The Ninjabot

If Your Friends Jumped Off a Bridge, Would You Jump Too? THE WALKING DEAD Review

Posted on November 17, 2014 at 7:00 am by Amanda Andonian

What an action-packed episode! We had vans falling off of bridges, a car chase, and even a walker slumber party. We’re back to the real meat of the story in The Walking Dead, namely Carol and Daryl tracking down Beth and discovering the horrible prison/hospital from Hell.

SPOILERS AHEAD

Seeing Carol and Daryl work together was truly delightful. They’re so totally in sync with each other most of the time that it’s incredibly entertaining to watch them talk strategy and clear out an area of walkers together. I especially loved their conversation in the car as they discussed whether it would be better to run the Grady Hospital car off the road, or continue to follow it to its final destination. Unfortunately, it’s not all fun and games with the two of them. Carol still has a lot on her chest that she feels she needs to get out in the open, and Daryl himself is struggling with the reality of being a survivor, in more ways than one.

First off, Carol’s exile from the group. When we saw Rick send her packing, Carol seemingly took it in stride and accepted his decision without fighting it too much. In this episode, however, we saw how much Rick’s rejection hurt her, and how leaving really was incredibly hard for Carol. When she sees the fire at the prison, she immediately heads back to help. Even though she knows that they may not want her there, she can’t turn her back on the others when she thinks they’re in danger. Despite being turned out, she follows them to make sure they’re okay and to help them survive.

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Those flashbacks of Carol tracking the others, burying Lizzie and Mica, staging the attack on Terminus, not only show us how hard Carol has become, but how far she’s come in such a short amount of time. She’s been fighting to keep it together for everyone else’s sake and safety, and the constant feeling of having to keep moving and keep fighting has worn her down so much that it seems she doesn’t quite know what she’s fighting for anymore, beyond putting off the inevitable for as long as possible. Carol has seen so many die and buried so many bodies, she claims to have given up on trying to save anyone anymore. Of course, the pursuit of Beth puts the lie to that, as well as her insistence on saving Noah later, but it’s still heartbreaking to see Carol so close to hopelessness.

Even though most of the focus was on Carol and her journey, we also learned a lot about Daryl, not the least of which his own struggles with who he is in this new world. For Daryl, it’s a relief to have Carol back in the group, and he does the best he can to show her that bygones are bygones. While it might be difficult for her to accept the things she’s had to do in order to survive, Daryl sees each new day as a chance to start over and do better. Carol’s observation that he’s become a man now shows just how far he’s come. He’s no longer the angry redneck with more muscles than brains, and he hasn’t been for a long time. The fact that he can still see the good in people and find hope in even the most hopeless situations is a testament to that.

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The best part of the episode, however, is how well Carol and Daryl handle each increasingly dire situation. There’s a herd of walkers in the way? No problem! Let’s light some shit on fire and distract them. A walker mom and daughter freak out Carol? That’s okay, Daryl can handle it! They’re trapped in a van with dozens of walkers just outside? Well then, it’s time to drive it off a bridge! No matter what’s happening, the two of them make split second decisions together in such a way that you’d think they could read each others’ minds. Their relationship is probably my favorite of the entire series because they’re so perfectly in tune, but they’re not what you’d expect when you picture “BFFs in the apocalypse.”

What this episode also did a great job with was keeping the action coming while also giving Carol and Daryl plenty of quiet moments to work through their issues. They keep on the move, sidestep a lot of danger, but still find time to have a few heart-to-hearts here and there. I’m also loving that we’re just that much closer to the rest of the group staging a rescue mission for Beth and Carol, which is really all we want to see at this point. Considering how battle-tested Rick and the others are, the upcoming siege on the hospital is going to be one serious death match. At the same time, Dawn and her officers are pretty well armed, if not as experienced in fighting large groups of people. Still, they’re much more well rested and have a lot more resources. Rick and the gang may just have their work cut out for them.

What did you think of last night? Is Carol going to pull through? Will Rick and the others succeed in saving her and Beth? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!

“Consumed” – A

The Walking Dead, Season 5 Episode 6, “Consumed,” aired on AMC November 16th, 2014.

You can follow Amanda on Twitter at @reiko516 for more geek news.

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