Monday, July 11, 2016
( 7:58 PM ) posted by Setsuled
I'm seven episodes into the the fourth season of The Walking Dead and the changeover to Scott M. Gimple as showrunner has improved the show in exactly the ways I'd hoped. Mostly just by focusing on simple things instead of the increasingly campy war between the prison and Woodbury. It's kind of a shame I don't have more time to watch the show, it'd be nice to get through the whole series before Comic Con next week. Hopefully I won't need to sit through a spoiler ridden Walking Dead panel.
Spoilers for Walking Dead season four after the screenshot.
And there's a Lewis chess set on the show now! That's a reproduction of a chess set from the 12th century. They're shown in the sixth episode, "Live Bait", written by Nichole Beattie, which did the impossible and actually got me interested in the Governor, David Morrissey's character, now known as Brian. After he gunned down a bunch of innocent people just because they didn't want to help him conquer Rick's team, it wouldn't seem like there was anywhere particularly interesting for the character go. But the writers wisely instead of looking to ramp things up did the exact opposite.
Running into two women, a little girl, and an old man hiding out in a building, the near-zombie now Governor listlessly falls into helping them. Even this guy who's gotten to the point where he can murder a whole group of people at the drop of a hat is a pretty decent fellow under the right circumstances. It's an interesting exploration on how an obsessive virtue can be bad in the right context. If they didn't run into Martinez (Jose Pablo Cantillo) things might have even ended happily ever after, or as close to that as one can get after a zombie apocalypse.
I loved that Brian is so quiet. He doesn't try to justify himself or make himself look like he was different than he was. Martinez has to assume from the fact that there are now two women and a child depending on him (again with the gender roles!) that he's not a murderous psychopath. Then, in some down time with a couple other guys, Martinez had to ask Brian directly if he's changed. Before Brian spoke, I knew immediately that if he said, "Yes," that would mean he would go back to murder. Don't get me wrong, I'm not knocking the show for being predictable--it's a nice moment of insight. Like Oscar Wilde said, "Only the shallow know themselves." Once Brian asserts something about his personality, now he has to demonstrate for himself whether or not it's true and the last thing this guy wants is some introspection. He's so afraid of it he has to kill Martinez who has unwittingly become a mirror. Really nice stuff.
I also like that the existence of Rick's camp is threatened by a flu. That's the great contrast between seasons three and four--the writers realised it's the little things that get the best mileage.
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