Zombies

The Walking Dead: "Alone" (Season 4, Episode 13)

We see some of this show’s strengths return to the fore this week. Specifically, they know how to do a theme for an episode, stringing it across multiple characters and scenes, even if they do bludgeon you with it at times. Second, they do killer set pieces. You won’t find much in the way of TV that does it better.

 

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What I'd like to see as the next big rage in 'monsters'

Jedi Mind Trick's picture

We’ve all watched the long (LONG) run that Vampires had as a fiction device. Vampires have had a run from Lumley’s foes of the Necroscope to Rice’s pretty, Interview vampires to Meyer’s sparkly Twilight vampires and everything else sandwiched between Stoker’s Dracula and The Vampire Academy. Of late, we’ve borne witness to a newly risen (OMG! I couldn’t resist it. I tried. Couldn’t!), relentless and unstoppable new staple monster. Yep. I'm talking about Zombies.

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The Walking Dead: "After" (Season 4, Episode 9)

AMC’s hit zombie show is back from its holiday vacation, and the verdict is Not Bad.

 

Good, actually. There was even humor. This show has trouble with story arcs, but it’s got real visual flair and knows how to deliver on individual episodes. Perhaps I’m overly appreciative after watching Helix, but then… For God’s sake, people, I’ve been watching Helix!  

 

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The Walking Dead: "Dead Weight" (Season 4, Episode 7)

Well, that was pointless, now wasn’t it?

The Governor goes from psychopath to sad loser surrounded by lazy walkers to family man and back to psychopath, all in the span of 1.25 episodes. Why? I guess because there were two episodes to kill. Maybe next week’s slam-bang action will give me second thoughts, but at this point I’m seriously unimpressed with the whole Governor arc. And yes, that retroactively extends all the way back to the third season.

It’s dead weight.

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The Walking Dead: "Internment" (Season 4, Episode 5)

Well that was one gory, boring, exciting, confusing gross-out of a memorable episode, wasn’t it? Just when it had me going “Meh,” it lurched up like a walker itself and started shambling right and left in impressively gnarly fashion. The first half was pretty unmemorable, the second half memorable indeed. But it also included some things I don’t want to remember.

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The Walking Dead: "Indifference" (Season 4, Episode 4)

We pick up where we left off last week. In order, we get some inspired set pieces that don’t actually involve gratuitous gore, some good dialogue, and a low key, downbeat ending that more or less works. Enough so that I’ll overlook for the moment what could be arbitrary angst of convenience. A good episode all things considered.

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The Walking Dead: "30 Days Without an Accident" (Season 4, Episode 1)

Let’s see, a bucolic life in prison, it’s raining zombies, and twin tragedies to round all that out. All in all, a quite effective hour of television to launch the medium's gross savant of a series.

We open with a lovely picture of some plants, birds sweetly chirping in the background. Rick splashes his face with water from a barrel. Then he tends the soil. It’s a minute of paradise until he takes off his headphones and hears all the walkers snarling along the outer gate of the prison yard. The contrast is nicely staged.

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World War Z

Republibot reviewed the 2006 novel from which this movie derives. That novel was told in oral history format, with a number of different personal and political vignettes about what happened to people in a war against zombies. It was obviously patterned after the kind of stuff Studs Terkel did with real events. That made it unique and structurally interesting.

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The Walking Dead: "Welcome to the Tombs" (Season 3, Episode 16)

Well, that was different.

Dramatically, you could say it worked. Thematic resolution of a sort occurred, and in real life, things often do end with a whimper rather than a true bang. Still, the sense of proportion seemed off in a couple of places. Basically, Rick and Co. came up with a rather weak plan, but triumphed anyway because the Governor went nuts.

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