It’s Raining Dead: Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1

Hershel and Rick talk in The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1

Hershel (Scott Wilson) and Rick (Andrew Lincoln) in The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1

Warning: This Walking Dead Season 4 post contains spoilers. Please wait until after watching, before reading further. 

(Singing) It’s raining dead! Hallelujah, it’s raining dead! Amen!

For me, the high point of The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1 (30 Days Without an Accident), is a delightfully action-packed scene where walkers are raining down on our heroes. This is a frightening situation for them, but thankfully Daryl Dixon is there to save the day by delivering lethal shots with his crossbow and stomping zombie heads into pulp. The juicy supply run gone-wrong represents the season-opener’s most intense section. There’s blood by the bucketful, peeling rotten flesh, and a walker hanging entertainingly by its entrails. It’s an absolute delight for zombie fans.

Although new showrunner Scott M. Gimple rewards us early on with this thrilling gory conflict, he does a fantastic job balancing The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1 with some great character development. A significant amount of time has passed since the end of Season 3, so in this episode we’re treated to catching up with the significant changes that have taken place at the prison. There are physical modifications that the site has undergone like an outdoor cafeteria, a garden, a stable, and a pig pen. Relationships have shifted too during that window. Romantic connections have emerged for Tyreese and Beth. Maybe even Daryl and Carol got together too? Carol calls him “Pookie,” however that mostly seems like a joke.

Rick and Carl have also been working at fixing the rift that formed between them at the end of Season 3. Rick has turned into a farmer and provider who helps find food for everyone while others have formed a council to lead the community. It’s nice to see Carl acting like a kid again, talking about comics and following his dad around. One of the stranger moments in the episode is the odd flirtation between Michonne and Rick when she gives him an electric razor and jests “Your face is losing a war.” Perhaps they’ll hook up as well at some point?

A bizarre detour during the episode involves Rick’s trip into the woods and his encounter with a deranged, lonely woman named Clara. What’s silly about the whole thing is that Rick follows her without telling anyone where he’s going. Then she ends up attacking him and killing herself senselessly. The subplot goes on longer than it should considering the whole adventure serves one point: for Rick and Hershel to later debate whether you can come back from the terrible things you have to do for survival. Hershel believes you can. And it appears Rick has turned himself around.

By the end of The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1, you’re left with three fascinating questions and a fun cliffhanger. First, whose gun is it that Rick digs up in the garden? Second, how are the pigs getting sick? Third, and most importantly, the subject of this week’s poll, how does the kid get sick who dies at the end? His death and transformation into a walker in the final moment spells trouble for our friends at the prison. Can’t wait to see how it plays out.

What did you think of The Walking Dead’s Season 4 premiere? Any surprises or disappointments? What do you think will happen next? Click here to leave me a comment.

How did the kid get sick in The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1?

Warning: This Walking Dead Season 4 post contains spoilers. Please wait until after watching, before reading further. 

During The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1, one of the kids living in the prison mysteriously became ill. There are a couple of potential causes for his sudden sickness that you can identify during the episode, so…

Walking Dead Season 3, Ep. 1 (Seed) Recap

Walking Dead Season 3 Episode 1

The Walking Dead Copyright 2012 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: Months after the events of Season 2, an exhausted Rick and company discover a prison that they decide to use for shelter. The only problem is that it’s filled with zombies, so Rick pushes his troops to clear out all the undead inside. Meanwhile, Michonne, the samurai sword-wielding, hooded figure from the Season 2 finale takes care of a sick Andrea.

This episode’s opening shot is fantastic. It starts on the blank lifeless, eye of a zombie and pulls back to reveal the entire ghoul just before it’s assassinated by a shotgun toting Rick. Then, everyone in the group comes swarming in to clear this house. Not sure where they found or made silencers for some of their guns, but I’m surprised no one thought of the idea sooner.

The whole pre-credits sequence is really gritty and intense. Everyone looks ragged, even Carl. The lack of dialogue in this scene ups the anxiety. No one says a word after they come up empty handed in their search and must flee a group of approaching walkers. All it took was that opening to get me.

Daryl continues to be my favorite character on the show for his complexity and his humor. It’s silly enough that he has to kill an owl for food, but only he could get away with a line like “While the others wash their panties, we should do some hunting, because that owl did not hit the spot.”

I’m also pleased to see Rick has become a much stronger leader since he declared Ricktatorship. He’s firm, resolute, and fast-acting. He even gives a rousing motivational speech to his team like a coach before the big game. And although Lori has long been a source of annoyance for her vacillating loyalties and her emotional behavior, it was nice to see her actually show remorse for turning Rick and Shane against each other.

Very little story focuses on Michonne, my favorite character from the Walking Dead comics, which is sad but understandable because she’s new. I have a feeling the writers will get to her more in the coming episodes.

Speaking of the comics, I’m happy that the writers decided to carry over the plot about encountering survivors in the prison at the end and leg amputation, even though it’s with a different character than the comic. Those two elements should be the source of gripping drama this season.

Anyone disappointed with the low amount of zombie killing so far in the series will change their attitude after this episode. More zombies are probably taken down in this 45 minutes than all of Season 1 and 2 combined.

What do you think of the first episode of Season 3? Do you like the new Rick? Were you happy to see Lori pay for her mistakes? Do you think they’ll tell us what happened during the months between Season 2 and Season 3? Any predictions on what might happen next?