The Walking Dead: “When the Dead Come Knocking” Recap & Review

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Stress abounds in this week’s episode! Michonne joins the Ricktatorship at the prison, while Glenn and Maggie stay at Chateau Woodbury. There’s a lot of upset words, and stuff happens. Review commence!

We start with Merle trying to get Glenn to divulge their group’s location. Glenn naturally refuses, despite Merle’s threats to Maggie (who’s in the room next door) and begins to list off the members of his “large” and dangerous group. Listing several members who are currently not alive, Glenn slips up when he includes Andrea. This naturally reveals him to Merle. As punishment, and for payback for leaving him on that roof, Merle looses a walker on Glenn. Bound to chair, all looks grim, until Glenn goes all kinds of badass and fends off the walker until he breaks the chair, and uses the broken arm that’s duct taped to him arm to stab the walker in the cranial area. Even more stress points for having the walker bite him on the duct tape, which we all know can repel direct radiation and bullets. Just ask Wonder Woman.

Amazonium tempered with metal from Zeus’ shield? Naw, just Duct Tape.

Then it’s Maggie’s turn. Except Merle has relayed Glenn’s unwillingness to co-operate, so the Governor decides to take her on. He starts with the friendly tactic, but quickly sees that it will get him nowhere. So he asks Maggie to strip, and eventually to lay face down on the table. He’s totally poised to rape her, even undoing his belt, but it only gets a defiant decline to divulge info from Maggie, even in the face of her fear. Finally he backs off, and takes her to Glenn. When he threatens to shoot him, and almost does, Maggie finally cracks, relaying their groups stats and location. The couple are left together.

Just one of the worst moments of my life…

The Governor, Merle, Caesar, and Milton convene, wondering how the group managed to take the prison despite its location in their “Red Zone”. Conceding that the group must be rather tough despite its size, the Governor asks Merle and Caesar to scout it out. He then asks Merle where his loyalties lie due to his brother being a member of the group. Merle, of course, Merle says the Governor. But I’m sure you can trust him. Guys with knife hands are usually the pinnacle of trustworthiness.

“Aw shucks, I can take your car to get a wash! Nope, no trouble at all…”

Meanwhile, Rick brings Michonne into the prison, after a spectacle of her fighting off zombies before succumbing to her gunshot wound. Plus she’s saved by gun toting Carl, which was pretty cool. The group take her weapon and lock her in what can really only be to referred to as their living room. Daryl then reveals the totally not dead Carol, and the group reunites. Carol, however, is told of Lori’s death and introduced to the new baby. Despite her tears at the bad news, she’s overjoyed to be back with the group and to meet the baby.

Because I’m Carol…bitch!

Rick and Daryl then proceed to interrogate/kinda torture Michonne for info on how she found them. But not until he calms himself does she reveal how she saw the guy who shot her take Maggie and Glenn. She tells them that despite its fortifications against walkers, humans should be able to sneak in and out. I suppose this realization came from her previous inspections of the grounds during her stay off-screen, but it still made me wonder how she knows this. Armed with this knowledge, Rick decides on a small group, including himself, Daryl, Michonne, and Oscar, despite Axel and Beth both volunteering.

Two words: Bad. Ass.

The group set forth, after a little heart to heart between Rick and Carl, in which the baby FINALLY gets a damn name. I’m not sure why it bothered me so, but it did. Unsurprisingly, it was Judith, her name from the graphic novel. Surprisingly however, the name came from a teacher of Carl’s. It was sweet…I guess. I don’t know if this is from the comics too, but couldn’t it have been a favored aunt or grandmother? Maybe I just haven’t been that close to a teacher to name my baby sister after her during a post apocalypse. Darn.

The rescue party’s trip is uneventful, until they become surrounded by walkers and forced into a cabin in the woods. Enter joke here. They find it inhabited by a crazy homeless man we’ll call Rolph (just because) and a dead dog. Rolph gets agitated and begins hollering until Michonne stabs him to stop the noise riling up the walkers. Then, in a fit of brilliant morbidity, the group throws his carcass out into the hungry pack and runs out the back door. It was all very coordinated and seamless, showing how far they’ve all “fallen” during these times. They make it to the gates of Woodbury, and the camera pans to a depressed Andrea, walking “home” on the other side.

Fare thee well, Rolph. Too bad you couldn’t keep quiet.

You see, Andrea’s been helping Milton out with a little experiment. Sort of. The Governor stationed her with him for security of sorts, as Milton was tending to a one Mr. Michael Coleman, who was on his last leg. Milton is doing some Pavlovian programming on the man using paintings, family photos and auditory stimuli to encourage his memory. When he passes, Milton hopes that he’ll retain this knowledge after his reanimation, proving Milton’s theories about a person still being “alive” after their death. Andrea refutes this, only to have Milton get a bit upset. She asks about his family, and realizing that he didn’t really have anyone to lose when everything went down, realizes his attachment to Mr. Coleman. Naturally, Coleman does not respond to Milton’s pleas and almost bites him before Andrea stabs him in his now zombified head. Milton is crushed, and Andrea runs to the Governor for comfort.

It’s hard to capture the awesome of something that happens so fast, but this pic does it perfectly.

The word for his episode: stressful. I spent the entire episode worried about the fates of Maggie and Glenn, a part of the episode that was delightful. Glenn’s gladiator moment with the walker loosed upon him was awesome, and totally made me think of how he went from mild mannered coward delivery boy to…this. It’s interesting to see how much he’s changed. And the Glenn/Merle showdown was never something I thought I’d see, but was absolutely thrilling. And Glenn’s failed attempts at intimidation genuinely made my heart sink when he says Andrea’s name. Stress, stress, stress.

My post Walking Dead cocktail.

Maggie being preyed upon by the Governor was perhaps the most stressful part of this episode. All you had to do was glance at the interwebs to see what fate she might have shared with Comics Michonne. But even then, the attack he laid against her was still disturbing, and her defiant “Do what you’re going to do”, and “Go to hell” statements made me love her even more. It also made me sympathize rather than be angry with her for finally revealing the group’s info when the Governor nearly kills Glenn.

Then there was this. I just agonized over what would happen if he cut him.

The reintroduction of Carol (TOLD YOU…there I said it…I’m sorry) was a touching scene, especially when she learns of Lori’s fate. The two had always been close and it was sort of therapeutic to see Rick mourn his wife without going into a berserker rage. The whole scene was really touching, and I actually teared up a bit. Then again I tear up at those healthcare commercials, so whatever.

Although in all fairness, this image could be used for either…

Rick’s initial treatment of Michonne was a little surprising to me, until I realized that they really don’t know one another. And she brought his baby food. But it’s a tough world. Hopefully they’ll bond over their joint killing and disposal of a man, as well as the rescue of Glenn and Maggie. Also, it was nice to see Axel and Beth volunteer so quickly to go rescue the lovers, although I can’t help if Axel did this relying on the fact that Rick probably wouldn’t choose him. The gesture was nice though. Oh and Rick and Carl’s father/son moment was touching, minus my trepidation at why the name Judith was chosen. It was another genuine moment in an episode full of fantastic performances.

And this backdrop. Heart to hearts are kinda hard to have at a post apocalyptic prison I think.

Andrea was actually tolerable this time, despite her continued relationship with the Gov, and I was glad to see that she stuck to her beliefs about the reanimation. And seeing Milton’s attachement to his test subject affect her so went a long way towards reminding us that, yes, Andrea is a person. I really can’t wait till her realization about the Governor, if it’s slated to happen anytime soon. It should be something to see, as Andrea doesn’t really do “hurt” anymore. Mostly just “Andrea smash!!”

Just because it was Andrea’s Crowning Moment Of Awesome.

Great episode. Really did a lot to forward the plot lines in a reasonable manner, as well as for our apocalypse players as well. I left me wanting more at the end (they usually do) almost more than any other episode so far, and I look forward to see how all these stressful stories play out next episode. My only question:

I think you will Rick. I think you will.

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