‘The Walking Dead’ Continues Mindlessly Stumbling Around (TV REVIEW)

[rating=3.00] “Not Tomorrow Yet”

For a show that has a long history of mishandling conflicts with a Big Bad, they’re certainly not making the introduction of Negan seem promising.The Governor was handled badly throughout the third season, only to be fumbled back into play halfway through the fourth, and Garrett was made out to be a substantial threat, only to be unceremoniously killed off a few episodes later (which was too bad, he had charisma). Now it seems the latest threat is going to prove just as unsubstantial.

By now, everyone who watches the show has had a friend who’s read the wikipedia page about the comics who’s gone through and spoiled some crucial upcoming events: Negan’s coming, and someone of significance will die almost immediately. The big contender is Glenn, since that’s how it goes in the comics, but with that whole “he’s dead/he’s not dead, LOL JK” bullshit they pulled in the first half of the season, that’s seeming to be less likely.

What The Walking Dead is doing in the meantime is employing its own worst trope on several characters, giving everyone glimpses of their hope and humanity, which was usually a precursor to them dying horribly. As a result, the first half of the episode is littered with these moments between Carol, Glenn, Maggie, Abraham, Rosita, and Sasha, trying to get us attached to as many characters as possible so we feel something when Negan eventually comes into play.

The second half of the episode deals with the Ricktatorship’s raid on The Saviors’ compound, right after the show’s token weekly zombie kills are a way to find the head of the Hilltop’s leader, Gregory. Rick, of course, punches one of the heads. Classic Rick.

While we were shown three weeks ago that a town literally overrun by zombies was no match for a handful of Alexandrians, this week took us one step further by showing that they can raid an entire compound without a single casualty, even by those who’d never taken a human life, which was supposed to give us some insight into Glenn and…that other guy with glasses who we’ve seen around intermittently. I could Google his name, but I’m not going to.

The big moment there was the photos of the bashed-in heads that Glenn stares at, which really seems to narrow down the “who’s it going to be” question down to two choices.

The upside to the episode was, obviously, Father Gabriel’s prayer he says just before shooting a Savior. That and Abraham’s logic of “why are dingleberries brown?” when breaking up with Rosita, although the line about thinking she was the only woman left on Earth was harsh, even for the apocalypse. Especially for the apocalypse.

Also worth pointing out, it was pitch black out when they arrived at the compound, then after an incredibly one-sided shootout, it’s suddenly morning, keeping consistent with the show’s “day’s drive away” plotpoint. Oh, and everything seemed to be looking like it was okay in a particularly hollow episode, until we find out that Maggie and Carol have been captured, mostly likely while they were arguing in the forest with one another. Which means next week will be much more pandering to the audience over who’s going to die. Yay.

 

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