Thoughts on Walking Dead Season 3 Finale


tombs

If you aren’t up to date with the show then you shouldn’t read on. It’ll spoil things for you or make no sense.

Every episode where Carol doesn’t off herself irritates me because throughout this season she’s the one who represents how the show is constantly different yet annoyingly similar to the comics. The baby is the same way for me.

For the first time that wasn’t really an issue for me. This episode was so wildly different from the source material that I got to just enjoy it for what it was rather than what it almost was. Now Andrea is dead, who was an infuriating version of the character. They’re still in the prison, the governor is alive, Tyreese is alive, Farmer Jesus is alive. All of this points to the idea that the show might finally diverge completely from the comic, which is something that I’ve been wanting ever since I started reading the source material.

I say this because the show has an awful tendency to recycle scenes from the comic without bothering to properly develop the context behind the scene. The biggest example of this for me was when Michonne went after the Governor. In the comic he tortured and raped her for days on end, so her gut-wrenching revenge made sense for her character. It was a fascinating scene because you’re completely on board with her triumphant revenge, but then they make you feel guilty when she goes a little too far and becomes just as much of a monster as the man who beat her.

governor

In the show the Governor at that point is just a creepy man who is most definitely up to no good. Merle on the other hand tries to hunt Michonne down when she leaves. When Michonne comes back to town with Rick there were three reasonable choices for her to make.

1) Find and kill Merle. Revenge.

2) Try to bring Andrea back. The show constantly stresses that they had become good friends so it makes sense that Michonne might give her one more chance.

3) Stay with Rick you stupid bitch. This is the one that makes the most sense. Michonne had no particular reason to be out on a personal vendetta against the Governor in the show. Instead she should be on her best behavior with Rick so that she can ensure herself a safe place to sleep back at the prison. By suddenly leaving she betrayed what little trust he had. Worse yet, she kills the Governor’s daughter. This enrages him and fuels his hatred and much of the ensuing war. Michonne is portrayed as a calm, cool-headed, thoughtful woman, but she suddenly does something wildly out of character for no well-established reason. This bullshit move then drives the entire second half of the season.

daughter

It’s clear that the daughter had to die in order the second half of the season to happen, but it makes no sense for Michonne. It should have been Glenn. He had the most reason to go after the governor. Hell, he and Maggie actually took Michonne’s place in the show during this segment. That’s proper character motivation. Instead they just copy/pasted the scene from the comic, made it less brutal, and didn’t give a shit about whether it made any sense.

This what makes me happy about the finale. There are enough signs to say that we just might be able to avoid this stuff in the future by having the show just make up its own story. After all, that’s when the show is at its strongest. Daryl and Merle were completely made up for the show and have been one of the best parts. The completely different Morgan episode was phenomenal. Pretty much every episode that people have praised took nothing from the source material. That episode where Lori and T-Dog died? Totally made up, and people loved it. More of this, please.

That said, even as something new this finale was pretty weak. The war that the entire season built up to was hilariously weak. The Governor had more effective raids earlier in the season with hardly any troops. The Doctor’s death was foreshadowed pretty well, but watching Andrea struggle for a third of the episode was mostly just annoying. If you hadn’t liked her up to this point then you aren’t given much reason to change her mind. Daryl just had a pretty important episode but is now wallpaper. Allen is dispatched almost as unceremoniously as his son, closing the book on another character that was never developed into anything interesting.

walking dead

The most interesting bits are that Carl is beginning to make his own tough choices and the Governor has officially gone over the edge and lost his mind. Rick being the leader of a settlement that now features 15 more people also means that he could be in a position for some interesting character development. He now has to lead a group that features many people who can’t really defend themselves. This move however doesn’t really jive with how he left that hitchhiker to die earlier on in the season. Oh well, at least I’m interested in what’s to come.

“The comics still exist and I’d urge those people to continue reading the comics where Andrea is still alive,” comic scribe and series executive producer Kirkman told The Hollywood Reporter. “Just know the show is something different and we are telling different stories. It doesn’t mean we’re not going to see a lot of the big stories and big events from the comic book in the TV show eventually; it just means those things will be a little bit altered from time to time. Hopefully it will be exciting, new and fresh just like it was the first time you read the comic, which is really the goal.” (via Huffington Post)

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I went on this rant in a Facebook discussion of the Walking Dead show.  I figured I could go ahead and post it elsewhere.  Lo and behold, my last post on this site was exactly one year ago.  Perhaps I’ll continue to post copies of my rants here since I seem to go on them a lot and this page has gone unused for so long.

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