Monday, 21 October 2013

S4x2 - The Walking Dead: Infected

Aired October 20th on AMC

This week’s episode started straight after adorkable Patrick had died in the shower block and turned into a Walker. It was like something straight out of your classic thriller movie, as Tyreese sang the highly relevant song ‘I got you under my skin,’ to his lady friend (I never did learn her name, not that it matters now) before she left to go back to her cell. It was a genuinely creepy sequence as she walked down the low lit hallway with a flickering torch and entered the showers where we knew Walker Patrick was hungry for human flesh. After a few will-she won’t-she see him moments, she left, only to be followed out. Luckily for her he was distracted by a cough and instead went into another cell to rip some guy’s throat out. Guess it wasn’t so lucky for him.

The cell block turned into a Walker breeding ground as the newly turned Walkers feasted on the people just waking up to begin their days. The close quarters meant that the body count was high as people tried in vain to escape the slaughter. The bigger problem came after as they worked out that it was some type of fast acting flu virus that started it and, unfortunately, they had all been exposed. New guy Dr S explained that the pressure in the body had reached high levels and, like when you shake up a can of coke, the blood needed to be released, so it exploded out of various orifices, drowning the victims in their own blood. Lovely.

They figured it was probably spread by Farmer Rick’s pigs and that everyone in the cell block was probably infected, so quarantine was effectively set up. Farmer Rick was up in odds as the situation had forced him to go back to his Walker killing ways, despite his want to help in a more passive way. He didn’t have much time to dwell on this fact however, as the Walkers congregating at the fence pushed a little too hard and it started to give way.

The survivors eventually realised that someone had been feeding them rats, hence why they were all in one place, but they were a little preoccupied with trying hard not to die. Farmer Rick saved the day by killing two birds (or pigs as the case may be) with one stone and lured them away with his infected pigs. He genuinely looked sad as he watched the Walkers feast on them, maybe because it represented the end of his recovery from crazy town, but I didn’t care that much because it meant the return of badass Rick.

Michonne continued on her journey of becoming a normal human with actual emotions, as Beth bandaged her foot up and wondered what you might call a person who’d lost their kids. When Judith spit up on her, she all but forced a reluctant Michonne to take her while she changed. Despite her reluctance, Michonne broke down in tears as she hugged Judith to her, maybe hinting that there was a child at some point in her highly mysterious past. Or maybe I’m just looking into things too much. Either way, Michonne is still the best!

Carl was still acting like the new mature version we saw in the first episode. He saved Michonne from a Walker by shooting it in the head with a shotgun and then apologised to Rick for doing so. It seemed that he did regret killing the boy last season and learned his lesson from his dad. He even asked Rick about when he was getting his gun back instead of just taking it. Now that’s progress people. Although Carol asked him again not to tell his dad about the knife lesson he witnessed in the library, he went ahead and told him anyway. This is perhaps proof most of all that the relationship between father and son has been fixed. The trust in his dad not to tell anyone was there, something which definitely wasn’t before. Rick agreed, and then gave him back the gun while strapping on his own, signalling that Farmer Rick was done. Hallelujah!

It wasn’t revealed who was feeding the Walkers, but a suspect was introduced in one of the kids – a creepy girl named Lizzie who couldn’t kill her dad when he turned and was upset that the Walker they’d named Nick was killed outside the fence. When Carol brutally told her that she was weak, her little sister said she wasn’t – she was just seriously messed up (who wouldn’t be in this show, right?). Was she messed up enough to feed the Walker she had bonded with in some twisted innocent way? Or does someone else in the Prison have their own agenda to feed the Walkers?

There might be evidence that it is the latter, as when Tyreese went to check on his quarantined lady friend, he discovered a bloody trail leading from her cell. Unfortunately, it ended with the burned body of her and another infected person. Gutted. While it wasn’t too clear, it looked like she was killed by a person and not by the virus, and then had the body burned to stop the spread of the infection. I’m pretty sure this won’t go down well with Tyreese or the council. Unless the council had something to do with it, but I can’t see Hershel condoning this. We’ll just have to wait and see.

The introduction of the virus works for the show; there’s only so many times you can watch humans vs zombies, or humans vs humans in a zombie ridden land before the concept becomes tired and loses the scare factor. This new threat is both a fresh new take and completely terrifying. It only took one night for Patrick to succumb to the virus, and with a prison chock full of people in close quarters, who knows how many were infected. I can only imagine what the paranoia is going to do to the group dynamic… should be fun!