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The Walking Dead Review: The Kids Are Not All Right

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If you thought dealing with flesh-eating zombies was a headache, try taking care of a child while dealing with flesh-eating zombies. For some reason, kids find the easiest ways to get lost, shot or just plain in danger. And don't ask Rick to be the babysitter, either.

"Bloodletting" felt like the missing end of the season premiere, practically picking up right where it left off and sending Rick and the wounded Carl towards Hershel's farm.

I love the new setting and the peaceful appearance, as it illustrates a nice contrast with the claustrophobia of the city. Just looking at the painting-like locale makes it hard to believe that zombies have taken over the world. Fans of the graphic novel should be pleased with the introduction of this significant location, especially with the new character at the center: Hershel.

Shane Helps Rick

He already fits right in with the original characters and Scott Wilson brings out a sense of versatility to the role. He's straightforward and honest, perhaps a little stern, but certainly caring. He even exerts a sense of leadership without acting overbearing or aggressive.

Hershel may be helpful now, but how long will that last? Who gets to play leader once the two groups finally come together and Carl is (hopefully) fixed?

Even as Rick and Hershel seem to be on the same page of helping Carl, the seeds of disagreement were planted when the two discussed their thoughts on the "epidemic." Hershel's religious views make him hopeful and optimistic for a cure, while Rick seems less certain that things will change for the better. Will Hershel turn into a fanatic? He seems like he could be the perfect grandfather, but some things may prove too good to be true.

I'm pleased the show continues to follow the guideline that is the graphic novel, but I am also open minded about the changes and alternative routes the TV series decides to take. For one, I'm still enjoying Daryl and his smart alec comments. Sure, he seems a bit like Sawyer from Lost (even the group traipsing around the woods reminded me of Lost), but he brings an edgy character that both Rick and Shane couldn't fill. You can't have everyone quiet and sullen. There need to be scenes like shooting the zombie in the head and telling it to "shut up."

Plus, Daryl isn't just a one-dimensional racist redneck. He's rational in questioning Maggie when she shows up. He remains positive in finding Sophia. He even holds a large stash of drugs which he gives up to T-Dog. It's good to have someone who remains as sane as can be in the situation.

Unfortunately, T-Dog seems to be anything but sane. Has he gone off the deep end because of his fever or is that just his personality? I'm finding his character hard to like or even connect with, and it doesn't help that his name is T-Dog. I just want to laugh every time the characters have to say his name with a serious face. I guess not every change from the source material works out for the best.

One thing I definitely noticed was the contrast in Lori's reactions to Rick and Carl getting shot. When she first heard the news in a flashback that connected this season with the first, she just seemed blank faced. No crying out. No tears of loss. Only Carl showed the obvious emotion to a loved one getting hurt. Had Lori really lost the love back then?

When it came to learning of Carl's injury, she was wracked with pain and emotion as she clung to Rick. I believed her when she went to her son's side. Lori truly cared.

I know that there's still a sense of strain on Rick and Lori's relationship, but has this zombie apocalypse brought them back together? Is it simply circumstance? Even though I wanted Rick to rush to help Shane, I was glad he finally chose to stay with his son and Lori. Quit leaving them, Rick, even if they can be a handful!

Speaking of Shane and Rick, did anyone get the feeling that there was a little too much bromance bonding going on? I know Rick needed someone with stability to help calm him, but holding each other's faces close had me thinking they might just start making out. I think their relationship needs to move a little slower.

At least Shane was willing to make the sacrifice to get the supplies for Carl. He's definitely trying to make up for all of his indecent acts last season. It was a great moment when Otis explained where they needed to go and he was like, "really?" as he saw the swarm of zombies. Nothing is ever easy in life. Additionally, it was a great way to cliffhang the episode with a mere pin holding back the snarling, starving zombies. They are just so scary good.

But since when could the zombies run? Was that simply camera work making them appear faster as they chased Shane and Otis? I thought they walked, or stumbled, even dragged along quickly. But they seemed to be booking it. The reason I liked that they walked instead of 28 Days Later-sprinted was that it made them not as hard to handle one on one. The true danger of a ton of them together was because they could surround you, not because they were fast. Are they still actually the walking dead?

The episode continued its gradual pace, although at times felt a bit slower than I would have liked. That said, the progress and situations didn't feel rushed and I'm pleased that we are just starting the journey that is Hershel's farm. And, of course, it's hard not to have a guilty pleasure for the zombie goodness that makes this series fun and filled with entertainment.

Are there any dark secrets hidden behind this seemingly serene setting? Will Shane and Otis survive? Will Carl? Can I handle waiting a week for the next episode? Sound off below with your thoughts on the second episode.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (75 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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I love this show but when ever I see Rick all I can think about is "Love Actually" he was my favorite character in that Movie but otherwise I cannot wait til next week!! It is so suspenseful

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With this show I only think the one character who is safe is Rick, the star. Will Carl make it? I really do not know, because this show is brutal. The girl is missing, will she be OK? As for Shane and Otis, well someone is needed for a rescue. Get Daryl to the farm and tell him what is happening, he will go in and kick butt. This is one rough show, a real roller coaster ride, you can't get comfortable and bored.

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I love this show! I'm think the little girl who is missing is a goner. We may see her in an episode soon as A walker. Carl is going to survive, he has to! Oh and I'm pretty excited for next week's episode. I want to see how Shane get's out of that medical center alive.

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Far better episode than the S2 premiere. I loved the flashback in the beginning. It showed Shane in a different light. Yes he's got some major flaws, however in the end he's really trying to do the right thing. It just never goes right. I'm excited they are on the farm. Things seem like they will get better but as we know (from the comics) things ate never as they seem. Can't wait for next weeks episode!

Piecar

The Walking Dead (wisely) follows the "Romero Rules". The VERY FIRST zombie in the Romero world could move pretty fast over short distances. Not run, you understand, but shamble damn fast.(The first zombie also used bludgeons, and looked for one when he needed it, listened and investigated doors for prey. He fought well enough to beat a human in a fair fight because hits didn't faze him.) The opening scene, where Rick is running with Carl and is basically out of gas, was terrific. Very real to life. It's very very very VERY hard to run a long way cradling someone. and that was the only way to hold a kid shot in the belly. Nice job, WD. I agree that the face touching was over the top. It was "actor shit" if you ask me. Hammy. You could make the case that Shane is trying to overcompensate for his betrayal before, but that was a little too caress-y for me. The FEMA trailer thing was a great ending. The bolt was ALMOST out, and it was a great cliffhanger....But was stupid because they're just sitting there looking at it...Again. A little too drama-y. And it was dumb that they wouldn't have an exit strategy once they got into the trailer anyway. Those ATCO trailers got sky lights. That's where I'd be going...Still, good scene and I have to let it go. Now we know who Shane is running with from the teaser trailers. Daryl...Sunuvabitch. The guy is the breakout star of this series. He's funny, smart, tactical, quick, a great fighter, and he works good in a team. They better have a "Daryl" action figure minted pretty quick 'cause the fan boys are gonna eat it up. Theo better get an actual character soon. I like the actor, but the character has nothing to hang my hat on. He's just a blank now. That said, if he gets a featured episode in the next little while, I put money he dies at the end of it. Who decides to do a Run and Gun with Pruitt Taylor Vince? The guy is a great Great actor...But run from a horde of zombies? Not so much....Unless we're going for the the old joke. "I don't have to run faster than them...just faster than you." I thought it was a really good episode.

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Does anyone else think Rick may have dropped a hint about what the scientist whispered to him while talking to Hershel?

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Lol I thought I was the only one bothered by the bromance. I thought the same thing when they were all up in each others faces. Each time they are that close I can't help but think " Dude you were banging his wife"...Smh I can't wait for that bombshell to drop. All in all a very good episode and yes, I def love Daryl also..His comments are the best!

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It was already better than the premiere.

The Walking Dead Season 2 Episode 2 Quotes

Lori doesn't know. My wife doesn't know. My wife doesn't know.

Rick

He was trying so hard to be reasonable, but that pushed my buttons even more.

Lori
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