You guys, it's Walking Dead night AND The Stir is back online! Hallelujah, it's raining dead walkers and live servers! Let's get right to the SPOILER ALERT part of this post -- click away now if you don't want to know anything about tonight's episode or what's happened on the season so far! -- because I'm rarin' to start recapping.
When last we left our survivors, we found out Merle was still alive (although there's a little less of him to love), Michonne and Andrea were "guests" of the Governor, and we got a pretty good glimpse into the Governor's villainous nature. (Also, we learned he has a habit of unwinding in front of a wall of severed zombie heads after a hard day's work. 57 heads and nothing's on…)
As for tonight's episode -- well, holy shit. I definitely didn't predict how this one was going to turn out.
Where we pick up: someone's dragging a torn-up deer carcass toward the prison. Um, worst snack ever, survivors. Jesus, I'm pretty sure a can of Alpo would be better than a zombie-chewed pile of intestines, and -- oh, wait, this mysterious person (in prison blues) is using Chunks O' Bambi to lure walkers into the unsecured gate. Listen all y'all, it's a sabotage!
Out in the prison yard, Rick, Daryl, T-dog and Carol are planning to burn some corpses and whatnot when they take a break to cockblock Glenn and Maggie who are trying to get it on in the guard tower. "Are you coming?" they shout. (Glenn and Maggie: "WELL NOT NOW WE AREN'T.") The prisoners, Axel and Oscar, beg to join the survivors on account of it sucking a whole lot of balls to live with a bunch of dead bodies. T-Dog gets an unprecedented amount of screen time as he argues in favor of letting the prisoners in -- it's almost like there's a reason we're suddenly aware that he's part of the show!
Over in Woodbury, Michonne is making ninja eyes at the bullet holes in the National Guard trucks. Since we know what happened and Michonne was already highly suspicious of the Governor, this scene seems a little unnecessary -- but boy, she sure can glower.
Back at the prison, Hershel is upright and ambulatory, and everyone's super stoked. Hooray for Hershel! Hooray for the fact that they managed to find a pair of crutches! Hooray for the tender, loving eye contact between Lori and Rick! Hooray for … the giant crowd of walkers that's coming up on their asses?
Yeah, it's a full-on zombie shitshow. Walkers are everywhere in the courtyard, prison alarms are going off and attracting more walkers, survivors are trying to run while popping off headshots left and right, and chomp, T-Dog takes a major bite to the shoulder.
Well, let's just take a moment to express our sorrow for T-Dog's imminent demise, and our equally heartfelt surprise that he's lasted this long.
Cut to Woodbury: Andrea -- whose hair is unusually well styled for it being the apocalypse and all, I have to say -- gives Merle a map to find Daryl. Merle wants to know why they never hooked up, is it because he called her a whore? Ding ding ding. Merle tells the Governor that he wants to go search for Daryl, and the Governor's like, well, maybe if you can come up with more concrete information. Merle's face is all, OH OKAY WELL LET ME JUST GOOGLE THAT, MOTHERFUCKER.
In the prison, T-Dog throws himself into a pack of walkers to save Carol. She looks back just in time to see a massive hunk of his throat ripped out, because I know that's what I'd be doing in her shoes: lingering.
Maggie, Carl, and Lori have made it to a boiler room, where Lori, like, instantly goes into labor. "I've got to push!" she says, and … really? Are we really -- okay, I guess we're going there. She's on the floor and Maggie's drawing on her limited farm-birthing experience and jeez, this can't get worse, except of course it does. Lori's bleeding all over and somehow knows she needs a C-section and she tells Maggie she's got to cut her open with Carl's knife. But you won't survive, Maggie tells her. Lori knows, she just wants the baby to live.
This is officially the only part of the show I am interested in but we keep cutting away to: Rick in the generator room, where -- surprise! -- they find Andrew, the other prisoner we thought had died, and now it's clear who's been on Deer Duty, and he tries to convince Oscar to "take back the prison" but Oscar shoots him and whew, that's the end of that; also, in Woodbury Andrea has a drink with the Governor and it totally looks like they almost kiss or something, OMG ANDREA HE HAS A WALL OF HEADS.
Okay: back to Lori. I have always, always hated Lori on this show, but watching Lori gear up to die right in front of her son is pretty much the worst. She sobs and says goodbye to Carl: "Don't let the world spoil you. You're the best thing I ever did." Maggie hacks into her belly and Lori screams in agony before she passes out. The baby emerges and it's alive, but Lori isn't.
Horribly, Carl takes on the unspeakable burden of putting a bullet in her brain to keep her from turning.
This show's taken such a dark twist it doesn't seem like it can be any more upsetting, but even Lori's death pales in comparison to Rick's reaction when he figures out what happened. As Maggie -- shellshocked with grief -- carries the baby into the prison yard, Rick howls like a tortured animal before collapsing on the ground. If I have occasionally found Andrew Lincoln's acting skills to be a little on the meh side, his performance in this anguished scene makes up for every clunky monologue to date, because goddamn. Goddamn.
This was the ballsiest episode to date, and I'm thrilled they took it this far -- not only because I love a show that can be this devastating and unpredictable, but because, well, I feel bad saying it now, but … no more Lori. (Sorry, Lori.) (You were kind of an awful character though.)
What did you think of tonight's episode? Did you have any idea things would go down like this?
Image via AMC