awkwardly

Tuesday

Walking Dead, Second Season Finale

{THERE WILL BE SPOILERS.}

There was something relieving about this delicate situation at the farm being brought crashing down. Having a stable, normal home kind of creates tension in this setting, so the tension was relieved by the farm finally getting overrun.

Maybe the tension was suspending disbelief for this long? It was pretty obvious that farm fences would not keep out zombies forever. Almost as silly as thinking you could pitch a camp at the top of the hill and that would be secure.

I like how Rick’s ranting at the end of the episode made him sound as sociopathic as Shane was. Made it sound like he wanted to kill Shane and just rationalized it afterwards. (I don’t hold it against him at all, even the sneaky way he did it with a knife, but to the others it must have sounded like the excuses Shane offered any time he proposed or tried to justify killing someone.)

Rick says, "This isn’t a democracy anymore." -- It never was. I guess this just means Rick plans to be more of a jerk about it than he was before.

THE BIG SECRET REVEALED. Back when they were at the CDC, dude whispered something in Rick's ear. Finally in this episode Rick revealed that it's a virus, that everyone is infected and will come back as a zombie. It's not just something transferred by zombie bite (like 28 Days).

On the one hand, it’s thematically interesting to think of it in terms of everyone being infected with the zombie virus, meaning everyone has the potential to become a zombie (become evil, stop behaving kindly towards each other). Notice how Shane symbolically mutilates himself by shaving his head* after he killed the chubby guy, then degenerates to further killing, finally puts his plan in motion to kill Rick, and then comes back as a zombie. If zombies symbolize evil, he was acting more and more like a zombie even before he died. It's interesting to think that all the good guys have this potential for evil in a really obvious way.

On the other hand, are you fucking kidding me? How can you present this as a secret when almost every other zombie movie assumes in their ground rules that everyone is coming back as zombies?

I understand why you can’t have the main characters talk about all the zombie movies they've seen, or the rules of zombie movies. But it's like planting a big secret in the first season of a vampire tv show, waiting to reveal it until the end of the second season, and the secret is: "Driving a stake through their hearts will kill them permanently!" It might be a surprise to the characters, but it's no surprise to the audience.

I'll keep watching the show, but I think if AMC was debating whether to cancel one show and extend some other show an extra season, I'd say cancel Walking Dead and try one more season of the Killing. It has some problems, but not as bad as this.

* I take it for granted that some instances of head-shaving are symbolic self-mutilation, especially when someone has been depressed or traumatized. See Britney Spears. Not ALL instances, but some. In this case, I think it's a fair assessment, especially the amount of time they spent showing him shave his head, the flashbacks that happened during that scene. Not that every person who shaves his or her head is depressed or mentally ill, but sometimes you can see a connection.

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