: Honestly, I forgot that wasn't known in the show until after I uploaded this review. It's part of the comic and I forgot that they hadn't revealed it in the show yet. But yes, it is a hugely important thing to keep in mind. It also raises the question of how one becomes a zombie. Remember, there were dead bodies in the cars on the highway at the beginning of the season. How do some turn and not others? Does it have to do with how you die?

I think the CDC question is going to be this show's "What Happened to the Mouse?" trope. It just doesn't seem relevant anymore. They'd have to do quite a bit of round pegging a square hole to get it to fit into the plot at this point. And if it was something zombie related, why would he whisper it and why would Rick keep it secret?
Jim Burnell
5. JimBurnell
@Milo1313 Given the pressure Rick has been under to keep everyone's spirits up and give people hope, I can see him not wanting to reveal that to everyone. It also would give new meaning to Jenner's comment about the blood tests not revealing anything unusual -- he was looking for someone who was immune rather than verifying that no one was infected.

The only thing that doesn't quite make sense is that (if I remember correctly, and I might not), Rick seemed surprised that the guards at the school where they were planning to drop Randall off also seemed to have become zombified without being bitten.

I've also read that Jenner told Rick his wife was pregnant, but Rick seemed surprised by that news, so...?

Plus it's been the subject of so much fan speculation that I feel like the writers must realize that they can't just let it drop.
John Ginsberg-Stevens
6. eruditeogre
SPOILERS BELOW, just so ya know.

My take was more mixed. There were more good moments, but also more of the flaws that this show cannot seem to escape. I did like the final confrontation very much, but as others noted the setting was ridiculous, as were the random zombie flashes that Rick experienced. Carl's moment of truth was marred for me by the unnecessary misunderstanding of his father, which felt forced. And the convenient zombie horde was a bit silly too; how can humans tramp through the forest at will with that herd around?

I was glad to see more interactions that were less soap-opera, like Andrea and Glenn at the Winnebago. I was glad to see T-Dog get a few lines too. I was perplexed by Laurie's talk with Shane, which for a moment felt to me like a prod to drive him over the edge. And just how is Rick going to explain to Daryl that he gave his son a weapon stolen from him?

I was ambivalent about Shane's continued existence on the show, because I felt his death in the comics occurred to heighten all sorts of stakes for the characters, especially with Carl doing the deed. I agree that you need more than walkers to create conflict and movement in the narrative, but his villainy, which seemed to boil down to "he's nuts," seemed repetitive. What it did do was build a somewhat different emotional trajectory for Rick, which I did find interesting, if also sometimes forced.

I am very curious to see what happens next week.
7. Improbable Joe
Team Sha- oh, yeah.... :(

This really was one of the better episodes, which just highlights everything the show gets so very, very wrong. And yes, I'm bitter because Shane died and Lori is still alive and being the worst mother since the invention of motherhood. If not for her, this would have been a really good hour of TV, and not just really good by TWD's low standards. "Shane, I've decided to forget that time you tried to sexually assault me. This baby could be yours, and I think you're kind of awesome sometimes. I'm so sorry that a couple of days ago I told Rick that you're a dangerous sociopath who might need to be put down. See you guys when you get back from the woods, all alone at night with guns and knives!

Then her internal dialog must be something like "I'm forgetting something... something that starts with a 'C' that I know I'm supposed to be paying attention to. 'Cabbage'? No, not that kind of farm. 'Conflicting signals'? Nope, I sent those out loud and unclear! Ummmm... 'Cat'? Did I have a cat? Something I'm supposed to feed and take care of and love and protect. It must be a cat! Here Kitty!"

And now we've lost Shane, the only good thing on the show. Shane smacking himself around is great acting, in the sense that Jon Bernthal seemed to be the only actor who understood that he was in a horror TV show, and not a complex character study full of great dialog and deep meaning. Someone should let the writers know too, come to think of it. They're not good enough to write good characters, so at least give them some energy! I mean, the best lines Andrew Lincoln has delivered on the show were him screaming at his dying ex-bestie. A little pulpy, a little over the top, just what we need from this show.
Bill Capossere
8. Billcap
As usual, it giveth and it taketh away.
T-dog: now was that really so hard? A line here, a line there, and pretty soon you’ll end up with a human being
Glen and Andrea at the RV: A little too easy and too quick, but still, it felt like a real conversation between real people. Made me want to rub my eyes and make sure this was the same show
Conversations about rooms. Again, real people. Real dialogue. Real reactions. See, small little things can still be useful
The slow unstated reveal going on with regard to the zombification process
The visual with Shane and Rick, even if it did draw some attention to itself
Rick post-confrontation
Shane killing Randall offstage, a rare moment of understatement
Shane getting killed, no matter how it happened

The negatives
Oh, that field setting. I honestly thought I’d somehow looked away and missed the brief cutaway moment where Rick dropped Shane in that field after carrying him from where they’d had their confrontation. I mean, they couldn’t seriously have us think that all that walking and talking was there. They couldn’t. No really, they couldn’t. (so then, someone please tell me I did miss that cutaway and he was carrying Shane there).

The just-add-water zombie horde. Appears as needed! Instantly! No need for messy questions!

The requisite idiot plot: Both Rick and Darryl are suspicious of Shane’s story, but let’ s just go along with the whole thing anyway. And sure, if Shane says “don’t track”, well then, Darryl just won’t track. Even after Shane leaves.

Head-rubbing. Nuff said.

The silly “Is my son going to shoot me?” moment

Lori’s out of left field conversation with Shane. So much for a real conversation between two real people

It’d be nice if the show would have taken their time with some of the repercussions of Dale’s death, some of the changes wrought in the characters. For all the times this show stands still, they still somehow manage to lurch over-quickly from place to place in terms of character. But this show did give reason to hope. Kill off Lori next (please, please), leave the farm (and with it a few more characters) behind soon (please soon), and maybe we can do something.
Alex Brown
9. AlexBrown
@Jim: The CDC thing makes a kind of sense, I guess, if you look at it that way. Then again, the comics were never terribly interested in what caused the zombie outbreak (there's no CDC plotline in them at all) but about how people survived once the world fell apart. The comics and the show are, ultimately, less George Romero and more Y: The Last Man.

@erudite: As for Lori with Shane, perhaps it semeed like a prod because that's precisely what her character has thus far been used as. But in the context of her actually having her own independent personality this week rather than being a plot tool, her conversation comes off more as a woman who is finally willing to admit to her mistakes and genuinely thinks she can make it right and make everyone happy. Everyone's done something like that before, especially women since we are often taught to be the peacemakers for men (that's a whole different can of worms that I won't get into). She, like the rest of the gang, was galvanized by Rick's eulogy and wanted to make amends to the person she wronged the most. She just misjudged Shane's reaction, and that to me is the bigger plothole. Why was everyone so intent on cutting the crazy guy with rapey tendencies so much slack when they should've dumped him and Randall both on the roadside.

@Improbable: She really is a terrible mother. At this point someone needs to put Carl on one of those toddler leashes. But to be fair to Lori - Christ, I never thought I'd say that - she and everyone else honestly believed Shane wanted to start over and get things right. And he played it well and made them think he was on their side when he was really off playing his own psychotic game of Guyball.

I disagree completely with your last paragraph, though. Shane as the only good thing on the show? Clearly you and I have both been watching alternate Shanes. He was certainly one of the most active characters, but he was the antagonist. It's the antagonist's job to antagonize, to instigate, to stir shit up, while the protag can only react. So yes, he had energy, but don't conflate tying a woman to a train track while twirling a moustache with great acting.

Also, TWD isn't strictly a horror show. It's ultimately a drama. They've been very clear that the show is about the horror of surviving, not about the horror of zombies and sociopaths. I love the horror elements the show drops in, but you can't sustain several seasons of horror movie. Horror movies are designed to end; survival isn't.

@billcap: Yeah, Carl fake aiming at Rick was unnecessary. All he had to do was say, "Dude, dad, get out of my way, I'm trying to kill the Shane Zombie skulking behind you." As for Daryl and Glenn, Daryl did keep tracking even after Shane's ominous warning. He did it ESPECIALLY because of that suspicious warning. That was how they found Undead Randall, because Daryl kept tracking. He even took Glenn's flashlight so he could see better.

And Rick didn't go off alone with Shane without suspecting something was going down. Daryl and Glenn were more caught up with finding Randall and protecting the group than in the petty testosterone battle between Rick and Shane. Rick splintered off with Shane with the intention of either getting Shane to back off/leave the group or killing him if push came to shove. And Shane went along with it because he underestimated Rick yet again and thought he was stupid enough to not see Shane pulling the wool over his eyes. And that's why Rick is a better leader than Shane, because he can play two games at once and judge the odds of which move will bring him ahead, while Shane could only ever run on one speed - pissed off.


If you really want to see Lori die horribly, just pick up the comics.
Bill Capossere
10. Billcap
On the tracking, it seemed to me that Darryl didn't begin tracking for what appeared to be quite a while. As opposed to immediately sweeping for tracks from the barn outward (where he would have quickly noted two sets, especially as one of them was someone basically being dragged along) the moment Shane left.But maybe my timing is off.

On the split, I can buy Glen as oblivious no problem. But Darryl made it clear he didn't buy Shane's story. And if he thinks Shane is willing to lie about this, maybe whack himself to make the lie appear true, in combo with all the other Shanecrazy, then he's thinking this isn't a BFF spat but something much more serious, and so he wouldn't let the split happen or would have but then followed them (the latter seems more likely to me).

On Rick, I really wanted him to go off with Shane knowing this was it, and I liked that he did, but what I meant by the "idiot" part is that I can't accept him being that suspicious and smart and yet let it go as long as it did, and have it happen as it did, with his back to Shane etc. Not when he has Carl and (as much as it grates to say) Lori back at the farm, plus all the others he allegedly feels so responsible to. Put him on his guard more, show him watchful, have him give the high sign to Darryl to follow, etc., but don't tell me he's smart enough to know Shane wants to kill him but dumb enough (or trusting enough, which at this point equals dumb enough) to make it so easy for Shane. I just don't think you can have him say "so this is where it's going to happen", which is acknowledgment of the real possibility that Shane will kill him, and at the same time have him not do anything about that possibility besides trust he can talk him out of it.

In other words, as is often the case, it's less in the intent than the execution in this show for me.

I agree that the show is more drama with horror background/elements rather than horror with some drama. Maybe that's part of the reason for execution issues--the writers still trying to find that balance themselves or having yet come to the realization of what they're doing.
11. Christiana Ellis
One interesting interpretation I've heard that at least partially explains Shane's behavior, (and perhaps Rick's too if he picked up on it), is that Shane WANTED Rick to kill him. Suicide by post-apocalyptic cop, so to speak.

Maybe it wasn't Shane's plan exactly, and part of him really did want to kill Rick, but Shane has been broken for so long, and some part of him had to realize things could never be fixed. As a result, he was really just trying to provoke Rick into putting him out of his misery, whether he was fully aware of this or not.
12. Improbable Joe
... actually, there's three shows going on here. Shane and I guess Dale were actually living in a zombie apocalypse horror show... and look how that turned out for them. Daryl is in a cool action show where he never misses and cracks wise all the time. Everyone else thinks they're doing Mad Men on the Prairie or something. That's why I'm Team Shane, because I'm a huge horror fan and Dale sucked and had to die because that's what his horror movie role was. That's why everyone loves Daryl, because everyone loves action movies and action heroes. And that's why the show worked this week, and the characters worked this week... because THIS week, TWD was a show where stuff happened and people had to do things. That's why the first half of the season was blah and the second half has been getting steadily better.

I think Billcap has the right read on the fact that the writers aren't really sure what kind of show they're writing, and they're lucky they've been given this long to figure it out. If this show was on Fox it would have already been dumped onto Friday nights on its way to cancellation. The show the NEED to be writing is a show where people are DOING THINGS, because it seems like when the characters are doing things, the writers know how to make them interact almost like real people.
treebee72 _
13. treebee72
@Milo1313 - Actually Daryl didn't keep tracking - he started to, but was cut off by Shane's bs and then went off with Glenn in a random direction as instructed by Rick. It was later that he decided to go back to where they split off & start tracking Randall. It was stupid and lazy writing to get Rick & Shane alone for their scene.

(And I still can't believe that nobody was like, 'Wait, Shane, you stopped to relock the shed after finding Randall missing, but couldn't take the time to call for/get help? WTH?')
14. Midas68
Rick likes to risk peoples lifes while saying he won't risk peoples lifes.

Him trying to make the doctor cut off their attempter murderer's leg to save him from Zombies when the Doctor kept saying he doesnt want to die to save his posible executioner while surrounded by hordes of zombies was retarded.

Ricks Wife went from "Oh No You Don't" go risking your life when we have a baby coming, to Stupidly asking people to risk theirs for a girl in some sort of sleep state=p and then going off to do it herself when she couldn't find someone stupid enough to do so.(and of course wrecking when she looks at a map)

Now Carl is the biggest retard(yeah he has kinda a excuse but not enough of one being a kid) As Shane said before he went and got the mud zombie to eat old man Zipper, "Quit trying to get yourself Killed" which of course he quickly ran to find a situation to do so.

Rick tells his son its ok that he got Old man Kipler Killed and they have great father and son moments when the kid wants to hang the prisoner(which makes daddy now not wont too) but later he lets his son have a gun(stolen at that)

Then he shoots Shane in the head(so it was another tender moment where both father and son killed their best friend/father figure.

This is only a part of the pathetic writing of the Sheriff and his family. It is exactly why I would definitly follow a Shane Type instead of a Stupid MF who contradicts his morality while still trying to say it is His High Road that everyones walking dead on.

I like the show still but it Pisses me the hell off because of what could have been.h which just tells you how Gawd Awful most TV is.
Alex Brown
15. AlexBrown
@Billcap: You make some good points. With a show like TWD it's nearly impossible to tell what the writers were aiming at with a scene because of a history of terrible plotting decisions, shoddy acting, and high school play production-level dialogue. I very well may have read too much into it.

@Christina: I think Shane was definitely at the end of his rope. He knew that one of them wasn't going to leave that field and I think he came to terms with that.

@Improbable: Interesting take.

@treebee: You're right about the tracking timing. It was stupid and lazy writing, but I can see why Daryl and Glenn agreed at first. They were all still under the haze of working together as a group with Rick as the leader. Arguing about whether or not to track - especially when Rick was being very insistent that they do what he said - would've undermined everything they just spent the day doing and working toward. It's kinda like fridge logic: you don't notice the problem until 2 in the morning when you go to get something from the fridge.

@Midas: TWD has definitely fallen below its expectations. It is nowhere near as great as it should be. But I don't think it falls into "Gawd Awful" territory. May I remind you that "Work It" actually aired?

You say now that you'd rather follow Shane, but wait until you see which Big Bad comes next. That Big Bad is Shane X100 with a heaping helping of pervert thrown in for good measure. I'd much rather stick with a guy like Rick. Give me the security of social order rather than than the unbridled chaos of tyranny. But I'm also speaking as a woman. My gender is far more likely to be forced into becoming breeders and property (or get raped like the guys Randall hung out with) than men, so I want someone who's going to protect the group and keep everyone safe without turning me into his sex slave. I want civilized society, not a dictatorship.
16. Philip Andrew Wardlow
Bad writing aside...and correct me if I'm wrong I thought the horde of zombies in the comics came because the Muddy swamps in the woods had trapped so many and now that there has been a long dry spell they have finally all been release from the muddy in point why they showed the viewing audience the zombie trapped in the bog when Carl came across him... YES it is fortutious climatic ending to the season...but at least there is reasoning behind it....IF they mention what I have just mentioned here in the final episode that is...or will the show just leave us speculating as they like to do..
17. dlmoore
someone may have said this, but didn't Rick get his proof Shane was lying when he said Randall must've escaped through the loft...Rick knew he didn't because he and Carl were sitting there.....?
Alex Brown
18. AlexBrown
@dlmoore: Yep. That and the fact that Daryl nailed shut the hole in the loft where Carl had snuck through the day before when he was taunting Randall. Shane was never very good at thinking through his lies. His lack of foresight - especially against Rick who, regardless of his many poor decisions, when he wanted to be a good future planner he was a great one - made him a terrible leader and is ultimately what got him killed.

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