Walking Dead Reviews – Season 4 Ep. 9: After
Spoilers for The Walking Dead –
So much for the prison, now a smoldering, zombie filled mess. I’m nowhere near as sentimental about it as I am the prison home in the comics, so watching Michonne navigate the last of its zombie traps and mercy stab Hershel’s head is enough of a goodbye for me.
Rick should be incredibly proud of his son. Carl’s impatience with his own dad’s weakness, and the weakness shown in a dead man’s letter, is a sign that he’s growing into a strong man, someone who will survive. If you’re a Carl hater, sorry, I’m just not with you. Chandler Riggs is carrying himself with a swagger in these early scenes that’s turning him into one of my favorite characters. He gets overconfident and lets a few zombies get way too close, but survives, and carries that overconfidence into an angry verbal tirade against his seemingly ineffective father. He says the kind of things we’ve all said in the heat of the moment, and later intensely regretted. Does his injured, exhausted, nearly comatose dad Rick actually hear the tantrum through his stupor? We don’t know yet, but if you love the character you hope not. The most tension comes during a scene in poor (most likely dead) Sam’s room when Carl again comes way too close to a walker for comfort. You almost have to suspend disbelief to accept that he makes it out of that without a single bite or a scratch, but he does.
Hot damn does Michonne ever clean up nice! Her dream/flashback sequence doesn’t add a lot of new information, but does help bring to life for the viewer, what she’s lost. She also boosts the episode’s zombie kill count when she takes out her frustrations on a whole field of them, that weren’t even after her, and were in fact acting as her camouflage. If you wanted to tell me both her and Carl were either knowingly or unknowingly projecting anger that they felt at themselves, I would believe you. Both break down in tears by the end, as they attempt to reconcile with both the living and the dead. The events of the episode bring all three characters featured, Carl, Rick and Michonne, together by the end, with two of the simplest of old forgotten things: a knock at the door, and the line “it’s for you.” I laughed out loud.