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Because The Walking Dead season 10 finale has been delayed thanks to the real-world virus, I have decided that to fill the void left in the schedule, to start a re-watch of the series. I live tweeted the episode as if it were playing live in the regular 9pm GMT slot on FOX TV UK.
We take a detour from the prison to catch up with Andrea (Laurie Holden) and (what I think is the first time we actually get to hear her name) Michonne (Danai Gurira) who have spotted a helicopter crash and go to investigate. When some other people turn up to do the same thing, Andrea and Michonne are found hiding by an old friend. It’s Merle (Michael Rooker)! And he’s back to bring some of his own brand of devilishness back to the series.
The pair are taken back to Merle’s compound, known as Woodbury. Woodbury is run by a man known as the Governor (David Morrissey) and Michonne takes an instant dislike to him, Andrea seems kind of smitten. We get the traditional setup, introduction to some of the main crew but Michonne’s initial gut reaction was right. Whilst Woodbury seems idilyic on the surface, there is something peculiar going on behind closed doors.
The resident doctor, Milton (Dallas Roberts), seems to think there is still something human left within walkers and is doing experiments on them to try and find it. He grills the girls over the two walkers Michonne kept with her but she is keeping tight lipped as ever.
The Governor heads out to find the helicopter pilot’s crew who he promised the pilot he’d bring back alive. But after a little bait, it’s time for the switch, and Woodbury kill all the soldiers of the pilot’s crew and take their supplies. Back at Woodbury, the Governor tells everyone that the camp had been overrun with walkers and they were too late to save them. Andrea thinks the Governor a knight in shining armour and asks for his real name, which he refuses to give.
After, he heads home, looks at a picture of what presumably were his wife and child and heads into a back room to stare at a bunch of fish tanks. Nothing unusual there…but the tanks are filled with zombie heads including Michonne’s protection and the head of the pilot!
As with all setup episodes this one did lull in places but the mystery surrounding the Governor at the end really piqued interest and having Merle back is fantastic for the show – even though his stump hasn’t cleared up much a year later.
The Governor in the comics is much darker and twisted than the TV version and honestly, the comic arc with the Governor was one of my favourite’s. However, it would never transition to TV and so we have a more PG-13 friendly version. We’ll have to keep watching to see what else they change.
Overall Rating: 8