Welcome to this week’s edition of Dead Stuff ‘n’ Thangs, in which I write about my thoughts on the latest episode of The Walking Dead. I love the show so there won’t be any “the show isn’t as great as it used to be’ nonsense here, but I will be nitpicking when something stupid (in my opinion) happens. Let’s get started!
Season 8, Episode 4: “Some Guy”
Airdate: November 12th, 2017
I wasn’t able to watch episode four as soon as I normally would (which sucked, but I survived). Between that delay and life getting in the way, I’m just now getting around to sharing my thoughts on episode four. The good news is that there will be two editions of Dead Thoughts this week, because I watched episode five in the morning. Without further ado… here are my thoughts on episode four.
“And Yet I Smile…”
I was buzzing in anticipation of what happened after the previous week’s episode, and hoped for an immediate return to the action. I was briefly disappointed when it began with a flashback, but it faded fast when I understood we were getting a glimpse of Ezekiel donning the costume, mannerisms, and attitude of “King Ezekiel.” I always enjoy getting glimpses of characters in a private moment, because when they are away from everyone else, their silent actions speak volumes and hint at things their fellow survivors are never allowed to see. My impression of Ezekiel in this moment was one of weary resignation—doing what he knows must be done, but heavily troubled by it. By the time he greets his people, however, he’s in full King mode, addressing the group with a rousing speech that lifts the hearts of his people and makes them believe victory is inevitable as they send their loved one off to war.
Ambushed and Slaughtered
The group was almost entirely wiped out by the Saviors brutal ambush, and it was a gruesome sight. Wounded and alone, Ezekiel is surrounded by the bodies of his fallen fighters—and it doesn’t take long before they start to turn. The tactic that worked so well for Aaron’s group in episode two puts the injured Ezekiel in grave danger, particularly since he can’t seem to find a gun with more than a single bullet in it. Seriously? I guess being shot in the leg and unable to walk didn’t make the situation frightening enough… had to throw in a lack of weapons, too? (insert eye roll here) But it was fine because another Kingdomer, Alvaro, appeared in the nick of time to save him. Where did he come from? Who knows? Maybe it was a magical portal… one that he should have closed, because it wasn’t long before a Savior (Gunther) also appeared out of nowhere, killed him, and captured Ezekiel with plans to deliver him to Negan. But with the walkers closing in and Ezekiel unable to climb over a fence, he decides delivering Ezekiel’s head to Negan will suffice.
Here He Comes To Save The Day!
Jerry made use of the magical portal as well, and he wins the prize for Most Bad-Ass Magical Appearance. The King is moments away from being killed with his own sword when the perpetually-jovial Jerry lets loose a mighty battle cry and cleaves Gunther in two with his axe. Hell yeah! The tide had turned and all was going to be well… and then Jerry broke his axe trying to pry open the padlocked, chained gate. Damn it! All I can say is, they better use some more magic and have Jerry’s axe fixed, because his is one of the most interesting weapons used on the show, and I’m not happy that it’s busted now.
Don’t Mess With Carol
Can I just say how happy I am that Carol is back to being her badass self again? This is the Carol I missed so much last season—doing what needs to be done (even though she doesn’t like it) to protect the people she cares about. It still blows me away to think about how far she’s come over the course of the series. I never imagined that the Carol of season one would become one of the strongest fighters of the group, and that’s one of the reasons I love her character so much. I know it’s sort of become a thing for Carol to save someone when things are looking grim—as she did with Jerry and Ezekiel, rather than preventing the Saviors from driving off with the big guns—but I love it when the formerly meek, frightened Carol gets to show how courageous she has become in horrific world.
I was worried about those guns getting back to Negan, but Rick and Daryl arrived just in time to chase the bad guys. How AWESOME was it when Rick pulled alongside their vehicle, and simply hopped in?! I LOVED THAT! I was expecting him to run him off the road or something, but that was SO much better.
Because (a) I didn’t watch this episode the day after it aired and (b) I was stupid enough to go on Twitter the same night it aired, I already knew that Shiva would perish in this particular episode. What I didn’t know was when, or how it would happen, so I kept expecting to see Shiva appear every time things got intense with Ezekiel. Knowing it was coming didn’t diminish how heartbreaking it was to see Shiva save Ezekiel’s life at the cost of her own, however. I grieved right along with Ezekiel when Shiva went down, and I have a feeling this scene will continue to tear at my heart no matter how many times I see it.
Losing Shiva seems to have stripped him of the will to carry on as ‘King’ Ezekiel. “I ain’t no king,” he tells Jerry. “I’m just some guy.”
How will the loss of Shiva (not to mention all the fighters who accompanied him) affect Ezekiel’s leadership? Will he abdicate his throne, so to speak, and ask someone else to take his place? Will the people blame him for the loss of their loved ones, and demand a new leader? I’d like to think that Ezekiel will rise to the occasion and keep doing the best he can for his people and be even more resolved to end Negan’s reign of terror, but I guess I’ll just have to wait and see!
Stay tuned for the next edition of Dead Stuff ‘n’ Thangs, where I share my musings about episode 5: “The Big Scary U”!