If you were complaining about this season moving too slow, you’re not anymore. Holy crap, dudes. So I was expecting a continuation of the slow burn of the Governor’s storyline after last week – sure, he had a new camp under his control, but it didn’t seem like he was going to go full-on against Rick and crew. I was wrong.
We left off last week with the Governor standing outside the prison, Michonne in his gunsights. We pick up a little bit later, as he’s taken her and Herschel hostage and is rallying his new troops, telling them that they can have the prison without firing a shot. Okay, we’ll see how that works. To be honest, a half-dozen guys with wire cutters and some patience could probably flood that place with walkers easily, but that doesn’t seem to be the plan. Instead, the Governor fires a shot from the tank to get Rick out (wait, that’s firing a shot) and tells Rick that he has until sundown to clear his people out, or the hostages will die.
The new, sensitive Rick tries to reason with him, telling the Governor that there’s plenty of space and resources inside the prison for both groups. He’s not having that compromise, though, and takes one of Michonne’s swords to Herschel’s neck. And then all Hell breaks loose, obviously.
The majority of the episode was just a pitched battle between the two groups. I have to say, these are usually my least favorite Walking Dead episodes – last season’s siege of Woodbury was chaotic and confusing, and this wasn’t much different. The big beats were: The tank did a ton of structural damage to the prison, basically destroying it. Meghan (the little girl the Governor’s been traveling with) getting bit by a walker at their old camp and her mother Lilly finds her and carries her to the battle scene, where the Governor cooly pops the kid in the head to keep her from turning. Rick shoots the Governor in the arm and the Governor shoots Rick in the leg to keep it even. Herschel gets beheaded. Daryl gets badass, taking out the tank and killing Mitch while the rest of the Governor’s untrained troops get routed.
The escape bus takes off with Tyreese and Glenn, leaving Rick, Carl, Daryl and Michonne in one group and Bob, Sasha and Maggie in the other. The Governor storms the prison virtually alone and he and Rick kick the crap out of each other for a bit before Michonne finally gets what she wants and impales him on a sword. Lilly then comes back and gives him a little poetic justice with a bullet through the brain. Wow. So much for the Governor, I guess. That was kind of anti-climactic but this show doesn’t really follow the same rhythms as other episodic TV.
The Walking Dead returns Sunday, February 9th. What do you think is in store for Rick and crew in the second half of the season?