we're here for another week of walker fun with rick et al (at least, that's certainly how the writers seem to view things).
today's episode is called "Hounded", again evoking some musical ideas.
we are in no way as old as our musical references imply
a whole lot's been happening, and we've yet to see full ramifications from many of the events thus far.
since lori's death, rick has:
-killed various walkers in gruesome fashions.
-answered imaginary phone calls.
-pinned glenn to walls inside the prison.
and since lori's death rick has not:
-held his newborn daughter.
-talked to his son.
-appeared to be sane.
what will he do to shake things up this week?
how will michonne fare outside of woodbury?
is woodbury anywhere near jackson lake?
we're just blowing off steam!
join us after the jump for the answer to these and many more questions!
8:30 - you're here early! are you sure you have enough snacks? nutrition is essential in walkerland. make sure you're stocked up on edibles.
we're a little more partial to pizza pizza, but hey.
8:45 - tonight our drink selection is almost as limited as the governor's. we're into some james ready 5.5 tonight, along with some grande cuvée weizenbock and as always david's tea.
8:50 - people often ask if there's some sort of official pretty much a movie drinking guide to the things we liveblog. and no, frankly, there is not. the best advice we have is to drink when you feel like it. sometimes we'll add a suggestion here and there. but in general, y'know, walker kills, cool things, stupid things, commercials, cliches, bad voice overs, good music, good foley, neat sets, good makeup, nice attention to detail, bad continuity, etc.
...might as well test your drink now. make sure it's cold, right? or hot, in the case of tea.
9:00 - here we go again.
as you remember, some things happened last week. they were gruesome, and somewhat horrific, but on the whole less so than the week prior. this is a small victory for us, the viewer.
9:01 - we open up with merle out in the woods with some men.
they come upon some walkers, ripped apart and organized in a pattern
"what the hell is this mess?"
"she did this"
the men are pretty worried about michonne
"damn straight tim, we're doing a righteous public service."
"go back," one of the men says
it turns out, michonne has spelt out 'go back' in walker parts (arms, legs, and a back).
a walker-gram he calls it. i call it a rebus!
one of merle's men runs off, and he goes crazy about it, and gives him shit.
then he starts yelling at michonne in the woods.
"we're armed to the teeth and you're going to pop out with your little pig-sticker?"
she does so, decapitating one guy, and killing another two.
she runs off into the woods, with merle's goon that ran off watching, and merle chasing after screaming "are we having fun yet?" which, ew, nickelback. but it seems she's been shot as well (by merle, of course - these lackeys are pretty much stage-dressing at this point)
we're into the theme song then, and boom. commercials.
9:06 - rick is back... a woman is on the phone.
they've been calling since this all started.
they're safe 'cause they're careful.
"what makes your place so safe?"
"it's just away... from them?"
"i have a son... i have a newborn baby." (hey, he remembered! good job there, rick!)
already a better father than this douchebag. and my baby's getting bornt by randy!
rick is begging this woman.
"could you take on others?"
he's seriously begging.
"we're good people here. we can help. we just need help. please. you don't understand. we're dying. we're dying."
poor rick. he's gotten so desperate now...and he probably knows a lot of this is his fault.
9:08 - people are eating, and rick comes back, looking clean and safe.
everyone gets stiff..
"everyone okay?" he asks
"yeah. what about you?" hershel asks
"yeah. i cleaned out the boiler block."
rick doesn't even look at carl. he pats him on the shoulder, then talks about how many walkers he's killed, and how he needs to clean out the bodies. he plans briefly with hershel and takes off. man, poor carl!
9:09 - merle's beating up his one guy, who ran off. he's kind puking 'cause michonne decapitated some guys.
"shit's going down, i need you son. now, you know we don't ever let our own turn."
they go on to stab into the brains of the heads, all the heads.
they go on after her.
"she ain't running boy, she's hunting."
9:10 - we cut back to children singing nursery rhymes in woodbury.
andrea and the governor debate the ethics of their biter matches.
the governor wants to know her problem,
"i'm not going to tell you how to run your town."
"if it's an escape, it's not a good one... i think the world's brutal enough" she tells him.
she goes on to explain she wants to work the wall
"i'm a good shot. i want to stay that way."
he asks if she can use a bow, but not after asking her if she wouldn't be happier in the kitchens.
9:11 - rick is tapping the phone? taking it apart? using some kind of fancy police-techniques?
hey, i've got some weed in my, uh, boogie van.
now there's a guy.
"you the guy she was talking to?"
"and you want to come where we are?"
the guy goes on to explain no one's been attacked, no one's been bit, no one's turned, no one's gone crazy.
"have you killed anyone?" he asks rick.
"yes. people that have threatened my group."
"how many people have you killed?"
"two were outsiders, one threw walkers at me. one was one of our own..."
the guy goes on to ask about rick's wife.
"how did you lose your wife?"
"how did you know i have a wife?"
"you have a boy and a baby. how did you lose your wife?"
"i don't want to talk about that."
rick goes crazy and busts the shit out of a stool, and the table.
this is fun.
norman reedus has kind of a redneck zombie playlist. but it's got some neil young on it, so win.
(all though, including lynyrd skynyrd is kind of paradoxical, no? i'm not linking sweet home alabama, but them southern men...)
9:17 - andrea chats up another lady on the wall, she's young, and good at bows? they have some straight talk about shooting and killing family members. i guess they're bonding? and it's definitely unsettling how she speaks in the present tense (her bow being "worth more than [her] car."
andrea sees a walkers.
"walker," she says.
this girl takes a bunch of shots and misses all the time.
andrea jumps over
"we're not supposed to go over the wall," her friend yells
andrea takes it out, and her friend goes a little squirrely.
"what the hell was that?"
"that is how it's done." andrea is humorously smug.
"what is wrong with you? this isn't a game," woodbury-lady yells.
they have a staredown...the governor will be pissed.
in the name of terrible conformity, he shall punish you!
9:19 - hershel goes and meets rick in the boiler room.
"may i," hershel asks rick, gesturing to a chair.
he's here to talk it seems.
hershel is badass.
"...still feel it. i'm wiggling my toes right now. i'm a ghost from the knee down." he says, rubbing his stump.
"you saved my life, rick."
he explains to rick that lori was sorry for the things that happened. she told hershel that, and she was going to tell rick.
hershel tells rick to take his time.
rick tells hershel about the phone.
"someone calls. i got a call. on this phone."
he passes the phone to hershel, who picks up and gets nothing.
"they said they were calling numbers and got me."
rick asks hershel not to tell the rest of the group.
hershel looks sad. it seems he's willing to humor rick for the time being, because he's still got a lot of essential compassion.
"i'll sit here with you. that's something i'm pretty good at nowadays."
rick declines and hershel turns around.
scott wilson, andrew lincoln, you men are pros.
unlike these hack ass writers who pencilled a commercial in here.
9:25 - merle and his guy track michonne through the woods.
she comes out of nowhere, slashing up his guy, and attacking merle.
she loses her sword, and the walkers are on them.
merle and his new hand fare well, and michonne, who has retrieved her sword, does okay,
disembowling walkers (despite the face full of walker guts. we'll let that be, i guess.)
walkers dispatched, the men look around and she's gone.
9:26 - oscar and daryl are inside, tracking rick.
he's left some walkers alive, but they're in no hurry to kill them.
looks like carl's with them.
daryl tells him a story about his mom, and her smoking, and her penchant for wine...
he was playing with some kids.
he could do that without merle, apparently.
they heard some sirens, blah, blah...
the kids had bikes and daryl didn't.
his friends were surprised when he caught up.
turns out his house burnt down, cause his mom smoked.
that's how she died?
"that was my mom in bed, burnt down to nothing. that was the hard part. she was gone. erased. nothing left of her. people said it was better that way." he laughs. "ha, i don't know. just makes her seem like it wasn't real."
"i shot my mom," carl tells him "she was out. hadn't turned yet. i ended it. it was real. sorry 'bout your mom."
"sorry 'bout yours."
wow. good job parenting, rick. gary-stu/daryl is filling in quite nicely though - at least, reedus is great.
9:29 - great, now andrea is getting chewed out by the governor for going over the wall.
she admits she liked the fights.
"...i didn't like that i liked them."
this leads to some stupid shit between the two of them that we don't approve of.
silly pseudo romantic bullshit writing with bullshit rammifications. eww.
9:31 - merle and his guy have given up. they're running.
"she killed tim and crowley."
merle says she's heading for the red zone and is as good as dead.
"what do we tell the governor," the guy asks merle.
"we tell him we killed her."
the guy doesn't agree to conspire. he wants to go after her.
"you're right," says merle. "you can't cut corners on this one."
merle asks the guy how to pronounce his name, gets it, and asks,
"hear that bird?"
then shoots him in the head.
hey look, a commercial.
9:36 - michonne, injured, is stocking up, walkers on her ass.
she unsheathes, but they walk right past?
'cause she's covered in guts? we're not getting this one.
9:37 - phone rings.
"you didn't want to tell her how your wife died?"
"no we just lost her, do you want me to tell you?"
"it would be good to talk about it, rick."
he asks how she knows his name.
she hangs up.
9:38 - michonne limps along, her leg clearly pretty messed up.
a truck drives along in the distance.
it's likely merle.
shit, it's maggie! not merle.
9:38 - she's got glenn with her.
they decide it's clear, then start making out. clearly they are distracted by romance! was this meant to be foreshadowed a couple of episodes ago when they were banging in the guard tower?
they are being watched by at least one external party.
"it's a beautiful day," she tells him.
michonne watches from a distance as glenn uses bolt cutters to break into a building.
in the necessary jolt of the minute, some birds fly out.
maggie tells him to get that toy duck as michonne sneaks up. she (maggie) sounds so happy about the prospect of getting the kid something to play with! i guess no one had the heart to tell her lil' asskicker would probably be just as happy with a set of keys.
9:40 - the governor and andrea wax poetic about non walker life, and we learn he didn't care about his car.
andrea says she finds it hard to believe he didn't have a single thing he was proud of.
"i didn't say that," he tells her. "so how long's it been?"
"...since you had whiskey this good?"
nice save, you perv douchebag. but of course, andrea flirts back. because writing.
now he claims that there's no place he'd rather be than here or now. that's pretty informative.
he also tells her there's no need to be ashamed of liking the fight, or liking to fight.
"most people don't have it," he tells her. "...that's why there's a whole lot more of them then us."
"us?" she asks
"eat, drink and be merry... 'cause tomorrow we die" he toasts.
then they have some pretty gross makeouts initiated by the tasteless andrea.
"other things happen."
poor musical cues, bear.
poor cues indeed.
9:42 - glenn and maggie have "hit the formula jackpot"
maggie comments on how quiet it is here, without them lining up against the fences
like "back home."
all of a sudden merle sneaks up on them.
"and where are y'all people calling home?"
oh, shit merle found them!
he recognizes glenn and drops his gun. sneaky!
"can you tell me, is my brother alive?"
is draco alive?
merle says if they take him to his brother he'll call it even. he notices glenn staring at his newly-weaponized former hand.
"you like that? yeah, i found myself a medical supply warehouse, fixed it up myself."
hmm. okay, player.
that's some exposition i'd have actually liked to see realized. maybe a webisode (that actually works for international viewers, you dicks!)?
this is tense.
glenn offers to tell daryl where merle is.
"the fact we found each other is a miracle, don't you trust me?"
"you trust us," glenn tells him. demanding merle stay put. goddammit, glenn should be the leader!
merle disagrees, and shoots at glenn.
then he grabs maggie and tells glenn to get in the car.
michonne watches on.
looks like glenn and maggie are woodbury-bound,
and clearly based on that shot we go to commercial on,
that baby formula is staying there.
dammit glenn! shoot people.
"now that's what i'm talking about."
great dialogue, folks. good job identifying the new trivialized black character in rick's crew. you know, now that you've totally fucked over t-dog.
anyway, daryl, oscar and carl are making their way further in.
oscar and daryl shoot up a walker.
this walker has carol's knife in it.
9:50 - rick's phone is ringing.
"how did you know my name?"
"because i know you. the people you were talking to today. that was jim, jacqui and amy."
wow, this is lori.
glad they did this. we anticipated a much weaker adaptation!
"what happened, rick? baby, what happened?" she asks him.
"i loved you...i couldn't put it back togethr, i couldn't put it back together, " he tells her. "i made a deal with myself. i would keep you alive. i'd find a place. i'd fix that, there . i couldn't open that door. i couldn't risk it. i was going to keep you alive. carl, and the baby, and then.. i just thought there would be time, but there's never time. but i love you. i loved you. i couldn't put it back together. i should have said it. i should have said it."
"rick, now rick, you listen to me. you have the baby. our baby, and carl. i love you!...rick, i love you.... can... can...rick. can... can you do that? rick? rick?"
rick? rick? rick?ˆ
then it starts sounding awesome, with lori calling out to him.
i quite approve.
andrew lincoln again, ladies and gentlemen.
he hangs up the phone.
9:54 - in a gross turn of events, andrea and the governor are naked, and we are nauseated, and andrea what the fuck...
you look great, though. just saying.
..any way, the governor has a visitor at the door, which thankfully prompts him to put on a robe.
he brings the news about their men being lost.
"...yeah, she cut them down, put a sword through 'em. then biters got in the way. then i got her."
the governor says merle can tell a story at the funeral.
then he asks for her head, and her sword. 'cause he's disgusting.
merle lies through his teeth, then tells about his surprise meeting with glenn and maggie,
"from the looks of it, they've got to be set up pretty good," merle says, "i'll find out where."
governor goes back inside.
andrea asks if everything is okay.
"hell yeah," he responds, disrobing.
9:57 - rick goes to meet his group and little asskicker, clothed in something pink and proper, thankfully. gotta observe strict geder roles in the zombie apocalypsem don'tcha know?
we have a cute little moment of him holding his daughter for the first time and saying hey, but frankly, it's not particularly effective this far in. we know rick is rather screwed in the head, and we know this kid's life is going to suck. why does the inception of all that seem heart-warming?
9:58 - daryl's in the hallway, making noise with carol's knife.
i guess it's time for his breakdown?
he's going to let some walkers out and kill them, but god damn if it isn't carol, all locked up in a closet! this is a pretty big shock, as we've already seen her disembodied scarf - one of the side-character's most vital of organs.
yay, daryl has saved yet another life on his way to being the babe ruth / michael jordan of walking dead.
9:59 - rick and the group walk outside, with rick finally carrying the baby.
"hey, she looks like you," he tells carl. then he sees something. something in the distance.
he gives carl the baby and walks off towards the gate.
michonne is against the fence, amongst the walkers.... are walkers racist? is that why they don't see her?
guess it could also be considered a callback to rick and glenn's walk through the streets in walker guts from season one. hey, y'know, whatever. zombie walk season one was great!
she's against the fence with the basket that maggie and glenn lost.
the basket full of formula.
will rick let her in?!
we go to the credits before we know. but hey, he overcame his cop training and didn't shoot her on sight! go rick?
...our verdict? ...sort of a movie. live!
well, that was an interesting story. it foretells some things that we don't really want to see, but do indeed happen in the comics. today held to the comics fairly closely itself, along with the past few episodes. andrew lincoln continues to be pretty great, and once michonne gets like, consistent lines we might be heading towards a show that seems mediocre when viewed favourably? like, from a critical perspective?