Editor’s note: this review of AMC’s The Walking Dead will contain some spoilers. I will try to keep them to a minimum, but they’re be there nonetheless. You’ve been warned.
So at what point do you think you would start losing basic language skills in a long-term survival situation? I’m no expert, but I’m thinking it would take a hell of a long time, especially for an adult. Now, how much time has passed on The Walking Dead. I’m no expert, but I’m thinking a couple of years. What would it take for a community of people to devolve in language skills in only a couple of years?
Let me go ahead and answer that question directly: bad writing. It would take bad, lazy writing for that to happen.
That said, the way the trash people talk is really only a small part of an otherwise pretty solid episode of The Walking Dead. We have, as usual, a few different story threads here. Let’s start with Rick’s group, since we’re already talking about them
We pick up largely where we left of in the previous episode. The trash people have captures Rick and company, and want some sort of ransom. Rick offers an alliance instead, and a brief scrum breaks out. In the end, the trash people stand down, and Rick has to prove himself by facing off against a zombie covered in knives and wearing a helmet (I can’t believe AMC’s press site didn’t have a picture of this guy).
It was exactly as cool as it sounds; clearly the highlight of the episode. Rick prevails, but not before impaling his hand and cutting open his leg. He doesn’t seem to concerned about infection, nor does anyone else, although the leader of the trash people isn’t too keen to get blood on her.
They end up agreeing to split the Saviors’ stuff after defeating them, providing Rick can get the trash people an adequate supply of guns.
Meanwhile, back in The Kingdom, tensions are escalating with the Saviors. Richard is once again engaging with one of the goons, and this time gets Morgan and Benjamin involved too. He’s clearly trying to stir things up, and it’s heavily implied that Ezekiel knows this.
Richard then recruits Darryl with the promise of taking the fight to the Saviors. Everything seems like it’s going well until Richard accidentally tells Darryl that he plans to setup Carol to be killed to start his war. Darryl is less than enthusiastic about this plan, and the two part company after the standard The Walking Dead style fist fight and gun/bow pointing.
This scene does give Darryl some necessary information that allows him to finally reconnect with Carol. That makes for a nice scene, with both parties clearly emotional and Carol deeply conflicted about her separation from the world. Darryl gets the opportunity to bring her back when she asked if everyone is okay. He considers this, but decides to lie and let her continue to have her little bit of piece.
I really loved the scene, but I’m curious to see how The Walking Dead is going to move forward. Carol is one of the strongest characters on the show. Keeping her on her own is interesting in the short term, but I doubt she’ll be sidelined too long. She’s just too fun to see kicking ass and taking names.
The episode ends with a lot of things changing. Darryl is heading back to the Hilltop for some reason. Morgan has been tasked with convincing Ezekiel to fight. Daryl and company need to get the trash people guns. Tara is clearly conflicted about telling the group about the amazon women’s fishing village. And Richard is likely up to some other sort of shenanigans to force the war to start.
I’m surprised I’m saying this, but it seems like The Walking Dead is moving in the right direction. It’s just a shame about the trash people’s dialog. That was really, really dumb.