The Walking Dead - TV
The Walking Dead - Season 4 Recap: Babies Are Delicious

Josh Engen | 7 Feb 2014 15:00
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The Walking Dead Rick

Even with a whodunit hanging over the crew's heads, the flu epidemic takes precedence. Darryl enlists all of the black cast members to help him search a nearby veterinary college for antibiotics (you know, like you do to medically treat a virus...), but promptly crashes into a horde of walkers. Tyreese barely manages to escape due to a newfound death wish, but the posse eventually makes its way to the school and collects the supplies.

Now let's step back for a moment. One of the things that I've always loved about The Walking Dead is the way that the writers shy away from zombie-heavy story lines in favor of interpersonal relationships. Zombies are always in the vicinity, sure, but they're only a backdrop. Unfortunately, with such a large cast, character development is typically an afterthought to basic plotting, which is why is takes so long for the characters to evolve.

Carol Peletier joined the group before Rick was even around, and her character has undergone, perhaps, the most well executed transformation on the program. After her abusive husband, Ed, died in season one, she started becoming more and more confident in her ability to take care of herself and Sophia, her daughter. Unfortunately, when Sophia died, that confidence was gnarled into a scary kind of emotional vacancy. Secretly, she started educating the group's children in survival techniques and weapon's training.

So, when Rick realizes that Carol is responsible for Karen and David's death, it clicks; she has run out of compassion. Staying alive is just a numbers game, and killing two infected people is a small price to pay for the group's safety. Unfortunately for Carol, Rick doesn't agree and sends her packing, thus reestablishing the Ricktatorship.

It was actually a huge bummer to watch Carol drive away, but it was subtly brilliant on the writers' part. Carol inadvertently helped Rick rediscover his role, and her character arc came to its logical conclusion.

Back at the prison, the flu is spinning out of control. Glenn is really the only infected character that anyone cares about. But Hershel, in a backwards kind of heroism, has locked himself into the quarantine zone in order to care for the infected. People are dying, which means that newly-minted zombies are attacking. Just as Hershel is on the verge of losing the facility, Rick and Carl burst into the room like the Kool-Aid Man and mow down all of the walkers with a pair of automatic rifles.

Then Darryl's group returns with the antibiotics, which means that Zombie Cuomo's devastation has officially come to an end.

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