If you start out as the cattle, you’re gonna wind up being the butcher…
Well this episode brought those cattle/butcher allusions to a head in what, looking back on it now may have been the most satisfying way possible. Things are moving fast on The Walking Dead, and some people are going to start having issues with that speed if it continues, but I for one am really excited by the show’s current confidence. Read on for my thoughts on the latest episode ‘Four Walls and a Roof’, but as always be warned, there are spoilers ahead.
OK, so let’s cover the major plot details first. Gareth and his group have been terminated in possibly the most brutal example of human on human violence in the show thus far. The other week I mentioned about how the line between good and evil has been just about completely shattered now in the show, but I can now say that the line between those who are still breathing and the walking dead is becoming pretty hard to distinguish at times. We have seen humans biting and eating other humans, and that includes Rick by the way, and now humans dispatch of other humans as if they were just rotting zombies. The gang have changed considerably from back when they lured the Governor’s first group into the prison and then scared them away. Now they pull the same stunt but instead just smash their enemies into bloody pulps. That decision to cut between Gareth eating and the nearby zombies repeatedly may have been disappointedly unsubtle, but it certainly helped to make the point.
About the speed at which the Terminus group was dispatched – I was a little torn on this whilst watching as there are some fascinating ways which the cannibals could have shaped the next few episodes, and also because we have now lost the opportunity to see some plot points develop, but overall I have come to the conclusion that this speed makes the most sense and is truly keeping us on the edge of our seats this season. I’m choosing to trust in the show’s new, brazen confidence and eagerly await finding out who the next villain will be. Still, I really wanted to see the aftermath of Bob’s ‘Tainted Meat’ cries and Tyreese’s avoidance of killing Martin unfortunately seems to have just petered out.
The other two things which must be discussed are the group splitting up and Bob’s death. The handling of Bob’s death I thought was pretty much perfect. Not too many viewers had really grown to love him as a character yet but, in these last few episodes especially, there was clearly a warm and interesting character to found in Bob and that’s enough to make us feel his passing. As to the group splitting up, I guess it was an inevitable move on the show’s part but I was actually really enjoying the dynamic of a larger group and so it’s a shame that we have to lose that. Especially so as the threat which was motivating Abraham was eliminated before he left. Also, after the episode’s really rather tense standoff between Abraham and Rick I was hoping that they would stick together in order to generate a ‘danger from within’ feeling which we haven’t had since Shane.
There was so much that this episode did right; from the shocking speed at which plot lines were wrapped up, to the fantastically tense and nail biting atmosphere which was so prevalent throughout, that it’s easy to forgive the slightly questionable aspects of the show. Primarily by that I am referring to Maggie’s continually bizarre behaviour in never mentioning her sister nor seemingly having any interest in searching for her. That is getting harder and harder to ignore, and what with her now off to DC without the group she won’t even see Beth if Daryl is back with some sort of good news. It’s going to be interesting to see how next week’s episode plays out as we haven’t any villain to drive the action against (although I’m sure that won’t take the show long to sort out) and now that the group is splitting up the pace of the show could slow down a little. What primarily is worrying me is what exactly has happened to Carol, I really don’t want her to be killed off at point soon. And if it isn’t her behind Daryl, who on earth could it be…
Thanks for reading! I’ll leave you with this week’s zombie, or should that be human, kill of the week. Be sure to leave a comment in the box below!