Monday, November 28, 2011
I was expecting a little more action or excitement in this episode, but any disappointment I may have had with the pacing was more than compensated for by that ending.
• Herschel talks Rick into helping him "rescue" two walkers trapped in the swamp. Could this swamp be an explanation as to why the farm is relatively zombie free? Is the farm surrounded by swampland that acts as zombie flypaper? If so, kudos to the writers for recognizing the problem and coming up with a solution.
• Daryl definitely needs to work on his terms of endearment. Calling someone who clearly likes you "stupid bitch" is generally frowned upon in polite society.
• Carol definitely has some issues with the men she chooses. First she was with Ed, who was a physically abusive alcoholic. Now she's making eyes at Daryl, who, though he has become my favorite character, isn't exactly prime husband material. I guess maybe in this world her choices are slim.
Although if Daryl and Carol do become an item, it'll be easy to come up with a "celebrity couple" name for them, like "Bennifer" or "Brangelina." Just call them "Darol."
• Lori managed to not annoy me this week, which is a pretty good feat. A few weeks ago she said her baby absolutely was Rick's. This week she's not so sure. Now neither am I.
• So Lori is home schooling Carl. A nice touch, and something you'd definitely need to think about in that situation. By the way, Chandler Riggs, who plays Carl, is a way better actor than any 12 year old has a right to be.
• Shane says Rick's insistence on going back to Atlanta for Merle (last season) caused the deaths of Amy and Jim. Um... how's that? Weren't they all sitting around a campfire eating fish instead of posting sentries when the zombies attacked the camp? How was Rick responsible for that? I guess I need to re-watch Season 1.
• Dale is a major character in the comic, so I didn't think the show would kill him off just yet, but when he was confronting Shane in the swamp I wasn't so sure. For a minute there I was afraid this would be his last show.
• In the comic, Herschel paid a bigger price for his beliefs. When the zombies got out of the barn, several of his people were killed, which jolted him into the realization that he was wrong about the walkers and they're not just "sick people." Not so on in this episode. Maybe that's to come in February?
• One of the barn zombies that Daryl shot was Herschel's wife. You can tell by the reaction shot of Herschel immediately after she was shot.
• OK, about that ending. Wow. I've been whining for two months now about the boat anchor that is the Search For Sophia sublot. It just went on and on and on with no end in sight. It stopped the storyline dead in its tracks and seemed to be going absolutely nowhere.
But I take it all back. Oh, all that is still true of course, but they redeemed themselves with that ending. I did NOT see that one coming. It took forever to get there, but the payoff was totally worth it. Seeing Zombie Sophia stagger out of the barn was heartbreaking and horrifying at the same time. It was a gutsy move and I'm glad they did it. I'm still thinking about it, and I know I'll be haunted by Zombie Sophia for days to come.
• Now, about Sophia and Herschel's barn... did he know she was in there? Let's examine the time line here. In Episode 1, everyone hides under cars on the highway as the zombie herd shuffles by. A couple of stragglers try to grab Sophia, who runs off into the woods. Rick follows her, tells her to hide under a fallen log, then runs off to dispatch the pursuing zombies. When he's done, Sophia is gone. Apparently she was attacked and bitten minutes later. They search for her in vain for a few days, before finding Herschel's farm in Episode 2.
So when exactly did Herschel put Sophia in the barn? Was it before Team Rick arrived? Or after? Either way, Herschel had to know who he had in the barn. At some point he found a "sick" little girl and stashed her in his barn. Then a group of people who just happen to be searching for a little girl shows up at his place. He had to make the connection.
Even if Herschel himself didn't put Sophia in the barn, one or more of his people did so. I guess it couldn't have been Jimmy, since he volunteered to help with the search. He wouldn't have done that if he knew she was in the barn. That leaves Otis, which would make sense. He died before Dale and the rest of the group arrived and resumed the search. So I suppose it's possible that Otis stashed Sophia in the barn and Herschel simply didn't know about it. But I'm not 100% convinced.
It's going to be a long wait until February!