And there it was: in one single moment, The Walking Dead became silly. I’d been willing to put up with a lot through the first nine episodes of the series, but after last night’s introduction of the pregnancy storyline, it’s become very clear: the creative team doesn’t know what to do with this show. I’m not condoning for not having a distinct direction or story to tell, but instead for its complete lack of any point outside of self-perpetuation. Now, with a large chunk of the show about to be dedicated to a lame ‘Who Is The Father?’ story, Dead‘s lack of original direction is starting to turn the show into an unwatchable mess.
Much of last night’s episode was dedicated to one story: a zombie in a well. After all sorts of scenes dropping Glenn into the pit to get it, lots of talk about how you can’t kill it inside because it would pollute the water… and in the end, the zombie rips in half, disposing its infected insides on the bottom of the well. Dale looks at it and says “we’ll just close off that well,” and everyone goes on their merry way. Glenn gets laid in a overly contrived and poorly written scene with the redneck girl whose name I can’t remember (complete with lines like “I’ll have sex with you” “Why?” “Because you’re here”), and people find somewhere else to drink water. I gotta ask: what’s the fucking point here? Because it felt like a deliberate waste of time, one that did nothing but provide the same characters with the same material (Shane acting a little off-kilter, Glenn being awkward, Rick being remorseful and distant, etc, etc) we’ve seen them acting over and over.
It continues into the scenes with Andrea, who is still bitching about not having a gun, and clearly being set up for a romantic storyline with the unstable Shane (who of course, was asked to speak at Otis’s funeral). Her character continues to be a nuisance, as well does the still-absent Sophia, who keeps Daryl acting like Redneck Crying Heart with a Weapon with his whole bullshit speech about Cherokee roses (I must ask, how does the suffering of the Indians compare to crying over a missing girl?). It also keeps her mom a boring weepy mess, a character who really just needs to either commit suicide or move on with her life.
I don’t want to continue hammering away at the same points, so I’ll get back to the pregnancy storyline. This will most certainly turn Dead into a soapy Rick vs. Shane storyline, complete with mysterious music and awkward exchanges between Shane and Lori, and Lori and Rick. It’s the latest in a line of idiotic story moves (loving Mexican defenders of the old, Shane’s whole head shaving in the last episode) which turn the already thin Dead into a silly story where characters we know won’t be killed get into what look like dangerous situations, then are saved at the last minute. Have you already forgotten the travesty we saw last week, with the miracle horse doctor performing the miracle life-saving bullet surgery on Carl at the last minute? An injury of which Carl is already conscious and recovering? The Slowly Crawling Dead is getting worse by the week… although it’s not all bad, at least there weren’t any badly-scripted conversations about religion this week. Just ones about hope, and believing, and in T-Dog’s case, some sort of rambling about searching through the woods like Rambo.
What did you think? Maybe next Sunday, The Walking Dead will take a step in the right direction. Right now, it’s lacking direction, structural cohesion, and any sort of emotional connection with the characters. Not a good sign for a show already guaranteed a third season.