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No “Dead Weight” – The Walking Dead Review [SPOILERS]

Posted on November 24, 2013 at 10:29 pm by Amanda Andonian

All’s well that ends well, right? Not on The Walking Dead! Last week, we saw the Governor reunited with his old friend and comrade Martinez, and this week we see whether the Governor has truly changed for the better and can fall in line. Not caught up quite yet? Check out our short and sweet spoiler-free review:

Spoiler-Free Recap, “Dead Weight” – B+
Though the episode gets off to a slow start, it quickly escalates in the second half. Joining Martinez’s group, the Governor has to prove that he can pull his own weight. But in the face of danger on every side, the group only barely hanging on to survival, it’s all that the Governor can do just to make sure that his new family is safe. His solution to the problem proves that there’s no keeping this Governor down.

Final Spoiler Warning!

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The big question from last week was whether or not the Governor had actually turned over a new leaf and become a better man. “Live Bait” managed a masterful stroke by turning the evil Governor into a man who we could actually feel empathy and pity for. Having been taken in by Lilly, Megan, and Tara, it seemed that the Governor had found a new family to give him hope and something to live for. Martinez sees this too, and takes that as a sign that the psychopath is gone.

Of course, that apparent change of heart did not last for long. Not only is Martinez a witness to the atrocities that the Governor committed, he’s also not the type of leader that the Governor can get behind. Martinez is sloppy, he doesn’t take security seriously, and he’s too trusting, as evidenced by his ignominious death by golf club. It’s almost too bad that Martinez has to go, but the Governor was never the sort of man to follow others. After seeing the lax manner in which Martinez runs his camp, the Governor decides to take matters into his own hands.

Even as he cuts a bloody swath through the camp’s potential leaders, the Governor actually seems to be struggling with his power grabbing. Feeding Martinez to the walkers in the pit, he keeps saying, “I don’t want to do it,” almost as if he’s begging Martinez to understand. It’s a strange dichotomy—he obviously doesn’t want to go back to the way he was, but he also recognizes that “The Governor” may be the only person who can keep Megan and Lilly alive.

At one point, he does try to get away with his new family to strike out on their own, but it becomes clear almost immediately that there’s nowhere for the Governor and the others to go that will be safe, at least not in such small numbers. The roads are filled with walkers, and other human beings are as much of a threat. The Governor knows that, and so he makes the decision to kill Pete, enlist Mitch, and take over the camp. It essentially becomes New Woodbury in a matter of days, but the peace only lasts so long. When a single walker gets through their walls, threatening Megan’s life, the Governor returns fully. Next time, it’s another showdown with the prison.

After half a season, it seems as though we’re right back where we started. The prison group is surviving and getting by, and now the Governor is coming to try and take it all away. Will he succeed in taking over the prison this time, or will he lose his make-shift community once again? We’ll find out next week in the mid-season finale!

“Dead Weight” – B+

The Walking Dead: Season 4 Episode 7, “Dead Weight” aired November 24th, 2013 on AMC.

You can follow Amanda on Twitter at @reiko516.

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