Tribe - tonight's episode was truly one of the most powerful, intense things I've ever seen on TV. If you're a fan of the Walking Dead, you must see this episode unspoiled. Massively intense, sad and with character moments the likes of which I have not seen anywhere else. Some huge changes that will impact the show moving forward.
And that's the extent I'm going to cover the episode right now. Still in 'recovery' mode.
Comments section is open for your thoughts and reactions--if you haven't seen the episode yet, don't read them, don't get spoiled!
Update: I've added my thoughts/reactions after the jump. Don't read if you haven't seen the episode yet!
Man, that was a heavy episode. No one, I think, saw the baby's birth happening like that. I figured we'd get a warm Hallmark-card from the prison episode in mid-season. That certainly was not the case.
On Lori and the baby:
I have a 4 year old boy and just, about three weeks ago, had another boy, so the whole child birth scene hit me hard, and the interaction between Lori and Carl was heartbreaking. That, then cut in with the scene from last season, with Rick telling Carl that he needed to grow up...man, some powerful stuff. An emotionally horrible, worst-case scenario...really haunting. The zombie apocalypse is not fun stuff. Poor Carl -- he did what had to be done, and it was horrible.
Lori died bravely here, so that her baby could live. On the Talking Dead follow-up show, the guest exec producer said that Lori had always viewed her pregnancy as a death sentence. She had accepted what was going to happen and faced it well.
I think Rick realized the death sentence, too - it's partly why he distance himself from her. We saw him break apart at the seams (finally) in this episode, and it will take him a while to snap out of it. In the comics, he literally goes a bit crazy for a while. Looks like that's up next week.
Part of me wondered if they had to act as they did. Child birth takes a while...hours...but, we really don't know the exact timing or what was exactly going on. Similarly, it takes a while to bleed to death, but again, we don't know. There were still walkers around outside their door the prison, and they had no way of moving her. We can assume that everything had to go down that way, because really, it would be too darn sad if they could have somehow saved Lori.
Having helped my wife through 2 pregnancies now, and having two young sons, this episode really resonated with me. Makes you hold your family a bit closer and want to keep them that much safer, really.
I really didn't know that T-Dog had the cult following that he did, because I've never been a big fan. Last season, he didn't have much to do, and while he's had some more dialog this season, he was on the short list of "survivors most likely to be eaten." He went out well, though I wish he'd had his fireplace poker and took out a dozen more walkers in a furious battle death rage before getting overcome.
On Andrea & Michonne:
Really, with the drama going on at the prison, this side story was annoying. We know the Governor is EVIL, and we know Merl is EVIL, so seeing Andrea get all friendly with both of them was verging on yelling at the TV. Michonne and the Gov square off in next week's episode...
What was up with the head/shawl thing? She's still alive. Daryl did not seem as torn up about her apparent death that I would have guessed.
- Obviously, knowing how to do a C-section and having the proper equipment & supplies. Not something you want to try out for funsies...leave that to the pros...but, if someone is going to die if you don't act...
- Agree with the commenter on the size of perimeter...and it was clearly not a secured perimter. Evil Inmate guy was able to sneak around, cut through their inner defenses and so on, without notice, and there was zero advanced warning that the walkers were approaching. You can't chain up a gate and assume that it's good, especially if there's a herd of walkers on the other side. If someone's eyes aren't on the area, you can't assume it's safe.
- Post-collapse, you need to have fighting gear on you at all times. A handgun and no reload is not fighting gear. If survivors had all had AR-15s and a couple spare mags at the ready, the zombie outbreak would not have been the problem that it was.
- An attack is likely to come when your guard is down...so if you have to let your guard down, make sure that others are actively watching your back. The survivors had gotten comfortable behind the walls of the prison, and they let their guard down...
- Contingency planning. All hell broke loose and the group scattered in three different directions. There was no clear rally point for the group, no clear plan of action when faced with a superior force.
- Know when to stand and fight, know when to run and hide...and the latter is usually the wisest. The survivors started shooting when they should have started running. They had some time and space before the walkers were upon them (minus Hershel, who was doing the best he could to book it out of there). If at first sign of enemy contact, everyone would have bugged out for a designated rally/safe point, things might have gone differently.
- Again, the importance of communications (a recurring 'lesson' from the show). If Carl, Rick and T-Dog had walkie talkies, how differently might things have played out?
- Baby supplies. Next week, the group has to make a frantic run for formula to keep the baby alive. They'd known the little one was coming for a while...couldn't have tried to get some formula and so on prior to that?