Monday, November 12, 2012


Welcome to a roundtable discussion of this week's episode of The Walking Dead from your friendly neighborhood LowBrowMedia savants.
This is a spoiler-heavy zone. You have been warned.

Magus: With the larger band of survivors having secured the prison, attention comes back to Andrea and Michonne for more than five minutes increments. This is an episode where a lot happens with the focus once again not on the walkers as the villain of the show. There's the return of the long lost Merle Dixon, we learn that Michonne's other skill is a wicked side-glance that would kill lesser men, and we meet The Governor.

We catch up with Andrea and Michonne on the move investigating a helicopter crash out in the middle of nowhere. Their search of the wreckage is interrupted by another group of survivors. Soldiers that have become walkers are dispatched, a survivor is pulled from the wreckage, and Michonne and Andrea are captured in hiding by Merle. One blindfolded car ride later, the ladies are in Woodbury with Andrea being treated for her mystery illness and Michonne deploying her best distrust and aforementioned side-glance. She is not terribly subtle when it comes to this and it's really kind of surprising that The Governor wouldn't off her. However, he is a much more nuanced character than the prisoner Rick offed in the previous episode.

After a tour of Woodbury, it becomes apparent that The Governor is going to do his best to convince the ladies to stay of their own accord for now. He comes up with reason upon reason they should stick around for the time being and maybe join the community. It's not until later that we see he probably isn't going to let them leave regardless.

The Governor goes out to rendezvous with the reserve unit the surviving helicopter pilot came from. He then has his men in hiding gun them down and take their equipment. The Governor is a man who is willing to do whatever it takes to secure his power and community and then some by eliminating a potential threat to his authority. Unlike Rick's action at the prison, The Governor moves before anyone has a chance to take a swing at him. He sees the soldiers as an immediate threat to his power that needs to be neutralized. Merle is among the men he takes with him, but it's not entirely clear if Merle is completely in. There's the impression that Merle does what he does as repayment for being taken in by the community at a time when he needed help. The ultimate test of this loyalty will probably come when there is the inevitable reunion of him and Daryl.

Upon his return, The Governor informs the people of Woodbury that the soldiers had already been killed by biters (walkers) and that they took the equipment to help fortify the town. There's more side-glance from Michonne as he continues to work on Andrea and it looks like she's ready to sign up. In fairness to her, The Governor has presented a community with little difference to the one put together by Rick and his group. It's behind the scenes where we discover that The Governor has some skeletons (heads) in his closet and a sampling of his madness is revealed.

Jon: Simply put, this was the best episode of The Walking Dead in well over a year. Getting a little time out from Rick Grimes and the gang was long overdue in my opinion, not to mention starting to finally flesh out other corners of this zombie-filled world.

As Magus expertly describes above, this episode starts out following Andrea and Michonne as they are taken captive and brought to the idyllic community of Woodbury. How this little town has maintained a Pleasantville-like atmosphere isn't immediately revealed, but the heavily fortified boundary and a strict curfew would not be possible if it weren't for the commands and direction of the mysterious Governor. As "Walk With Me" progresses, the narrative focus shifts to The Governor and his cronies. They're up to something, and while that something isn't clear yet, what is obvious is that he'll be a force to be reckoned with once the ladies decide to leave Woodbury and the inevitable clash between he and Rick later on. Tough times are ahead, for sure.

But, hey not all bad! There's also Merle! Daryl's supercharged racist, redneck brother has returned to us as a poor man's Ash Williams complete with a metal stub and a detachable bayonet. And while I don't know that I'd go as far as to say I missed him, I do welcome his special brand of maliciousness back to the program. You gotta wonder whether or not he'll back away from his allegiance to The Governor when he and Daryl find each other once more, or if he'd be able to sway Daryl to the dark side (at least temporarily).

Again, this was a fantastic change-of-pace episode and I believe has set the remainder of the season up for some great revelations and bombastic action when all our players finally converge.

Previous roundtables for The Walking Dead season 3: 
Week 1 - "Seed"
Week 2 - "Sick"