‘The Walking Dead’ makes a triumphant return to AMC for second half of second season
Published: Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 00:02
"The Walking Dead" returned to AMC Sunday with the eighth episode of its second season. Like the others, this episode was full of the usual drama and gore fans have come to expect. However, since the end of the last episode before its mid-season break, the tone has changed quite a lot.
Viewers were left with a cliff-hanger at the ending of episode seven when, as a result Shane's rash actions, Rick and the gang were forced to shoot down all of the walkers in Hershel's barn – the last of whom was one of their own - a child named Sophia.
The story continues with Hershel, who delusionally believes the walkers to have hope of recovery banishes Rick and the others from his land. His wife was among the zombies killed in the barn, so he feels particularly invested.
Unwilling to leave the comfort of the farm, Rick grows nervous and attempts to reconcile things with Hershel. The comfort of safety and community the group found at Hershel's farm is not the only thing at stake in their banishment. Lori recently revealed her pregnancy to Rick, and Hershel (a veterinarian) is the closest thing they have to a doctor.
However, Hershel is nowhere to be seen, leaving behind only an empty flask and stories of his past drinking problems. Rick and Glen use these clues to lead them to the town's bar, where they find not just Hershel, but a few other survivors, as well. I won't give the rest of the episode away, but it seems like the series is setting itself up for a great second half of season two.
After the realization that Sophia was in fact dead, the tone of the group changed significantly. Her survival was a last hope for many of them amidst all of the trauma. Even Rick's authority has begun to be questioned, with the group at a low point after not only the child's death, but their banishment from the temporary oasis the farm offered.
A nice addition to the episode that some fans may not be aware of is a follow-up show that airs directly after on AMC, "The Talking Dead." This 30-minute show is hosted by The Nerdist Podcast's Chris Hardwick, and is a live chat about the latest episode of the show. Guests featured in past episode include comics creator Robert Kirkman, cast member Norman Reedus and celebrity fan Kevin Smith. The show also takes questions from fans submitted via Twitter, Facebook, phone, or www.amctv.com/shows/talking-dead, which are answered live by Hardwick and his guests.
The next episode of the season, "Triggerfinger," will air Sunday at 9 p.m. on AMC. For fans who can't wait, a sneak peek is now available at www.amctv.com.