Walking Dead on AMC (part 3)*

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Michael, Apr 3, 2013.

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  1. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden MichiGort Staff

    Livonia, MI
    I have been liking this season a lot, but was a bit disappointed in last night's episode. The character moments were nice, but it felt like they crammed 22 minutes of story and character development into 44 minutes of show. I would accuse them of trying to save money with this episode to splurge on a later one, but it probably was not cheap to design and dress the country club and moonshine cabin for use in only one episode, so that explanation would not fly.:shrug:
  2. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O! Thread Starter

    yes, a long term buzz.

    F_C_FRANKLIN Forum Resident

    Does this make sense? The girl that plays Beth comes across a bit"wooden" when she actually says her lines, however she has charisma and presence. She comes across on the screen as a "normal" teenage girl, not a jaded child actress trying to play a teenager on a TV show. Maybe as she gets more screen time, the line delivery will start coming across as more natural.
  4. CraigVC

    CraigVC Senior Member

    Portland, OR
    A couple of pages back in this thread, this topic of whether the show should focus on delivering "answers" and eventual resolution, versus the sense of just repeating itself with zombie bashing.

    Because I'm about 10 days away from catching up and watching last night's episode (I travel and won't be home again to watch with my wife until next Friday), I'm going to reply to this discussion from last Thursday even though I'm going to stop short of reading posts after I catch up to Sunday morning's posts, to avoid encountering spoilers.

    Anyway, my viewpoint is that the Walking Dead could be a great show by not ever providing the resolution and answers that some viewers crave. I agree with those who argue that providing resolution and answers to the mysterious of why zombies exist and how to cure humanity of them would never be completely satisfying because we're dealing with something that its completely implausible and illogical from the start.

    HOWEVER, I do think that this show needs to work on advancing the progress of the survivors. What I feel is lacking is a deeper exploration of the "what would a human, or a group of humans, do in the face of an overwhelming and seemingly fatal disaster on a global scale?" Maybe I'm just naively optimistic, but I believe that human ingenuity would continue to exist, adapt, and evolve over the course of time, even in the midst of devastating disaster and carnage.

    If the essential premise of the Walking Dead is that when a global disaster, impacting and infecting every single human being, occurs, all of the intelligent, resourceful, and thoughtful people on the planet immediately die, and all who are left are the physically strong and those of average intelligence who are simply lucky enough to go through life while never encountering more zombies at a time than they can obliterate with a hammer, knife, or gun . . . Then I think they are really missing an opportunity and are leaving themselves with premise than indeed will become very boring after a while.

    I would love it if one or two of the current main characters to start finding new groups to integrate with, who are perhaps more intelligent and more resourceful, who have figured out new ways to survive and adapt and find some measure of satisfaction and happiness in this new world. Maybe that's the naive optimist in me, but I figure some more positive human attributes have carried the human race at least this far without complete destruction. We've even faced some serious threats like global nuclear destruction if the full force of the Cold War had been unleashed.

    So I have to think that some germs of the human attributes that navigated through that threat still exist somewhere else on the planet, and that they have been smart enough to avoid getting themselves killed, with enough brainpower remaining to actually start to establish a new life that could continue longer than going from "old world" structure to structure (i.e., downtown office building to farmhouse to prison to suburban houses, etc.), encountering random idiots willing to kill strangers for a bigger bed or a glass of whiskey or whatever.

    Maybe I'm just as deluded :) as those who long for the show to eventually deliver the BIG ANSWERS to explain the zombie condition. But I do think the show could progress without ever providing any of those answers. I think it could transition from a very entertaining but ultimately fluffy soap-opera show (sort of a Gray's Anatomy set in zombieland rather than Seattle Grace hospital), which is how I would rate it today, to an amazing, deep philosophical exploration of the potential of humanity to persevere in the face of overwhelming devastation.

    Stuff like when an earlier character (blonde woman, I'm terrible with the characters' names) contemplated suicide but found meaning in life to claw her way out of the despair -- that hinted at the potential of how this show could elevate itself, but I think they did a crap job of really digging in and exploring what was going on with her. They could have created a really harrowing depiction of her internal conflict, and showed her going right to the edge, in the way that could be way scarier than any cartoon zombie jumping out from the shadows. As I recall, though, it was basically handled as surface/superficial exposition: "See how she's gonna kill herself? Now see how someone saved her and/or she saved someone else so now she's got a reason to live? Trust us that that's how it goes when you're down in the dumps and then someone lifts you up. Now back to the zombie killing before you get too bored with something more substantial!"

    Regardless, the reality is probably that because this show has awesome ratings, they're not going to mess with success, and will likely just ride it out until viewership declines, then they'll either let it just trail off with an underwhelming finale (in which all we see is the "same old same old" will continue into the future) or they'll try to do something more over-the-top to bring viewers back and jump the shark in the final season or so. I honestly would prefer that they just trail off with underwhelming finale, if they don't have the courage to do something like I hope for - to gradually deepen the series into more of a philosophical meditation on the possibilities of human survival.

    I'll check back in a week or two, to read replies to my thoughts in this post and find who disagrees with me and thinks I'm way off base. :)

    IronWaffle, dead of night and Vidiot like this.
  5. zeppage2

    zeppage2 Forum Resident

    Oakland, CA
    I am shocked there was not an ill fated (attempted) sex scene. Why introduce the alcohol and ignore the effects it has on many? She is a chatty teen-aged girl; she does not need alcohol as a social lubricant. Furthermore, why did she show no ill effects from the drinking? No slurred speech, no impaired motor skills.

    F_C_FRANKLIN Forum Resident

    Just because Daryl comes from dirt bag white-trash, doesn't mean he's willing to screw a under-age girl (even if he is or isn't attracted to her on some level). I think it's been established that his character has a moral compass that goes past his shady upbringing, and clearly he has feelings and is holding out hope for Carol to return in his life.
    JimC likes this.
  7. vernon

    vernon Well-Known Member

    Honky Kong
    I was hoping for that. At least that would have lifted last night's episode from slumber.:) Perhaps it didn't happen because as pointed out by another member above, there was no chemistry to speak of between the two.

    Good point, really a stupid show last night.
  8. zeppage2

    zeppage2 Forum Resident

    Oakland, CA
  9. rogerdodger

    rogerdodger Well-Known Member

    I'm usually not a huge Rick fan but after watching this weeks episode I realized I really miss him a lot. Daryl is okay but please no more Beth, she should go next!
  10. Who/what is buried in Carol's grave, for one. But I do agree with a majority of everything else you mentioned.
  11. That's not sloppy writing. They put up a grave but hadn't found her body. Not every question needs to be answered in a film or TV show unless its an important element of the plot. Once they found Carol we got our answer that nothing was or maybe a random body but it doesn't reall matter.
  12. DreadPikathulhu

    DreadPikathulhu Senior Member

    Great episode. It's got to be a record to have three good ones in a row.
  13. porpoise mouth

    porpoise mouth Well-Known Member

    Sing apore
    I hope next weeks episode picks up after this disaster!
    Vidiot likes this.
  14. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O! Thread Starter

    up and down...just the way it goes...I'd rather have it that way...makes one appreciate the good episodes, but for me I have no problem with any of them...
  15. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O! Thread Starter

    watching it in a bit.
  16. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O! Thread Starter

    ...I'd have that fellow in my corner over most of the cast along with Michonne...an honorable man..
    JimC likes this.
  17. Vens

    Vens Member

    I'm just saying that it was a good show that slowly descended into mediocrity. I dont't have problems with the direction but with the pacing. I like that they changed some things and made it diferrent from the comics but they stuck with the prison for too long. Should've been done in one season or better, they should've got to prison in the last few episodes of season 2 and move on in the end of season 3.

    I didn't mean it like that. I got emotionally disconected from the characters when they all agreed to murder the kid who knew the location of their farm in season 2. Yeah I know the show is about world gone to hell where morals twist and everything is done for survival but that was just inhuman and happened too early on to be justified. So maybe you got over it or it didn't even bother you but for me they were dead from that point onward and it's hard for a show to be suspenful when you don't care for the characters.

    And that's the other problem, there's no suspense because walkers aren't threatening anymore. They said they will try to make them scary again yet they struggle to find situations to do so. You might say I'm nitpicking but there are little details that just take me out of the show and I have to call bullsh!t. A few episodes ago Daryl and Beth were in the woods when they heard a walker. She was startled and looked around her. Then they cut to the camera following zombie from behind as it walked at least 15 meters while making noises and she didn't look once in that direction even tho she was scared and knew something was coming. Not to mention Daryl was next to her yet walker found a way to sneak behind her in open space where even the best ninja would fail for sure. Bullsh1t!

    I never said anything about writing but ok. What about inconsistencies? Michonne used two pet walkers because she found out they don't attack each other so it would prevent walkers to run after her. Makes some sense but it doen't mean she can freely walk among them. Remember in first season characters had to be drenched in blood with guts hanging from their necks to blend with walkers? Not anymore! Now you can just walk into a group of zombies and march with them for hours. It needed to be done to remind us of the ones she used before and provide need flashbacks but it could've been done differently. I say sloppy writting.

    She then swung her sword and decapitated walkers around her and it was hillarious since there was clearly at least 2 meters space between them and her katana as the heads flew up. Now this is just emberrassing for a show of this caliber. Took me right out of it.

    What about when characters bash zombie heads 10 times and you can see blood splashing all over but somehow not a singe drop of blood ends up on their hands or clothes? Zombie makeup is still impressive but they are all boring now. Remember how there were memorable zombies early on? Zombie child, zombie without legs, the one missing lower jaw, the fat one stuck in the well etc. Nothing like that anymore.
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2014
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  18. Vens

    Vens Member

    I thought the last episode was pretty decent, one of the better ones from this season. Like some mentioned before, it was stupid that Daryl who is no stranger to drinking got visibly drunk while a teenage girl who drank (a lot) for the fist time in her life looked completely sober. Otherwise it was good. Beth desperately needed some characterization and it was interesting to watch Daryl loose his cool.
  19. While they are still afraid to some degree of the Walkers, the biggest threat has become other humans which makes the show more interesting IMHO. You and I will differ on this--I find nothing in the show to be sloppy--it's a TV show and believability went out the window once they had zombies.

    The issue iwth Michonne and the walkers--I always thought that she used them to "mask" her scent and also as a warning of other Walkers. Kind of made sense to me. A series evolves as do the rules on a show. Look at at a show like "Star Trek" where they discovered elements that worked over time. That's not uncommon. The same can be said of ALL TV shows and they will always have some inconsistency. I'm not sure what the issue is with that at all. You either accept the world that they've created or you don't. They've stayed relatively true to the rules established early on.

    I could care less about memorable zombies as the human drama is what makes the show interesting and the behavior of the characters when put into an unimaginable situation.

    You're certainly welcome to nitpick the show. I'd rather sit back and enjoy it for what it is rather than what it isn't. The series has gone in some interesting (and sometimes not so interesting) directions over the seasons and I'm still entertained by it. Have there been issues? Sure as every series has issues but, on the whole, they've managed to create an entertaining series.

    If you don't enjoy it, don't watch it.
  20. Vidiot

    Vidiot Now in 4K HDR!

    Hollywood, USA
    I think this was kind of answered in the last episode of the first season, where the scientist at the CDC deliberately commits suicide and blows the entire place up (in a shockingly cheap effects shot). You figure, if one of the world's leading disease experts sees that everybody is infected and everybody is gonna turn into a zombie about an hour after they die, we're doomed.

    Well, they did give us a clue with the arrogant scientist in the Army truck a couple of episodes back, who said he knew why the plague started. Whether they'll develop anything with that remains to be seen. The comic book has been going on for 11 years and as far as I know, has not yet revealed why or how the plague started, and whether it can be cured or not.

    I'd like to see them try something different: for example, what if the zombie strain mutated and suddenly animals could become infected, too? What if we had zombie dogs, cats, and birds? Or: what if somebody became partly infected and became a zombie, and yet retained all of their human intelligence, instead of becoming a mute, staggering monster?

    So there's a lot of things they could do with the plot in future stories. Having said that: the most recent episode was a snoozefest. Worst. Episode. Ever. We don't need to see two people in a cabin getting drunk and arguing for 45 minutes.

    I think that's kind of the whole point of the show: how far is your basic morality going to change when you're confronted with an "end of the world" scenario? I think that's when you find out what kind of person you really are, deep down. The creators of the show have said several times that the central issue of the show is how do people survive, which is a tough question. I'm reminded of Sheriff Rick's three questions for new people, which (as I remember) included, "how many walkers have you killed? How many people have you killed?"

    Me... I'd have to be there in the moment, but I'd most likely opt to just take the kid prisoner (permanently) rather than kill him. Either way, I wouldn't let them get away and reveal our location.
  21. DreadPikathulhu

    DreadPikathulhu Senior Member

    I could certainly go for some zombie cats.

  22. Michael

    Michael I LOVE WIDE S-T-E-R-E-O! Thread Starter

    could work as they are all zombies in waiting...
  23. Balthazar

    Balthazar Forum Resident

    Applies to this and so many other threads.

    I will say one thing. They're not even up to where the comic was at 100 issues. Pretty much every show should end after 7 seasons. Considering they're rounding out the 4th season, I do hope they plan to build toward a conclusion of some sort. I take it as a given that shows based on books that are still in process will have to veer from the established storyline.

    I hope they plan a graceful ending rather than keeping it going to just to keep it going and get ratings.

    Figuring out why the plague started would be waste of time for the series. The zombie plague is just a macguffin. And zombie animals would be waste of time. Working with the characters they have left and potential threats from other humans is far more interesting.
  24. DreadPikathulhu

    DreadPikathulhu Senior Member

    I really don't mind these character episodes, they're a nice change from the prison or Virgil's farm. It is nice that we're getting some sense that there are other people in the world who haven't done so well. It's apparent that people stayed at the country club for some time before everything went to h*** and they either killed each other or committed mass suicide.

    I expect that we'll continue with these single episodes, and then the season will finish with the cast all together while the camera pulls back for some dramatic reveal.
  25. Vens

    Vens Member

    That's an easy way out. For a show that is trying to be a serious drama, the beliavability has to be there, otherwise it can't work. You can use fantasy elements and still make it realistic...even with zombies. The Walking Dead is a proof and for the most part they did an excellent job. Once you accept that zombies can exist in the world and set the consistent rules for them, they are not breaking the immersion. It's other things that bothered me. You can replace zombies with humans in most of the examples I gave and it would still be distracting.

    That's what I said. It can work on a longer distance but shouldn't work when she's right next to them. She was even closer to the other walkers than the ones she held on the leash. By that logic, if you could get inside a group of walkers relatively unnoticed, you can freely walk among them.

    I still enjoy it and watch it when there's nothing better to do. I'm too far into the series to just stop now.

    This is true. Constantly through the show characters make morally questionable decissions and that's what makes the show interesting. But that one is the only one that really striked me. Maybe I'm too naive but I won't accept that normal people would act like that in that situation (That's why I can't even watch a movie like The Purge, cause the whole concept is too ridicoulous to me). On the other hand people can do crazy things during the war.

    I agree.
    Vidiot likes this.
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