The Walking Dead: Wildfire

Spoilers…

“Wildfire,” last night’s episode of The Walking Dead was another big improvement over episodes 2 and 3. It seems like the show is headed to a strong season finale next week. I’m with Scott Meslow: it’s the best episode since the premiere, hands down.

A lot happened. Andrea refused to let anyone touch the dead-and-about-to-be-zombiefied Amy. We find out that Jim was bitten by a walker during the previous episode’s attack — a sure death sentence. Rick continued trying to contact Morgan and his son (whom he promised to rendezvous with in the first episode). Shane considered (maybe?) shooting Rick. The group headed to the Center for Disease Control headquarters, where it turns out one person was alive and conducting scientific experiments.

I had a few favorite moments, but I think the one that tops the list was watching Amy rise while Andrea sat beside her. When Amy’s eyes finally opened, unseeing, and she reached out and slowly clutched Andrea’s head, it struck me that the scene was probably meant to be read in two ways: tender and predatory. And just as Amy’s demeanor shifted into something more menacing, Andrea shot her in the head.

Leaving the infected Jim (sad!) by the side of the road on the way to the CDC was kind of an odd way of doing things. It was very sentimental, and also a strange set-up since in most television shows it would be likely that we’d see him again. But in the context of this show, it’s obviously really very unlikely.

Another odd, but really interesting, moment was when Rick and Shane were doing their sweep of the forest, and Shane held Rick in his gun sight for a minute or so. We knew he wasn’t going to shoot Shane, but it seemed like it was supposed to be a revealing moment between Shane and the viewer. It was ostensibly a sign of how unstable Shane is. But then the camera turned and the “we” ended up including both Shane and the viewer: we both discovered that Dale was also watching Shane, and Shane is forced to play it off. It was a nice surprise.

I’m pretty excited about the series finale, especially because I think we’ve had enough wandering in the woods and I’m ready for answers and some context for what’s going on in the rest of the country and the world (you’ll remember I mentioned this in the first recap). Hopefully the guy in the CDC’s underground bunker will be able to do that.

Anyway, I think I judge an episode by how much it makes me turn it over in my head afterward. This one has had me mulling it over quite a bit.

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1 Comment

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One response to “The Walking Dead: Wildfire

  1. Encrazed Crafts

    Hee hee, always fun to read how others like or dislike things, and why. I didn’t really like the episode, thought Vatos was the best so far, but it was ‘okay.’ Shane turning on Rick was far too random to be revealing, just more of a “um…ok? You took one little line out of context and you are already gunning for him at a moment’s notice? What about all your years on the force co-op?”

    I liked how Andrea took down her sister after the heart to heart, but think the process the writers took to get her there was far too damning to be good. She pointed a live gun at Rick, the guy trying to help her and who showed her how to use a gun properly, just to shoot someone who was already dead. “We do not kill the living.” She should be dropped from the group immediately after that. Merle pointed guns and people and we were not meant to like him. But Andrea is ok to do the same thing? To the main character, written to be lovable and courageous? Another random moment that did far from pay off in my opinion.

    I do really feel for Jim. Lost his family. Fought for a new group of friends, only to have one of them rat him out at the first hint. That’s class. Kissing him out of guilt will not pave over the ordeal you put the man’s final hours through. It sounds cynical, but I hope she catches something off of him as he was infected at the time. At least the CDC guy will have something fresh to dissect in his lab -_^

    I also think Jim was the every man who failed, more than likely a view of the audience at home if they were in the same situation. He wanted to protect his family but they got attacked suddenly, and he lost them. He carried on surviving, but empty until he came across Shane’s group. He defended that one as well, only to be bitten during the process, and then nearly lynched by the same people he put his life on the line to defend. I do not blame him for wishing to be left to die alone. With ‘friends’ like that, he’d be better off jumping into the arms of zombie.

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