The Walking Dead - S04-E05 - "Internment"

The Walking Dead
Season Four, Episode Five.

Cry me a river!



The Walking Dead falls into a group of shows (DexterJustifiedGame of Thrones) that are at their best when multiple shits are hitting multiple fans and the noose is tightening for all characters involved. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love me some quiet moments when they’re done right (see: Mad Men) and this show occasionally stumbles into some good ones but the reason most people watch this show is for when all hell breaks loose. And All Hell Breaking Loose is definitely in The Walking Dead’s wheelhouse. So, usually I just breathe a sigh of relief when I realize an episode is going to be short on grim hangdog faces talking about depressing things and high on chaos and everyone frantically scrambled to control it.

This was one of those episodes for this particular show. Who cares that a good chunk of the dialogue rang a bit false? It had Grimes & Son mowing down a sea of walkers with automatic weapons! It had dying patients trying to kill their doctor! It had people puking and crying blood! Okay, that last one was pretty hard to watch and I’m really glad that the sickness storyline seems to be over (after being sick, including six days in the hospital, with a chronic illness for two months recently, this was starting to get a little under my skin). Cutting back and forth from the deteriorating situation outside to the deteriorating situation inside created effective tension that carried the entire episode.

The emotional foundation, if you could call it that, of this episode seemed to be the sons and daughters helping their parents. Rick not so subtly watches Carl step up to plate once again and Hershel watches Maggie risk her life to help him. Even that weird little girl Lizzie, who is now kind of a daughter of the collective group, saves Glenn by drawing away the intubated walker. Yay for family bonding!

And now, just when you thought it was safe to come outside, there’s a one-eyed man in a trench coat creepin’ outside the prison gates. He’s BACK. I am mildly surprised we’re seeing The Governor back this early. I thought he wouldn’t show up until the back half of the season. Not that I’m complaining as human antagonists are always a boost for the show.

Three episodes left in the first half of the season. I assume they are going to be Governor-centric. Thoughts, Steve?

I've always found that The Walking Dead does a good job of using both styles alternatively. Whenever we get to a slow, character building episode you can be sure that the next one will be full of action and multiple shits. With the difficulty Blair and I faced trying to write about last week we knew that this week would pack a punch. I would say we were right. The episode had everything you could ask for. Outdoor massacres, indoor mass extinction, with a little extra punch in the face at the very end.

With the majority of the groups prime soldiers still on their return trip home we had to know it was about to get bad. That's what this show does, kicks the group when they are down or the most vulnerable. It was good to see the Grimes' get some bonding time. They did some fence fixing, some zombie killing, some farming and Carl helped dear old dad put off his awkward conversation with Daryl for just a little bit longer. I'm not sure which made me more anxious, the events outside or in. I know inside had more focus on it but you also only had 2 people dealing with a horde of walkers outside. 

The obvious star of the show was Hershel, and I agree, this was a great arc to help develop him and build his confidence back up. However there was the scene after Maggie tells him to go get some rest that we see him break down. Was it the loss of patients? Lack of sleep? The come down from what must have been a massive adrenaline dump? Or mix of all three? 

Then there is the deadly duo of Carl and Rick. I hope this brings Carl up the ladder a bit in terms of both importance in the group and development in the show. Graduating from handgun to semi-auto rifle is quite a jump, both in skill and power. He seemed to learn that rifle and handle it's kickback pretty quickly, albeit the AR-15 is one of the most widely used rifles in the world, behind the AK-47 because of it's ease of use, but he seemed a bit too proficient at it too quickly.

So now the prison is in disarray, the group has been cut back down to manageable show size and who decides to rear his ugly mug again? I think it is a bit early for him to come back. Granted that could have been a teaser and we still won't see him for another few episode, or at least the group won't see him. There is bound to be an episode or two dedicated to him but I don't think it will involve the prison group. We'' have a current Gov situation episode and a Gov flashback episode. I can see him revealing himself to the group on the final episode before the break. We all know how this show loves a good cliffhanger and the end of a term.

-When the episode started showcasing Hershel so much, I was really worried this was going to be his swan song. But he made it out with flying colours! Does this mean he’s in danger because he seems to be in the clear? I’m worried.
-As surprised as I would have been had Glenn actually died, it really did seem touch and go there for awhile.
-Well, the sickness seems to have thinned out most of the Woodbury people they took on at the end of last season.
-Ever since he lost his leg, Hershel seems to have struggled with his self-esteem. One thing this sickness story arc did a great job of was develop Hershel a little more and give him a little more confidence. Did you see him at the end, admitting he was a badass and hopping in the vehicle to accompany Michonne?

-I thought Glenn was doomed, but then I remembered that this is Kirkman not R.R. Martin
-Still no further clues to the one feeding the rats. I don't think it would be the Gov as the rats were being fed from inside the fence(not that it is hard to get in there). I do however think he has been leading the swarm to the prison.
-Now the group really does have to think about moving on. Will they be on the run or find somewhere new?

Blair’s Episode MVP: Hershel
Steve’s Episode MVP: Hershel
Blair’s Episode Grade: A-
Steve’s Episode Grade: 87%

Blair’s Deadpool Pick: Hershel
Steve’s Deadpool Pick: Glenn