Monday, March 19, 2012

Why the Second Season of "The Walking Dead" Kinda Sucked

The second season of “The Walking Dead” is over. Some would say sadly, others would say thankfully. I’m a little bit in between for the time being. After a six-episode first season of the series, I like many other viewers, salivated over the prospects of a 13 episode second season…and also like many, I was left wanting more. Granted that the show’s ultra-creepy season premiere and jaw-dropping finale were great, but everything else in between felt kind of…well, flat.

From this point forward, SPOILERS AHEAD. So if you haven’t seen any recent episodes, read all this at your own risk.

So, here we are. The group is without sanctuary (though the prison is seen looming in the background as our group scrambles to figure out what to do next), Shane, Dale, and others are deader than shit, while Andrea is trapped in the woods and saved by Michonne (making her first appearance on the show fucking finally). Like I said, all that and the show’s beginning were awesome, but just about everything else in between was either flat or just plain drawn out. Maybe it’s because show-runner Frank Darabont got shit-canned by AMC (and as a result, two of his biggest supporters in actors Jon Bernthal and Jeffrey DeMunn, who played Shane and Dale respectively, got slaughtered, even though anyone who has ever read the comic knows that by this point Shane is way past dead to fucking begin with) and maybe it’s because with all the budget-slashing there had to be more talking and less zombie-bashing, ya know…because filming people talking is much less expensive than bloody special effects and makeup.

Whatever the case may be, the one thing that irked the shit out of me about this season of “The Walking Dead” is what the writing staff has done to the women of the group. Lori is unbelievably irritating and just a flat out cunt (like she was in the comic granted) while I pray for Carol’s death with each passing episode. Andrea, who was such an awesomely-written, strong-willed character in the comics, has been degraded to being a chick that doesn’t know what the fuck she’s doing. We saw flashes of her strong character in the first season of the show, before harping on the death of her sister…the sister she let come back as a walker so she could shoot her. What did Andrea in the comic do when her sister was bitten and killed? She blew her head off right away so she WOULDN’T come back as a walker. Yeah…the writing staff has fucked Andrea up to the point of no return. I can forgive turning Dale into a bleeding heart, Maggie into a clingy twat, or even making Herschell less of a douche bag and even kind of likeable, but seeing what they’ve done with Andrea just makes me all kind of pissy.

What are we to do with the women of “The Walking Dead”? Well if Michonne is done proper justice, we’ll have a bad ass character and one of the absolute iconic faces of “The Walking Dead”. And speaking of iconic faces, I’m dying to see the first appearance of The Governor. One of the greatest villains in the history of the comic book medium, the existence of The Governor and his crew has been hinted at aplenty, and for those who have read the comics before, know that the collision course between the group and The Governor was THE game changer for everyone involved, and insured that nothing would ever be the same again for anyone.

Now what I did like from this season was the final confrontation between Rick and Shane. It was a long time coming and inevitable, and Rick’s display of take no prisoners “it’s either him or me” mentality is the Rick I’ve been dying to see since the show first premiered. I’ll actually kind of miss Shane because Jon Bernthal played him so damn well, and took an otherwise hated comic book character and made him sympathetic and actually likeable. The zombie makeup and effects were also spectacular, particularly the effects work done with the zombie chewing his way through the car windshield on Lori’s crashed car and slowly destroying his own face. That was fucking incredible. Oh, and Daryl Dixon is probably the best character on the show, he’s the funniest and most cheer-worthy TV racist in television history since Archie fucking Bunker.

All things considered, I’m generally looking forward the third season of “The Walking Dead”. With 16 (!) episodes slated for next season, here’s hoping for some more action and some much less fucking TALKING! I’m all for drama in a post-apocalyptic zombie world (which is what made the comic book so fucking good in the first place) but it stifles any of the horror, action, or sense of impending doom, which is what the show should be all about in the first fucking place.

In the end though folks, we’re going to have to wait a while to see what develops…

…but as long as I see Lori and Carol get eaten alive I’m okay with pretty much whatever the fuck happens next.

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