This week’s episode of ‘The Walking Dead’ basically has three mini-stories going on – one of which I found really fun, one was mildly interesting, and the third I found incredibly silly. Once again, only part of the regular cast is featured, which seems to be a continuing trend during this second half of Season 4.
Let’s start with the plotline I found mildly interesting. With Rick still recovering from the pummeling he received from the Governor, Michonne takes Carl out to search other homes for some additional food and supplies. While searching a house, Michonne mentions that she once had a young son, which sparks Carl’s interest and results in him asking a string of questions. Michonne agrees to answer them one at a time, but only after they’ve checked and cleared each individual room in the house.
While separated, Michonne comes upon a children’s room where she finds the remains of the entire family, who appear to have all committed suicide (or at least had one family member kill them all before offing him/herself). She shuts the door so Carl won’t see what’s in there, but reveals that she had a young son named Andre. Still thinking his baby sister is dead, Carl suggests that maybe Andre and Judith are together in the afterlife.
As for the storyline I found really fun, say hello to new characters Abraham Ford (Michael Cudlitz), his girlfriend Rosita Espinosa (Christian Serratos) and scientist Dr. Eugene Porter (Josh McDermitt). After picking up Tara and Glenn at the end of last week’s episode, we first see Abraham this week taking care of a trio of Walkers while Tara looks on. When Tara says that she’s never seen anything like that before, Abraham wonders what she’s talking about, since she was killing a Walker when he found her. “But you were smiling,”” Tara responds.
When Glenn finally comes to (after being knocked out by a Walker at the end of the last episode), the military truck they’re all traveling in is hours away from where Ford first picked them up. Glenn forces them to stop, then gets out and insists that he’s going back to find Maggie. Ford tries to stop him and tells him that they’re heading to Washington, D.C. because Eugene has information that just might save the world. Of course, when Glenn asks for more information, he’s told that it’s classified.
Glenn still insists on going to find Maggie, and when Ford suggests that she’s already dead, Glenn makes the huge mistake of hitting Abraham. A fight ensues, and while everyone else is trying to break Glenn and Ford up, Eugene (still back at the vehicle) notices a swarm of Walkers coming out a nearby corn field. He gets a gun and haphazardly opens fire on them. He’s a horrible shot and manages to put a few rounds in the vehicle as well (more about that shortly) but the gunfire is enough to get everyone’s attention, so Ford and the others come rushing back to help take care of the Walkers.
Once they’ve disposed of the zombies, Ford notices that the truck’s fuel tank has been ruptured. No longer having transportation, they agree to follow Glenn back towards where he believes Maggie might be – though Abraham and Eugene’s plan is only to follow until they find another vehicle they can use.
Now let’s get to the silly part. Although many viewers will probably think that this was the most exciting bit of this week’s episode, what happens to Rick back in the house is just poorly written lunacy. With Michonne and Carl off to get supplies, Rick decides to take a nap in one of the upstairs bedrooms. Not long thereafter, he’s awoken by noises downstairs and realizes that a group of men has entered the house.
Rick then proceeds to hide under the bed. When one of the mercenaries enters the bedroom and starts checking things out, he never notices that anyone is under the bed, even though he could pretty much see under it from the entrance to the room. (The plot requires Rick to see out, but apparently no one is smart enough to look down when entering the room.) Now keep in mind that not only has this group broken into a house that’s not theirs, but it’s the freakin’ zombie apocalypse where one would check every possible hiding place for both Walkers and other dangerous people.
The man decides to take a nap, and is soon interrupted by a second man, who once again, doesn’t bother to look under the bed. (This reminds me of the movie cliché where no one looks at the back seat of their car when getting into it.) The two men actually get into a fight over the bed. One puts the other in a sleeper hold, knocking him unconscious, but not before he notices Rick under the bed. The man who didn’t see him now falls asleep in the bed.
Knowing that he needs to get out of the room before the unconscious man awakens (or the sleeping man catches him), Rick manages to get out from underneath the bed and out of the room without detection from either. However, when he enters a bathroom, another man is in there and a big fight ensues, the result of which has Rick killing the man. Now, again, keep in mind that during all this ruckus (Rick and the other guy manage to knock a whole sink full of items onto the floor), no one downstairs seems to hear anything, nor does the guy sleeping one room away! In the only smart move in this silly plot, Rick leaves the bathroom door cracked open, knowing that the dead man will soon turn into a zombie and maybe take out a few of these doofuses.
Rick manages to escape the house and catches back up with Michonne and Carl. Together, the three make their way to the nearby railroad tracks, where they see a sign for “Terminus” offering both safety and comfort. Not having any other plans for what to do next, they decide to follow the tracks and see what Terminus is all about.
While I found the Rick storyline this week to stretch the limits of credibility, I must confess that Abraham Ford has almost instantly become one of my favorite characters on the show, and has the potential to become just as popular as Daryl. On the other hand, I’m already quite suspicious about his scientist pal, Eugene. Not having read the comic books, I’m not sure if Eugene is supposed to be as odd as he appeared in this week’s episode, or if the actor playing him is just not very good. Time will tell.