The Walking Dead — Seed (S3E01)

The Walking Dead starts the season with an absolutely killer episode. It begins the winter after the finale. Rick has taken complete control of the group, Lori is getting very near her due date, and the group has become much closer. The group is completely in sync, they have learned how to infiltrate a house in complete silence. Rick, Daryl, Carl, Maggie,  Glenn, and T-Dog, the fighters of the group, break into and clear the house of zombies. None of them, including Carl, hesitate to gun down or stab the walkers. When the house is safe, the rest of the group steps in and searches for food and medicine. This entire process is completely streamlined, they do it swiftly and in complete silence. They had been sweeping houses all summer and practice seems to have made perfect. They have also mapped out the locations and numbers of the herds they have encountered, the amount of walkers seems to have risen exponentially. Nowhere is safe.

That is, until they find the prison. While Rick and Daryl are hunting, they notice a prison in the distance. Though Rick doesn’t look thrilled to see it, he shows a hint of a plan. When they get down to the prison, each member of the team (including the women) man a tower with their guns or stab zombies through the fence. Each has their preferred weapon and has honed it, making nearly every shot a head shot. Rick manages to close the gap in the fence, shutting out the only entrance into the prison. Once the zombies are wiped out, the group is incredibly relieved to have a wide open field to sleep in for the night. They are in such a chipper mood that Beth (Hershel’s other daughter) breaks into song, with Maggie chiming in. Carol and Daryl joke about Lori’s pregnancy, followed by a massage; the last thing we need is another couple. But they play it off with a joke about fooling around, and it looks like we’re safe from them getting together. For now.

Though everyone else is nearly in tears with excitement at the momentary safe haven, Rick isn’t. He hasn’t smiled a single time and has barely said a word. He has probably had a constant grimace across his face the entire winter and it doesn’t look as though this will change. He has become so hardened from the apocalypse that he’s become detached from reality. He can’t stand to look at Lori anymore, because every time he does, he must think of Shane. The only thing that is propelling him forward is trying to keep the group safe and let the baby (that he doesn’t want) be born in a safe environment.

Rick insists that they push into the prison the following day to try and find a safe place for the long haul and to retrieve more food and munitions. The fighters (besides Carl) are in a circular formation so that they can cover each other from every angle. It started off with easily pickings, but then the zombies with headgear show up. It takes them significantly longer to kill these ghouls until Maggie finds the sweet spot under the neck.

They clear the cell block quickly and grab two pairs of keys for the cells themselves. Though Daryl refuses to be caged like an animal, the others find their cells and are thrilled to find real mattresses to sleep on. Carl walks Beth to a cell of her own, but is shooed away by Hershel. Looks like Carl has a little crush, it’s so cute! Glenn and Maggie check each other for scratches and embrace when they realize that they’re clear. Everyone seems to be happy besides Rick. When Lori thanks him, he just nods and walks off. He leans against a wall by himself and tries to gather himself, but it doesn’t seem like he’s going to return to any level of happiness anytime soon.

When Lori tries to go to Rick with her problems, he just sends her off to Hershel, he does “stuff” rather than talking. Lori explains to Hershel her fear of her baby coming out stillborn or already being dead and trying to kill one of them, or that she will die during childbirth and bite one of the others. This doesn’t seem like such a terrible end, Lori has just been in the way and I don’t think many people (in the show or viewers) would be at a loss without her. Since she has no one else to turn to, she tells him her fears that both Carl and Rick hate her. She’s the reason that Rick had to kill his best friend (and her son had to kill him a second time) and they haven’t forgotten that.

When the men and Maggie go to explore and clear the prison, Rick makes Carl stay behind. And surprisingly enough, he doesn’t talk back. He understands that someone needs to stay behind, and he does just that. Carl was forced to grow up too early, he has taken on a stronger, more mature role in the past few months. When the crew is faced with multiple swarms of walkers, they bolt into a closet, but Maggie and Glenn ran a different direction. When they are clear, Hershel starts calling out for Maggie. Just as he sees her, a sleeping zombie awakens and takes a bite from his calf. They make a break for a clear room, carrying Hershel with them.

They decide that they have to try anything to keep Hershel alive. So they take an axe to his leg to try to get rid of the bite before the infection spreads to his brain. In an absolutely disgusting scene, Rick has to swing the axe a couple times to tear through the muscles and bone in his leg. This is a nasty comparison to the typical one-shot needed to remove a zombie threat. Nicotero does an absolutely spectacular job with this, because I felt sick to my stomach, and I’m not squeamish. If that wasn’t enough for you, the crew looks up and sees a group of living, breathing, talking humans.

There was very little about Andrea and Michonne (she hasn’t been named in the show yet, but she is known from the comics as Michonne). All we see of Michonne is her amazing katana-wielding powers, where she takes out two zombies at once and her pets. She keeps two armless zombies on chains walking behind her. These pets seem fairly trained, as they will follow her without trying to eat her. Andrea and Michonne have been covering each other all winter, but now Andrea has dropped into a terrible sickness. She is extremely pale and looks near death, but Michonne won’t leave her behind. Though we don’t see too much of this storyline and we know very little about Michonne, I have no doubt that we will see much more of her and her pets.

(My review of the next episode of The Walking Dead, Sick)


About MockingSilence

Just an opinionated teenage girl who watches too much TV.

Posted on October 15, 2012, in SciFi, Fantasy, & Horror, The Walking Dead and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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