Poor, poor Sophie. I really did think, despite all the evidence to the contrary, that the survivors were going to find her afraid, hungry, possibly sick, but alive and in a non-zombified state. Instead, she turned up zombified with a bunch of other Walkers in Herschel’s barn. But I’ll get back to that.
The episode, again, was pretty boring up until the last ten minutes or so. I said in the past that I appreciated the slower pace of this season and I think that worked for a while, but a few too many episodes spent at Herschel’s farm, with not much action or threat of danger, really sucked a lot of energy out of this season. Some of the character development for Glenn and Daryl has been interesting, but it hasn’t really worked with a lot of other characters: Shane’s coming across as sort of cartoonishly villainous rather than stressed out and emotionally tortured, I still don’t quite “get” Dale, and Carol and T-Dog remain barely developed characters. The end of this episode, though, was just fascinating and exciting to watch. Shane’s rant came across as a little silly at first; instead of focusing his anger strictly on the danger Herschel’s barn posed, he started ranting on about wasting time searching for Sophie and came off as a maniac rather than a calculating person attempting to swing opinion to his side through a focused display of anger. I always thought Shane a calculating manipulator, so this rant struck an off-note for me.
After Shane loses his mind and smashes the lock to the barn door, zombies start staggering out and the survivors, one by one, start raining lead into the crowd of Walkers as Rick and Herschel watch in horror. It was a great scene, and one made even better when Sophie is the last to emerge from the structure. Daryl, Carol, and Carl all lose it, and Rick is the only person with enough presence of mind to discard Herschel’s dangerous philosophy and put the girl out of her misery.
And so, The Walking Dead now goes on hiatus until February 12th. What a way to go out. Over the next few months, I’ll probably forget about the slow, boring last few episodes, but I don’t think I’ll forget about the zombie shootout at Herschel’s barn. Did Herschel know the little girl was Sophie? When did he find her? If he knew, why did he hide it from the survivors? I’m looking forward to seeing these questions answered, and I’m sure the answers are going to create a lot of tension between the two groups of survivors. But that last scene is enough to keep me excited about what’s to come in February.
Crazy Violence Level: 8 of 10
Comments: Zombie shoot-out at the OK Corral!
- 15 or so defenseless zombies gunned down gangster style, including the now zombified Sophie. I believe that makes at least two little girl zombies, shot in the head execution style, over the course of this series.