‘The Walking Dead’ season 3 episode 16 recap: Good Riddance


It’s suburban Woodbury vs. the prison pals. Who won? Who died? And what does this mean for Season 4? This season of The Walking Dead has been both exciting and frustrating. Pitting Rick’s collapsing leadership skills against the sociopathic Governor’s iron grip on his town was an inspired idea, but we spent a lot of time on go-nowhere stuff like the ghost of Lori and Tyrese’s group of survivors. So here’s how they wrapped it up.

The episode started with poor hapless Milton being chased down by the Governor. He’s being pegged as the guy who burned the zombie trailer, and the Gov isn’t happy. He orders Milton to stab Andrea, and when he refuses Milton gets a knife right in the belly and is left there to become a Walker and eat her when he wakes up. Guess what? Andrea deserves every horrible thing that could happen to her. Her dithering incompetence and refusal to see the truth about the Governor was the single worst thing about this season.

Back at the prison, Rick and crew are packing up and splitting town. And just in time, too – the Governor’s men, led by ol’ Martinez, roll in to find the place deserted. The only thing left is a Bible opened to a particularly telling verse. The bad guys walk out, only to stumble into an ambush set by Rick and crew, with tear gas, tactical body armor and lots of firepower. They cut down the Governor and his gang, including a particularly telling bit where Carl shoots a kid from the other side who is in the process of surrendering. Not cool, little dude. Geneva Conventions.

The Woodbury “army” retreats, and they’re not happy. Neither is the Governor, who just opens fire on the complainers like a boss. He kills like 20 people, leaving Martinez, another dude, and a lady alive (because he runs out of ammo). Back at the prison, Carl tells his dad to kill the Governor before anybody else has to die, and they set off after him.

They get to Woodbury, where the lady survivor tells Tyreese what the Governor did and he lets them past the walls. Their first mission is to rescue Andrea, but she’s already been bit by zombie Milton and is on the way out. They give her a pistol to let her do the deed with dignity.

And then we’re back to the prison, but Rick isn’t alone. All of the people left behind in Woodbury are coming to join them. Uh, why wouldn’t the prison guys just move to the well-defended town instead of vice versa? I know where I’d rather live.

So what did you think of Season 3 of The Walking Dead? Overall, I thought it was an improvement over the somewhat meandering Season 2. Despite some missteps and some wasted time, it worked really well. The character of the Governor was a convincing antagonist, and I’d bet we haven’t seen the last of him.