The Walking Dead Episode 207
"Pretty Much Dead Already"
Written By: Scott M. Gimple
Directed By: Michelle MacLaren
Original Airdate: 27 November 2011
In This Episode...
Taking his cue from Dale, Glenn stands up and announces to the camp that the barn is filled with walkers, sending everyone into a tizzy. Everyone starts bickering, which devolves into a fistfight between Shane and Darryl. Rick pulls them apart and insists on talking to Herschel about. While he does, the barn becomes a new area to guard. Inside the house, Rick tries to talk to Herschel, but he is not interested in talking, bargaining, or reasoning. Even after Rick tells him Lori is pregnant, Herschel wants them out by the end of the week. Maggie overhears, and while she is mad at Glenn for blabbing, she is more mad at her dad for kicking them out. She is starting to side with the campers.
When Rick tells Shane that Lori is pregnant, he feigns his way through the obligatory "congratulations" - then promptly loses his shit. He confronts Lori, who squashes the very thought of the kid ever being Shane's - genetically or otherwise. Shane wants to bust open the barn and kill all the zombies, but Rick stops him - barely. Shane goes for the weapons, and discovers that the guns are gone - and so is Dale. Shane tracks him through the forest and finds him easily. Dale tries desperately to stand his ground ("What are you going to do, shoot me like you did Otis?") and even pulls a gun on Shane. Shane calls his bluff and Dale relents, turning over the weapons. Shane returns to camp with a sack full of guns and a barn full of walkers... but we'll get to that in a second.
Carol has started to give up hope of finding Sophia. Darryl is the one who has to talk her back up and turn her thinking positive. It's an interesting dynamic the two are building. Not quite lovers; not quite siblings or mother/son... just a sweet mix of two people from very different worlds finding common ground. Meanwhile, Maggie is still pissed at Glenn, and he finally grows a pair and tells her that he wanted to tell his group about the zombies - he forgot they are something to be feared and he didn't want Maggie in danger. "I would rather you be alive and hate me rather than be dead and like me." That seals it for Maggie - she kisses him passionately.
Jimmy calls frantically for Herschel: "It's happened again." He asks Rick for his help. Jimmy has discovered two walkers - one of which Herschel knew as a human - stuck in the swamp and he wants Rick to put aside his bloodlust to help round up the walkers. Rick is conflicted but goes through with it in the hopes of ingratiating himself to Herschel and getting a little more time on the farm.
Okay, back to Shane and the barn. He is passing out guns to anyone and everyone who will take them. It feels like he is trying to start a mini revolution. As he is rallying the troops, he sees Rick and Herschel leading a couple of zombies by animal control harnesses. Shane officially goes off the deep end, screaming at Herschel, at Rick, at everyone. "These things aren't people. Could a person survive this? Huh?" He blasts one of the walkers through the heart and chest with a half-dozen bullets, but the walker keeps wriggling and growling. "Enough!" he screams and shoots her in the head. The zombie drops, as does Herschel, overwhelmed with sadness.
But Shane is not done. He pries open the barn (with Herschel near-catatonic and Rick handling a zombie of his own, no one tries to stop him) and a steady stream of zombies pour out. He takes aim and starts picking them off as they come out of the barn. T-Dog and Andrea and Rick join him and, after Maggie nods to him, Glenn as well. It's like Duck Hunt without the laughing dog. When it was over, at least a dozen bodies piled up like the Jonestown Massacre. There is a strange, shocked peace that falls over everyone - until they hear a growling coming from the barn. There is still one zombie left. It creeps out... it is Sophia. Darryl holds back Carol from running to her. The little girl zombie picks her way slowly over the zombie corpses as everyone stares in horror, shock, sadness at what was once a little girl. Rick mans up. He approaches. He levels his gun. He steels himself. And he fires.
Dig It or Bury It?
The majority of the episode was quite obnoxious. Everyone fighting with everyone else, and Dale... I don't know what is going on with him or his "holier than thou" attitude, but I want to wring his neck and frankly, I am surprised no one in the show has done it already. His obsessive need to baby and protect Andrea is verging on the unsettling.
But the last five or ten minutes of the episode, when Sophia is revealed... that was perfection. The slow build to Rick finally stepping up and shooting her was breathtaking. It's funny, I was just thinking a few days ago that there hadn't been enough casualties this season. But I am very relieved that Sophia didn't make it. Not because I didn't like her, but because finding her alive after all this time would have been a Disney-fied ending to that story arc and I would have lost all respect in the show. It was realistic and frankly, I was getting bored with that storyline.
Wisdom of the Walking Dead
Dale, to Shane: "This world, this is where you belong. I may not have what it takes to last long, but at least I can say when the world went to shit I didn't go down with it."
Kill of the Week
Obviously, this has to go to Sophia. Her kill was simple, but emotional. An honorable mention does have to go to the female zombie in Herschel's control that Shane shot over and over to prove it wasn't human before landing a killing blow in the brain.
Zombies are out until February, but I think maybe Herschel will go a little crazy.