Hello fellow TV Zombies and welcome back for another helping of The Walking Dead discussion! We slowed things down a bit in episode 2, but not to worry, we weren't at season 2 levels of slowness. But, there was time to reflect on the new situation our band of survivors find themselves in. No need to elaborate here. It was a solid hour of The Walking Dead, let's recap!
We focused solely on Rick and crew at the prison in this week's episode, so we'll have to catch up with Andrea and Michonne next week. Of course, we do find out someone is spying on the prison at the end of the episode, so that could be a hint at a potential tie-in to the 2 plots. So, there were mainly 2 stories going on here. Rick dealing with the other survivors they found while going for food and supplies. And, the medical treatment of Herschel.
The episode kicked off right where last week left off. They were in the cafeteria and the other survivors came out of hiding, with one gun among the 4 of them. Rick's main focus is on getting Herschel back to C-Block. T-Dog took the one armored walker waiting at the door for them, and then they high-tailed it back to their home base. (following Glenn's navigational arrows of course) But, they weren't alone. The 5 people they found followed them too. Darryl stayed back from the entrance to C-Block with his crossbow to hold them off. And this is where our story splits.
Dealing with the Surviving Inmates
- Rick heads out to see a standoff between these 4 newbies, T-Dog and Daryl. We find out that the 4 were actually inmates to this prison. Some were in there for murder while others narcotics and such. Tomas had pretty much declared himself the leader of this group. (Nick Gomez, who has been in a variety of things including the recent hit Looper)
- Tomas is dead set on getting his C-Block back so he can stay in his cell. They were here first, so it's their prison. Some guard had locked the 4 of them away with the food storage which allowed them to stay alive for 10 months (292 or 294 days depending who you talk to). Rick and crew had to catch them up on what has happened to the rest of the world, how there's nothing left and probably half of the population is wiped out. They even took them outside to show them the grounds littered with dead walkers.
- Rick arranges a deal with the 5 to split the remainder of the food supply (which was a lot more than the group led on) and they'll help them clear out another Cell Block for them to stay. It's safe to say there was a major lack of trust going on here. Rick confided with Lori that he felt the best approach was to just kill them. He had done it before in the bar last season. All he cares about is keeping his group safe. Lori told Rick that she knows he's not a bad person and if he thinks killing those people is the best option, then he should do it with a clear conscience.
- So, the crew sets out (Rick, Daryl, T-Dog, Tomas, Big Tiny, Redneck guy, Oscar and the other guy). It was pretty funny watching the inmates take on their first walkers. They disregarded any information they learned from Rick and crew and started going for body blows and such. By the time the next scene rolls around we see them all going for head shots.
- They do run into a dilemma when a walker rips off his arm that was handcuffed to end up with a sharp appendage. He scratched Big Tiny's back which most likely meant he was infected. They sat around debating for awhile. Rick already knew the answer. But without hesitation, Tomas just goes to town on his former buddy. He hacked Big Tiny to pieces and the look on his face was of pure salivating pleasure. This man was a killer by nature and it was easy to tell he would be a threat to this group.
- They get to D Block and force Tomas to open the door. Rick instructed him to open one door so they could control the flow of walkers. But Tomas had an issue with the door (at least he claimed). He opened both doors and a hoard of walkers came at them. His excuse? "sh*t happens!". Then Tomas took a close swing that could have hit Rick and also threw a walker on top of him during the fighting. Daryl was able to save him before any bite took place.
- Tomas tried to play off what he did saying that the walker was coming at him. Rick understood retorting with, "sh*t happens". Then without hesitation, Rick takes an axe to Tomas's head. OUCH!
- The Other guy made a run for it and Rick chased him into a prison yard full of walkers. Rick closed the door on him and advised him to run. WHAAAT!?!?! This Rick ain't messin around!
- And then there were 2. Redneck dude started pleading for his life saying that he's not a killer and they had nothing to do with the setup. Oscar refused to plead for his life but you could tell that these guys weren't loose canons like their buddy by circumstance, Tomas. Rick kept his word and took them to D-Block. Lots of Redneck Dude's friends were dead twice over in there. Rick promised that if he ever were to see either one of them near C-Block and his crew, he would kill them. Yikes, he ain't messin around! Something tells me we haven't seen the last of these 2 guys. But, you never know.
- So, while Herschel's leg was chopped off we still weren't sure how this was all going to turn out. Carol apparently was given some medical lessons from Herschel of the off-camera time in order to be able to help or actually deliver Lori's baby via c-section. So, she took charge on treating Herschel. Mission number 1, stop the bleeding.
- Glenn was assigned by Rick to never leave Herschel's side and to take him out of the equation if he ended up dying. Rick also ordered Herschel to be handcuffed to his bed, just in case.
- Carl took things into his own hands and went wandering off, found the infirmary, killed 2 walkers and came back with supplies. Needless to say, Lori was furious at him. But, Carl didn't really care. Beth tried to yell at Carl for talking to his mother that way, and Carl just ran away. This kid is CRAZY!!!
- Maggie had already given up on Herschel surviving. Lots of debates happened on what the group would do if he did survive. They would need crutches, he would be a burden on them, etc... Beth was already cutting pant legs shorter to anticipate his survival. Meanwhile, Maggie wanted some alone time with Herschel to tell him it was okay to let go. She and Beth would be okay because he taught them so much.
- Carol knew that she'd need to be better prepared to deliver Lori's baby because Herschel may not be around to assist or may just be incapable of assisting. She asked a reluctant Glenn (already on orders) to come with her to the prison yard. She picked out a female walker and said she had to practice c-section incisions. Interesting to note that once they picked out their walker, they didn't kill the other ones. Glenn just created a diversion and led them away while carol brought her test body onto their grounds. As I mentioned, we see Carol working on her incisions at the end of the episode and it appears that someone is watching her. I have my theories, but they're potentially a "little" spoilerish (from previews I've seen) so I'll just stay quiet for now!
- Meanwhile, Herschel stopped breathing at one point and Lori came in and started CPR. It looked like they were trying to throw us off and make us think Herschel was biting Lori as a walker (Some people were probably really hoping for this), but it turned out that Lori saved him. Carl actually seemed impressed in his mother. Perhaps, he'll start warming up to her again?
- Rick and crew got back and everyone huddled around Herschel as he opened his eyes and he was still alive!! I'm going to blame the music that almost got me choked up when he reached for Rick's hand in almost an acknowledgement of thanks for chopping his leg off and saving him. There were smiles from the whole crew and maybe even millions of viewers as we discovered Herschel will live to see another day.
- There was another moment between Rick and Lori to end the episode where they discussed plans to clean up the next day now that things are settled down. Rick assured Lori that she's not a terrible mother (based on a comment she made earlier in the episode). Lori was almost hoping Rick had come out to talk about them. And while he couldn't bring himself to open up to her fully, he did place his hand on her shoulder and tell her they were awfully grateful for what she did. He walked away, and Lori just smiled because it was probably the biggest showing of affection that she's seen from her family in quite awhile. Of course, it may have been a half smile/half starting to cry because they have a long road to recovery if they ever will.