For any of you that have listened to our radio show “Nerd Play”, you are probably aware of my insatiable appetite for the Walking Dead comic book series. Like the aforementioned living dead, I have consumed all that has come my way that is Walking Dead without discrimination. Comics, novels, video games and yes the main course, The Walking Dead on AMC. This is where I believe I suffer from lactose intolerance if you will or some mild form of IBS when it comes to this television adaptation. I know that it looks good, it’s supposed to taste good and sometimes it does. Other times it gives me a raging case of storytelling indigestion.
Well here we are now at the end of season 5. I have been there, like most of you viewers, right from the beginning at season 1. We’ve seen the Farm, the Prison, The Governor, Terminus and this year the Night of the Hunters and Alexandria.
Oh boy this is going to get good! Isn’t it? Isn’t it???
Last we saw Rick and the gang last season; they were locked in a shipping container by their strange hosts in Terminus. They don’t waste anytime kicking off this season, with a great scene featuring bound and gagged “guests” leaning over a trough being taken out one by one. We soon learn that what we expected all along is true: the people of Terminus are cannibals. The show writers don’t waste too long on this story as our survivors soon escape and not only overtake Terminus but also burn it to the ground. I’m sure this is the last we will see of these miscreants.
Look. I will do you a favour. I won’t bore you with too many details. I mean, if you’ve watched this season, that has already happened. Let’s just hit the major points:
- We meet Gabriel, a troubled priest battling is own demons. Gabriel has a sweet church that is well secured. Gabriel is a dick.
- Those rascally cannibals are still lurking about. Thanks to a terrible supply run and our good buddy Bob, we finally get our Night of the Hunters “tainted meat” moment.
- Insert non-eventful episodes, “character developing” stories here and there.
- There’s a hospital being run by Law Enforcement officials. That will be a safe haven for Rick and company right? No….
- We finally found out what happened to Beth. (see above comment)
- More “character developing” episodes…..
- Everyone splits up. Everyone gets back together. Eugene is a liar. Abraham is a Bossy Betty. They almost die. Someone does die.
- The Wolves and this season was brought to you by the letter “W”
- Rick loses his sh*t
- Remember that Morgan guy?
One of the high points of this season is when we met Aaron. This was a pivotal checkpoint in this show. Aaron is the recruiter of a community called Alexandria, which boasts a walled township, homes, schools, and everything else you could hope for. This is a very important story arc in the comics, one that is still felt in the current issues of the comic book. This was a welcome change of pace this season. Rick and the gang have been through far too much to be overly trusting right out of the gate. Could they trust THIS new community? Had they finally found a place they could permanently call home? The show writers developed this well. I really enjoyed the video interviews that the leaders of Alexandria had each survivor endure. Everyone eventually settled into this new environment; whether it was finding a job or a role, setting up house, developing relationships and even destroying them, Rick losing his mind..not his hand, rediscovering the joys of baking and child care, (I’m looking at you Carole) and even taking a shower….eh Daryl? (That last part actually never happened.)
All of this culminated in a finale that depending on who you talk to was either amazing or awful. I will say that the last 5 minutes were very good. It reminded of of that Green Lantern movie. Think back to the end of that film when we see Sinestro put on the yellow ring for the first time. “NOW this movie is getting good!” ~ Roll End Credits.
That was the feeling I got at the culmination of this season, specifically the finale. I keep coming back to the print medium. If you’ve ever read the comics, you know that it isn’t really weighed down with too much dialogue or too much plot development. Sure there are issues where not a lot happens but it’s always moving along to dramatic story arcs. This series, specifically this season (and season 2 on The Farm), seem to just limp along like the title background characters.
I can’t stop watching.