The newest season of The Walking Dead opens on a rather turgid note, where the undead have gathered in the thousands outside the gates of Alexandria (a quiet subdivision outside Washington DC where homes start at a mere $800K). Rick is now the de facto leader of the community, having been granted emergency powers by the character played by the actress who played Captain Janeway.
Before I go further, have you noticed that wherever Rick and his gang show up, things just go to pot? Herschel’s farm, Woodbury, Terminus. Sure, some of them deserved it, but you see my point. Everything is going smoothly, then Rick shows up and BANG! Crap gets sprayed everywhere.
The narrative hops around between previous events (cleverly portrayed in black and white) and “current” events. If I get the gist of it, walkers had been gathering at a camp site (it actually looks like a strip mine) at the beginning of the events of the series. The residents of the camp boxed them in with tractor/trailers, but the shuffling and groaning of the walkers kept attracting more walkers until their ranks swelled into a mob numbering in the thousands. The tractor/trailers kept them boxed in, but they had started to leak out. Somehow, no one in Alexandria noticed a giant grouping of walkers shuffling around so close to them until a scout (Eugene’s hair bro) magically reappeared to deliver the news.
Demonstrating a rare moment of careful thought and consideration, a plan is hatched to lead the mass of undead away from the community by grabbing their attention with flareguns. Daryl, Sasha and Abraham (looking a little doughy considering that just a few days had passed since last season) would lead them, pied piper-style, away from Alexandria, while the hoi polloi of Alexandria hid in their McMansions.
Easy, right? Well, what kind of story would it be if everything just went smoothly? The undead critters start to leak out and the rest of the cast, led by a tired looking Glen, are forced to deal with the stragglers. Of course, people die because no has thought to wear a thick pair of elbow length leather gloves—like you’ll find in any hardware store or where they sell welding supplies. PROTECT YOUR ARMS, DAMMIT! You don’t have to run around looking like Mad Max, but adopt some basic protection!
Carol makes a brief appearance. I don’t know what it is about Melissa McBride, but she has some strange appeal to me. But enough about that. Is she married?
Sasha and Abraham lead the walkers away while Abraham engages with his earthy euphemisms (‘Grabbing the bull by the nutsack’). The story continues to jump between the B&W planning stages and implementation stages. People get killed because they violate the #1 rule of horror—never go off by yourself!
The march of the undead continues—like a never ending Saint Patrick’s Day parade, sans the beer and the green and then, suddenly, a horn blares…..leading the walkers (wait for it) BACK TO ALEXANDRIA!
Where did it come from? I don’t know! Nobody knows! But nothing that happened in this episode matters! Don’t you love that? You could’ve spent the last ninety minutes crocheting or licking the terminals of car batteries! Tune into The Walking Dead next Sunday in an attempt to justify the lost hour and a half out of your life this Sunday!
Maybe it’ll have more Melissa McBride in it. It damn well better.