This episode of The Walking Dead was of course more of a slow burner than the chaotic premiere. It had to be there was no way they could keep up that kind of budget two episodes in a row. To be honest even if they could do that it wouldn’t make any sense, you need the slow episodes otherwise there would be no character development; it would be constant zombie decapitations and fireballs. Though this sounds fun in reality it wouldn’t be, why would you be excited in scenes of danger if you cared nothing about the characters? If every episode was all action you wouldn’t care about the characters, trust me. Which obviously would make the experience as a whole much less fun. However, though this episode was more drawn out and took on a much pace, there was a huge moment at the end of the episode. Not huge in scale, but in terms of what actually happens in the scene. That is what is so good about the show; it’s ability to keep you guessing. If anything you would expect the *SPOILER ALERT* dismembering and subsequent eating of a main character to be in that chaotic shit storm the group were caught up in during the premiere. The writers tricked us leading us to believe that something really bad could happen to main characters in the first episode, when in actual fact they all got out unscathed; the real damage taking place in the closing scenes of a seemingly slow episode.
I am of course talking about the re-appearance of the Terminus cannibals capturing Bob and eating one of his legs. He isn’t dead, it seems he will survive through it, the question is: which one of the group is next? I ask this as it seems the roaming group of ex-Terminus dwellers, creeping on the outskirts kidnapping members of the group will be a regular occurrence. The writers have done well to keep the threat of the cannibals around without Terminus, in an interesting way. Readers of The Walking Dead comic among you may know that; the scene of the cannibals roasting one of Bob’s legs on the fire as he looks on is lifted directly from the panels of the comic. However in the comic it isn’t Bob who gets the chop, its Dale. Dale is alive in the comic for much longer than he lasts in the TV show. He actually dies in issue 66 from being bitten by a zombie, shortly after the events of cannibalism.
I find it difficult to talk about anything other than this scene to be quite honest as save for a few interesting scenes that give some of the story lines momentum for the coming weeks, which I shall talk about in due course; the episode was a fairly normal day in the life of the survivors. An addition I am certainly pleased to see is the appearance of Gabriel, the preacher. Having read his first appearance in the comic as well as the secrets he is keeping I am sure this character and his back story will provide some fantastic drama in the weeks to come, which of course fuels the always brilliant acting on the show. It is stories like Gabriel’s that will no doubt lead to some excellent performances.
Once again the acting was brilliant, particularly from Andrew Lincoln who for two episodes now has got into the habit of delivering a certain stare. He did it to Gareth in the throat slitting scene of the premiere and he delivered the look once again to Gabriel in this episode. When he gave the look to the leader of the Terminus cannibals it was out of pure hatred, he was sending a message to the leader of intimidation and unmasked threat. When he stared out Gabriel it was merely out of mistrust. Its frightening, he seems to fall into a trance; as though he is holding himself back. It is a dead pan, wide eyed stare often delivered when someone he hates or mistrusts is speaking to him and he should be answering. Rick seems to be moving toward an odd place, developing into a psychopath, he seems vengeful and angry. This may be a hint towards a future scene from the comic in which on his orders some of the group do terrible things to the cannibals responsible for chopping off Dale’s leg.
Another important scene in this episode was Daryl and Carol giving chase to the car responsible for kidnapping Beth, the hearse with the cross on the rear window. This is an interesting and promising development that could spice things up a lot. It would get a little stale if the entire group were involved in the same thing, its nice to have the odd diverging plot line that takes us to a different location every now and then, even if this is only the case for a few episodes.