THE WALKING DEAD Episode Recap: “Walk with Me”

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Last week on The Walking Deadwe saw Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and the crew deal with a life-threatening injury to one of their own, a prison swarming with Walkers and the arrival of a group of strangers that did not have the best of intentions.  We’ll have to wait at least another week to see how they’re doing because tonight’s episode is all about Andrea (Laurie Holden) and Michonne (Danai Gurira).  We also get a great introduction to season three’s most anticipated new character and a warm welcome for a character from the past.  Hit the jump to check out our recap of the latest episode of The Walking Dead.

walking-dead-season-3-michael-rooker[Spoiler Alert: All reviews and recaps come with a general spoiler warning from this point onward.]

“Walk with Me” opened up with a hopeful rescue scene as three National Guardsmen flew over the countryside in a helicopter, but shitty luck forced them to crash into the trees.  Andrea and Michonne happened to be nearby and checked it out, but so did a caravan of militia led by the very capable Governor (David Morrissey).  While Andrea and Michonne watched from the treeline, a familiar voice was heard off screen…turns out Merle (Michael Rooker) is with the Governor now!  The militia round the women up with the surviving pilot and take them somewhere to get treated for their various ailments.  Where you ask?

Welcome to Woodbury! The Governor has set up a town that looks too good to be true (and I’m sure it is) with a structured work force, ample guards, defensible walls and plenty of supplies.  As the women are treated as guests in Woodbury, Andrea starts to warm to the idea of staying while Michonne keeps her guard up.  Meanwhile, the injured pilot tells the Governor of a similar encampment they had set up: well-armed, well-provisioned and well-trained until one Walker bite sent the camp into chaos.  The Governor promised to rescue the pilot’s friends and bring them home safely, but slaughtered the lot of them and took their weapons, supplies and ammunition.  He spun a nice story to his townspeople about his heroic rescue attempt that was sadly too late, but if you had any reservations about the Governor, the last scene of the episode surely solidified the fact that this guy is a wacko.

So let’s talk this one out.  We get a change of pace with the characters this week which is telling for future episodes. Rather than hop back and forth between Woodbury and the prison, we get to spend an entire hour in one or the other (at least for the establishing episodes).  Before we get to the Governor and some of the other new characters, let’s talk about Merle!  As you may know, Merle is Daryl’s (Norman Reedus) older brother who was left handcuffed to a pipe on a rooftop in season one, only to escape from being eaten by severing his own hand off.  Merle seems to be doing just fine as he has a new Cap’n Hook like harpoon attached to the end of his arm now.  He also seems to be cowed but the Governor’s strong presence, something that even Rick wasn’t able to do without the aid of a gun.  I’m happy to see him back, but I’m also curious to see if he’s still up to his old racist and violent ways or if he’s toeing the party line of Woodbury.

walking-dead-season-3-david-morrissey-laurie-holdenOh, Woodbury. What a quaint little utopia you are.  You’ve got clean streets and safe walls with ample amenities, hot running water, even tea! There couldn’t be anything wrong here, could there?  While Andrea seems to be swept up in the fairy tale land the Governor has created, Michonne seems to have the right of it.  We get a glimpse that something shady is going on when Milton the scientist is seen tinkering around in his basement lab.  He talks to the Governor about Michonne’s Pack-Walkers, saying that if you take away their jaw and arms, you take away their ability to harm and their desire to eat.  It also allows for a sort of scent-camouflage. The Gov likes this idea very much.

Now, as I haven’t read the comics, I’m not sure how close Morrissey’s performance as the Governor is to Robert Kirkman’s ink-and-paper counterpart.  This is definitely a topic for discussion in the comments, so please have at it.  Morrissey recently spoke about playing the Governor as more of a politician, less outright evil up front so that he has a longer arc to develop and play out.  I’m sure that this episode was just a taste of what’s to come, but he’s already shown hints of how far he’s willing to go.  It’s great, as an audience member, to try to figure out whether or not to trust this guy as you follow along with Andrea and Michonne.  Even the massacre of the National Guardsmen could be explained away by the Governor, who would probably say that that many new people would strain their resources, compromise their safety and introduce more dangers than are necessary.  Add to that the fact that they might challenge his leadership and are already proven to be unreliable (thanks to the pilot’s story about the camp disbanding in a panic), and his decision to eliminate them is cold, but calculated.  So he’s just a tough leader, right? Who just happens to be a bit of a collector…

What the fuck…the heads?!  I have to assume that’s straight out of the comics.  A wall of aquariums swimming with severed heads? Notably, we see Michonne’s former Pack-Walker (Lurker?) heads and the head of the poor dead pilot as well.  I’m also more than a bit curious about the naked, dark-haired lady who was passed out in the Gov’s bed as he slunk away to his secret aquatic abattoir.  It’s certainly not his wife, who is presumably the blonde woman in the family photo.  Guess we’ll have to wait and see (shush, comics-reader spoilers!).

Now that we have two colonies set up, it’s only a matter of time before they become aware of one another.  The Governor seems to have his shit on lock in Woodbury, but Rick and the gang are just getting settled in.  Plus, Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) has her baby on the way and Hershel (Scott Wilson) is on the mend.  Carol (Melissa McBride) is doing her best to practice c-section surgery on Walker corpses, but someone is spying on her from the treeline.  I’m guessing it’s not Merle anymore since he probably would have mentioned it at some point in this episode.  The plot is starting to clot thicken!

Rating: 8/10 – A lot less kills (and way more casualties) this week but new characters and settings with a good amount of surprises to chew on.  Docking it two points since we didn’t get a glimpse of our prison-bound heroes and there weren’t any scenes of great tension.

walking-dead-season-3-danai-guriraMusings:

  • The Governor is a smarty-pants because he employs a scientist to figure out what the hell is going on with the undead and has an R&D department of sorts.  Also good for tea (?).
  • What’s the deal with Michonne’s ex-Lurkers?! I thought they’d get to that in this episode but they only danced around it.  It must be something pretty rough from her past to set it up as a teaser.
  • Poor chopper passenger…the guy is all happy and alive, and then crashed-up and cut in half…and then alive again, only to get knifed in the skull.  Not what he signed up for, I’d imagine.
  • Merle misses Daryl.  It’s time for a redneck reunion!
  • We’ve got confirmation that it’s been seven or eight months since Andrea split from the rest of the survivors.
  • There are 73 people in Woodbury and soon to be 74 (I’m assuming that’s not counting Andrea and Michonne).
  • Milton seems to have his eye on Andrea, while Andrea flirts with the Governor, while the Governor has a naked chick in one room and floating heads in another.  Weirdest love triangle ever?
  • One guard keeps eyeing Michonne in a way that I do not approve of…

Zombie Kills:

  • Looks like 11.

Casualties:

  • About 15 total, most at the National Guard encampment, plus the two chopper passengers and, eventually, the pilot.

Best Kill:

  • Has to be Merle’s nonchalant arm-spike through the head.  Classic Merle!

Best Zombie/Effect:

  • You know, I do/did enjoy Michonne’s Pack-Walkers, but the floating heads in the aquarium is yet another image from this show I’ll never be able to un-see.  Kudos!

Feel free to talk about your reaction to the Governor and anything else from this episode or the show so far in the comments below.  Tune in next week for our recap of episode four of AMC’s The Walking Dead!

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  • J

    The woman in the bed looked to be pretty clearly the same one that was showing Andrea and Michonne around Woodbury.

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  • dogg

    I’m glad they killed off Michonne’s pet walkers. Their heads looked really fake. Worst effects of the series. Looked like they were animatronic or something instead of their usual great zombie makeup.

  • Jobertson

    Did anyone else think Futurama?

    Thanks for the recap

  • LEM

    I liked the episode and even though I never read the comics I have heard a lot of what the Governor does yet from what they’ve said about the show makes me think they will tame it down a lot. I do think the identity of the woman in his bed could be a clue as to how far they’re going with this character.

  • Rick

    I really like their version of the Governor, because it plays more realistically (give me a sec to explain).

    Serial killers and sociopaths are (and always have been) known to be either recluses, or…what their victims or unknowing family/friends describe as “disarmingly charming”. This is due to their ability to blend and provide the exact “this is what they need to hear”. In the comics, the Governor was 20% that, 80% maniac; that mix doesn’t make as much sense as the guy they’ve created on the show. he’s 60% charm, and 40% maniac. Which is just enough to be unbelievably dangerous.

    I look forward to the scene where I hope we get a Rick vs Governor stand off, with their bishops (Daryl and Merle) facing off as well.

    • LEM

      Yeah I think it’s going to be horrible if Daryl has to kill Merle. It will probably come down to a “them or me” choice for Daryl and unless something plays out differently for Merle this season Daryl will probably have to kill him. I think it’s strange that Merle is so willing to take orders from anyone so maybe he’s just biding his time and has a plan of his own after learning that his previous tactics cost him his hand.

      • K

        Totally agree that it would be a really poor choice to have Daryl kill Merle. There is so much more they could do with those characters, I hate it when character deaths are thrown in just for the sake of shock or thrill value but basically waste the character’s potential…Don’t do it Mazarra, don’t do it!!!!

  • rick

    in the comics its her BF and her BFs best friend nothing special about her walkers.

  • Alex

    The soon to be 74, is probably from the pregnant woman walking by in the background. I still need to get my hands on the comics soon…

  • Carlos

    This was the most boring episode in a while

  • RorshachLives!

    Does anyone else notice just how similar large parts of ‘The Walking Dead’ – comic and series – are to George Romero’s original script for ‘Day of the Dead’… a despotic Governor, pet zombies, scientists researching the virus, etc? If Romero had set ‘Day…’ in a prison and not a missile silo, it might have been a better location.

  • Sam

    more like 6/10 to me.
    A lot of this starts to feel really ripped off of original Romero\’s Day of the Dead… The evil military cliche, the experiment room…. especially the kind of awkward doctor who seems to be the one who would ultimately change sides, or give something up. It got all kind of predictable…

    And , just one detail i know but since it\’s a whole scene… the way the Governor and his men take all the trained military squad was laughable.

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