Predictions for The Walking Dead Episode 508: “Coda”

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WARNING: This article contains spoilers from previous episodes of AMC’s The Walking Dead, as well as it’s comic book counterpart. Comic spoilers will be marked with spoiler tags. Proceed at your own risk.

– LIKE NERD PRESS ON FACEBOOK

We haven’t been given a whole lot to speculate on in regards to this upcoming episode, “Coda.” That seems to be a running theme, as the past few episodes have been hard to take a guess at.

We left the group still divided at the end of “Crossed,” with five of them in Atlanta, holding three of Dawn’s officers captive… well, two after one manages to knock out Sasha and escape. On the other side of the city, Beth has done her best to give Carol what she needs to pull through, and has suspiciously earned Dawn’s trust all of a sudden. Michonne, Carl, and Judith are back at the church where Gabriel has escaped and fled into the woods, and good ol’ “GREATM” has solved their water problem, Abraham has gotten over himself with some tough love from Maggie, and Eugene is waking up.

Most importantly, we have Rick and his team attempting to bargain for Beth and Carol, but who knows how that will work out since Officer Lamson has escaped and is… wait for it… on the lamb. Eh? Yeah? Get it? Lame joke.

Looking at all of this, and the promos we were shown, we don’t really have much of an idea of where things are going to go, so let’s speculate, shall we?

First and foremost, the episode name “Coda” is a word that is defined by Merriam-Webster as “something that serves to round out, conclude, or summarize and usually has its own interest.” From this description, I think it’s safe to assume that we’ll be seeing the conclusion of something. I’m going to assume it’s the group’s time in Atlanta. Rick and his faction still don’t know that the cure and D.C. are fraudulent, and even if they find out, Noah comes from a walled community in Richmond, VA. One way or another, this group is going to head north with GREATM probably joining them along the way.

In addition to this, the episode description gives us a little insight into what will be happening:

“New enemies disregard rules and morals; although Rick wants to find a peaceful agreement, the enemies seem to prefer a more violent resolution.”

If this description is accurate in any way, it appears that the peaceful solution that Tyreese cooked up and Daryl vouched for isn’t going to work with Dawn. I’m going to say it’s fair to assume we’ll see a lot of action as well, if this description is indeed accurate. The promos, as well as some rumors, may lend some authenticity to this assumption.

As far as the promos for this week go, we don’t get much. One features Rick speaking with someone, presumably Dawn, about how the Grady cops have two of his people. He names them, and begins to offer a proposal. There are a few shots of Rick running through the streets, police cars, and Daryl and Sasha set up as snipers on a rooftop. Some quick shots of Gabriel are shown before we also see Beth back at the elevator shaft, telling someone that this is “who they are.” For a split second after that, we get a look at Maggie and Glenn, and it looks like they are in the fire truck, which appears to now be surrounded by walkers. Before the promo ends, there is one last shot looking up at Rick as he draws his gun as if to fire.

I’d guess that the deal between Dawn and Rick goes sour pretty quickly, and probably happens within the first half of the episode. I also believe that Rick telling Dawn that she has two of his people, is going to immediately put Beth and Carol in danger as Dawn will quickly realize that they know one another. The shots of Rick running through the street are most likely him chasing down Lamson, who may also be the person he is drawing on at the end of the promo. This situation, if it occurs as I believe it may, reminds me a lot of a situation Rick encounters in the comic.

-COMIC SPOILERS- In the comic, Rick is taken captive by the Governor along with Glenn and Michonne. After some brutal torture and detective work, the Governor figures out that the group is holed up in a prison nearby. The only problem is that the Governor doesn’t know where it is located. To figure this out, he has Martinez break the three out of captivity, and helps them (along with Dr. Stevens and his assistant, Alice) back to the prison. Once everyone, or mostly everyone, arrive at the prison, Rick notices that Martinez has gone missing, and takes off after him in Dale’s RV. When he reaches Martinez, Rick hits with the RV, incapacitating him. Rick gets out to  confront Martinez, he swears to Rick that he was only going back to get more people — good people– as they deserve a chance at the prison. Rick, untrusting of Martinez, kills him so that he cannot reveal their location. -END COMIC SPOILERS-

In short, I feel like Lamson may be playing a role similar to comic Martinez.

The shots of Gabriel in this promo seem to fall in line with the second promo we’ve been shown, which I’ll touch on in a moment. My real big question, is who is Beth talking to at the elevator shaft? There’s a good chance it’s Carol, but I can’t see Carol being good enough to walk yet, much less repel down an elevator shaft for that matter. Beth may be talking with Dr. Edwards, who as I stated before, may be fulfilling the role of Dr. Stevens from the comic, and helping Beth get out of the hospital. He may be trying to save his own skin as well, which probably isn’t the worst idea he’s ever had.

The only other question regarding this promo is how Glenn and Maggie get themselves trapped with walkers all around. I’m guess that it may be the hoard over the hill that’s been lingering for a few episodes now. My theory is that since GREATM aren’t that far from the church, which isn’t that far from Atlanta, a firefight or big explosion without any ambient noise to drown the sound out could draw the walkers toward them, thus trapping them in their only shelter, the fire truck.

The second promo is one exclusively featuring Gabriel. In the promo he has wandered all the way to the school, the one STILL packed with walkers, where Gareth and the Hunters were hiding. Gabriel picks up a few items from around the campsite, including a pack of playing cards, a backpack, and bible signed “Mary B.,” Gareth’s mother. Gabriel opens the bible and turns to the second book of Chronicles. The specific section he opens to is about King Solomon. I looked at the specific verses on the pages, and while none of them present anything that may have a specific meaning, King Soloman was the person responsible for building the first temple in Jerusalem. I feel like this may be a hint at where Gabriel’s destiny lies, as in the comic -COMIC SPOILERS- he joins the group in their trip to D.C., and founds the first church in the Alexandria Safe Zone. -END COMIC SPOILERS-

I think in this scene, we’ll see the walkers break out of the school, and put Gabriel in immediate peril. Just when things are beginning to look bleak, I think we’ll see Morgan show up to save Gabriel, as he appeared to be following the Hunters’ symbols they were carving in the trees when we last saw him in episode 501.This would most likely lead him to their camp. From there, Gabriel might persuade Morgan to come with him back to the church as protection, and since Morgan has met Carl and Michonne before, he’ll realize that this is Rick’s group and hopefully join up with them.

The fact that we’re light on promo material makes me think we’ll be seeing a lot go down. I’m assuming the first half of the episode will be very tense, and the back half will contain a lot of action. Maybe we’ll see the walker crowds that Glenn’s group is encountering merge with the group at the school, and the massive amounts of walkers in Atlanta like Carol and Daryl saw when entering the shelter in “Consumed.” We know that there are going to be massive quantities of walkers in the episode, so that would sense.

In addition, we can probably expect one form of heartbreak or another, as Norman Reedus has admitted to working through some serious emotions while filming the mid-season finale. Possible character death? Multiple deaths? Who knows, but it definitely doesn’t look very good for Carol or Beth if Dawn finds out they’re both with Rick. Especially not Beth based off of some nasty rumors floating around.

I’m not sure what to expect, but I stand by these predictions. They seem reasonable enough. Let me know what you think. I just want to see the Rictatorship in full force one more time before the mid-season break!

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The Walking Dead Episode 507: “Crossed” Recap

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WARNING: This article contains spoilers from previous episodes of AMC’s The Walking Dead. Proceed at your own risk.

– LIKE NERD PRESS ON FACEBOOK

First and foremost, let me say that I’m going to review this a little differently. I don’t really like the 10/10 scale I’ve been using to rate film and TV, because I feel like it nit-picks a little too much. Instead, from here on out, I’m going to use a 5/5 scale. This way it is a little closer a “five star” system that most use to rate TV and film, and it gives me the opportunity to be a bit more objective.

Now that all that is out of the way, I can say that I really enjoyed this episode. I love slow character building, because it usually means a big payoff. It also allows me the change to pick the brains of some of my favorite characters. I understand that a lot of people did not like this episode though. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t perfect, but I definitely enjoyed it more than the past few. A lot happened, though it seemed that none of it was particularly significant yet, and we got to see every character in the group. There was also a lot of subtle storytelling and symbolism in this episode too, so of course I loved that. Let’s get into it, shall we?

The episode opens with the group at the church boarding up all the windows and locking everything down. It appears that after their run-in with the Hunters, they’re no longer taking any chances inside the church. Sasha hacks away vigorously at a pew, presumably to create more boards for the windows while Daryl and Tyreese exchange some dialogue regarding what happened with Bob. Daryl then heads outside to plant the pipes from the church organ into the ground to create what I assume is a warning system for walkers.

We also get a look at Father Gabriel who is none too happy that the group has begun to dismantle his church in favor of safety. He asks Daryl “Are you going to take the cross too?” To which Daryl responds “If we need it.” Rick and Michonne then share some dialogue about going to Atlanta, and how Rick feels he has to go because he owes Carol the most, though Michonne states that everyone in the group owes Carol.

A team of Sasha, Rick, Tyreese, Daryl, and Noah set off for Atlanta, as Carl holds down the fort with Michonne while keeping an eye on Judith and Gabriel. As the group leaves, Gabirel looks on in horror at the remains of his church, taking particular interest in the blood stain on the floor from the altercation with the Hunters. He scratches at the stain with his finger nails (cringe), and when that doesn’t work he attempts to scrub it with his sleeve.

After a commercial break, we see Sasha and Tyreese in the back of the moving truck Daryl and Noah arrived at the church in. Tyreese attempts to comfort Sasha, but she resits. We then jump to Beth at the hospital, who stops by the unconscious Carol’s room as Dr. Edwards makes his rounds. From there we go to Glenn as he looks over the massive hoard of walkers his group faces. The shot pans upward to focus on his face, and his the background we see a sign that reads “Buckle Up – It’s the Law” with an illustration of the state of Georgia wearing a seat belt. This image stuck out to me, because Glenn is dressed incredibly similar to the image on the sign. This probably doesn’t mean much of anything, I just thought it was kind of funny.

Glenn GA

Glenn’s group is taking care of the still unconscious Eugene, as the walkers off in the distance have yet to take notice to them. Tara has rationed water for everyone, labeling each bottle with each of their initials, creating the group moniker of “GREATM.” This is some pretty typical Tara dialogue, but it stuck out to me because in that anagram, Maggie’s initial is the one that is out of place. I wouldn’t have given this much thought, but in the way the bottles are arranged, Maggie’s is off-set from the rest of the group. Similarly, Glenn and Rosita’s appear to be paired together which I’ll touch on in a bit. Once again, this probably means nothing, and I’m probably fishing for meaning, but it’s still pretty strange.

GREATM

The group discusses Eugene’s condition, and tries to figure out what their next move is. Water is low, they’re hungry, and they’re not sure if Eugene is even okay. Abraham, still slumped in the road on his knees, lashes out at Rosita when she confronts him for slapping a bottle of water out of her hands. This scene was pretty unsettling. I saw a lot of fans theorizing that Abraham’s wife and kids may have been afraid of him in his flashbacks from “Self Help” because of a history of abuse, and I didn’t buy into that at the time. However, after seeing this scene, they might be onto something. Maggie quickly draws on Abraham, telling him that he needs to sit down or she’ll put him down. Abraham begrudgingly returns to his almost zen-like kneeling position.

Scary Abe

Next we jump to Rick’s strike team, who have already arrived in Atlanta and made base in an abandoned building. Rick devises a stealthy plan that requires the group to move quickly, quietly, and lethally. Tyreese, in typical Tyreese fashion, objects to this plan. Instead he proposes that they take a non-lethal approach by capturing two of Dawn’s officers and offering an even trade. Rick disagrees, but gives in to the plan after Daryl sides with Tyreese. It’s easy to miss in this scene, but Rick appears to be taken aback by Daryl not aligning with him. Once again, a subtle thing that may cause waves later on in the season.

After another break, we’re back at the church as Gabriel tries his damnedest to get that stain off the floor. Next to him, Carl lays out a series of weaponry and tells Gabriel to pick one. Carl intends to teach Gabriel how to defend himself, but of course Gabriel is uninterested. He turns the conversation on it’s head, by bringing up the Hunters, and how they promised to flee, implying that Rick’s group are the dangerous ones.

Carl gives Gabriel his speech from the promo for this episode about how no one is safe anymore, and that you can no longer stay in one place. It appears that these words strike a chord with Michonne, as she appears to be concerned. I feel as if this is because Rick and, through extension, Carl are in the same place she was when she was forced to rely on the prison group due to her circumstances.

Gabriel ends up selecting the machete, and retires to his office after apparently being sickened by Carl’s explanation about how not every walker’s skull is as soft so you have to drive the machete downward. Michonne seems suspicious though, as she watches Gabriel take the machete with him into his office.

Hmm

Jump cut to Beth mopping floors back at Grady Memorial, as she overhears a conversation between Dawn and one of her officers. The officer urges Dawn to pull the plug on Carol, because they’re wasting resources. This leads to Beth lashing out against the officer, demanding they keep her alive. She tells the officer he wastes resources daily by charging his DVD player. Of course Dawn being Dawn tells the officer to tell Edwards to take Carol off his rounds, and that she only lives if she pulls through on her own. After the officer leaves, Dawn tells Beth that she essentially gave Carol a death sentence by doing that, and explains how delicate the balance is at the hospital and blah, blah, blah. Anyone else getting tired of this song and dance?

Dawn, apparently having a sudden change of heart, gives Beth the key to the drug locker as Officer Shepherd alerts Dawn on the radio that they heard gunshots in the distance. Dawn orders her to investigate with Officer Lamson (SHEPHERD and LAM(B)son, eh?). Dawn then explains to Beth that she is trusting her because she realizes that Beth is not weak like most think, and is actually quite strong. Yawn. Sorry, this plot line has just worn really thin to me. Either something amazing has to happen, or it just needs to end in the mid-season finale. I’m praying we don’t end up with a disjointed cliff-hanger like we did with the Governor in the Season 3 Finale.

Dawn

Jumping back to Glenn’s group, they devise a plan to fetch more water from a stream down the road. Glenn goes ahead with Tara and Rosita, as Maggie volunteers to stay behind with Eugene and Abraham. When Maggie tells Glenn she’ll stay, he seems hesitant. He gives her this weird, contemplative look as he turns it over in his head. As he leaves, they do this really weird hand/forearm grab instead of kissing goodbye or something along those lines. Ever since the two reunited after the prison, their relationship has been a lot less hot and heavy, and a lot more… I guess the word would be complacent? I’m no relationship expert, but something is off between these two.

Weird

On their way to the water, Glenn, Tara, and Rosita encounter a downed telephone pole with a few walkers pinned under it. They walk by the walkers as if they’re nothing, Tara even making a joke about not getting up. There certainly isn’t a whole lot of mind being paid to walkers anymore is there? I think this might be setting something up. The producers always seem to mention in interviews that they still want the walkers to perceived as a threat, and they always seem to pull the rug out from under us at some point. This, paired with some spoilery details about upcoming events in the season, including the mid-season finale and beyond, make me think that we’ll be seeing the walkers play a more prevalent role after all the bad guys are dealt with.

The three in the group bicker a bit after Tara’s joke, and it quickly becomes apparent that the loss of hope in D.C. has taken a toll on Glenn. Conversely, it has also taken toll on Maggie, who we see tell Abraham that he isn’t the only one who lost something with D.C. “It’s never going to get any better than this.” She states as she cares for Eugene. Could this be what’s causing the rift  between Maggie and Glenn that I’m picking up on?

In the next scene, we’re back with Beth who is paying a surprise visit to Dr. Edwards in his office. Beth asks him what medicine he’d give Carol, and he quickly picks up on the fact that Beth has the key to the medicine locker. Edwards is quick to urge Beth that if Dawn is the one who gave her the key, she didn’t do it “out of the kindness of her heart.” Beth silences him, and demands to know what kind of medicine she needs. Edwards apologizes to Beth for making her kill the other doctor as occurred in “Slabtown,” and states that he was only trying to save his life. He follows that up by stating “I’m still wondering if I did.”

I think Dawn’s plan here may be to get her officers to turn on Edwards by framing him for the medicine that will be missing. She may also be tying Beth into that lie as well. It seems that Dr. Edwards smells something funny in the situation, and by his words and actions, it appears he’s worried that he will be dragged into whatever it is. He caves though, and tells Beth to give Carol five milligrams of epinephrine. He then wished Beth good luck as she exits the office.

Back at the stream with Glenn and his mini-group, they aren’t having much luck. The water is incredibly murky and undrinkable. Rosita reveals a trick to filter water that Eugene taught her in our first official “Hey, maybe Eugene IS useful!” moment. Rosita also reveals some information about how she and Abraham met in Dallas, stating that he was the only person who asked for her help since the turn. She follows that up with “Maybe he was lying too.” In that same moment, the group notices ripples from fish in the stream, and Glenn apparently has a plan to catch them.

water filter

We cut back to Atlanta (man there is A LOT going on in this episode), as Dawn’s officers are following the sound off gunshots through the streets. They pull into an alley as Noah hobbles through it. They cut Noah off, and begin to apprehend him when they notice that there aren’t any walkers around for him to be shooting at. Rick’s group comes out of hiding with guns drawn, and orders the officers to drop their weapons and kneel on the ground. After a few seconds of deliberation, Lamson agrees. He and Shepherd kneel, as the group binds them.

As the group begins to move the officers indoors, Lamson stalls for a moment and has some dialogue with Rick that was a little cringe-worthy. He observes that Rick was once a cop from the way he talks and carries himself. I can see how one might deduce that, as those in law enforcement do tend to facilitate themselves in a certain fashion, but I’ve been confused for a police officer before… and I’m definitely not one. The line just seemed kind of cliche to me. Anyway, Rick smirks at him a bit, as Noah explains that Lamson is “one of the good ones” to Rick.

As soon as Noah finishes his sentence, a car marked with a cross comes flying down they alley toward the group. Daryl and Rick open fire on the car as Shepherd and Lamson hop in the back of it. The car takes off, but doesn’t get very far as Sasha snipes one of the tires. The group rounds the corner, and finds the car empty and abandoned. Around the car is a horrifying site, as torches bodies lay all over the soot-covered ground. The building and vehicles in the immediate area are all torches as well. Some of the bodies are walkers, gruesomely melted to the pavement. Above the scene there is a sign scrawled across a water tower that reads “EVAC HERE.”

napalm

The group quickly spots Lamson and Shepherd fleeing the scene, and take after them. Daryl lingers behind the rest of the group, surveying the area after hearing a noise coming from the car. Initially he doesn’t find anything, but is tackled just as he lets his guard down. His attacker is the officer who was driving the car, later revealed to be officer Licari, and he quickly gets the upper hand on Daryl. Licari begins to choke Daryl while holding his head against the pavement with two walkers just inches away. Daryl fumbles his hand around one of the walkers’ faces, nearly getting his fingers bit. Daryl fins the eyes of the walker, and sinks his fingers into the socket, and pulling the skull off of the charred remains of the body. He bashes Licari in the head with the walker skull, and Licari loses his grip on Daryl just as Rick arrives, putting down the remaining walker and drawing on Licari. The officer surrenders, but Rick keeps his weapon drawn and stares down the officer as he rises to his feet. Daryl calls off Rick yet again, and insists that “three is better than two.” Rick begrudgingly abides as he glares at Daryl for a few moments.

Rick

A quick aside — I know a lot of people thought this zombie kill was awesome, but to me, it was a little too “B-Movie.” I felt the same way about the firetruck walkers in “Self Help.” I wish the producers would worry less about the zombie kill of the week, and more about a coherent, tight story. End Rant.

After a commercial break, we reconvene with the Atlanta group as Shepherd attempts to reason with them. She explains to the group that her and the other officers are essentially useless as far as negotiating for Beth and Carol go, as they have been planning to overthrow Dawn. She explains that Dawn also may know that they plan to put Lamson in charge once they take care of her, but Licari insists she does not. Lamson silences Shepherd though, agreeing to go through with the group’s plan. He tells everyone that he just wants a peaceful resolution, and that he’s known Dawn the longest so he can be of help.

I don’t know that I believe this though, simply based on their names. Licari doesn’t have much significant meaning as far as the story goes, but Lam(b)son and Shepherd stick out. I got the vibe that Lamson is posing as the leader, but Shepherd may be calling the shots. I also don’t know that I believe that these particular officers want to overthrown Dawn either. From the little bit we’ve seen of life at the hospital, Dawn has ordered Shepherd to do quite a bit. She’s seen watching Beth at one point, she’s ordered to investigate the gunshots, and I believe she’s been seen reporting to Dawn a few other times as well.

Also — sidebar, has anyone else noticed that the hospital group may be a tiny tribute to George A. Romero’s work? The group dynamic is very similar to the one seen in the group in Romero’s Day of the Dead, where a female leader struggles to maintain order among a militant group hiding from the undead with a doctor/scientist. Also, Dawn = Dawn of the Dead. Just thought those were kind of funny coincidences, especially since the Walking Dead has referenced other works in the genre, especially Romero pieces, quite a bit in the past. Multiple references were made, especially regarding Day of the Dead, last season as well. Not to mention the fact that Day of the Dead was one of the first films executive producer Greg Nicotero ever worked on.

Back to the episode, we jump back to Glenn and co. revisiting the walkers trapped under the telephone pole. This time they exterminate them, and loot their bodies for useful items. They use the netting of their jackets to make nets to fish with, and Tara finds a backpack with a few useful items, including a yo-yo.

As Tara sorts through the bag, Glenn and Rosita catch fish together, and exchange some dialogue that I felt was a bit flirty. Glenn also lets Rosita know that the group needs her skills, similar to how Abraham approached her when they met, and Glenn asks is Rosita is “in” with the group, wherever they wind up.

Fish

This scene may not seem entirely significant, but there is a lot of symbolism. First a foremost, fish are a symbol that often signify transformation, good luck, and fertility. This could signify that the group dynamic is changing. If it means what I think it might, it shows that not only is the group about to take off in a new direction (probably Virginia with Noah), but Glenn himself is changing and becoming more of a leader. Thats something I think is fairly obvious to viewers once they really take a look at it. Another interesting note about fish, is that it’s earliest biblical reference is by Clement of Alexandria. Not going to spoil anything, but that may stick out to comic fans.

In addition to fish, water — also a big staple with this specific group in the episode — can signify life, fertility, and transformation, not unlike the symbolism of fish. The final item, the yo-yo Tara finds, can symbolize emotional ups and downs, and in dreams it often means you’re doing something you never though you’d do again… like flirting with someone new after you’ve been married in a zombie apocalypse? Again, maybe I’m digging too far into this one, but things seem different between Maggie and Glenn. It also appears that Glenn is finding his own as a leader. This is something I wished the show would do for quite some time now.

–COMIC SPOILERS– In the comics, Maggie becomes more of a leader, and after the sudden death of Glenn, she takes charge of her own community that works alongside Rick’s. I’ve been hoping for awhile that the show would flip the roles, with Glenn surviving, as I believe that Glenn is the stronger character and Stephen Yeun is the better actor. I’d also love to heard Glenn spout off the iconic “I BELIEVE IN RICK GRIMES!” line. –END COMIC SPOILERS–

At this point, the episode jumps back to the church, where Michonne addresses Gabriel. Michonne explains to Gabriel that she doesn’t want anything from him, that she just wants to help, and that the things that they do are worth it. Gabriel quickly dismisses Michonne, and it is revealed that he has been using the Machete to pull up the floor boards in his office. This guy, I tell ya…

floorboard

The next scene features Beth using strawberries to buy off an older ward of the hospital. Once she hands over the strawberries, the man bursts into what is one of the least convincing coughing fits I’ve ever seen. This distracts the officers long enough for Beth to retrieve the medication she needs for Carol from the medicine locker. As soon as Beth passes the coughing man and the officers on her way to Carol’s room, he’s suddenly perfectly fine, and no one is the wiser. Uh, okay then.

Beth enters Carol’s room, and sets up an IV drip with medicine. There is a touching moment as Beth grabs Carol’s hand and tells her that it’s Beth, and that she just wanted Carol to know that she was there.

awww

When we get back to Rick’s Atlanta group, we get to see a frustrated Sasha get a stern talking to from Tyreese, who tells her that she needs to move on and hold onto what she felt for Bob, not the anger. This will come into play a little bit later, but not now as we jump back to Gabriel who has now cleared enough floorboards to slip through the bottom of the church to the outside. Gabriel crawls out right under the “You’ll burn for this” carving, and immediately steps on a nail. After pulling out the nail, Gabriel limps his way into the woods, through the graveyard.

Back again to Rick’s group, Rick is speaking with Officer Lamson who is giving Rick information about Dawn. When Rick calls him Sargent Lamson, he tells Rick that his name is Bob. This catches the attention of Sasha. Rick refuses to call him Bob, and tells him he’s still a cop. Lamson replies “No. The real ones are all gone.” Rick pauses for a moment, then walks away.

Gabriel has now made his way deep into the woods, and pauses in fear when he hears a noise from around. He looks for a few moments with no avail when suddenly a walker jumps out at him. Gabriel wrestles with the walker, eventually picking it up and slamming it on the ground, which impales it on what looked like a sharp rock or stick. Just as Grabriel is about to finish the walker, holding a large rock over its head, he freezes because he sees a crucifix around it’s neck . Gabriel drops the rock, and tearfully trudges deeper into the forest.

In Atlanta, Officer Lamson gets Sasha’s attention with a story about how he saw a walker outside he knew before. The walker was a man named Tyler who Dawn sent to escort survivors out to the evacuation zone in Lamson’s place. Lamson explains that initially he was jealous, but sees that he could have been a walker had they not switched. Lamson convinces Sasha to consider exterminating the walker.

Back at the fire truck, Maggie confronts Abraham and asks if he wanted her to shoot him when she pulled her gun on him for threatening Rosita. Abraham admits that he did, but seems to have changed his mind. The two hear a gasping noise, and Maggie runs to the head of the bus to take of the now waking, possibly walker (?) Eugene. As this happens, a close up shot shows Abraham’s bloodied hand reaching for the water bottle Maggie offered him, showing that he has transformed and that life goes on.

As this happens, Glenn, Tara, and Rosita walk back to camp and Glenn admits to Tara that the joke she made to the walkers under the telephone pole was a little bit funny. At this point, everyone seems upbeat, and has moved on from having their hopes for D.C. dashed. Glenn smiles and tells Tara not to even look at the massive hoard over the hill.

Back in Atlanta, Lamson shows the walker to Sasha, and appears emotional as she lines up her shot. Lamson turns a moment of trust into a moment of weakness, as he charges Sasha, bashing her head into the window and knocking her out cold. It also seems that the rest of the group may have left already, as Lamson books it out of the building, leaving Sasha lying on the floor behind him. It also appears that Sasha may now have a gash above her head, similar to Beth, similar to Andrea from the comics. This would add to the similarities between Andrea and Sasha, including her age, her attitude, losing her lover to the Hunters, and being the best shot in the group.

Sasha

Take-Aways:

– Big set up for the mid-season finale.

– Dawn is up to something.

– There is a rift growing between Glenn and Maggie.

– It’s good to see Rick again.

– It’s even better to seen the entire group again.

– Lamson is a phony and Shepherd may be more than she’s letting on to be.

– Gabriel… ugh.

– Hospital… ugh.

Overview:

4 out of 5 Zombie Heads

The pace of this episode was so fast that I never got a second to really question anything. I never once had a moment to stop and think “this is a show.” That’s a good thing. This episode was more of an experience than an installment.

A lot of build up this week. Next week should be crazy.

Positives/Negatives:

+ Cool action.
+ Symbolism like crazy.
+ Lots of build-up.
+ Leader Glenn is the best Glenn.
+ Ricktator Rick is the best Rick.

– Why is everyone questioning Rick? People just tried to eat you like yesterday.
– Dialogue wasn’t the best this episode, especially the “Were you a cop?” segment.
– Questionable decision making for Sasha.

If You’re a Fan of the Walking Dead, Check Out This Interactive Short Film

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I play a lot of video games. I also watch a lot of movies. I tend to enjoys games that have a more cinematic approach because of this. I’m a big, big fan of Telltale’s Walking Dead games (for obvious reasons), as well as really any other point-and-click adventure game.

This new promotional piece for G-Shock is called “Five Minutes” and it scratches that cinematic gaming itch. You can play it on your tablet or computer (I couldn’t get it to work on my phone), and it only takes a few minutes. If you’re a fan of zombie flicks in any capacity I really suggest you try it.

That said, this is NSFW and contains some violence, though nothing worse that what you’d see on The Walking Dead.

You can play here.

Enjoy, and “try to remember!”

Predictions for The Walking Dead Episode 507 “Crossed”

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WARNING: This article contains spoilers from previous episodes of AMC’s The Walking Dead, as well as it’s comic book counterpart. Comic spoilers will be marked with spoiler tags. Proceed at your own risk.

– LIKE NERD PRESS ON FACEBOOK

This episode is incredibly hard to make predictions for. We honestly don’t know a lot. The plot hasn’t given us much of a clue where this specific episode will go. All we know right now is “hospital bad, Rick’s group good.” Just check out the initial promo, it doesn’t tell us a lot.

Off the bat, this episode is going to be an ensemble episode in some sense. I don’t think we’ll see a whole lot of Beth and Carol though. We probably won’t see much of Glenn’s group either (calling it Glenn’s group now because Abraham is clearly not in the shape to lead). I think we’ll get an episode primarily focused on the church group, specifically the strike team Rick takes with him. From the trailer it looks like that’s going to Daryl, Noah, Tyreese, and Sasha. It appears that Michonne is staying behind at the church with Carl, Judith, and Gabriel.

In the trailer we hear Carl kind of regurgitating the “you are not safe” speech Rick gave him to Fr. Gabriel. In a second promo, you can see a little more of that as Carl is trying to get Gabriel to learn to defend himself, though Gabriel seems more concerned with getting the blood stains from the Hunters off of his church floor. It also seems as if this strikes a chord with Michonne, as she gives Carl a concerned look. Maybe we’re reverting back to the Carl that shoots unarmed runaways in the face?

A third promo, the one aired during Talking Dead, is one of Beth attempting to pull some weight back at the hospital. Beth is mopping the floors when she hears an officer telling Dawn that they can’t afford to waste resources on Carol, and should take her off Dr. Edwards’ rotation. Beth, playing it a bit coy, confronts the officer and tells him that his DVD player takes ample resources to power, and “that woman” has only been there for a day. Beth learns the hard way that this is not how she should be going about things, as Dawn orders the officer to take Carol off the doctor’s rotation and that she only lives if she pulls through on her own. When the other officer walks away, Dawn turns to Beth and tells her “You just killed that woman.”

I’m getting reaaaaaaallllllllly tired of Dawn and Grady Hospital. I can’t wait until this arc is over. There’s just no redeeming quality about these” villains.” At least with the Governor he had a real community to worry about, and his cause was semi-sympathetic. Same with Gareth, he and his group were the resault of a traumatic experience. These people at GMH are just strange and kind of cultist. Which sort of seems to be a recurring theme this season.

That’s about it, that’s all we got. Like I said above, I think we’ll see a lot of Rick and his strike team. Probably a good 50% of the episode since that will be where the action is. I think we’ll see Carl and company back at the church the second most, probably about 25% of the time, Glenn about 15%, and Beth/Carol about 5%.

I honestly don’t think we’ll see Rick’s group end up at the hospital this episode, and if they do it will probably be in the closing moments. We’ll probably get another episode that draws things out and features some showdowns on the street between Rick’s gang and officers out patrolling. We’ll probably see some Eugene drama and walker action with Glenn’s group, and a lot of dialogue between the church and hospital. This episode will largely serve to build up for the mid-season finale, and that’s fine, but looking back the way that they organized this season was kind of deflating. Great open, then we stalled for few episodes… granted those episodes were important, I just feel like all of the action we saw in the past three episodes could have been interwoven a lot better.

Let’s hope for a big finale, eh? Still worried about Carol. Feeling kind of apathetic about Beth. Hopefully they fix that.

The Walking Dead Episode 506 “Consumed” Recap

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WARNING: This article contains spoilers from previous episodes of AMC’s The Walking Dead. Proceed at your own risk.

– LIKE NERD PRESS ON FACEBOOK

Episodes like this worry me as a fan. Not because the episode was bad, it was actually quite the opposite, but because they always make me worried that we’re going to see a big death. This show likes to really give characters a big spotlight before they “off” them. Last season Hershel had a lot of build up that led to a big heroic moment before his demise. The Governor, despite being the primary antagonist, received his own heroic moments as well before going off the deep-end and meeting the sharp end of Michonne’s sword during the fall of the prison. Even secondary characters like Karen, Martinez, Lizzie and Mika got their own development before drawing the short straw. I’m afraid that’s what is happening with Carol this season.

I know, I know, there are plenty of rumors to combat this idea. I get it. Still, I can’t help but be worried for Carol. The production staff of this show also have a history of intentionally misleading fans. Just take a look at some of the season reveal trailers. I also can’t help but feel that there aren’t many more places to take Carol’s story. Then again, I probably would have said the same in season one or two. If you couldn’t tell, I’m really wrestling with this. I just get really uncomfortable any time I see a character I really like getting a lot of focus. It’s kind of bittersweet. This would also be a great time to illustrate that no one on this show is safe. Not even the badass, bottle rocket shootin’, guts smearing, kid killing, Daryl loving, firebug that Carol has become.

Getting back to the episode, it was a good one. We got to see Carol and Daryl do some recon in Atlanta, and though dialogue was few and far between, we got meaningful story from each character. The episode focused largely on Carol though. Through the heavy use of flashbacks we got to see that Carol is vulnerable. The episode kicked off with a look at where she went after Rick sent her away, and it wasn’t enviable. Alone and clearly remorseful, Carol took to an abandoned law firm. This was some obvious symbolism, since Rick had essentially tried and judged her for her actions. Whether or not that was right is up to us as viewers to decide. Carol also showed that she may be one of the better survivalists of the group, setting up traps to catch water, searching for clean bottles, and using the good ol’ crayon trick for candle light. One note I took is that I REALLY enjoyed the use of music here. I always love it when I hear a song on this show and immediately want to hop on iTunes to download it. If you’re also into that, this site is usually pretty good at helping track down song titles and artists.

Carol’s solo excursion is cut short though, as she sees smoke in the distance. Carol quickly pieces together that it’s coming from the prison, and takes off to investigate only to find the ruins of what was once her home. Fire is a big theme in this episode, and this was just the beginning of it. This is something they’ve been setting up since Carol shared dialogue with Mika last season about how to tell if a fire is still burning or not. That in itself may or may not be a metaphor for whether or not the fire inside Carol is still burning. Whether she still wants to keep pushing forward not just to live, but to re-establish society.

Once the cold open ends, we see Carol and Daryl tailing the car with the white cross into the city. This was really awesome because we get to see them travel down what I believe is I-85, correct me if I’m wrong, just as Rick did on horseback in season one. It was crazy to see how much nature has taken back Atlanta since we last saw it.

After the car runs out of gas and the two are no longer able to tail the police officers, Carol leads Daryl to a place she knows of where they can hole up for the night. When they arrive, the noise of Daryl trying to crack the lock attracts a few walkers initially, but as he continues a huge mass of them come from out of the woodwork. It’s evident that Atlanta is still very much infested with numerous walkers, and I wonder if this will come into play when the survivors confront the group at Grady Hospital.

After they finally get into the building, it’s pretty quickly revealed that this “temporary housing” she refers to is a shelter for abused women and children. They stay here appears to especially uncomfortable for Carol for obvious reasons, but she doesn’t yet tell Daryl that she spent a few nights there with Sophia before the turn to get away from her abusive husband, Ed.

Scenes like this one are really the reason the I tune into The Walking Dead. The show is very much about character development, and the often stellar actors on the show nail it in these situations. Carol and Daryl rarely speak to one another, but you still get a good grasp on the emotional tone of the episode because of the chemistry between Melissa McBride and Norman Reedus. These two characters can communicate more through body language that what most do through extended monologues.

Daryl is clearly sympathetic to Carol in this moment, and appears to feel her pain. Daryl tells Carol she doesn’t need to keep the first watch, and they two lay back on a bunk. A lot of fans were upset that there wasn’t any sort of sexual tension or romantic moment here, but I’m happy there wasn’t. The relationship between these two is much more than what “shippers” want it to be, and although I’d welcome the development of a romance eventually, this wasn’t the time for it. Carol, a victim of abuse, is taking refuge with Daryl, also a victim of abuse, in a shelter for abused women and children. The two are pretty clearly creeped out by being there, and haunted by their past. It isn’t particularly hard to piece it together that “Oh, this probably isn’t the best time for that.”

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The two are almost immediate disturbed by loud bangs outside of the room. When they enter the hallway the see a walker on the other side of some frosted glass, in another room. As soon as we have time to accept the eeriness of the lone walker on the other side of the glass, a child walker appears next to it. This scene was very unsettling. This sort of thing isn’t uncommon for this show though, as they often use children and child walkers to illustrate when a situation is particularly ominous. It dawned on me pretty quickly that Carol made the connection that this may have been her and Sophia had they stayed. As Carol steps forward to enter the room and kill the walkers, Daryl stops her and tell her she doesn’t have to.

The next morning, Carol awakens to the sight of smoke outside the window. She appears to be alarmed, but quickly calms down when she sees that it is Daryl burning the bodies of the walkers they saw in the night. She is thankful, and the two watch the pillar of smoke rise to the sky as we get a brief flashback to Carol digging graves for Lizzie and Mika with Tyreese. Carol pauses for a moment as she looks off in the distance toward the pillar of smoke, now white, pouring from the house Beth and Daryl had lit on fire in the season 4 episode “Still.” This was also the smoke that Carol and Mika had discussed in “The Grove.”

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I know a lot of fans had issues with this scene as well, considering that they’re on a recon mission. The Grady Memorial crew has no real idea that they’re out there, and sending a giant pillar of smoke into the air is anything but subtle. Considering the fact that they seems to high-tail it out of there afterward, I didn’t really find a whole lot to gripe about. I can definitely see the complaint though.

As they’re packing up to leave, we get a brief glimpse of what’s in Carol’s bag, and it is revealed that she is still carrying the copy of Tom Sawyer that Herschel gave Lizzie last season. The two then set off across the city to seek out a high rise to get a better vantage point. The two stick close to the buildings, and we see more familiar sites including the tank Rick hid in during season one. As the pair comes up on a parking garage, they encounter a pack of walkers that Daryl distracts by lighting a legal pad he took from the shelter on fire, and throwing it in the direction opposite of where they were heading. The two enter the garage and head toward a sky-bridge that connects to  a skyscraper they can get a better view from. As the two work their way through the garage and enter the sky-bridge, there is a brief glimpse of someone watching them from behind a car. It’s very easy to miss, and the person is pretty clearly Noah.

The two then cross over to the skyscraper where they find a gruesome site of a camp who appear to have been executed as they slept. Many of the walkers are bound tightly in their sleeping bags, and others are trapped in tents. Daryl utters “Some days I don’t know what the hell to think,” after they put down the cocooned sleeping bag walkers, ignoring the ones left in the tents as they shimmy through a chained door to enter the adjacent building.

Once inside, they appear to be in an executive office. The two peer over the bombed Atlanta cityscape, and Carol ponders “how we got here.” She then begins to open up about what happened with Lizzie and Mika, but Daryl simply says he knows. They aren’t here. Carol tells him that it’s much worse than that, and Daryl tells her that he said they get to start over because they have to. It was at this point that I kind of got the feeling that Daryl is thinking bigger than just moving on from what they’ve had to do to survive. I could be wrong about this, but at this point I think Daryl might be the person in the group that sees the need for community the most.

Daryl peers out the window, then uses the rifle they have to scope out a van across the city that is marked with crosses. The van appears to have been abandoned for quite awhile, and is teetering on the ends of a bridge. Before leaving they fill up their water, and they comment on a piece of artwork in the office. The two take opposite stances on the art, and after Daryl tells Carol to stop because she says she likes it, she utters “You don’t know me,” with a smile. Daryl responds “Keep telling yourself that.”

As they head back out the city, Carol has her weapon stolen as she shimmies through the chained door again. Noah is on the other side, and demands their weapons. They surrender their weapons as Noah apologizes, but tells them they look tough. As he backs away, Noah cuts holes in the tents, freeing the trapped walkers. The pair quickly dispatches them with knives and Carol’s sidearm. Carol raises her pistol toward Noah, Daryl slaps her hand down just as fires. The two share disapproving looks, then take off after Noah, but he jams the door and gets away.

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The next shot features Daryl and Carol, now freed from the sky-bridge and working their way back through the parking garage. Carol is upset with Daryl, and explains that they have three bullets and no weapons. She tells Daryl that she was only aiming for his leg and had no intention of killing him. Daryl dismisses her, insisting they’ll survive the city and pointing out that Noah is just a kid as he attempts to break the lock on an exit door. Carol tells Daryl that she doesn’t want him to die. That she doesn’t want Beth to die, and that she doesn’t want anyone at the church to die. She claims that is why she was leaving, that she couldn’t stand to lose anyone else. Daryl quips that she isn’t somewhere else. That she is right here, trying. Carol tells him that neither of them is who they used to be.

This part gets really interesting, as Carol, continuing with the theme of burning and atoning for her sins, states that she isn’t sure if she believes in God anymore. She tells Daryl that she isn’t sure in heaven or hell, but if she’s going to hell then she’s going to put it off for as long as possible. She then picks up Daryl’s bag to hand to him, and a book about treating victims of child abuse falls out. Daryl appears to be angry, maybe even embarrassed, but it’s clear in that moment that neither of them are who they used to be.

When we return from a commercial, we see a flashback of Carol standing over the burning bodies of Karen and David back at the prison. Back in the present, Carol and Daryl have reached the van on the bridge, and Daryl hops in to investigate. Probably not the best decision considering that the van is a stiff breeze away from taking of nose dive off a bridge that appears to be at least a few stories high. Inside, the two scour for documents as we get a good look at a statue of the Blessed Mother on the dashboard that looks identical to the statues that played a pivotal role on ABC’s Lost. Being a fan of both shows, and Lost clearly inspiring a lot of the work on AMC’s The Walking Dead, it was a nice nod.

As they gather all of the evidence they’ve found, Carol notices a massive amount of walkers closing in on the van. As they exit and attempt to fight their way through the hoard, Daryl notices the letters “GMH” on the underside of the stretcher in the van. Carol quickly deduces that it may stand for Grady Memorial Hospital, and they begin to take down some of the walkers. Unfortunately it’s all for naught as the duo quickly becomes overrun and their only option is to back into the van.

At this point we see what may be some of the worst editing in the series. Carol and Daryl buckle themselves into the front of the walker surrounded van, and in a real Thelma and Louise moment, Carol grabs Daryl’s hand. The two shift their weight all the way forward, and the van begins to fall. Here lies the problem. The van is tilted, so it falls face first. The shot within the van shows this as well. The van visibly begins to flip in the air, you can even watch the van flip in a behind the scenes video AMC has posted on YouTube and their own website. Somehow though, the van miraculously lands on all four wheels. This took A LOT of suspension of disbelief, and I’m surprised it made the cut in the fashion it did. Usually continuity and realism issues are dealt with pretty meticulously on this show, and it was disappointing to see something that big slip by the wayside both the with physics and the poor decision making with the characters. That said, it was still kind of cool, right?

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The following action was kind of neat, despite the shoddy van scene. All of the walkers surrounding the van on the bridge began to fall, and soon the windshield was covered in blood and walker corpses. When the coast is clear and they’ve caught their breath, Daryl helps Carol away from the van as a walker who has been cut in half drags behind them. This walker was particularly reminiscent of the bicycle girl walker from season one, which falls into the theme of the “farewell tour” of Atlanta that the show appears to be doing… but, more on that later.

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It appears that Carol took the brunt of the damage from the fall, and is pretty banged up. After licking their wounds for a bit, they decide to work their way toward Grady Memorial. While cutting through a building, Daryl obtains a machete from a walker lying on the floor. Daryl also finds numerous bags of potato chips. That’s cool, I guess. Gotta eat, right? Carol peers out the window and spots two similar vans to the one they had fallen in across the way, parked on top of another garage across from the hospital. They decide to stake out the place for awhile, and they discuss how they’ve changed.

Carol tells Daryl he was a boy when it all started, and now he’s a man. Carol also opens up about her abusive past with Ed, how she and Sophia stayed in the shelter, and that she got to be who she always thought she should have been during her time at the prison, but that version of Carol got burnt away as well. Daryl tells her “Hey, we ain’t ashes,” and they set out toward the hospital.

After spotting a walker pinned to the wall by an arrow, they deduce that Noah is nearby. Gunshots in the distance lead them directly to him, and Noah pushed a walker onto Carol, possibly on purpose. Daryl follows Noah into an office where he is trying to move a bookcase that is blocking a door. Daryl tackles Noah into the bookcase, which promptly falls onto Noah as Daryl rolls to safety. As Carol limps her way into the room, a walker begins to work it’s way through the door that was blocked, and Noah begs for help. Daryl, suddenly having a change of heart about what Noah’s fate should be after he threw a walker onto Carol, denies him help. Daryl pulls a carton of cigarettes out of what appears to be Noah’s pack, and lights one up (again with the fire and burning theme). The brand, Morley, was thought to be a nod to the X-Files, but it’s since been revealed that Morley is a fake cigarette company used in numerous shows including the X-Files and Breaking Bad. Dale even smoked Morely’s at the beginning of the series.

Carol, stunned by the sudden aloofness of Daryl, pleads with him to help Noah. Daryl points out that she almost died because of him, and Carol points out that she didn’t. Daryl still denies Noah, and begins to walk away. The walker falls onto Noah, and after pleading again, Carol gets Daryl to kill the walker. With this scene I began to wonder if it wasn’t continuing to play on the painting Dr. Edwards had in his office, the Denial of St. Peter, and the Last Supper paintings we kept seeing at the church. This season appears to deal a lot with denial in many ways, I’m interested to see where that goes.

When we come back from another commercial break we see another Carol flashback of her in the woods, wiping the walker guts off of her after the fall of Terminus. She peers off into the distance at the black smoke, then keeps moving. In the present, Carol and Daryl help to life the shelf off of Noah, and after thanking them Noah panics and heads for the window. He begins to frantically look around the citsyscape muttering about how “they” heard the gunshots and would be looking for him. Daryl asks him who “they” are, and Noah reveals he’s from the hospital and after some prodding, that he knows Beth. Carol looks outside and sees a cross-marked station wagon patrolling the streets.

The three hurry downstairs and begin to slap together an exist strategy. Once they reach the lobby of the building, Noah falls and Daryl helps him up. Carol runs outside and is blindsided by the station wagon. Daryl tried to run after her but Noah holds him back insisting he let them take her. Noah tells Daryl that shell be okay because they have medicine, machines, and a doctor. He tells Daryl that they can get her back. He tells him they have people, guns, and that it’ll take a lot to get them back. Daryl retorts “So do we.”

The episode comes to close with Daryl lighting yet another fire to distract walkers so that he and Noah can take an abandoned box truck. The last scene we see is the two in the truck, Noah looking nervous and skeptical, and Daryl looking like he is on the verge of tears.

Take-Aways:

– Norman Reedus and Melissa McBride have some amazing chemistry onscreen together.

– Fire.

– Not  a lot was said, but a lot was conveyed.

– While this episode could probably be filed under “filler,” it was incredibly enjoyable.

-Stunts and continuity maybe need to get a little more attention from the showrunners.

– Daryl has lost pretty much everything at this point. They always seem to rip it all away from right as he gets close to happiness.

– It was nice to see the two open up a bit more about their past, but really it was Carol that did all the talking.

– It was also nice to see Daryl trying to help himself. I think the separation and eventual death of Merle opened his eyes to a lot of things.

– With the group presumably about to head north with half thr group not knowing the truth about Eugene and Noah’s knowledge of a camp in Richmond, VA, it feels like we’re getting a farewell tour of Atlanta. A lot of the commercials during the show have been clips from previous seasons focusing on places we’ve been and things we’ve seen before. In this episode alone, we got to see Atlanta, the prison (sort of), the grove, and the woods outside Terminus. If and when Morgan joins the group, all  narrative ties to Georgia will have been cut.

-Next week it’s FINALLY back to the main group.

Overview:

8.5 out of 10 = Great. 

It was a great episode with fan-favorites. There really wasn’t a whole lot to complain about. That van scene though…

Positives/Negatives:

+ Great acting from Reedus and McBride.
+ Everything that happened at the shelter.
+ Meaningful flash backs.
+ Noah is finally with the good guys.

– The van.
– Poor decision making by Daryl and Carol at times.

The Walking Dead Episode 506: “Consumed” Instant Reaction

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WARNING: MINOR SPOILERS TO FOLLOW.

This episode was good. Like, really good. We got to see two fan-favorites on their own. The dialogue was sparse, but meaningful, and we got more insight into the histories of Carol and Daryl. I also got the impression from this episode that Daryl might be the only character on the show that’s thinking big picture — rebuilding civilization. There were touching moments, tense action sequences, and a few stunts that though a bit far-fetched, paid dividends.

If anyone ever had any skepticism toward Melissa McBride or Norman Reedus as actors, I’d recommend this episode to them.

All in all, many of my predictions for this episode were fairly accurate, and the scenes shot in the women’s shelter were both touching and tense.

I’ve seen a few fans complaining that this episode was “filler,” but I rather enjoyed it. At this point, people need to learn to accept that The Walking Dead is 80% character building and 20% action. This isn’t so much a story of zombie horror as it is a story of survival and maintaining your humanity in the face of death.

Once I get an opportunity to watch this episode again, I’ll do an official review. For now, I’ll leave it at the fact that this was the best episode out of the past three. Based off the previews for next week, it looks like we’ll finally be getting a big ensemble episode with everyone involved. Can’t wait.

PREDICTIONS AND SPECULATION FOR THE WALKING DEAD EPISODE 506: “CONSUMED”

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WARNING: This article contains spoilers from previous episodes of AMC’s The Walking Dead, as well as it’s comic book counterpart. Comic spoilers will be marked with spoiler tags. Proceed at your own risk.

— LIKE NERD PRESS ON FACEBOOK

Following the conclusion of this week’s episode, “Self Help,” we aren’t really given any information at all regarding where the next episode may take us. Similar to the episode before it, “Self Help” was a bottle episode that followed Abraham and his group, exploring their next steps after splitting off from Rick’s core group, as well as Abraham’s past and the validity of Eugene’s claims. As I stated in my review for the episode, I felt as if the show would have benefited from the two episodes being swapped. At the end of 504: “Slabtown,” it’s revealed that Carol is in the hospital, battered and unconscious, with Beth though we don’t know how she got there. There isn’t really a whole lot to gain from holding that suspense over our head an extra week, but I digress.

According to all the promos we’ve been treated to, it appears that this coming week we’ll finally see how Carol ended up going from riding shotgun with Daryl to being laid up on a stretcher, just as I predicted.

The first promo we have appears to be an extended version of the clip we were shown at the tail end of “Self Help.” Daryl and Carol are trailing the black car with the white cross on the back as Daryl explains to Carol that it was just he and Beth together after the prison fell. Carol asks if he saved her, and Daryl responds that Beth is strong and saved herself. The clip ends them discussing that Rick will wonder where they went and that the tank is running low. Carol encourages Daryl to run the car off the road, though I suspect we won’t see that happen based off of other previews.

The second promo we’ve been shown is the one that aired during Talking Dead, where Daryl is laying what appears to be a body wrapped in a white sheet onto a fire. He appears to be on top of a roof or landing of a building, and Carol enters the scene and thanks him as somewhat ominous music plays. The camera follows the smoke up into the sky and the clip ends.

I’d bet good money that the person Daryl is laying on the fire isn’t Beth. In fact, the body looks very tiny and Daryl doesn’t appear to be exerting much strength by lifting it. I’m assuming that this is a child they find and Carol, still upset over the events with Lizzie and Mika, request that they give the child a proper burial/cremation. This will probably be one of many touching moments Carol and Daryl will share in the episode, and hopefully we’ll get to explore each of their mental states, as well as their relationship. It’s also worth noting that since they do appear to be on top of a building, they are most likely in Atlanta. Many of the daytime sequences from the next promo show them in Atlanta as well, so this is probably during that time span.

The next preview, the UK promo, is very much like the snippet we were shown at the end of “Self Help.” In this promo, Daryl is discussing how they have the upper-hand at the moment, as the two tail the car into city or town setting. The clip also shows them in a city setting during the daytime, as well as a shot of what looks like Carol on the ground as walkers trudge past her. There are also a few clips of each of them seemingly on their own, together in what appears to be the back of a van, a van with white crosses on the back surrounded by walkers and teetering on the edge of a bridge, a moving-style truck smashing through a gate, and a scene that looks like Carol covering her face as something burns. Oh yeah, and a shot of CAROL AND DARYL LYING DOWN TOGETHER — GASP (I couldn’t resist).

The two scenes that interest me the most out of this promo are the van scenes, since they fall in line with spoilers that surfaced over the summer, and the scene with Carol covering her face. If my prediction about the body they’re burning on the rooftop is correct, I feel like this scene may be a flashback to Carol burning the bodies of Karen and David back at the prison. This would be an interesting callback for us as viewers, and would give us an idea of where Carol is at mentally right now.

In addition to these promos AMC released two photos from the episode. One photo features Carol with a somewhat concerned look on her face, and the other features Carol covered in the scrapes and bruises we see her with during “Slabtown.”  In the photo with the bruises, Carol is staring down someone across from her that is blurry, but it looks like it may be Noah in plain clothes. This lends further credence to my theory that it’s Noah in the woods with Daryl when he returns to the church, and this might also mean that Carol does get herself injured on purpose to get into the hospital… though I still feel like that’s unlikely. Either way, Carol doesn’t look too thrilled.

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SOURCE: http://www.thewalkingdead.com/new-stills-from-episode-506-consumed/

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SOURCE: http://www.thewalkingdead.com/new-stills-from-episode-506-consumed/

Outside of these snippets of information, we don’t really have all that much to go off of. It seems as if we’ll get a lot of story in this episode and then after that it’s probably back to the action with the main group. Do you think we’ll see a big standoff between our survivors and Dawn’s group at Grady Hospital? What about Abraham and his group? Will they return to the church to regroup with Rick after the big reveal with Eugene? Is Eugene even okay? There’s an awful lot that needs to be resolved before the mid-season finale unless we’re going to be left with another cliff-hanger. There’s only three episodes left until we go on break!

Let me know what you think! Like, comment, subscribe, and don’t forget to follow Nerd Press on Facebook!