The Walking Dead S5E3, “Four Walls and a Roof”

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It’s been a rough week, as evidenced by the fact that I’m barely finishing up this write-up before the next episode runs.  Better late than never?  Sure.  Why not.

While our “heroes” were in or around the church for the entire episode, it wasn’t bogged down by their location.  Through three episodes, there is an energy in this show that hasn’t been there for quite some time.  Is it because they have a clear objective?  They’re not just going location-to-location anymore.  There’s a reason to move forward; to do more than just survive.  And, while most viewers seem not to trust Eugene, they trust him more than they trusted the promise of safety at Terminus.
One question about Eugene’s cure.  He talks about how it’s going to kill the dead.  Did he say it would cure the living?  After all, everyone is infected.  Doesn’t seem like it would do much good unless it also cures all the living of the virus.

Hates:

1. Towards the end of the episode, Rick says that he doesn’t want to waste bullets on the Gareth and company.  That certainly didn’t stop him from firing his insanely loud gun at zombies from point-blank range earlier in the episode.  You’ve been surviving in this world for quite a while now.  You know zombies are drawn to loud noises.  For the love of God, stop firing your gun unless you absolutely have to.

2. Gareth.  I hated that guy.  It wasn’t because he was a sadistic cannibal.  It’s because he said everything with such a smarmy face.  Like he was smarter than everyone else in the room.  He really annoyed me every time he was on the screen.

3. Abraham pushing so hard to leave in the middle of the night, even after it was pointed out how unsafe that was.  “I gotta protect Eugene.”  Leaving the safety of a sheltered location in the middle of the night is the exact opposite of protecting Eugene.  Last week I said Abraham was smart.  I may have been wrong.

4. Gareth & company’s plan to attack the church.  These are ruthless people who were smart enough to keep control of a place as big as Terminus for quite a while (they never said how long they had it after regaining control, but I’m guessing it was close to 2 years).  And yet they just assume that those who left the church wouldn’t be coming back?  Why not keep a person outside as a lookout?  This show has a history of making smart characters do really stupid things.  I wasn’t upset to see them die (see #2), but it was what led to their death that left me shaking my head.

5. A pet peeve of mine is when someone cocks a gun multiple times without firing.  This is especially prevalent with a shotgun.  I get it.  Cocking a shotgun sounds awesome and threatening.  But please stop doing this.  I swear one of the guys cocked a shotgun three times while walking around the church.  I’m no gun nut, but this always gets on my nerves.
It did, however, remind me of Bob Loblaw’s slamming book commercial.  So that’s okay.

6. They’re really making sure that we know that Maggie has lost her faith.  She symbolically put down a Bible earlier in the episode, then refers to the church as, “Just four walls and a roof.”  I can already see where this is going.  She’ll continue to be faithless and be all, “Blah, God,” until she sees Beth again.  I wish they would stop this storyline.

Loves:

1. Crying Bob turning into Laughing Bob.  “Tainted meat!  Tainted meat!”  Loved this scene.  In the comics, Dale was still alive and it was his leg that was eaten, and Andrea wept over him.

2. Gabriel’s admission of what he had done was heartbreaking.  “I always lock the doors.”  Seth Gilliam is doing great work in this season.

3. Gareth made a last-ditch plea to save himself and his crew from Rick’s wrath by promising that he would leave them alone.  I loved Rick’s rebuttal.  “You’d do this to anyone.”  It was basically him saying, “I don’t care if you stop hunting us; I know you’ll just terrorize another group of good people.”
That led to a brutal killing of Gareth and his entire gang.  I thought a nice, quick throat-slitting party would have been good.  Maybe take them outside.  Rick had other ideas, and laid into that group with a ferocity I haven’t seen since Rick ripped a man’s throat out with his teeth.  Don’t get me wrong, Gareth deserved to die, but I expected a bit more humanity out of Rick’s death sentence tactics.  It was impossible not to think about this:

4. Bob dying before answering Sasha’s question of, “What is the good that comes out of this bad?”  Even Bob the optimist didn’t have a good answer for that.  Sometimes there is no good.
Let me say this and try not to feel like a monster: they spent entirely too much time on the death of a minor character.  Bob has been around since the beginning of last season, but he never did much.  They tried to build his character, but they failed miserably.  I felt nothing for Bob’s death.  I honestly didn’t care one way or another.  It seemed like a cheap way to feel like they killed off one of the main group, without having to kill off an actual character.
I tell you what I did feel, though: the knife going into Bob’s skull.  That was a wet sound, and it made me cringe a bit.

5. Abraham’s note on the map he left for Rick: “Sorry I was an asshole. Come to Washington. The new world is gonna need Rick Grimes.”

Final thoughts:

I like the way this season is going.  Still cautiously optimistic, but these first three episodes have been great.

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