The Walking Dead: Beside the Dying Fire

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Well, season 2 is over. I watched the episode late since there was a Thunder game at the same time and the Thunder takes priority over pretty much anything else. I was told the finale was “awesome” and “intense” and a bunch of other adjectives that would imply it was good. All of them were wrong.

I know I’m in the minority here, but I thought the finale was anti-climactic and  irritating. Feel free to hurl insults my way, but at least hear me out first so you can at least throw out a good argument.

1. Everyone ends up at the same place… at the same time.
Okay, I have no idea how everyone knew to meet at the camp they set up for Sophia, but I’ll let that go because it’s possible they all could’ve conceivably had that same line of thinking. What I can’t let go is the fact that everyone showed up at the same time. I get that they tried to explain it with a bad Asian driving joke, but it’s still stupid and impossible.
You can argue that that’s a minor thing, but it was blatant enough to pull me out of the story. That’s a problem.

2. Let’s all turn on Rick!
I don’t understand what Rick did that was so bad.
Not telling everyone they’re infected? Big deal. I don’t understand how that affects anyone unless you’re searching for a cure or someone dies… in which case you just have to make sure you shoot them in the head. I really have no idea why this is an issue. His reasoning was valid – he didn’t know if it was true and there was no reason to put people into a panic unnecessarily. (Not that I think anyone should panic about it, but the public is illogical and they would.)
Carol, of all people, has no right to stop trusting Rick for something as minor as keeping this nugget of information to himself. He flipping put everyone in danger to look for her daughter and now she can’t trust him?! I have big issues with how illogical this line of reasoning is.
Because he killed Shane? I can see how that would be jarring just because he was “one of them”, but not shocking. It was clear that either Rick or Shane had to go. If I were in the group I’d be a little surprised Rick had the balls to do it, but that’s what you need in a leader. If it’s kill or be killed, you want the guy leading you to do the killing. Again, Rick was right. He gave Shane every chance possible, but ultimately he was left with no choice. He was held at gunpoint and Shane literally told him that he was not going to stop until Rick was dead. His hands were tied.
And really? Lori is pissed at Rick about that decision? Didn’t she just tell him two episodes or so that he needed to kill Shane or Shane would kill him? Moron. I hate her character. The writers have completely failed her.

3. Worst. Speech. Ever. 
As you may have noticed, I’m on Rick’s side when it comes to killing Shane. What I can’t figure out is why he told everyone the way that he did. Obviously this is going to be a difficult subject to broach and Rick’s a smart guy – it seemed pretty out of character for him to tell everyone by yelling at them that he did it for the good of the group and because Shane was a troublemaker.
Yes, he did mention that Shane lured him into the woods with the intent to kill him therefore forcing his hand, but he never focused on the fact that he killed Shane in self-defense. He just kept telling the group that Shane was bad and he’s the leader and he had to do it to protect them, which is basically not true.
Rick killed Shane because Shane clearly told him that he wouldn’t stop until Rick was dead… not to mention he said this holding Rick at gunpoint. In any court in America, that kill was in self-defense. It’s completely reasonable to kill someone in that situation, yet that’s not the defense Rick chose to take. That’s not logical to me. It’s bad writing.

All in all, the show is entertaining and for that reason, I’ll keep watching. However, I will continue to be frustrated with the way they handle things. Constantly changing people’s characters, not following a logical structure, making weird transitions from a “real life” feel to a graphic novel feel and doing their best to coerce you into feeling something for the characters instead of letting it happen naturally happen… which isn’t even an option since they’ll change people from faces to heels and back at the drop of a hat to serve a story. (I didn’t feel any kind of emotion when Glen told Maggie he loved her or when they showed the message they left for Sophia on the windshield. Guess I’m cold-blooded.)

I know after reading this you probably think I hate the show, and honestly, I don’t. It’s just frustrating to me to see something that has the potential to be really good continually shoot itself in the foot. Not to mention that I see many people saying it’s one of the best shows ever. No. Not even close. Please do yourself a favor and catch up on The Sopranos, LOST, Dexter, The Wire, Breaking Bad and Sons of Anarchy, then get back to me about how good The Walking Dead is. Not every entertaining show is a good show (True Blood) and not every good show is particularly entertaining (The Wire).

Beside the Dying Fire: 6/10

I also suggest you read this story on Grantland. Nailed it.

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2 thoughts on “The Walking Dead: Beside the Dying Fire

  1. I watched the first season and gave up. This show has a lot of problems, and judging from your post they are still there. The main problems are the HUGE plot contrivances, and with your point #1 it sounds like those are still around in full force. The funniest one in the first season was when they were trapped in the CDC trying to break the windows when one woman just happens to have a grenade in her purse. Really?

    The other glaring problem is the poor characterization. It was hard to get a handle on the characters, especially Rick, since when you did he would go out of character. Your point #3 tells me this still happens. Glad I didn’t bother with season 2.

  2. I rather liked the season finale despite all of its flaws. Mostly because it seems as if the show is finally trying to head in a good direction, or at least make the show less maddeningly boring/moving way too slow. I’m semi-optimistic for Season 3, but the first two seasons have been merely decent/solid at best, and mediocre to bad at the very worst.

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