Last night’s episode, written by Ryan Coleman, may not have been as emotional as last week but it was certainly pivotal. The crux of the episode can be summed up in the first words spoken by the Governor: “We have a lot to talk about.”
That line applies to the show overall, not only to the conversation between our two pseudo-heads of state. There are a lot of face-offs in this episode, some subtle, some full of unnecessary posturing and some that put old wounds to rest.
The Governor goes into his chat with Rick under the misconception that Rick is still unstable. He thinks that he can give him a sob story, lie to him about his intentions and that poor crazy Rick will roll over. On a level, the Governor realizes that he has misjudged Rick, but he never realizes how much he has underestimated our sheriff’s loyalty to his people.
The Governor also underestimates how much Rick values Michonne. The Governor’s terms for peace are contingent on Rick giving her up. Given the events of last week, Michonne is now a fully baptized member of Team Rick. Her skills make her an asset to the group and beyond that, her interaction with Carl solidified her as family. Plus, Rick is smart enough to know that the Governor will slaughter them regardless.
Speaking of Michonne, she and Merle finally have their own face to face talk since the events at Woodbury. Michonne is unmoved by Merle, but I have to say that I think he was genuine and practical in his approach. He made no apologies for what he did. He simply states that they have to work together and that the group needs them to work together. I agree with him but I also understand why Michonne could care less what he thinks or feels.
The other important talk we get this week is between Glenn and Maggie. Their conversation doesn’t last long, but it is enough to pop the giant bubble of tension that has surrounded them since their return from Woodbury. He apologizes for letting his own trauma prevent him from being there for her and that statement is all she needs to hear. Then in a move that is a bit out of character for this show, we get a full on sex scene between the two! The scene was supposed to be sweet and yes, sexy, but I was cringing because I expected a zombie to pop up and bite one of them.
There are other small conversations that represent shifts in viewpoints. Milton’s conversation with Hershel opens him up to the possibility that his fearless leader might not be the good guy. Likewise, the Governor’s treatment of Andrea in this episode and her resulting talk with Hershel cause her to come to terms with what she has known for weeks – she chose the wrong side. We’ll see both of these shifts play out more next week as Woodbury prepares for war.
Many people thought this episode was filler, but I think it moved the story forward. It also shows us two very important things. After weeks of fracture, Rick’s group has come back together and is stronger than ever. The Governor’s kingdom, on the other hand, is crumbling and he is too far gone in his insanity to realize that he is outmatched.
“Great, he brought his butler.”
Hershel revealing the gun on his leg. Someone put this man in charge, already!
Merle and Michonne’s conversation. These actors have great chemistry and you can tell they had fun with the scene.
Daryl and Martinez’s “who has the bigger penis” face off was a waste of everyone’s time and a waste of Norman Reedus. It seemed like the writers needed to kill time and the only thing they could come up with was a testosterone-off.
Rick didn’t kill the Governor. It would have been the smart choice. Woodbury wouldn’t retaliate, at least not to the extent that they will come after them with the Governor in charge.
Andrea is too far gone for me to find her redeemable. It’s clear she’s chosen the side of the prison but I can’t root for her. I can understand her finding a level of security in Woodbury but nothing excuses her betraying Rick’s confidence by telling the Governor about Shane and Lori. There is no reason for that except her overwhelming need to feel important. I want her off my screen.