Do you remember that Far Side comic where there are these guys waking another guy up, saying, “Wake up! Wake up! You’re having a nightmare!”
“Of course, you’re still in Hell.”
This week’s turgid episode starts with our heros living out their respective versions of domestic bliss—Glen, Maggie, and Glen’s scraggly mustache in a shower scene just barely allowable for family viewing, Rick and Michonne in bed together, sharing an apple. Carrol, riddled with PTSD from her period of captivity with the Saviors, goes walkabout in the Aborigine fashion. Daryl, being the surly fifty-something year-old teenager that he is, broods and takes off on his motorcycle.
Carol, driving a spiked Volkswagen Golf, encounters some wandering Saviors, whom she reluctantly kills with a machinegun cleverly hidden up her sleeve. Morgan and Rick come across the aftermath and kill the Savior leader with (guess what) a knife through the thicket part of the head. Morgan comes clean with Rick about the Wolf he captured and allowed to escape, promising to find Carrol and bring her back.
Glen and MIchonne are captured by the remaining Saviors (the ones from last week). When Daryl tries to save them, the Saviors get the drop on him and their leader shoots him without speech or ceremony. Is he dead? We’re lead to believe he isn’t, but who knows? The Walking Dead has a nice way of offing characters with no warning.
This particular episode had little in the way of storyline and, except for the very end, did little to advance the overall story of Alexandria versus the Saviors. It was essentially a bunch of stuff that happens. I’m hoping that this is just a setup for the season finale, and that the finale will be a doozie. But The Walking Dead has become derivative of itself—rehashing old stories, but with different settings and enemies. The conflict with the Saviors is essentially a re-hash of their battle with the Governer. It’s become way too formulaic for my personal tastes.
I’m looking forward to 'Fear the Walking Dead.' Sailing across the ocean of an undead world will hopefully present a new set of challenges nowhere to be found on the east coast. Along with the characters’ built-in animosities and complexes, the newer show definitely shows promise.
(Editor's note: this review reflects the opinion of the writer and not necessarily the opinion of the site. I'm kind of enjoying Season Five! -- Brian Woodman).