Nov 28, 2010

LiveBlogging: The Walking Dead: Episode 5

Tonight's episode is probably my favorite. I liked the first episode, but this one surpasses it. It's finally getting to be the show that I thought it could be. It was evenly paced all the way through. The tone was perfect. There were bits of action, and it all seemed to meld together very well. I'm impressed. I want the series to keep going, and I'm worried they won't be able to tie up the next episode in a way that makes sense, but they could give us one hell of a cliffhanger.

10:57 - Oh, man, this is an intense ending. Rick is losing it, walkers are everywhere, and, suddenly, the door to the CDC opens. I am utterly intrigued by this direction.

10:54 - The CDC is screwed. The close-up of the face is disgusting. In fact, just about everything they're showing right now is utterly disgusting. Dead bodies everywhere. A near-maddening sound of flies buzzing.

Speaking of, do you think they had to experiment with fly sounds to get the right one? Hmmm.

10:53 - "I think tomorrow I'm going to blow my brains out."
"Tonight, I'm gonna get drunk."

Wonderfully delivered lines.

10:52 - Dumb-ass. This definitely has a King "Stand" / Matheson "I Am Legend" vibe (both the movie and the novel).

10:50 - We're getting some insight on the infection. This is a surprising shift for the show.

Also, the brains / flesh...disgusting(ly awesome).

10:41 - The numbers are dwindling quickly. Jim (That guy) is about to get it. They've got him resting against a tree, and it looks as though they're going to leave him there.

This situation speaks to the very tension that perpetually exists in post-apocalyptic literature / media. Does a single person's right to do what he wants override the necessity to keep the group together?

Of course they couldn't take Jim with them, but to what extent is each individual able to act selfishly / individually? It seems like the group would have to adopt an ostensibly socialist philosophy to survive. Every person would have to work to benefit the group. I know the free market folks would disagree, but the philosophy of "means" is worthless when the "end" (existence) is at stake.

10:38 - The caravan is heading out. I love the shot composition and the music here. It's a little over the top, but it may be my favorite musical moment of the whole show. It manages to be transcendent and ominous at the same time.

I also like the shared movement of the whole group...and a little comic touch there. Wonderful. Of course one of the vehicles would break down almost immediately.

10:36 - Wonderful-looking shot to bring us back from commercial. I love just how green it is. I also like that we're opening the second half of the show the same as we did the first. It's interesting.

10:35 - Synergy. They're really piling on the zombie stuff for this show. Either it's a brilliant move, or a brilliantly stupid move.

10:31 - Shane isn't totally despicable, and yet they kind of make him one-note. I want to like the guy. He's got mixed motivations, sure, but the way that he's coming undone is genuine. They just need to give him a balance of screen time so that he's not just portrayed as being the guy to disagree with Rick on everything. He's not just the counterpoint.

10:30 - Okay, it's back. I kind of dig the first person POV shot they just put on display. Very comic book-y.

10:28 - I actually do kind of like Shane. He's been kind of the one-note villain...wait, my screen just went black! Anybody else?

10:27 - There's something vaguely metaphorical about Rick and (that guy) having a conversation about right to die and euthanasia while framed directly in front of an American flag.

Speaking of, what I do like is that they're not going overboard with the social satire stuff, which plagues a lot of shallow zombie flicks.

10:25 - Maybe I'm just way off in not seeing the connection between Rick and Lori. It's not like they don't have chemistry, but they only seem to come together to have a moment of "I love you blah blah blah" before going off to do other stuff. They haven't really come together in a meaningful way...or maybe I don't know what in the hell I'm talking about.

10:21 - And we're back. I kind of like the flashes of zombie premonition that (forgot his name) is experiencing. Nice little touch.

The field where the bodies are being buries is awesome, as well. It's giant and lush and green and works as a nice counterpoint to the disgusting nature of the work.

Also, the characters are starting to get a look I can only deem as "post-apocalyptic grime." Or, "Post-apocalyptic Grimes." Am I right?

10:15 - The death of Amy is sudden and tender without being melodramatic. Of course the speech Andrea gives borders on the melodramatic, but it manages to mostly avoid going too far. It's a nice touch.

What I like about this episode so far is the fact that the characters are interacting with each other and the environment well. It's an evenly-paced work, and the camp isn't divided between the people who are staying behind and those who have rushed off for some Macguffin or another.

Dealing with the crisis is what intrigues me about the show. I actually like watching the characters be conflicted about their situations and digging graves for other characters and things like that. Unfortunately, I think it might kill the momentum to only have a six episode run. They'll have to build the momentum back up after an extreme break.

10:12 - The gore is extreme, but it lies on the outskirts of the very human story taking place at its center, between Andrea and her sister.

We're getting the first stirrings of the zombiefied (or walkified) version of Amy. There's only one option here, unfortunately.

10:09 - Jeffrey DeMunn (Dale) is comforting Andrea by telling the story about his wife's losing battle with cancer. Very human. DeMunn is probably my favorite actor on the show, and I like seeing him get a moment to show off his ability to empathize.

This discussion is very King-ian in nature, and it, too, works very well. Dale and Andrea steal the scenes in which they are featured, most times.

10:07 - The characters are all discussing the possibility of offing one of their own, who was bitten in the attack from the previous night. The characters' personalities are coming out well in the dialogue.

10:06 - The show seems to be settling into the tragedy of the zombpocalypse very well. Up until now, there has been a lot of running around and going back into the city and so forth. Now the terror and shock and paranoia have all begun to sink in. I love it.

10:04 - Is it bad that I am much more a fan of Andrea (Laurie Holden) than Lori Grimes? I remember being specifically drawn to Lori in the comics. In the series, not so much. I mean, I like her, but just not in the same way. It's not her fault, though.

10:02 - Whoa! Pickaxe to the head. Way to balance the emotion related to death with the reality that they would come back to "life." Only two minutes in, and this is already my favorite episode.

10:01 - This episode opens with Rick Grimes talking (not) frantically into a walkie-talkie. Great cold opening. Perfectly silent, save for Grimes himself. Wonderful beginning. This is the sort of thing I've wanted to see all along.

Episode 5: Wildfire


  1. Andrea is one of my favorite characters in the comic.

  2. She's awesome. All of the other female characters pale in comparison.

  3. I actually like Norman Reedus.s Daryl much more than I initially thought I would.

  4. Me, too. He's totally the right look and feel for "that guy."

  5. Rick's t-shirt has surpassed the point of John McLane dirty.

  6. I was just thinking the same thing about Rick and Lori, except I think they do lack a bit of chemistry.

  7. You get the show back?

  8. I really hope they drop the accents next season.

  9. The accents aren't quite that distracting, but I think they could lighten them a bit.

    Yeah, I want to give the show the benefit of a doubt with the Rick / Lori thing. I'm glad I'm not the only one who doesn't see the chemistry.

  10. On a side note, Jeff Bridges looks like a bad-ass in the True Grit trailer.

  11. I think Shane is coming off more sympathetic on the screen than he did on the page.

  12. I couldn't remember. It's been forever since I read the comics, but yeah, I can see that. It would be garbage for him just to be this jealous asshole, which, I guess, is what he was in the comics.

  13. Ditto on the caravan sequence.

  14. That was a nice touch. A little bit of comedy mixed in with an overarchingly emotional sequence.

  15. This is a very new direction for those of us who followed the comic.

  16. Yes, I was beginning to think this was entirely new. I haven't read the comics in forever, but this is waaaay different.

  17. Perhaps the CDC compound will replace the prison.

  18. It's got to, doesn't it? I don't see any way of them returning to the previous main storyline, do you?

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