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The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead is a drama about a zombie apocalypse. It is based on the 2003 Image Comics series. AMC 2010-???

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Episode 9 - What Happened And What's Going On

22 February 2015

This episode hinged on you caring about Tyreese and I don’t. Other than being kind hearted I don’t think we had a specific reason to care about his fate. I appreciated the effort to make his final hour more interesting than any other death on the show but no matter how artistic the wrapping paper, the gift inside was just another emotionless death.

Maybe Tyreese’s death will serve the plot in some way but I have lost all faith. We spent a whole season (end of 4 and first half of 5) getting to know Beth and yet I still didn’t care when she died. I find it impossible to chart the ups and downs of the groups emotions at this point. Glenn has drifted into nihilism, Michonne wants to find a new prison and Rick is caught in the middle. Perhaps those emotions would mean something if the show hadn’t been mired in relentless depression since its second episode. 

Season Four built strongly to the conclusion that despite the world being full of horrors, it was the world that should be afraid of our group. Their loyalty to one another and their team work made them stronger than the sum of their parts. It seemed like the show had finally embraced the most obvious TV formula available: our survivors are the good guys and they find a way to smile because they have each other. Season Five seems to have lost all sight of that and gone back to trying to work out why these people wouldn’t just kill themselves to end their suffering. It makes for pointless, unrewarding viewing. 

I felt nothing when Tyreese was bitten. A year ago I would have at least been shocked. I will continue to limp along with these brief reviews until the end of the season but I should apologise if you were looking for hope in this corner of the internet.

p.s. It should be a media story that The Walking Dead producers have killed off another black character just after introducing a new one. It seemed like a bad joke when Bob died in the same episode that Gabriel entered the picture. But now just as Noah joins the gang permanently we lose Tyreese. It’s shameless and offensive.

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  • I feel the same way, but about the whole show. I'm going to see it through since I've watched so much already, but this show feels like the Governor's daughter...someone needs to put her out of her misery.

    Viewer score: 1 / 100

    Posted by putridpundits, 21/02/2015 7:39pm (5 years ago)

  • The Good
    The Tyrese story was very solid. I liked getting little hints about his life before. In typical Walking Dead fashion (at least for the show) if a character starts developing maybe we should be on the look out to whether he’s going to make it or not. Still I liked Tyrese talking about the old world and him as a child. I thought it was helpful in fleshing out his character. I also liked it because so few characters talk about before the apocalypse and Tyrese seems to be one of the few characters still holding on to the old ways. Once he got bit it was pretty shocking just for the shear fact that they did it. How many times have we seen a walker sneak up on a character only to have the turnaround last minute and fight? So it was nice to keep the threat of anytime and anywhere you could end up dead. The hallucinations were an interesting choice and I actually liked it. It worked well in conjunction with the nonlinear story telling at the beginning. What we thought were flashbacks to Beth’s funeral were only flash-forwards to Tyrese’s. I liked the devil and angel on the shoulder back and forth with both The Governor and the guy he let go and our survivors we’d lost along the way. They had a nice debate about fate and whether morality can’t still survive in this world.
    Michone was one of the only characters I got more out of in this episode. It’s nice to see someone at least care at trying to make it through even if it’s just a journey with no reward. The idea that someone is still trying to look for something better helps with the melancholy funk that seems to be surrounding everyone and everything.
    The Bad
    The beginning was pretty slow as we sort of played catch up for the audience. I didn’t quite check my watch, but it was noticeable. It added to the shock of Tyrese being bite, still they could have written certain scenes a little differently to keep my attention. There is just this sense of depression that’s surrounding the Walking Dead at this point. I really would love to get a little bit of hope or life injected into the show. As it is it seems like we just said goodbye to another hopeful character.
    I’m indifferent about Noah. I don’t know him, so I struggled to care about him losing his friends and family. It’s a way to get a crash course on the character, but it doesn’t make him standout in anyway. All of these characters have lost someone.
    It should be commented on that yet again we introduce another black character to our group so immediately they kill of another. After they’ve repeatedly done this it starts being a lot more than a coincidence.
    The Unknown
    As a personal side note, I wish they would have gotten to explore the friendship between Tyrese and Rick more in the show. It was always a favorite part of the comic for me. I guess I can’t complain too much since we got Tyrese to stick around longer.
    The mangled lower torso’s and limbs that the gang found and later the vehicle they crashed into for the rest of the bodies was pretty gruesome. I have a feeling where the story is going as a comic views. Still it sets a nice little intrigue.
    Favorite Moment
    Tyrese saying “It’s not over” really got to me. Him defiantly standing up to the hallucination of The Governor was a nice moment. It was also sad for him to be trying to fight and hold on to some good left in this world. I do think there are characters that can be good and still make it in this world, though the body count tends to tell a different story.
    Bottom Line
    This was another solid start to the midseason of The Walking Dead. I was lulled into a false sense of security by how much this felt like playing catch up to the audience. Seeing us say good bye to Tyrese was affecting and sad. At least more so than Beth.
    Score: 67 out of 100

    Viewer score: 67 / 100

    Posted by William, 11/02/2015 4:08am (5 years ago)

  • One more unknown and possible clue:

    *Behind Michonne at Noah's family compound are the words in graffiti 'Wolves Not Far'. Who are the wolves? Is that the group that attacked the compound leaving their mark?

    Posted by Fluids, 10/02/2015 8:26pm (5 years ago)

  • I was fairly entertained.
    I liked way Glenn toyed with the reflective disc and then it snapped. Liked the way the exposition was handled, the music in the background was terrific (Bear McCreary).
    I agree about the poor choice seeming to maintain a racial quota on the show. I liked the background we got on Noah and actually thought he might get killed. I've wondered why the gated communities weren't shown more. The distances from South Carolina to Virginia though are much farther and I have a hard time believing the walkie talkies would work that far.
    What I did like about Tyrese's exit was the reappearance of the girls, the governor and the cannibal guy (name?) I thought that part interesting. I didn't understand the bottomless corpses until we saw the tops in the "accident" scene. But that was pretty odd. Not sure what that was signifying.

    Viewer score: 65 / 100

    Posted by Yogabon, 10/02/2015 1:34am (5 years ago)

  • Sorry one more add about Tyreese's inner turmoil:

    We all stumble through life making poor decisions. Unfortunately Tyreese had to realize that letting go of his past mistakes is the solution to calming his anxieties and troubled mind in the final moments of his life.

    The real tragedy here is that none of the other characters can learn from his introspection because it all occur in his mind. I feel this is the biggest problem with the show. The characters cannot grow unless they share their feelings and mental struggles with each other. If they don't then how can humanity ever perservere in this apocalyptic construct?

    Posted by Fluids, 09/02/2015 10:01pm (5 years ago)

  • We appear to be finally starting to focus more on the inner thoughts of all the supporting characters:

    Michonne: is tired of running around and wants to settle down somewhere. This harkens back to a Season Four episode four (Indifference) where Daryl and Michonne are out in Scouting Party with Tyreese and Bob and Daryl finds a piece of Jasper and Michonne flirts with Darryl and says it matches the color of his eyes. Then she states she never would have known that was Jasper if he hadn't said anything. Daryl makes an off handed comment to her and says ‘It’s amazing what you learn when you stay in one place for a while’. We are left with a very thoughtful look from here which has resurfaced here in this episode. She tries to convince Glen and Rick that they could make Noah’s base of operations work, however it’s quickly determined that it is not very practical. However, she continues to push her point and convinces Rick to take the group up to the DC area since it is only about 100 miles away from their current position at Noah’s.

    Rick: is practical and careful and measures other people’s thought’s presently, however he does look gaunt and run down and perhaps he’s desperate (or they all are.)

    Glenn: has a broken feeling to him like there will never be any hope for humanity. He snaps a CD in his hands as they drive to Noah’s old place. Later on he points out to Michonne that death is all around them and always has been and that won’t ever change; very upbeat huh?

    Noah: is grieving finally for his family and for Beth.

    Tyreese: has always had an inner turmoil of dealing with the world that he has been struggling to survive in and letting go of the world they way it was. You could tell part of him (if he wasn’t so troubled) wants to fight to hold onto his humanity for his sanity and for the betterment of all mankind; ultimately physically trying to get the world back to the way it was. (If he had survived, he would have made a great eventual Hershel.)

    His back and forth inner struggle is highlighted after he gets bitten by the decisions he has made to do things and their consequences: how that saved some people and cost other people their lives: Martin telling him that saving his life ended Bob’s. The Governor telling him that he has to pay his dues now for deserting the folks at Woodbury. Beth, Bob, Lizzie and Mika telling him that death is not so bad. In the end he dies knowing he has done all he could do and he’s at peace with that.

    Bad:

    Why didn’t Rick use a belt from the Noah’s house as a tourniquet for Tyreese’s arm? You would have thought one of the scouting party would have thought about that. Rick did manage to save Hershel after chipping off his leg and he would have lost a lot more blood faster than Tyreese since he severed a femoral artery. Then again, inconsistency should be okay.

    Perhaps the visitations from character's past was a little too much, however I thought the point was to show the innerworkings of Tyreese's conscience and struggles.

    Thoughts:

    This group I think of as a family. In order for humanity to return to normal I think they all need to feel more for humanity. Then the morale center won't need to be present in a sympbolic individual like Tyreese, or Hershel or Dale. Instead humanity will flow from all of them.

    Good:

    Wonderful arrangement of people; actions and images. There is loads of misdirection in this episode. This does not have the look and feel of other Walking Dead Episodes. I feel like we are in Tyreese’s brain the whole time. We race through his thoughts which are flashing back and in the present and mixing everything from every time period in the now when he was dying. There was the montage aspect of pictures of Woodbury mixing in with action images of Rick and company trying to get them out of Noah’s family’s safe haven; Mika and Lizzie; the Governor; Mitch, Bob Stookey and Beth and conversations with Noah whilst going to his old home 500 miles away from where their current group is.

    It was very fitting for Tyreese's death to be at the hands of a child and also it being somewhat surprisingly trivial in terms of it's spectacularlity. However emotionally I felt his thoughts were very impactful.

    Unknown:

    *What is Sasha feeling experiencing the loss of her brother?

    *Where exactly are the group now? We know they are about 600 miles away from Washington DC.

    *There was no sign of Abraham, Rosita or Eugene although I am sure they are still with the group.

    *Are the radio broadcasts memories or made up hallucinations ? (Andy Lincoln actually is the announcer on those using is normal voice.)

    *Which group took out Noah's family? They look pretty heavily armed. Isn't Rick concerned about encountering this group as he goes back to get his main group and bring them toward's Washington?
    I hope they cover that in the next episode.

    What do you think?

    Viewer score: 65 / 100

    Posted by Fluids, 09/02/2015 9:49pm (5 years ago)

  • I liked this episode a bit more than the last several, at first the opening scene confused me but after seeing the entire episode I could at least appreciate the effort the editors put in. It was one of those storytelling tricks that you have to fully watch to be able to appreciate, because during the episode i was very confused.

    I completely agree that I don't care all that much for Tyreese as a character, I guess it was mildly shocking to kill him off so abruptly given how recently Beth died, however from what he saw from him in the show, i don't see how he was ever a fan favorite in the comics.

    I can't say the hallucinations were "amazing television" but they at least drew my attention, which more than I can say for past TWD episodes.

    It really is shocking how the writers continue to kill off one African American male character after another, apparently TWD gets praised by some for its diversity, but this trend can no longer be passed off as a coincidence. And now Sasha's days are numbered probably.

    Back to positives, this felt like a more natural way to have a "divided group" episode than episodes past, although I do have to question why they brought Tyreese to Richmond if he's so "useless".

    The main problem The Walking Dead has is that there are very few characters that I would be shocked to see die (Rick, Carl, Michonne, Judith), the rest haven't been given enough substance. I always felt character deaths were strongest when you thought they still had more stories that could be told using them.

    This episode was still an improvement for me over the Cops Hospital nonsense though.

    Viewer score: 53 / 100

    Posted by Ben F., 09/02/2015 9:43pm (5 years ago)

  • I was pretty shocked when I went online after the episode aired and saw countless people claim this was a fantastic episode. I even saw one publication call it 'one of the best episodes in years'.

    I felt nothing throughout. I felt no emotion for Noah at the start (why should I? I forgot who Noah even was to be honest). I felt nothing for Tyreese. I barely feel anything for most of the cast now to be honest. Seeing the perspective of someone's hallucinations as they die was unique and had potential, but all I felt this was was nothing more than fan service. 'Let's see how many past characters we can bring back', except they missed probably the most crucial character here, Tyreese's dead girlfriend Karen. The final shot of his hat upon the cross was nice, but everything else felt like filler at best.

    This show has fallen dramatically. I hope the show comes to a finish sooner rather than later, but it being one of the highest viewed shows on television (even above the likes of Breaking Bad when that was still airing), I don't see it coming to an end anytime soon.

    Viewer score: 45 / 100

    Posted by Anonymous, 09/02/2015 8:58pm (5 years ago)

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