THE WALKING DEAD Episode Recap: “Killer Within”

by     Posted 1 year, 296 days ago

the-walking-dead-season-3-slice

I was completely blown away by how far the fourth episode of AMC’s The Walking Dead decided to go.  This was an unbelievable episode that showcased everything the fans have asked for and then some: dramatic character development, incredible tension across the board, plenty of gore to go around and more than its fair share of heartbreak. My only complaint with this brilliant episode is, being this early in the season, how can they hope to top it?

Starring Andrew Lincoln, Sarah Wayne Callies, Chandler Riggs, IronE Singleton, Melissa McBride, Laurie Holden, Danai Gurira, David Morrissey, Michael Rooker, Norman Reedus, Steven Yeun, Lauren Cohan, Scott Wilson and Emily Kinney, AMC’s The Walking Dead airs Sunday nights at 9.  Hit the jump for my review of “Killer Within.”

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

Last week, we got a tour of Woodbury courtesy of Andrea, Michonne, the Governor and Merle.  This week, we split our time between the peaceful little post-apocalyptic town and the work-in-progress that has become the prison.  Let’s wrap up Woodbury first, since that’s the less involved of this week’s storylines.

Michonne walks the perimeter of her temporary home and begins to suspect that the Governor was responsible for the deaths of the National Guardsmen.  While Andrea and Michonne makes plans to leave Woodbury and head for the coast (or a nice secluded island), Andrea gives Merle some information to help him track down his brother Daryl.  Merle and the Governor reach an accord in which the Gov will go with him once they receive a few more supplies.  The Governor then manages to sweet-talk Andrea into staying and it looks like Andrea may have bought herself a few more days there along with a reluctant Michonne.  A relatively tame and peaceful day; the same could not be said for Rick and the gang.

Back at said prison, an unknown figure carries a gas can around, lures Walkers with a deer carcass and leaves a trail of meat through a series of doors he unlocks with his ax…that can’t be good.  As Walkers storm the compound, attracted by a blaring prison alarm, the group gets split up.  Turns out it was Andrew (Markice Moore), the former prisoner we presumed dead once Rick left him locked out in a pen full of Walkers.  Andrew gets the true death this time around when reformed prisoner Oscar (Vincent Ward) puts a bullet between his eyes, thus saving Rick’s life and proving his loyalty at the same time.

But not all is well in prison land.  T-Dog takes a nasty bite to the shoulder while trying to close a gate, and later sacrifices himself so Carol can make it to safety (or so it seems).  With Hershel and Beth safely tucked away and Rick, Daryl, Glenn and Oscar shutting down the alarm, Lori, Carl and Maggie are left to fend for themselves.  A kid, a very-pregnant woman and a depressed head case…what could go wrong?  The friggin’ baby decides to come along, that’s what!  In the craziest sequence in the show’s history, Maggie performs an emergency c-section on Lori, delivers the baby and then has Carl shoot his mother in the head to prevent her from rising as a Walker.  Upon the realization of all of these events, Rick has a complete breakdown.

steven-yeun-norman-reedus-andrew-lincoln-episode-4-walking-deadHoly. Shit.

For those of you who balked at my 7 of 10 rating for the season premiere, THIS is why.  This episode is what I knew the writers and actors could achieve.  It had absolutely everything in it and I’m still reeling from the intensely emotional experience of watching it.  Conceivably, a better episode could be produced if the Woodbury storyline reaches the level of the prison storyline and they air in the same episode.  But that is simply too much awesome for my monitor to handle.

I’ll concede that the Woodbury plot was pretty slow this week, but I wouldn’t call it boring.  I’m liking Michonne more and more, not only because she can take care of herself, but because she knows what’s up and is trying to get Andrea to see it rather than just getting out of Dodge (which is what she probably should do).  And while Andrea and the Governor have a little somethin’ cookin’ it seems that Merle has gone all puppy dog for the Governor, a loyalty which may be tested in the coming weeks.

Let’s get back to that prison.  I mean, what the hell?  We start off with a ho-hum scene of the gang moving their vehicles into a protected area and plans to burn the Walker corpses; a normal day in the post-apocalypse.  There’s even a bit of comedy when Glenn and Maggie are caught banging in the guard tower.  We get our first taste of tension when T-Dog spots Oscar and Axel (Lew Temple) near the fence; they want to talk.  It seems they’re too scared to clear their cell block of the dead bodies and want to join Rick’s crew.  Everyone nixes the idea except for T-Dog (and that’s how we knew you were going to die, you big softie!).

All absolute hell breaks loose moments later.  The terror and panic in Rick’s voice made me physically upset, as did the scene of poor Hershel lumbering along on his crutches as a Walker nearly did him in.  Little did I know that the gang would lose at least two members this day.  Let’s break them down one by one.

T-Dog’s death came as a surprise.  (Where the hell was your riot armor, son?!) I really liked the development of T-Dog over the last few episodes where he was basically the muscle of the group; I’m sad to see him go.  But he went out like a champ, that’s for sure.  As he lurched along the prison halls, bleeding out from a bite to the shoulder, he and Carol came upon an impasse of zombies which just so happened to be blocking their path to safety.  Knowing he was dead anyway, T-Dog sacrificed himself to save Carol and got all eaten up in the process.  But at least Carol’s safe, right?

sarah-wayne-callies-episode-4-walking-deadMaybe, maybe not.  It seems that Daryl happened upon an article of Carol’s clothing lying next to the remains of T-Dog.  Daryl and Rick’s reaction was none too reassuring, but without a body (and without a spectacular death scene for McBride) can we really count her among the casualties?  I don’t think so, but we’ll hopefully find out in future episodes.

That brings us to Lori.  Oh, sweet Lori, how I was beginning to grow fond of you this season.  That look that passed between Lori and Rick broke my heart, but only because of events that occurred later.  It seems that the little Grimes chose the most inopportune moment to make his/her introduction.  I will say this for The Walking Dead writers, they know how to end a pregnancy storyline.  Rather than draw it out for endless episodes (::cough:: Lost…), they ended it with a bang…literally.  I will say that I’m not often squeamish and I have been a fan of horror films for many a year, but that Caesarian section scene gave me the willies.  Perhaps it was because of the sincerity of the actors in the scene or the fact that I’ve become so attached to them (it certainly wasn’t the “realistic” blood or surgery).  But it all caught me so off-guard that I couldn’t help but be upset by it.  I particularly felt bad for little Carl, who not only offered up his knife for Maggie to cut his little sibling out of his dying mother’s womb, but then had to (presumably) put a bullet in his mom’s head.  There was a great flashback to a scene in the previous season when Rick gives Carl a gun and tells him, “No more kid stuff.”  Heartbreaking.  And Rick’s reaction to seeing his newborn without the mother present was almost too much to bear.

Where do we go from here?  Are there too many ghosts haunting the prison for the gang to stay there?  Will they make for the open road again and bump into the Governor?  And how will the newborn complicate survival from here on out? Your guess is as good as mine!

danai-gurira-walking-dead-episode-3Rating: 10/10 An absolutely perfect episode! I could not ask for more.

Musings:

  • Who exactly is going to nurse that baby without Lori around? Unless they happen upon some formula or Maggie just happens to be pregnant.  Or they induce…nevermind.  Too much thought has been spent on this already.
  • So are Oscar and Axel good with the crew now?  Will Daryl and Axel bond over motorcycle maintenance?
  • Knife-Stalking Daryl is the newest action figure to collect!
  • With what the writers pulled with Andrew, I’m going to remain skeptical about character deaths unless I actually see it on screen (ie Carol, possibly a zombified Lori).
  • The zombie kill rate seems to be way more consistent and numerous this season.

Zombie Kills:

33 confirmed (ie on-screen) kills, but way more shots fired.

Casualties:

T-Dog (R.I.P.), Carol (?), Lori (probably, but off-screen), Andrew again…this time, stay dead!

Best Kill:

Has to go to Oscar offing Andrew.  Not for how cool it was, but for how righteous it was and for proving his loyalty to the group.

Best Zombie/Effect:

This will be a double-tap for Daryl’s skull-splitting knife kill and Glenn’s head-chop attack.

Definitely curious to hear your thoughts on this one, so feel free to voice them in the comments below!  Make sure to tune in again next week when we review and recap the next installment of AMC’s The Walking Dead.

walking-dead-season-3-poster




Like Us


Comments:

FB Comments

  • rprawira

    Hmmm…. who was it that tried to bring some conscience into the group? Oh that’s right, Dale… That’s what you get for trying to be nice, a walker chompin on your neck.

    • Daniel

      I noticed that too. Hopefully a pattern isn’t developing.

  • rprawira

    Hmmm…. who was it that tried to bring some conscience into the group last time? Oh that’s right, Dale… That\’s what you get for trying to be nice, a walker chompin on your neck.

  • ben

    Great episode, but it was definitely premature for Carl to have shot Lori, especially after it’s proven that Herschel can survive a big gaping open wound. Plenty of women have been given a c-section without anesthesia throughout the course of human history and haven’t died. They didn’t have any problem walking out of that prison wing with a baby in their arms- Sewing her up was already part of the plan. Zero reason to think she’d die/come back until she had been given the same chance as Herschel.

    That said, if it was because Carl’s got a bit of an itchy trigger finger or a way-less-than-thorough thought process, should make for some pretty cool drama later on.

    I agree on the 10/10, but would have to change that retroactively if they totally gloss over the corners cut in the logic of bumping off one of the essential main characters of the show this early into the season.

    • dc420911

      it’s because theres no way they could off lori on tv the way they do in the comic

    • Leo

      You don’t survive having a C-section with a Buck Knife by a person who has never cut open a (living) person before. She died almost immediately from the blood loss, Carl didn’t shoot a person who was bleeding out, he shot a corpse.

      I am glad that Chandler Riggs (Carl) has stepped up his acting. It’s partly due to the writers not giving him a lot of lines and the fact that he has grown up since the last season, but he definitely improved his acting. He’s still not perfect but for a young child his acting is finally acceptable. Imagine Season 2 Carl trying to pull off that scene.

      • ben

        You and the poster below make a lot of sense. Agreed that Carl is way better this season, and also that the fewer lines help sell his performance.

    • Danny

      There’s a big difference between having your stomach being cut open and losing your foot. You can wrap something around the leg to slow the bleeding down but you can’t really do that with a stomach. Also, they planned for Lori to give birth near the medical supplies where they could sew her up but of course that didn’t go according to plan. There was nothing wrong with the show’s logic.

      • ben

        I’m definitely not a doctor (and neither was Maggie), so I’ll buy that for a dollar.

  • Leigh Barrett

    I never thought I would actually cry after an episode.
    Just when I was accepting TDog’s fate and the way
    He gave himself up for Carol, I’m then suckered punched
    by Lori’s berth , (Closure with Carl) and the knock out
    Punch Carl having to put his mom down and Ricks total
    Breakdown ( which we all knew was coming). I love this
    Series for the same reason I loved the Sopranos. We have humans
    In in an environment we can NOT comprehend, however
    We crave and even search out the similarities in our
    Own lives. I cried like a baby when Carl and Lori said
    Goodby to each other, as a mom I totally felt her pain. She and
    Carl should receive Emmys for that performance, just amazing

  • Leigh Barrett

    I never thought I would actually cry after an episode.
    Just when I was accepting TDog\’s fate and the way
    He gave himself up for Carol, I\’m then suckered punched
    by Lori\’s berth , (Closure with Carl) and the knock out
    Punch Carl having to put his mom down and Ricks total
    Breakdown ( which we all knew was coming). I love this
    Series for the same reason I loved the Sopranos. We have humans
    In in an environment we can NOT comprehend, however
    We crave and even search out the similarities in our
    Own lives. I cried like a baby when Carl and Lori said
    Goodby to each other, as a mom I totally felt her pain. She and
    Carl should receive Emmys for that performance, just amazing

  • Leigh Barrett

    I never thought I would actually cry after an episode.
    Just when I was accepting TDog\\\’s fate and the way
    He gave himself up for Carol, I\\\’m then suckered punched
    by Lori\\\’s berth , (Closure with Carl) and the knock out
    Punch Carl having to put his mom down and Ricks total
    Breakdown ( which we all knew was coming). I love this
    Series for the same reason I loved the Sopranos. We have humans
    In in an environment we can NOT comprehend, however
    We crave and even search out the similarities in our
    Own lives. I cried like a baby when Carl and Lori said
    Goodby to each other, as a mom I totally felt her pain. She and
    Carl should receive Emmys for that performance, just amazing

    • Henry Pym

      We get it, you have a chick boner for a little kid. No need to proclaim your love for Carl three times.

      • Danny

        Shut up. Collider’s comment system isn’t exactly the best, so sometimes it double/triple posts. No need to be a jerk.

    • Spanky

      Emmy for what performance? He barely said anything and his face was always slightly covered by his hat and hair.. he did acceptable but didn’t really do anything other than show an emotionless face and they added a tear drop

    • TB

      Leigh – you couldn’t say it any better…

  • junierizzle

    Good episode. Cant call it great because Ive never liked Laurie. But Ricks breakdown was probably the best acting in the series.

  • BrNdon

    I was super bummed to see T-Dog go. But I guess when you’re a black guy in situations like this, you have to be extra careful when another brother shows up in the cast to maintain the diversity.

    • gcm443

      exactly, i’m surprised it didn’t happen sooner

  • Spanky

    Anyone else annoyed by Andreas stupidity? It’s just a bit far fetched considering with how they are giving the rest of the cast working brains this season

    Why would she give Merle any information about his brother and the other group? Is she really that incapable of understanding that he might want some sort of revenge based on what was done to him?? She also knows a little about him from their time together and from what it sounds like it wasn’t all that pleasant.. so why not tell him to piss off and stay away?

    Why isn’t she asking Michonne more questions on what her deal is with the place? And at the same time, why wouldn’t Michonne tell Andrea about what she found on the army trucks.. or ANYONE?

    This is one thing I HATE about shows where characters don’t reveal information to others for the sole purpose of pushing a story line towards where ever the writers want

  • Pingback: Influence Film – movies news » THE WALKING DEAD Episode Recap: “Killer Within”

  • TB

    I could barely sit still, mind you I was watching while @ work! LOL… You know a show is good when you feel drawn in, my eyes swelled up with Lori, I didnt’ want to see any main characters go, the group was just now seeming to be like a family and they snatch 2 away, bummer!

  • TB

    I could barely sit still, mind you I was watching while @ work! LOL… You know a show is good when you feel drawn in, my eyes swelled up with Lori, I didnt\’ want to see any main characters go, the group was just now seeming to be like a family and they snatch 2 away, bummer!

  • Paul

    Lori was never checked to see if she was dead. The previews show us that Lori’s body is gone. I think that Carol finds Lori, sews her up as she was taught by Hershel, and they will both be alive. The shot fired by Carl was not shown because he didn’t shoot her. He couldn’t shoot his mom, so he fired a shot so that Maggie would think he had shot her.

    • Tralfadore

      Plausable.

    • Common Sense

      Sews her up? With what? Carol is wandering, lost in the maze of prison hallways – or maybe she actually reached the outside (where she would have to dodge dozens of walkers). She has no weapons. Come on. Lori’s character was kept in the script long enough for the baby to be born. Regarding Carl – if anyone went through this many tragedies / trauma at his age, he’d probably turn into a real mental case! Which brings me to the subject of the Governor. I think in his past life he was a serial killer – who else would keep heads in jars in a darkened, locked room? Andrea needs to be his next victim! And why is Michonne wasting her time with Andrea anyway?

    • chez

      Good twist… also who’s going to feed baby?? they have no formula, or baby supplies!!! Great episode

  • LEM

    The rehash of the dale death with T-dog was a little disappointing and it seems they already have his replacement lined up but that last scene was a killer. Andrew Lincoln and Lauren Cohan delivered big and after never really being blown away by the acting on this show this scene was heart wrenching. I still balk at your 7/10 rating for the premiere and you still doubt that they can top themselves again. I knew this season would be the one to kick this show into high gear and from what I’ve heard about upcoming episodes it gets even better.

  • Felipe AC

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO T- Dog WHY?! Whhhy?!

    also lori died…whatever..but T-Dog! this was your seasson to shine!

  • shaqfu75

    great episode, it was so a great one so geart a one it was

  • opong

    it is not sure yet if Lori was already dead..sure we heard the gun fire but there is a possibility that Carl faked it. could be that Lori was taken by Carol…in ep.02, Carol was practicing a c-section on a female walker. It has to mean somethin..Right?

  • Ann

    I sure hope you are right about Lori IE: Carol saving her. My husband was very upset when Lori died as she was having the C-Section…..Who knew he had a crush on her, lol??? I hope Lori will be ok :)

  • John

    Carl, bottled it with shooting his mom. So fired off a shot and ran out. Leaving Lori to return as a walker. Rick goes into the prison on a Zombie revenge fest and encounters Lori Zombied up. Thinks possibly about perhaps “one last kiss for old times sake!”….Nahh just blasts her in the Temple as he knows he must do.

  • false one

    @John, yeah some of those zombies are kinda hot.

Click Here