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About Last Night: The Walking Dead – “Killer Within” (MASSIVE SPOILERS)

Posted on November 5, 2012 at 1:57 pm by Amanda Andonian

Wow. Just…wow.

Last night’s The Walking Dead, “Killer Within,” was one hell of an episode, and we had to say goodbye to a lot of people. The events of this episode definitely mark a massive shift for the show, not only when it comes to the group dynamic, but also in terms of Rick’s psyche and the kind of person he’s going to be from this point forward. The title of this episode is especially interesting to me as well; what killer is it referring to? I’m not one to over-analyze titles, but I’m going to do so at the end of this post.

If you weren’t paying attention to the title, this is your last warning that HUGE spoilers are in the following.

THERE BE SPOILERS AHEAD!

If you saw the teaser from last week, then you already knew that the group would be facing a sudden incursion of walkers, apparently led inside the prison by some mysterious person. The episode begins by following this person around as they quietly lure more and more walkers back inside towards the group. The final shot before the opening credits is that of a bloody hand carefully placing a human heart on the concrete like a breadcrumb. Creepy!

We then cut to Rick and the others, who are planning out their activities for the day. In a rare moment of levity, the group laughs at Glenn and Maggie’s attempts to hide their momentary trysts, but the good mood doesn’t last long once the remaining two prisoners, Dexter and Axel, show up. Here we see Rick’s resolve tested, and though the two men beg for his mercy, and despite the fact that T-Dog argues in their favor, Rick and the others agree that it’s just too risky to let them into the group. Instead, they’ll send Dexter and Axel packing with a few supplies later in the day.

Meanwhile, Michonne is clearly still on the offensive when it comes to the Governor, investigating the trucks that he brought back after finding the soldiers “dead.” Her efforts are rewarded by suspicious bullet holes and still-wet blood on the floors; but the appearance of the Governor and their subsequent conversation lets us know that he doesn’t trust her either, and he knows that she’s a threat to him. Michonne continues to try convincing Andrea that they need to leave, that her gut tells her that this town is a bad place to stay, but Andrea obviously remains unswayed.

Unfortunately, Andrea is intent on screwing things up, making the very questionable choice of telling Merle where Daryl and the others were last, as well as giving him a map to Herschel’s farm. Though she says that she wants to help him because she would want to know where her family was, I think a lot of it is also guilt over leaving him on the rooftop, where he was forced to cut his hand off. Personally, I wouldn’t waste too much time feeling sorry for Merle, but I think that Andrea’s judgement is clouded because she so wants to stay in Woodbury and believe that it’s a good and safe place. When she tells the Governor that she and Michonne will be leaving soon, it’s pretty clear that she wants him to talk her out of it, and he’s more than happy to do so. Michonne, of course, is extremely unhappy with the decision to stay a couple more days.

Back at the prison, everything is going to hell quickly. Just as Rick and the others are getting ready to go on their errands for the day, a huge herd of walkers descends upon them, and the prison sirens start to go off. Rick is convinced that Axel and Dexter have something to do with it, but Dexter manages to convince him that they aren’t involved, though he can help Rick find a way to turn the sirens off. In the confusion, the group gets separated, leaving T-Dog and Carol on their own, as well as Maggie, Carl, and Lori.

Tragedy first strikes when T-Dog is bitten on the shoulder as he tries to lock out the walkers. Retreating into the prison, he and Carol try to escape, only to be surrounded in the dark hallways. Carol insists that she has to stay behind and help him, but T-Dog valiantly sacrifices himself so that she can get away. After all, he’s already been bitten, so it’s only a matter of time before she’d have to kill him anyway. Although it was sad to see him suffer so much, I think this send-off really did justice to T-Dog. Rather than just get overrun by walkers, he was able to make the choice to give his life to save someone else’s—the kind of noble act that we don’t see very often in this show.

While this is happening, Rick, Daryl, and Dexter make it to the generator room; but before they can shut off the sirens, Andrew—who we thought had died when Rick locked him outside—comes out of nowhere and attacks. They get in a furious fight, Rick looses his gun, and it ends up in Dexter’s hands. We see Dexter think about his options for half a second before shooting Andrew and handing the gun over to Rick. It seems that after weighing his options, Dexter likes his chances with Rick being in charge, not Andrew.

I’d been hearing buzz about this episode online ever since it aired on the East coast, so I thought that T-Dog’s death and the scene in the generator room was the end of it. That wasn’t the case, unfortunately. The real tragedy happens with Lori, who suddenly goes into labor while they’re lost in the prison. Maggie has to deliver but it’s not looking good, so Lori convinces her to do the C-section and save the baby, even if it means her death. I’ve never been a big fan of Lori, and I imagine most fans of the show don’t like her much either, but her last words to Carl are so heartbreaking that it’s difficult not to feel his pain when she dies. Whatever Lori might have been when it came to Rick and Shane, she was still a mother who was willing to do anything for her children.

It was a pretty heart-wrenching episode, and I foresee things spiraling out of Rick’s control from here on out. Not only does he need to deal with the death of his wife, but now he has an infant daughter to take care of, as well as an preadolescent son who had to shoot his own mother in the head to ensure that she wouldn’t come back as a walker.

As for the name of the episode and what it means, I realize it can apply to almost anyone in the show since The Walking Dead often poses the question of what kind of person would we turn into if we were face with this harrowing reality. I don’t want to say that it refers to Lori’s baby because it’s awfully heavy-handed to call the baby a “killer” just because Lori died during childbirth. It just seems like such a pointed episode name, though, for a series that constantly raises the issue of whether someone is really a killer or just a victim of these insane circumstances.

Who else watched last night? What did you think of T-Dog and Lori’s send offs? Tell us in the comments!

For more geek-related stuff, follow Amanda on Twitter at @reiko516.

    • Rick's reaction at the end was heart breaking…

      • I know! It felt as though he was slowly realizing just how much he had lost. Lori's gone, and now there's no way for him to reconcile with her. He still loved her despite everything that happened between them.

        • I think he also realized that it all was his fault… Had he not gone all Shane on Andrew everyone would still be alive.

    • Nacho

      But the important question is, we're there crickets?

    • I figured "Killer Within" applied to the baby, Andrew, and the walkers. All of them are inside something or someone. The baby was inside Lori, and the Andrew and the Walkers were inside the prison. The obvious choice was Andrew since he set a trap to retake control of the prison. I do like your idea of what we would turn into faced with a situation like this. Either way, YES it was a great episode. I bet next week is horrible though. HAHA

      • Well, considering the fact that it seems we're going to be seeing more of Andrea, you're probably right.

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