Three guys talking about comic books, sports, movies, TV shows and the numerous other pastimes that make us Gentlemen of Leisure.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Walking Dead 4x11: Claimed

Hope in a world devoid of it. It’s a common theme in The Walking Dead. It’s also a common theme for viewers to discuss the lack of hope within this series. I’m sure this isn't the last time I will discuss this topic but it comes up now because this episode was all about hope.

Claimed followed two pieces of our fractured group. Glenn and Tara are with Sergeant Abraham and his crew. Meanwhile, Rick, Carl and Michonne were hopeful to have found an at least temporary safe haven in the house they came across two episodes ago. Unfortunately, that safety was short lived.

Glenn’s story offered the greatest hope this series has offered if not ever than since season one and the CDC building. The prospect of the world even being able to be saved is an intriguing one but it certainly feels too good to be true. Still, there are some interesting stories to be mined by characters that have tremendous optimism in the face of such a hopeless situation. Do they really believe deep down that they can save the world or are they just trying to fool themselves into thinking it's possible for fear of the alternative.

The Rick, Carl, Michonne plot of the episode was the opposite. They’re coming fresh off their supposedly permanent safe haven being destroyed and simply want to hunker down in the house they came across for a brief respite. Rick even comments on how no where they go will ever truly be safe. Then, when Michonne and Carl are gone and Rick is basically passed out, the house becomes overrun with shady miscreants. Rick, however, is able to escape relatively undetected.

Rick, Carl and Michonne are left to wander the Georgia wilderness again looking for safety. But even their story ends with some modicum of hope. The same hope that Tyrese, Carol and the kids found last episode: Terminus. Will Terminus or Sgt. Abraham and Eugene's plan to save the world offer legitimate hope or will they simply be fool's gold? I have my own thoughts but, really, only time will tell.

Other Thoughts:
I’m kind of disappointed we didn't actually get to see the face to face reunion between Michonne and Rick and Carl.

I've had soy milk before. It really isn't that bad.

When Michonne tried to act silly but Carl would have none of it I was kind of miffed. I’m not saying it isn't realistic, but boy does it bug me when teenagers try to act like they're too mature for something they actually aren't.

All the characters keep scavenging food from houses. Someday they’ll be no more prepackaged food, right?

I’m curious how that entire family died sitting in that room. Starvation? If I was starving to death at some point I'd take my chances with the zombies. What's the worst that could happen?

I might look forward to Carl and Rick reuniting with Judith if they had shown any attachment to her at all while they were all together.

When the ruffians invaded the house I thought for a second it might be Sgt. Abraham and crew. Obviously they were not.

I initially thought the fight over the bed ended in the guy's death. But I think he was still breathing. Still, it seems pretty over the top to fight like that just for a bed, even for a bunch of ne'er-do-wells.

Apparently, Eugene is the only bad shot in the entire series.

Why was the guy Rick killed in the bathroom fully panted? Don’t get me wrong. I didn't really want to see his junk but what’s the point of sitting on the toilet with your pants up? Maybe he was just looking for a place to sit? I guess it makes sense. We've already seen what happens when you use someone else’s furniture.

I'm paraphrasing, but in a pre-taped interview with Andrew Lincoln on The Talking Dead Andrew said that Rick knew immediately he was in trouble because any group of people still alive in that world wandering and scavenging must be ruthless killers, thieves and/or rapists. Ummmm...except for his own group? In the end, I don't blame Rick for being cautious but he should still acknowledge that another wandering group COULD be filled with good people.

4 comments:

  1. Obviously, I have no hope (see what I did there?) whatsoever that this "cure the zombie plague" plotline is going to go anywhere other than more misery and a narrative dead end, but this episode does suggest a model for the show that could be very successful: one group of characters working toward a macro goal (cure the plague) while another group deals with the problems of living in this world on a micro-level (finding food, escaping miscreants). I'd be much more excited about a show like that than I am one where the characters just aimlessly wander from one crisis to another.

    Also, for whatever reason, after the last episode, I just assumed that Abraham and his crew were from Terminus - probably due to the fact that both that place and that crew showed up in the same episode - but it doesn't seem like that's the case, which makes their whole goal seem somewhat more unlikely to happen. Then again, maybe they ARE a detachment from Terminus and it just didn't get brought up.

    The prospect of the world even being able to be saved is an intriguing one but it certainly feels too good to be true.

    This isn't necessarily a criticism, but I was a little miffed that Glenn didn't say anything about what he learned in the CDC when he found out their mission. I get that he's focused on finding Maggie, but he might have been able to shake Abraham off (before Eugene wrecked the truck) if he'd just been like "yeah, well, I've been to the CDC and talked to the guy who helped create the virus and there is no cure. See ya!"

    Rick, Carl and Michonne are left to wander the Georgia wilderness again looking for safety.

    I wonder if we won't see the gang that invaded Rick's house again? Jeff Kober played the tennis ball guy we saw on the porch at the end, and while he's not a huge star or anything, he's made enough of a name for himself playing bad guys and creepos on genre shows (he was two different bad guys on Buffy) that I'd be surprised if he was cast just to show up on screen for a few seconds.

    I've had soy milk before. It really isn't that bad.

    Yeah, though I hated it as a kid (because it was slightly different), so I can't begrudge Carl his reaction.

    but boy does it bug me when teenagers try to act like they're too mature for something they actually aren't.

    EVERYTHING IN THEIR LIVES IS SUPER IMPORTANT AND SERIOUS! FOR REALZ!

    Incidentally, my instinctive disdain for whimsy in fiction is a remnant of my teenaged need for everything to be super-serious.

    I’m curious how that entire family died sitting in that room.

    And didn't become zombies? It didn't look they all had head wounds.

    In the end, I don't blame Rick for being cautious but he should still acknowledge that another wandering group COULD be filled with good people.

    Yeah. Caution is good, but to assume you're allied with the only remaining decent people left in the world is pretty arrogant and foolhardy. That statement also seems to fly in the face of the system Rick (or whoever) had worked out earlier in the season to vet potential invitees to the prison community, which while certainly not foolproof in preventing ne'er-do-wells from joining the group at least suggested the possibility that not every stranger left in the world is out to rob, rape and/or kill.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I could have sworn there was dried blood under their heads. My guess is mom drugged them, arranged them on the beds, then shot them and herself.

    Also, if one of the new character's story plays out the same way it did in the comics there's no real hope to be had.

    Cheery show, this one.


    - Mike Loughlin

    ReplyDelete
  3. @Teebore: "I just assumed that Abraham and his crew were from Terminus"

    I'm pretty sure they're NOT from Terminus. So...watch me be wrong.

    "CDC and talked to the guy who helped create the virus and there is no cure."

    I don't think the CDC created the virus. I thought they were just studying it. Regardless, Glenn probably should've mentioned something. Especially the fact that, according to the CDC, the US Government and all other countries "went dark."

    "Yeah, though I hated it as a kid (because it was slightly different)"

    It was different therefor you feared it? But, really, was it ever vomit inducing?

    @Mike: "I could have sworn there was dried blood under their heads. My guess is mom drugged them, arranged them on the beds, then shot them and herself."

    I didn't see it but I wasn't looking THAT closely. You may be right.

    "there's no real hope to be had."

    Robert Kirkman once said, and I'm paraphrasing, that The Walking Dead comic was an exercise to see how many terrible things he could put one character [Rick] through. So...ummm...yeah.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I've had soy milk before. It really isn't that bad.

    I'm not much of a fan of the taste, but the bigger problem is it makes my mouth itch like hell. So yeah, I'll take the baby formula too, thanks.

    I’m curious how that entire family died sitting in that room. Starvation? If I was starving to death at some point I'd take my chances with the zombies. What's the worst that could happen?

    I didn't see any blood either; I'd assumed poison, though I'd stupidly not considered the ramifications. I wonder if there's anything you can take that would ruin whatever part of the brain zombies need to work?

    I initially thought the fight over the bed ended in the guy's death. But I think he was still breathing. Still, it seems pretty over the top to fight like that just for a bed, even for a bunch of ne'er-do-wells.

    That one pissed me off. The fight was stupid enough, but just leaving the guy there? I immediately turned to Fliss and said "Why the hell would you leave a dead body there to get up and kill you?" "He's still breathing" she replied. "Then why the hell would you leave a guy you almost choked to death over a bed there to get up and kill you?"

    Why was the guy Rick killed in the bathroom fully panted? Don’t get me wrong. I didn't really want to see his junk but what’s the point of sitting on the toilet with your pants up? Maybe he was just looking for a place to sit? I guess it makes sense. We've already seen what happens when you use someone else’s furniture.

    I noticed that the seat was down, too; he was clearly just taking some time off from hanging with his ruthless killers, thieves and/or rapists.

    Rick knew immediately he was in trouble because any group of people still alive in that world wandering and scavenging must be ruthless killers, thieves and/or rapists

    I think this is incomplete on Lincoln's part. The full thought should go "Rick knew immediately he was in trouble because any group of people... must be ruthless killers, thieves and/or rapists, or have encountered so many people like that they'll be dangerous as hell just in self-defence".

    I mean, ye Gods, how many people has Rick and his Merry Survivors either killed directly, or abandoned to their deaths? It's not like we can't see his reasons, but at this point Rick pretty much is a ruthless killer.

    @Teebore Then again, maybe they ARE a detachment from Terminus and it just didn't get brought up.

    It doesn't seem likely, since they're explicitly on a mission to get Eugene to DC. I suppose either Eugene or Abraham & Rosalita started off at Terminus and didn't go on the road until the other(s) arrived and they decided to start out, I guess.

    Plus of course, they could very well have stopped off at Terminus recently on their way to the capitol.

    ReplyDelete

Comment. Please. Love it? Hate it? Am mildly indifferent to it? Let us know!