I finally was able to watch the Season 3-B premiere of The Walking Dead. It can be summed up in two words: “cold shower.” That’s okay, though. I shelved the show 3 episodes into season 2 because it seemed stuck… though I admit, a big reason I shelved it was also my gf’s complete disinterest in the program… combine that with my hectic work schedule and non-existent down-time and it all equals out to Netflix binge down the road.
Well… I binged and crammed a rewatch of season 1, then a first viewing of season 2, then I figured out a way to watch season 3 (as it is not yet available on Netflix). Mayhaps this series works better as binge viewing. The commercial breaks and the week of waiting to see what happens makes me feel like I am watching Lost… and I despise Lost. For every really sick, 5 star episode of The Walking Dead, there are 2 somewhat lame, sluggish episodes. Don’t misunderstand me, the 5 star episodes make up ten-fold for the sluggers and I cannot wait to watch the remainder of this season. I am stating that this series works best without commercials, one after the other (unlike Lost, which is actually worse without commercials and back to back to back so on and so forth).
So, after the emotional high of watching over twenty episodes of Rick and Glen and Maggie and Daryl and Lori and all the rest, I was salivating to get to my DVR and see if Daryl and Merle survive, if the Governor gets his, if Andrea gets back with her friends, if Cutty from The Wire is able to convince the gang to let he and his friends stay in the safety of the prison, and if Michonne puts a few sentences together. The payoff wasn’t there. Sure, some cliffhangers were settled, but not really… and more knots were tied… and characters ended up in frustrating places that I don’t want to see them in.
Rick and Cutty (for those of you who have never watched The Wire, please stop reading and go and watch all five seasons before you look at yourself in the mirror again) didn’t form an alliance like I was hoping they would. Merle is still alive and will cause more trouble. The Governor is going to cause more trouble. Andrea… I don’t know exactly what she is looking for… maybe she doesn’t either. She is safe where she is, this much is true. She can’t exactly go running off to be with her friends but it is frustrating that she is sticking with Woodbury.
What was most frustrating in this premiere episode was Ghost Lori… who I didn’t even know was Lori until I saw the first few minutes of The Talking Dead and Chris Hardwick said it was Ghost Lori. (NOTE: I only watched the first five minutes that my DVR had recorded. SECOND NOTE: Chris Hardwick is a very inspirational person.) I felt that Rick had settled himself with Lori’s death on the Ghost Phone. I guess not… so now we have Ghost Lori. To be honest though, when I first saw the strange specter, half its face hidden in shadow, its hair all done up and wearing a beautiful white dress, I kinda was thinking of a divine presence. As much as I don’t want to see Rick lose his mind, it was intriguing to think of the possibilities of a god… for the zombies? For the survivors? For the new world that these characters have finally accepted completely? Whatever it is, sign me up.
What is the End Game for this program? Do they just press on year after year, killing off characters and bringing new ones aboard? Great shows last 5 good seasons or thereabouts. And even then, there is filler. Homeland may be the greatest television program ever… and I wish that this past season had been its last…. although I wish more that Shotime proves me wrong. The Wire was 5 seasons… perfect. Some say the 4th season was thumbs down as well as the 5th. I say those people are insane.
My point is that the narrative of a group of people surviving a zombie apocalypse is great, but there needs to be somewhere that they are all heading… an ultimate goal… a final confrontation… a mountain that these characters know that once they climb, they can let out a sigh of relief and simply live a somewhat normal life off screen. Where is this series headed? Obviously, The Governor and Woodbury will attack the Prison and there will be a battle and obviously, Rick will somehow survive. Carl will somehow survive. Glen… Idk about Glen… Daryl will obviously give in to his older woman fetish and get with Carol. Merle will get what’s coming to him. I applaud the regular deaths of characters and the feeling that nobody is safe that the show gives, but that can only go so far. What is the End Game?
I’ve read spoilers in the comic book series and I don’t really like the direction that goes in, but this is a television show and it can’t go on and on like a comic book, forever. This will get old and the show will lose viewers and at some point, it will be announced that this upcoming season of The Walking Dead will be the Final Season. What will happen then? What is the End Game?
Ghost Lori? Or Zombie Goddess? I think Zombie Goddess is cooler. And if She looks like Lori, that’s all good. But give me something more than these people running around in circles and trying to survive. Let me know there is an end in sight and it will raise the stakes and it will keep my DVR tuned into AMC every Sunday night. Sure! Let Rick be some kind of Messiah for this new world. Fine! Make Carl the Messiah. Whatever! Maybe there has to be some pilgrimage to some holy place and once the gang gets there, they will start a new world. I don’t know. I’m not writing the show. I’m just watching it. But I can only watch something for so long if there isn’t an end in sight.