|David Morrissey as The Governor on AMC's "The Walking Dead." (AP photo)|
A few months ago I
wrote that I was looking forward to season three of AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” after
a very disappointing season two stuck on Hershel’s farm (seriously, there was
more drama and action in an average episode of Ozzie and Harriet) until some interesting
things finally happened in the season finale.
One of those things
was the introduction of Michonne, who appeared wearing a mask (to conceal that
they hadn’t picked an actress yet, or for protection? Never explained, though
the mask disappeared), leading two armless, jawless walkers and wielding a
katana (a type of samurai sword; no explanation on whether it was just a
convenient weapon or if she has some Japanese heritage).
Another was the
discovery of The Prison, the soon-to-be new home of our band of survivors.
In addition to following up on those events, the third season introduced The Governor, a dictatorial baddie who runs Woodbury,
a community of survivors, and isn’t above killing other survivors for their
supplies and/or if they don’t choose to join his community (though not everyone
gets the option), and the return of Merle, a racist a-hole who was left handcuffed
in a walker-overrun area, and then cut off his hand to escape (he now sports a
large blade on that arm).
Those are the big
things, but I also like some smaller details, like the fact that they now
acknowledge that ammunition is in short supply and is not an infinitely
renewable resource; previously they fired weapons with mad abandon for the most
I also appreciate
that things are actually happening. Not to harp on it, but Hershel’s farm was
one long, boring, repetitive slog, where the cast mostly sat around thinking
they were secure from the fall of civilization brought about by the walker
plague, and worried about their feelings. Really? Flesh-eating creatures, some
people you used to know, are wandering about, the governments have collapsed, there's no manufacturing or agriculture
and all you're worried about are your feelings? That’s a luxury they didn’t have.
It’s also a luxury that the producers
shouldn’t have had, but for some reason ratings actually went up for that
season. Maybe they were benefiting from
people discovering the first season on DVD and reruns. Maybe there were people
like me hoping that things would get better, based on reports of the graphic
novels upon which the series is based (though reportedly significant deviations in plot have occurred). Maybe I’m out of step and the second season was wonderfully magnificent
in every way, the apex of entertainment, action and drama, a classic for the
ages for which future generations will weep and praise like the works of
Shakespeare. If so, I’ll still think season two was garbage, and that future generations
are idiots on par with the cast of The Jersey Shore or Here Comes Honey Boo Boo.
Sunday, Dec. 2 is the “mid-season
finale,” and a confrontation is coming. The forces of Woodbury are planning to
attack the Prison, and the Prison dwellers are attempting to infiltrate
Woodbury. Nothing will be resolved in this episode, of course, but the stage
will be set for the second half of the season.
I can’t wait.