Below is my synopsis of The Walking Dead episode three. If you haven’t seen it I suggest you don’t read on. Buy The Walking Dead Season 1 and enjoy!
The Walking Dead Season 1 Episode 3 introduces a new change in pace to the series, with a much stronger emphasis on the human drama of the survivors situation rather than action packed zombie slaying and/or escaping. That’s not to say that the tension is any less. In fact from the word go the episode takes us on an emotional roller coaster that never lets up. We find Merle still chained to the roof blubbering away, half crazed. As his mind starts to refocus on the reality of his situation he starts to panic and becomes hysterical, one moment begging for forgiveness and salvation and the next flying into a violent rage as he looks for a way out. And all the time the undead are at the locked door, but how long will it hold? Pretty grim stuff, even for an unlikable character like Merle.
Back at base camp there’s a touching scene between Shane, Lori and Carl. Clearly Shane is in love with both Lori and Carl and you can see that they would make a good family. But of course moments later Carl’s real dad turns up and in that emotional reunion with his son and wife you know that everything has changed, especially for Shane.
Round the camp fire they catch up and then talk turns to Merle and how best to break the news to his equally violent brother Daryl. More importantly, as T-Dog reveals that he locked the door to the roof, the group has to confront that Merle is probably still alive sitting on the roof. We also meet two new characters Carol and her very objectionable husband Ed, but more of them later.
Later that night, Lori welcomes Rick back into her bed, when only 24 hours earlier she was having sex in the woods with Shane. Ouch the guilt. The female characters in the show are strong and feisty but the scripts sure as hell don’t give them an easy ride! Meanwhile Shane is literally left out in the cold.
When cross bow wielding Daryl returns from a hunt he proves to be every bit as aggressive an unhinged as his brother (although with a lot more wit) and needless to say he’s a little peeved to hear his brother has been left for dead. Then follows the “should they, shouldn’t they” debate in the group as to whether they should risk going back for Merle. Ultimately it is Rick who convinces them that on so many levels they have to go back, Merle a bag of guns and the walkie talkie that he needs to get back in touch with Morgan and Duane so they don’t walk back into the same mess in Atlanta as Rick himself did.
While Rick, Glenn, T-Dog and Daryl head back to Atlanta a bigger drama is brewing back at camp. When Shane takes Carl down to the lake to catch frog Lori goes after them, orders Carl back to camp and then tells Shane in no uncertain terms to stay away from her and her family. When Shane protests Lori reveals that Shane was the one who told her Rick was dead! Meanwhile Andrea, Amy, Jacqui and Carol gossip and wash clothes at the water’s edge. Carol’s very unpleasant husband, who we met earlier, gets into an argument with the woman and orders his wife away. When the women try to protect Carol he hits her. Shane storms over and pulls Ed away but instead of diffusing the situation, as Rick would surely have done, he takes the anger, from his recent confrontation with Lori, out on Ed almost beating him to death. Despite all the violence we have seen between humans and zombies up to this point this aggression between human and human is probably the most disturbing yet and goes to the heart of this drama.
Back in Atlanta the team makes it up onto the roof but… Merle is gone…but not all of him! A hand and a bloody hacksaw remain.
This 3rd episode of the Walking Dead really starts to move towards the human drama that Kirkman’s comic books have always been about. A TV series purely about zombies is going to have a pretty short shelf life but with the focus on the human characters and the challenges they face amongst one another in this new world is fascinating and will keep this series running, hopefully for years to come. I’m looking forward to seeing more of Daryl who, while pretty psychotic has got a lot of humor about him. Perhaps something of a “Saywer” for this series. It also feels at the moment that all the characters are flawed except Rick, who always appears to do the right thing. I wonder how long it will be until Rick too shows his demons. Personally I love the way that the writing and the characters pull the viewer back and forth. One minute you hate a character, Merle and Ed and the next minute you are appalled at what happens to them. Well that’s The Walking Dead Season 1 Episode 3!
So onwards and downwards to The Walking Dead Season 1 Episode 4.
TheWalkingDeadSeason2.Com for all your zombie needs!