The Walking Dead Episode 201
"What Lies Ahead"
Written By: Ardeth Bay and Robert Kirkman
Directed By: Gwyneth Horder-Payton
Original Airdate: 16 October 2011
In This Episode...
The survivors have decided there is nothing left for them in Atlanta and are moving out to an army base to see what is there. On the road out of town, they hit a roadblock and the RV blows a gasket, so they are forced to make a pitstop. As the crew starts scavenging the nearby abandoned cars, Rick spies a walker. He takes aim... then sees another walker. Then a dozen. Hundreds. The humans scramble, as quietly as possible, beneath cars and watch the herd shuffle by. Andrea is still in the RV, so she had no idea what was going on until she looked out the window. A particularly smart zombie comes in and starts sniffing around. It is on its way out when Andrea - hidden in the bathroom - makes a noise and the zombie charges. Dale is on top of the RV. He slips Andrea a screwdriver, which she uses to kill the zombie when it inevitably breaks in. T-Dog, meanwhile, gashes his arm open on a car door while trying to get to safety.
When it appears that the coast is clear, Sophia creeps out to go to her mother. A straggler grabs at her, and she runs into the forest. The walker gives chase. Rick doesn't hesitate in going after her. He catches her and the two get ahead of the walker, but not for long. "It doesn't get winded," he explains to Sophia, "but I do." He stashes her in a small cave while he lures the walkers away. At a safe distance, Rick kills two zombies with a rock. When he goes back to Sophia, she is gone. Rick hopes it is back to the highway, but when he returns, no one has seen her. Rick and Daryl head back out to track the girl while Glen and Shane remain behind to keep everyone else calm and busy. Sophia's trail goes cold, and night creeps in. The men return to the caravan and they set out again in the morning.
Dale, Glen, and T-Dog stay behind in case Sophia finds her way back, while the rest of the group - Carl included - head out to resume the search. In the distance, they hear church bells, and run towards them. The church is empty (the "bells" were a recording on a timer) except for a trio of zombies, easily killed. Rick, Shane, and Carl stay behind in case Sophia heard the bells; everyone they send back to the road. The guys are exploring the surrounding areas when they come across an uninfected deer. Shane is about to shoot it, but Rick stops him when he notices how taken with the deer Carl is. Suddenly, shots ring out (from the opposite direction) and both Carl and the deer go down.
Also: Andrea has it out with Dale - he took away the gun that her father gave her. He won't admit it, but he is afraid the moment she is on her own, she will kill herself. Andrea is mad at Dale for taking that choice away from her. Later she overhears Shane telling Lori that at the next opportunity, he is leaving the group, striking out on his own. Andrea immediately wants to come with him - mainly to get away from Dale.
Dig It or Bury It?
This is the way to open a season. The scene with the zombie herd was captivating. I like that we have whittled the survivors down a bit - I'm too lazy to keep track of tertiary characters. The little human moments are great, especially at the end with Carl and the deer; one of those "stop and smell the roses" moments that doesn't come across cloying or obnoxious or cheesy.
Zombie of the Week
While searching for Sophia, Rick and Daryl come across a zombie, which they easily dispense with. Rick notices that it recently fed, so they gut the walker to check for signs of Sophia. Daryl takes pleasure in cutting the zombie open. Its insides are black, oily, and putrid. Daryl locates the gut bag - it is much smaller than I thought it would be. They slice it open and find a woodchuck skull. Curiously, zombies still have digestive enzymes, because the woodchuck skull is devoid of flesh.
Kill of the Week
It's a tie between the zombie that Andrea kills in the RV by stabbing it in the eye with a screwdriver, and the zombie that Rick kills in the forest by repeatedly bashing its head with a stone until it literally collapses flat.
Get ready to head to Herschell's farm!