Favorite Walking Dead Season 3 Episode

This week’s Dead Alert newsletter features a poll: What’s your favorite Walking Dead Season 3 episode? At the moment I’m writing this, the top two episodes in the poll are Episode 12 (Clear) and Episode 15 (This Sorrowful Life), which are my two favorite episodes from Season 3. I liked Episode 15 just a little bit more than Episode 12 though.

So I’m wondering, what’s your favorite episode from The Walking Dead Season 3? And of course, why do you think it’s the best episode of the season?

Philip Waxes Poetic: Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16 (Welcome to the Tombs)

Chandler Riggs as Carl Grimes in The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16

Chandler Riggs as Carl Grimes in The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16

Warning: This Walking Dead Season 3 post contains spoilers. Please wait until after watching, before reading further. SERIOUSLY, there are some mega spoilers here, so don’t read ahead unless you’ve seen the episode or you absolutely don’t care about learning major plot points.

Summary: The Governor tortures Andrea and leaves her for dead, so that he can storm the prison with his army. However he quickly discovers that his troops don’t have what it takes to kill the prisonfolk, because they’re chased out. Afterward Rick, Daryl, and Michonne travel to Woodbury to finish the fight, although they’re surprised to find that that the people of Woodbury are anxious to switch allegiances.

Just as Season 3 opens with a closeup on a zombie eyeball, its finale, The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16 (Welcome to the Tombs) starts by focusing on a human’s. It slowly pulls back to reveal The Governor’s one good eye as he’s face-punching the crap out of…dun…dun….dun…Milton, for torching the walkers! Guess Milton finally grew a conscience (pair). Too bad it wasn’t Morgan who did it like some of us suspected.

Milton tries to reason with his captor, however The Governor is beyond saving. Philip issues Milton a scumbag ultimatum: kill Andrea or die. Milton tries to kill Philip instead, but sadly he gets crazy stabbed and left in the room to become a walker with a chained up Andrea. That’s sadistic Phil! During this scene he delivers a scary insightful comment akin to Jule’s Ezekiel 25:17 from Pulp Fiction, “You kill or you die. Or you die and you kill.” I think Jules would agree; that’s some cold-blooded shit to say.

Back at the prison everyone is making plans seemingly to flee. Carl is acting like a big baby giving Rick the silent treatment while they pack. The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16, is actually the first episode Carl has annoyed me all season long. Unbelievable after all the “Get Out of Here Carl” memes from Season 2. Michonne and Rick then have a heartwarming moment where she thanks him for taking her in. I really like her now.

Speaking of other characters I love, Tyreese politely declines The Governor’s invitation to fight, while offering to keep guard over the remaining folks. I was shocked The Governor tossed him a gun and said “Thanks.” Once The Woodbury troops arrive at the prison, they’re hooting, hollering, and blowing stuff up like they have unlimited ammo. Kudos to the writers and director for creating a massive amount of escalating tension as the Woodburyians comb the cellblocks looking for trouble. The highlighted bible passage sitting out was brilliant.

I was fairly disappointed however by what I felt like was an anticlimactic end to that fight. A few grenades plus Glenn and Maggie shooting and yelling scatters everyone to the wind. Then the pissed off Governor kills his troops for punking out, while his lackeys Martinez and the other dude just sit there in silence. Plus The Governor lives to see another day. UGH! I was hoping he’d get a huge satisfying death during the prison siege like he did in the comics. I was fascinated though by the whole piece about Carl shooting an innocent kid and trying to deny he did anything wrong.

I dug that Rick, Michonne, and Daryl found the one survivor of The Governor’s wrath and they went to Woodbury together where they got Tyreese and Sasha to switch teams. There was some good suspense leading up to Andrea’s bite. I loved the shot of Milton’s reanimated fingers just before the commercial, as well as the one of a closed door with screaming on the other side. It was touching when everyone came together to wish Andrea goodbye. Michonne even got misty!

The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16 ends on a happy-go-lucky note with the Woodburyians joining Rick’s group. Rick has regains his humanity (which I’m happy about) and he no longer sees Lori (thank god). But it’s not an ending that feels right to me. Not many characters die (at least important ones) and that closing seems uncharacteristically upbeat for the show. I didn’t have any significant attachment to Milton, Andrea, or Allen so none of their deaths got to me. Plus Andrea’s death was completely avoidable if she just tried to escape faster instead of wasting time. I was hoping for a huge throw down with lots of death and drama like in the comic. Sadly I didn’t get it.

Click here to take this week’s poll: Were you satisfied by the Season 3 finale?

Any predictions for what will happen in Season 4?

Were you happy with The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16?

In The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 16 (Welcome to the Tombs) battles are fought, characters die, and people switch allegiances.

Merle, Merle, Merle: The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 15 (This Sorrowful Life)

Michael Rooker on The Walking Dead

Merle Dixon (Michael Rooker) in The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 15 Copyright 2013 AMC TV

Warning: This Walking Dead Season 3 post contains spoilers. Please wait until after watching, before reading further. SERIOUSLY, there are some mega spoilers here, even more so than usual. Don’t read ahead unless you have seen the episode or you absolutely don’t care about knowing major plot points beforehand.

Summary: Rick fills Daryl in on his plan to turn Michonne over to The Governor and enlists Merle’s help to take her into custody. Later on Rick has a change of heart, but before he can tell everyone, Merle takes matters into his own hands. Acting alone, he captures Michonne and leaves the prison with her. At the same time, The Governor and his men trek toward the rendezvous point with murder on their minds.

First off, the title for The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 15, “This Sorrowful Life” is amazing not only because it encapsulates the horrible existence that is the zombie apocalypse, but also because it foreshadows the episode’s epically tragic ending. In fact, this installment has the saddest ending of Season 3, and maybe even of the entire show so far. Despite its conclusion, The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 15 is loaded with great banter between Merle and others, since this episode is almost all about everyone’s favorite one-handed loose cannon.

When we first see Merle, he’s ripping through prison mattresses in the hopes of finding some crystal meth, which seems silly, yet strangely smart. If you’re looking for drugs in a prison, might as well search likely hiding places right? His comments to Rick like “You’re cold as ice Officer Friendly,” are amusing with an underlying hard honesty. His following conversations with Carol, Daryl, and Michonne all contain elements of that same humor and unabashed earnestness. He asks Carol “You have any whisky? I’d even drink vodka.” He tells Daryl “People do what they gotta do or die.” And he says to Michonne “You gotta play the hand you’re dealt. I’ve only got one.”

The worst thing is that Merle’s totally right. Rick and his team are willing to essentially do the same thing they vilified Merle for: kidnapping an innocent person all in the name of survival. Although Merle knows that they don’t really have the stomach for it, which is why he anoints himself as the guy who does the dirty work. He’s willing to bear the group’s sins, which actually makes him a decent guy. As Michonne says to him, if he was really a monster he wouldn’t feel any guilt over what he was doing. He’d be “light as a feather.”

Speaking of Michonne, she’s overcome her rocky start and just keeps getting better as a character. She does an amazing job getting inside Merle’s head, convincing him that he shouldn’t turn her over to The Governor. Plus even without her sword she proves that she’s a regular McGuyver walker killer, using just her boots and wire. Of course Merle changes his mind and let’s her go, so she heads back to the prison. One of my favorite moments in The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 15 is Rick on lookout, awkwardly seeing her waltzing back onto the prison grounds.

Side note: it’s interesting that they used this episode to have Glenn’s propose to Maggie. I was wondering if they’d tackle that considering the two tied the knot in the comics when they were living at the prison. Totally grody that Glenn snatched the ring off a walker, although at least he picked a good one. Hope he cleaned it off first! Also it’s hilarious that Rick and Hershel have a change of heart about their stance on Michonne at the same time. For Rick it’s seeing his dead wife and Hershel it’s reading the Bible that triggers it. What a contrast!

And now the part you’ve all been waiting for! Merle’s demise. I laughed when he was getting drunk listening to Motorhead before his heroic attack on The Governor. Even in the zombie apocalypse Lemmy is still God! The writers actually do a great job of slowly making him sympathetic over the course of the episode, so that when he finally meets his end at the hands of The Governor you’re really sad. I love how they don’t show him actually dying, you just watch Daryl finding zombie Merle. Makes the emotional punch to the gut that much harder. I go on and on about Daryl and Norman Reedus, but Reedus gives us an AMAZING performance during this scene. He puts all of these intense emotions out there that Daryl would be feeling: loss, disgust, fear, and rage.

Also toward the end, Rick spills the beans on what was really happening with Michonne. He renounces Ricktatorship in favor of equal say for everyone. Definitely curious to see how democracy works given the impending showdown with The Governor. I’m so excited for the Season 3 finale I could almost pee. For your sake and the sake of my furniture I won’t though.

And now click here this week’s poll: Did the end of Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 15 make you misty?

Any predictions for the Season 3 finale? Who do you think will live or die? Will we find out who torched the walkers?  

Thoughts on AMC’s Interview with Chad L. Coleman (Tyreese)

This week’s feature in “Dead Alert,” The Walking Dead newsletter, was an interview with Chad L. Coleman who plays Tyreese on the show. I was surprised that Tyreese was introduced as a character this season considering that he shows up much earlier in The Walking Dead comics. Because he is already a member of Rick’s group in the comics before the prison even happens, I just assumed that he wouldn’t be used at all in the television show. Needless to say I was shocked and quite excited to see him make an appearance in Season 3.

So far I like Tyreese as a character on the show and I’m enjoying Coleman, the actor who is playing him. Tyreese has a kindhearted personality, and an eagerness to help which I really like. He also doesn’t blindly follow orders, and he thinks for himself, an admirable quality.

Reading AMC’s interview with Chad L. Coleman it was interesting to find out that he and Danai Gurira (Michonne) had worked together before and already were familiar with each other before the show. Sadly I didn’t watch The Wire, so I don’t really get the question comparing Coleman’s character Cutty on that show to Tyreese. I did find it fascinating that Coleman was in the army and has real-world survival skills that he could use if he needed them.

The most mind-blowing aspect of the interview with Chad L. Coleman however was finding out that Sasha on the show is Tyreese’s younger sister. This entire time I assumed the younger woman with him was his daughter just like in the comics! I feel dumb for not knowing that, but the other hand, the show hasn’t dropped me any hints that they were siblings. It makes their relationship a little more fascinating to me now knowing that.

Learning that Coleman ran track instead of playing football like Tyreese didn’t impress me, but hearing that he’s good at bringing people together did. His natural nice-guy qualities shine through in his role so far as Tyreese. I’m looking forward to seeing where the writers take his character, especially as Season 3 draws to a close.

What do you think about Tyreese as a character?

We Didn’t Start the Fire: Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 14 (Prey)

Laurie Holden on The Walking Dead

Andrea (Laurie Holden) on The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 14 Copyright 2013 AMC TV

Warning: This Walking Dead Season 3 post contains spoilers. Please wait until after watching, before reading further. Similarities and differences between the show and the comic are also discussed, but whenever possible, details of the comic are left ambiguous in case you decide to start it later on.

Summary: Milton tells Andrea about The Governor’s plot to massacre her friends, so she flees Woodbury to warn them. Furious that she’s chosen the prison over him, The Governor leaves to hunt Andrea down personally. Meanwhile, Tyreese and his daughter clash with Alan and his son because they refuse to blindly follow orders and they start to suspect The Governor isn’t actually the man he claims to be.

The pre-credits sequence in The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 14 (Prey) features a flashback to when Andrea and Michonne were traveling together. They’re huddled around the campfire while Michonne’s chained up walkers restlessly moan and groan. As usual, the tactless Andrea prys by asking her who they were, prompting a brilliant response from Michonne, “They deserved what they got. They weren’t human to begin with.”

Speaking of inhuman, shots of the chains morph in a brilliant transition into freaky disturbing images of The Governor creating his own little torture chamber for Michonne. That sick puppy is getting all kinds of twisted pleasure out of the process. The only reasons I see for them showing these moments are to remind us of the bond between Andrea and Michonne, as well as to foreshadow Andrea taking Michonne’s place (at least temporarily) at the end of the episode in The Governor’s chair-o-punishment.

I know I complained about Episode 12 (Clear) because it only focused on one group of people, but I actually didn’t mind the almost exclusive concentration on Woodbury in The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 14 because of how suspenseful the episode is. The majority of the thrilling elements come from The Governor’s chase of Andrea, which feels like a classic slasher film villain stalking his hapless prey (Oh hey, that must be why the episode is called “Prey!” How clever!).

Thankfully Andrea is smarter than the traditional horror movie victim, since she stabs her way out of being pinned down by walkers in the woods and sicks a horde of trapped stairwell zombies on Philip. If I were her though I would have either stayed to make sure the bastard died or stolen his truck. After all she did to escape, I couldn’t believe that The Governor cornered her near the prison and got her all the way back to Woodbury tied up without her putting up enough fight to get away. I did like the moment near the prison where crazy-ole Rick was on watch and thought he saw something in the woods before shaking it off.

I also enjoyed the parts of the The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 14 that follow Tyreese and his daughter. I chuckled when his daughter mocks him for being a terrible shot and desperately hoped when they let Andrea sneak out that they’d go with her. I’m happy that they heeded Andrea’s warning about The Governor not being what he seems., and that we got some hints about some of Tyreese’s backstory with Alan. Their conflict at the biter pit was awesome. It honestly made me think that Tyreese was the one that torched all of the zombies there at first, but then later on when Tyreese apologized to The Governor for running his mouth, I wasn’t so sure and suspected Milton of doing the deed.

That brings us to this week’s poll. Click here to let me know: Who do you think torched the walkers in the pit?

Do you think someone will warn the prison about the impending slaughter? If so, who will it be? Any predictions for the next episode?

 

 

Who burned walkers in Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 14?

In The Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 14 a mysterious figure starts a nasty fire that consumes all of The Governor’s zombies that he collected to use on the prison.