And just like that, the third season of AMC’s The Walking Dead comes to an end. It was a pretty heavy-duty episode, with a lot of moving parts. Some things worked well, some disappointed, and a couple are left in the wind, waiting for season four.
Let’s start with one of the things I liked least about the episode: Andrea and Milton. In the show’s cold open, the Governor beats on Milton for a moment, then drags him into Andrea’s holding/torture cell, and demands that Milton kill her. Instead, Milton tries to take out the Governor and gets stabbed in the gut for his trouble. The Governor leaves him to zombify and kill Andrea, echoing Merle’s torture of Glenn at the beginning of the season.
So far, so good, right? Things go downhill pretty quick after that. Milton isn’t quite dead, and he tells Andrea that he dropped some pliers on the ground that she can use to escape before he turns into a zombie and eats her face. Then we get a whole episode of her wasting time and the show trying to sell it as tension. Let’s be very clear about this: Andrea could have survived very easily, all she had to do is either shut up, or work while she talked. Instead, she droned on and one as the clock slowly peeled off the seconds. In the end, she died because she was an idiot (and had incredibly poor dexterity in her feet).
Add this to the fact that Andrea was already the show’s least sympathetic character (somewhere below the zombies, Shane, and the Governor), and whatever stakes The Walking Dead was trying to milk out of this predicament just didn’t work.
Luckily, that plot was only about a third of an otherwise very solid season finale. The big movement in the story involved the Governor’s attack on the prison, and it was pretty awesome. After a fake-out at the beginning of the show, which I’m guessing fooled no one, the Governor rolls in with all his army, guns blazing. They blow up a couple of watch towers, shoot a bunch of zombies, and generally have a good time of it. When it appears that the prison is abandoned, they decided to start crawling through the darkened bowels of the place, to their peril.
I really liked how this segment worked. We start off with the governor’s people looking unstoppable. They roll in with tons of people and firepower, but choose to abandon these advantages and venture inside. Once there, labyrinthine corridors, low light, and lots of creepiness combine to freak everyone out, just in time for Rick to spring his trap. Between the zombies and the defenders, the Governor’s forces are completely routed.
And then he gets even crazier than usual.
Furious, the Governor orders his piecemeal army back to the prison, and when they balk, he simply kills all but Martinez and that other guy whose name I don’t know. It’s shocking and brutal, and there is only one survivor. In a few minutes, the Governor loses pretty much every advantage he has. And when Rick, Daryl, and Michonne press the counter-attack, they manage to get the remains of Woodbury integrated into a single group at the prison. It’s not the big showdown I expected, but I’m quite happy with the direction it took.
In the end, the Governor is still out there, and probably more dangerous than ever. I’m not terribly surprised that this wasn’t resolved, but I’m also not completely satisfied with where it leaves the Woodbury arc either. Regardless, I’m planning to go into season four with an open mind.
That leaves the last plot point, and the one I liked the most: Carl shooting the scared kid from Woodbury. One thing that I really liked in the comics is how Carl developed from an everyday kid into a pretty scary little survivor, willing and capable of doing pretty much anything to stay alive. This came through brilliantly in “Welcome to the Tombs”.
What I really liked about the setup is that I sort of agreed with Carl. They were being attacked, and this kid runs toward them with a shotgun. The kid makes like he wants to surrender and hand over his gun, but why doesn’t he just drop it? Why is he holding it in such a way that you think maybe he’s going to try to get one last shot off?
I was yelling for Carl to shoot, and really didn’t expect him to. His decision, cold rationalization, and Hershel’s horror over the whole thing combines to make the episode’s most interesting moment by far. I’m really eager to see how this shakes out next season.
And that wraps up season three of AMC’s The Walking Dead. Make sure to check back next week, where me and some of the other writers at Bricks of the Dead are going to have a round-table discussion of the season as a whole and maybe a few other related topics.
AHAHAHAH YEAAAAAAHHH.. Andrea got bit, good episode.
I think this is going to be the overall reaction. There was definitely some housecleaning this season, with the show’s two worst characters (Andrea and Lori) gone. Hopefully ghost Lori is also gone.
Wow, holy crap, that episode was….mixed
1. Tyrese is back with the group! HALLELUIJAH!
2.I had mixed feelings about andrea being bit. I called it so I was happy when she was bit, but at the same time, I didn’t care.
3.Michonne actually cried! Breaking news! We have character development.
It was very mixed. I think it ended up on the positive side, but the Andrea thing could have been done a hell of a lot better.
Wow. Not sure where to start with this one! I loved it however I do still have a few issues.
I thought a major character would be killed off, but didn’t see it being Andrea. As a big fan of the comic, I just presumed she’d still be alive. Although after how bad a character she has been recently I’m kind of glad.
1) Where is the cliff hanger? It was pretty much a happy ending and doesn’t make me go “ohhh I can’t wait for season 4”. The season 2 ending did it! All we needed was a little clip of the Governor and his (now very small) crew having a chat saying they’ll regroup before getting revenge.
2) If Andrea spent more time trying to free herself than looking at Milton she’d be alive. Just saying.
3) Why didn’t they just take over Woodbury? They have the crew, it looks a safer place than the prison (walker wise) and they have more numbers now.
4) How old is Carl? Is he going through his grumpy teenager phase already? He had 2 badass moments (killing the kid and telling Dad what for) then sulked off!
5) Another season in the prison? Really? I’m thinking budget cuts mean they need to keep the same set!
6) And this one may just be me – am I seeing the same zombies over and over again? I swear I keep seeing a couple of the same zombie actors looking pretty much the same over and over again, and I’m pretty sure they’ve been killed before!
With no death of the Governor, Andrea dead and them all back ‘safe n sound’ in the prison I think they’ve really pushed this finale (and this season) away from the comic. This is probably a good thing as it will stop me from spoiling things!
It was good but could have been better. Personally I’m concerned where season 4 is going to go. The prison is going to turn into the farm if they stay there too long. And that was boring as hell!
I kind of liked how they didn’t go back to the Governor for some sort of stinger moment. We know he’s coming back.
As far as the prison being like the farm, maybe. I think the prison is an inherently more interesting place. It’s creepy, and they can do a lot of cool stuff with is (fortifications, trying to rebuild society with farming and whatnot, etc).
I don’t know. There is that danger, but I’m not too worried about it just yet.
What a show. or What a show? Puzzled with questions still. Even know that Andrea was a core character her and Milt’s death seemed rushed. I think they tried to pack to much in and forgot they still had to end the season on this one.
#1. I was very upset the the Governor didn’t show back up, really?Really? What cliffhanger? /Question 1 Agreed.
#2. But she’s dead now and the show will be better for it.
#3. The Governor knows Woodbury better than than Rick’s group. Not to mention Gov’s group got spooked fairly easy inside the prison, that could work in their favor. I actually thought that Rick’s group left and went over to WoodBury. If they have decided to stay at the prison I better see more traps and fixed wall with more exploration of the prison. And with all the elderly the zombies have more snackables there.
#4. Carl is a brat (not the word I wanted to use). Michonne needs to mother him up and slap him around. Shut it Rick, you suck as a father. Next question.
#5. I think with the highest rating on TV of that hour budget is most likely not the issue. I think they’ll stay there for only a couple more shows (governor) and move on after mass death.
#6. My Wife and I have noticed the same thing. Maybe they just like those guys/gals (its hard to find a good dead persons (I say person because I’m PC).. (not)
I feel shafted for this being a season finale. Left with really only 1 question. Where’s the Governor? I have a lot of Why questions but those I get.
I don’t feel shafted. I think a lot of the episode worked, but they spent a lot of this season trying to do something with Andrea, and it just didn’t work. She was a terribly written character, and – while I can appreciate trying to redeem her – a lot of it was just a waste of time.
4) How old is Carl? Is he going through his grumpy teenager phase already? He had 2 badass moments (killing the kid and telling Dad what for) then sulked off!
“#4. Carl is a brat (not the word I wanted to use). Michonne needs to mother him up and slap him around. Shut it Rick, you suck as a father. Next question.”
Wow…I really think you both are missing a significant aspect of the show. How are you expecting Carl to behave in this situation? His entire world is gone and he shot his own mother. I think it would be a bit unrealistic to expect him to be a calm adolescent. I think his behavior is rather admirable.
I think that – all things considering – Carl is adapting as well as or better than the others in the group. But at the same time, he’s getting very black and white, and resorting to violence is going to get easier and easier.
Yeah but…what’s wrong with that?
It depends on the situation. In a pure survival situation, it’s likely a benefit. If they reintegrate into some sort of society, he’s going to have a hell of a time acclimating.
Wow, huge letdown, definitely not worthy of being the season finale, not by a long shot.
They wasted almost half an episode on Andrea….AGAIN!. How hard is it to understand that her character sucks?? They could’ve covered the same thing in a couple of minutes, the scene when the governor kills milton was cool, they should’ve left it at that and then have Rick show up, find zombie Andrea and do what he has to do, that would’ve saved 10 minutes easily.
As for the rest of the episode, was I the only one who thought the ambush at the prison had a bunch of wasted opportunities? they could’ve locked them in the “catacombs”, shot their vehicle’s tires, use come explosives, molotov cocktails, anything! if the plan was just to scare them away then it was quite stupid, the only reason it sort of worked is because the governor went crazy, otherwise they could’ve just turned around and finished the job.
Regarding Woodbury, I too wondered why they didn’t take over it, but if you think about that would’ve been a bad move:
-Harder to secure, you need a lot more people that you don’t have.
-The governor knows it inside and out.
However, even though they don’t show it, I hope they at least looted the hell out of it: food, medicine,weapons, generators, you name it, they have everything they need to make the prison safer and a better place to live in.
The Carl scene was interesting, part of me thinks it was a good call, but the fact that he waited made it look more calculated/cold blooded and thus, opens the debate of wether or not he will turn into psychopath like the governor.
Overall, terrible finale, the whole time I kept checking the time, thinking about how the chance of the episode redeeming itself faded away minute by minute, and it never did.
Re: Looting Woodbury
I really hope they did too. They seemed to have a lot in the way of weapons and supplies. I wonder how much they fit on that bus that appeared to be mostly full of old people and kids.
Oh, I almost forgot, what did you guys think about the governor massacring his own people?
To me, while it was a great way to completely expose the governor for the lunatic that he is, but it also was a bit far fetched (not that he tried to do it, but the outcome):
-There were about what, 15 people left? all armed to the teeth, yet they all run when the governor starts shooting, I find it very hard to believe that no one shot back.
-Martinez: based on the arrow on the arrow on the doorstop episode and the conversation he had with Daryl, it doesn’t seem like he would stand by and let that happen, although that’s subjective, but it still bothered me a little.
It was a little too much for me. I liked the way the Governor was losing it, but it seemed like his snapping happened way too fast and all at once at the end of the season. I would have liked a more gradual build-up.
I like how they have progressed it in the tv series. I found that the Governor in the comics starts nuts and keeps going, whereas the TV version started of “nice” and then went nuts over the course of time.
So I think they have done well in expanding the Governor story when comparing TV series with comic.
Yeah, the comics version of the Governor wasn’t terribly subtle. I’ve always thought he was the weak aspect of that arc.
Oh man, I was yelling at Andrea through the screen so hard! What kind of idiot can’t talk and work at the same time??? I don’t think an episode of TWD has ever made me as rage-filled as this one.
Oh yeah, it was rage inducing.
But did it make you mad that she was wasting the episode’s time or that she would get killed? hahaha.
It made me mad that she was wasting time. It was a bad setup. Bad direction. It’s like the show was saying “Don’t worry guys, we know you hate this character. She’ll be dead soon.”
Chandler Riggs is killing it with the way he’s playing Carl. Dude’s got the badass going on, then he’s off to pout. His mother dies, the he ‘puts her down’, his father is never really there for him. He’s kinda raising himself. Taking in the world around him and applying kid logic, which means he doesn’t have all that stupid adult thinking to cloud his judgement, it’s pretty black and white for him. Best character on the show. Wonder how he’s going to deal with having kids his own age around now. He’s been treated as an adult more than a kid by everyone until he does something that reminds everyone of his age.
I liked the way it ended the season. I personally dislike the cliffhanger endings. With a bus full of elderly and young people it’s more of a challenge to the group. Will there be enough food? What happens when the older people die in their sleep?
Even when there’s a “bad” episode, it’s still better than anything on network tv.
I’m pretty impressed with Riggs as Carl here. He’s definitely giving the character some nuance, and I like where the show is taking him. Easily my favorite part of the finale.
I have to admit, it wasn’t a bad ending. The 27 deaths AMC promised was a bit disappointing, and I’m really bummed that Milton died, him being one of the few smart characters left. Still, Not bad, I’m excited for Season 4.
“I’m really bummed that Milton died”
I kind of am too. He had a bit of an arc, which was nice.
You might want to check out teefury.com, Dave.
I have to agree. This “finale” leaves me very mixed! I hated the wasted time and “development” with Andrea and Milton. It was a complete waste! My issues with those scenes were:
1)was too long and dragged out
2)was obviously a poor attempt to create the same build up as with Merle
3)The whole time the scene was on was frustrating to see her waste time, thus making it a poor attempt on suspense when also giving the obvious answer for the end result.
Other issues I had with the show, like said already, know one shot back?? I know why for the writing they did shoot back (you cant have a no name kill the Governor). But why not write it a different way? Also, was I the only one that was hoping they were going to lock them in the prison? That would have been great!
What I did like about the finale was, the effects! Though overdone due to how pointless it was after the first couple moments. I enjoyed the eye candy and sounds of the guns blazing part.
Carl, I literally clapped when he shot that kid! That kid hesitated and had a look like he was thinking of trying something. I would have done the same. Regardless of the reason (Carl does not know the kid was manipulated), that kid shot up Carl’s home. Plus that PERFECT reason Carl gave to Rick on why he killed him.
I also like that Tyrese is now with them! I have been waiting for that.
All in all, it was a good episode (I am easily entertained lol), some parts were finale worthy, others not. I think its good that we dont know where the Governor is. Puts added mystery to him and the up coming events. However, I dislike how not all that much happened this episode due to them dragging other things out too long.
Regular season episode I would give it a 8/10
For a finale episode I give it a 5/10
“Also, was I the only one that was hoping they were going to lock them in the prison?”
I thought this briefly too. That could have been really cool.
Agreed completely with you on Carl and Tyrese.
I think it’s quite obligatory that we all click this link:
Not bad. Not bad at all.
Three observations about the last episode of the Walking Dead. The first, and this goes back to season 2 as well, why oh why when you are doing a mercy killing of your friend to keep them from turning into a zombie do you use a LARGE caliber hand gun instead of something smaller!? I mean, they’ve already been ripped apart by a zombie, do you really have an idea what that caliber is going to do to them? Especially tonight, poor Michonne would not only walked out of that room deaf, but would have had Andrea goo all over her. Yuk. Second, a revolve does not eject a round after being fired. Did anyone else here the sound of brass hitting the ground? Research people, research…. And third, Andrea had some pretty manicure feet…Woodbury must have a spa somewhere we didn’t see…
My wife was all over the pedicure thing. It pissed her right off.
The execution thing is interesting. The Walking Dead is wonky about gunshots. When Rick shot in the tank, it messed him up good. Since then? Nothing.
My wife said the same thing about the pedi aswell! You know, its nice to see the mistakes that others noticed that you did not!
It’s definitely interesting what other people will pick up on. It set her right off; ruined the whole scene for her.
I dont get it. First of all, I dont get to watch the show as much as I would like. My wife hates zombie stuff and I dont have a DVR yet. But I still dont get it. Its my understanding that almost everyone is a carrier of whatever re-animates the zeds in this scenario. Therefore, if you die of anything, even if its completely unrelated to Zed activity, then you still re-animate. Thats why Carl and to shoot Lori even though she died in childbirth. But if that’s the case, then why is a bite from a zed a death sentence? If I get a non-lethal bite or scratch from a walker then I should be fine. It doesn’t infect me with anything that Im not already infected with. In order to re-animate then I have to die and if the bite doesn’t kill me then whats the bid deal. . The only thing I can think of is that somehow the virus, or whatever it is, mutates once its host does and the mutated strain in itself becomes lethal.
My understanding is that the bite itself is lethal. There’s some sort of nasty stuff in it. You get infected and die. And since everyone who dies gets back, you get back up.
But the “virus” itself isnt lethal because it everyone is a carrier. Thats why people who die like Lori and Milton re-animate. I seem to remember an episode wher the chrachters discussed this. But once someone dies, even if its from some reason unrelated to zeds, the virus transmitted by their bite is now lethal?
Right. I think that the zombies’ bite has some other sort of nastiness in it. Just some sort of toxic stuff that kills you.
OK, my thoughts before I read Daves review or any comments.
1. I actually thought they had abandoned the prison and Carl was sulking because of that, I even thought that the attack in the prison was the two amature Woodbury groups getting spooked and attacking each other for a second. So this worked really well for me.
2. Were Maggie and Glen trying to hit anyone? Or were they just spooking them and shooting over heads? Because they are really really bad shots if they were shooting to kill!
3. The Governor assasinating his army, there goes his major threat advantage, the prison group still need to be on their toes, but they aren’t facing the overwhelming odds that they were before… I’m still mindful of what the Governor shows up in the final attack in the comics though… so don’t think for a second the Governor is no longer a threat at all 🙂
4. The intergration of Woodbury into the prison group was an interesting way of finishing Woodbury story arc off… only the Governor and his two cowardly minions left…. if the “leader” of my group started shooting the group… I would probably have a “fight” response and gun down said leader… who is to say he doesn’t turn his gun onto me in the next instant?
5. Andrea, was her own down fall in the end. Stop jibber jabbing and concentrate. Such a fall from grace from the comic book Andrea… I thought they may of saved the character towards the end… but they didn’t so had to kill her off.
Season four looking forward to:
1. How much longer they will be at the prison, and how they are going to survive with all those people from Woodbury added. They could potentially do a fast forward between seasons, have everyone at the prison repaired, farming, and living happily and then the Governor attacks again in the season opener and destroys everything and makes them hit the road again.
3. I like where they are going with Carl, be interested to see how that progresses.
Just interested to see where we go next in Season 4. I’ve read the comics a few times, so know what happens in future of group there, so be interesting to see what happens on the show.
Heh, bit of a thesis, but it was a season final… off to read Daves review and comments now 🙂
“They could potentially do a fast forward between seasons, have everyone at the prison repaired, farming, and living happily and then the Governor attacks again in the season opener and destroys everything and makes them hit the road again.”
This sounds awesome to me.