Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Walking Dead: Season 2 Episode 4 (Cherokee Rose)

Spoiler Warning!

This episode represents a break in the action - to the extent that our group can get any respite in this broken world. The group is holing up at the farm, Carl is slowly recovering, and they have the means to conduct a more thorough search for Sophia. But, as ever, danger looms on the horizon, and chaos can strike at any moment.

My respect for the old man farmer is beginning to wane. I like how he treated the group's arrival, and everything he did to save Carl's life, but he may yet prove to stand at odds with the group. He doesn't want them sticking around too long - as it's their policy not to take in strangers, but Rick is desperate for a place to spread his roots, and this farm is as safe as any he's yet come across. In fact, it's surprising that the farm is so isolated from the zombie threat, I start getting suspicious about why that is. And the rule about them not carrying any guns on the property - though it doesn't seem like they need them - is there more to this story? I have a feeling that as much as Rick wants to honor the farm group's rules, his own group may end up coming into conflict with them, resulting in trouble ahead.

The farmer is also a religious man. I thought his exchange with Rick on the hill was pretty telling. Rick is right that the last time he asked God for a favor, God saw to it that his son was shot and nearly killed. Of course, the farmer prefers to focus on the good things, and wonders why Rick doesn't see God in the fact that he woke from that coma, was able to find his family, and that despite getting shot, his son was able to survive. But the God thing itself is purely extraneous. The difference of opinion here is between focusing on the good things that happen to you in a bad world (the farmer's approach), and focusing on all the bad things that happen to make the world such a bad place. But God has absolutely nothing to do with any of that. It's merely a difference of interpretation - God's presence is entirely absent. And while there might be a psychological benefit to focusing on the good things, it's not honest to posit God as the cause for them, especially considering that the cognitive dissonance required to reconcile God's ability to make good things happen, with his seeming pleasure in making even more bad things happen - or his inability to stop them, take your pick - is enough to screw with your head. Rick's absolutely right on one thing - if God does exist, he's got a twisted sense of humor.

I'm rather surprised that the farm group hadn't realized there was a zombie (a "swimmer") in their backup well. All this time, and they never once heard him moaning or splashing around? I don't believe he would have been that quiet. I guess maybe the pumping could have 'woken' him up, but then, farm girl said they used that well for their cows (I guess it's convenient that the zombie infection doesn't pass between species). But I'll tell you what, the whole, "let's not shoot him in the head because if he hasn't contaminated the water yet just by sleeping and shitting in it - which he probably has - then we don't want to ruin it by splattering his guts all over the well," was stupid, stupid, stupid - and this series is too smart to make that mistake. Yeah, it was tense lowering Glenn into that well, but it was a completely unnecessary risk. I expect more than that.

I loved, however, Glenn's moment in the drug store. He was embarrassingly awkward when he accidentally picked up those condoms, but when the farm girl said she'd have sex with him and then just started getting undressed in the middle of the drug store - totally hot. I guess that's one often overlooked advantage to a post-apocalyptic wasteland - you can have sex out in the open and in all sorts of places you would get in trouble for in a regular world where there are lots of people constantly milling about. Well, I think that's an advantage anyway. Provided you've got someone to do it with - farm girl was right, it's slim pickings when most of the population is [un]dead.

Also, 'protection' may (or may not) be hard to come by, and you don't want to go and get the wrong girl pregnant. Which is, finally, where we find Lori. And Glenn knows. And Rick knows, if it's right that that's what Dr. Jenner told him, except Lori doesn't yet know that Rick knows, and Rick doesn't know yet that Lori knows. I actually thought she was going to tell him during that scene at the end, before she headed out to the woods. I was sure she'd have known already by then, and I got freaked out when she headed away from the tents with a knife - I thought she was going to go ahead and give herself an abortion, just to eliminate the problems that this baby is going to cause. It's definitely Shane's, or at least it's going to bring out the conflict between Rick and Shane's claim on Lori. This is going to be huge when it breaks. And Shane has no idea yet.

Wow, Shane almost confessed to Andrea about Otis there, when he was teaching her about shooting. But it didn't seem like she caught on. He did a pretty good job covering his ass at the funeral. I can just tell this is all leading towards what might prove to be a major splintering of the group. But in better news, I'm convinced Daryl found evidence that Sophia's okay in that old house. I started to wonder, what if my suspicions when she ran away were true, and she doesn't want to be found? The whole thing with Daryl and the flower leaves me guessing. Did he find her, and was she dead, or can he tell that she doesn't want to come back? I guess we'll get some clues based on whether or not he tells the group about that old house - I'm surprised he hasn't mentioned it yet. I have a feeling there's a trick to it that we'll find out more about soon.

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