[TV] The Walking Dead Season 8 (Careful there will be Spoilers!)

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  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    I can't remember if we had a separate thread for Fear the Walking Dead, and I couldn't find one in the first 8 pages or so. Anyway, this last season has continued to be excellent. Last night's ep was probably the best of the series, and ranks up among the best of TWD's best episodes and was a nice reminder that this is indeed a zombie show. While lately TWD has gone further toward the more "comic" side of the fence, and often the zombies seem like an afterthought, FTWD has shifted more toward the "realistic" side of the zombie-pocalypse, and it's been paying off for them. Not so much realism in terms of events, but with characters making difficult choices and stepping up (or not). This was a great emotional/growth ep for both Alycia and Ofelia, both of whom many viewers probably thought would die in season 1.
  • naednek
    naednek
    GT Moderator
    I hated this last episode. Especially the end. The whole running out of air thing and how Alycia was predictable unimaginative, and totally unrealistic. Then the seperation part. Ya we've seen that before with her brother.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    Fear is just as frustrating to watch as Walking Dead. I liked the character building of Alycia because she has been woefully underdeveloped pretty much the entire run of the show so it was nice to see an episode where her character had some development. That being said, the suffocation due to lack of air was ridiculous. It's not an airtight room in deep space. Even if the fan was not circulating air, there is no way air would simply run out to the point of killing everyone.
    Also, the whole thing with Nick and psycho brother was colossally stupid. What exactly was their brilliant plan to rescue people? All I saw was two idiots going on a joyride through zombietown and then getting stuck in the helicopter where they were sure to die if not for the cavalry coming to rescue them.

    I'll keep watching because as of now, I do find Fear is the more interesting show. That may change once Walking Dead starts up again in a few weeks where there is all out war going on. The thing is, when Fear is good, it's really good and believable, but then it all gets unraveled by ridiculous plot twists or unbelievably stupid and illogical actions by the characters.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member edited October 6
    Hmmm - well I guess I bought the suffocation plot. I thought the idea was there were just way too many people in the confined space, so people would die from carbon dioxide poisoning. I suppose it did seem like there weren't that many people inside given it was supposed to be ALL the Indian AND farm survivors, and of course it was convenient she was the only one who survived exactly long enough. And then I did think it was odd she wouldn't just stay in the cage WHERE ALL THE WEAPONS WERE given the air had come back, and wait for rescue which she knew was coming. The part I laughed at was when she did the "calculation" and came up with the 2 hours number lol.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    After last night's episode, Fear has completely fallen off the rails. There is a death of a character that pretty much came out of nowhere and was so anti-climatic it registered a big fat zero on the emotion scale. Plus, Madison spent so much effort, almost to obsession, in bringing her family together it is ludicrous that she would be so matter of fact in letting her kids just go their separate ways. I don't know where this show can go now.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Spoiler-ish on Fear. I figure no one really cares anyway lol.

    Yeah that was so irritating and like Jimmy said, it did zero for me emotionally as much as I was starting to like her. I had actually thought they might do something like this, but then I thought no writer would be that annoying. But they did it!

    That actress is hilarious btw, they interviewed her on Talking Dead and she was a riot. Apparently she was like that on set, too, always grabbing Madison's boobs and such. I loved that she kept shipping Troy and the brother, I've been saying that for a while now too.

    I guess ultimately this is what sets TWD apart from Fear for me, personally. No matter how far TWD jumps the shark, I actually care about the characters. Fear has had better plot elements at times, but I still don't really care much about any of them.


    P.S. What's up with Fichonne? (Fake Michonne). Is she gonna be the cross-over character, I heard something about some sort of crossover.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    Ugh, if that is the crossover, it's pretty lame. A fringe character we have no attachment to?

    I think you and I are the only ones watching Fear. LOL.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Ugh, if that is the crossover, it's pretty lame. A fringe character we have no attachment to?

    I think you and I are the only ones watching Fear. LOL.

    I think literally it's just the two of us in the entire nation!!!!
  • naednek
    naednek
    GT Moderator
    rittchard wrote: »
    Ugh, if that is the crossover, it's pretty lame. A fringe character we have no attachment to?

    I think you and I are the only ones watching Fear. LOL.

    I think literally it's just the two of us in the entire nation!!!!

    Umm guys...
    naednek wrote: »
    I hated this last episode. Especially the end. The whole running out of air thing and how Alycia was predictable unimaginative, and totally unrealistic. Then the seperation part. Ya we've seen that before with her brother.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member edited October 12
    Lol, oh whoops! Didn't mean to disrespect. Okay there are three of us hardcore types.

    You know, one thing that I can't figure out is where in the hell they are in the Southwest now. The ranch seems to be in the U.S. but the dam is clearly in Mexico. I can't tell if they are even anywhere near California now. So, just like the original show, the sense of geography in relation to time and distance is totally messed up.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    So.... that finale, WTF lol.

    (Many Spoilers Follow, watch out you other 2 people!!!)

    It seemed like they just wanted to clean house so they can do something different next season. Hopefully that bodes well, but it's also a bit aggravating. Troy was really starting to grow on me, and without him, they basically toasted the entire set of characters from this season, feels like a waste. Well I guess Native American Sniper survived but he was pretty boring for me.

    My favorite line of possibly the whole series was when they find out Alycia is with the Proctors and then Madison (or was it someone else?) is like "but that doesn't make sense!" and I burst out laughing so hard. Cuz it was really totally a random plot point. She got some good scenes out of it, but it was so ridiculous.

    Overall this was still the best season of the show, and midway through I thought they were doing pretty well. I suspect something happened internally with the producers (not sure on the timing) but the last few episodes felt like a "let's clean this shit up and move on" - some cool moments/scenes, but just all over the place.

    Anyway, bring on the real show next Sunday!!! I actually signed up to go to the live showing at the Greek Theater, but I probably won't end up going. It's like a 5 or 6 hour event, and parking/driving around there is just horrendous. I would love to see the cast live but I just don't know if I have the energy for a full day of crazy crowds.


  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    Yes, something behind the scenes did happen. One of the co-creators left the show and Scott Gimple is coming on as one of the producers. It's all detailed in this interview (spoilers abound!):

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/fear-walking-dead-showrunner-season-3-finale-1048507

    I thought it was a decent finale and clearly a massive reset to Madison's world. The Proctor doesn't seem like much of a compelling villain though. He's kind of an extremely lightweight version of Negan and was more annoying than anything. The Christmas dinner scenes felt so contrived and tacked on which made them totally unnecessary.

    The show has a lot of problems, just like the original show does, but overall I do like Fear because they do try to be different but it continues to frustrate me that both shows have a terrible lack of control over pace, logic and character motivations.

  • naednek
    naednek
    GT Moderator
    I'm just glad they didn't go cheap with destroying the dam.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    And we're back. You guys watch the Season 8 premiere yet?

    Without any spoilers, I again am completely blown away by how lazy and illogical the writers of the show have become over the years. I fail to see what the point is of all the random time jumping. Artistic expression? Trying to be clever? Whatever it is, they need to stop because it's getting distracting.

    There is a big scene where, based on everything that has happened to Rick and his group over the past two seasons, you'd expect him to behave a certain way-- shoot first and ask questions later. However the big scene never played out that way and it was painful to watch because it was completely unbelievable.

    And of course, it wouldn't be Walking Dead if one character does something so patently stupid at the end to put him/herself in mortal peril.

    I'll keep watching, for reasons I cannot quite figure out, but it was not a great first episode of the season. It has to get better...right?
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    ...and after a FWTD hiatus, we are back with the "real" show!

    Season 8 - Episode 100 started off with a bang and a lot of moving pieces, as well as a flash-forward-ish element that was perhaps purposefully unclear. Honestly I ended up a bit underwhelmed, probably because it had been hyped so much everywhere I frequent, and I really felt like they should have gone with a 2 hour (or at least 90 minute) premiere. It felt like it was an unfinished product missing the second half. Clearly they had to work around the 2-hour Talking Dead post show, and having the episode be extended would have forced them to reduce the celebration.

    I felt like there were just too many characters running around all over the place, plus the time jumping (?), so that you just didn't get enough footage of each person in the framework of the "war". Not to mention in some scenes it seemed like they were dealing with a particular moment - like the attack would be TOMORROW. But the way people were porting from spot to spot it seemed like scenes may be taking place over the course of days or even longer? Maybe I should just take my own advice and not overthink things.

    I'll reserve further judgment on the core plot until I see the next episode or two. But what about that flash forward? On the aftershow it seemed like they were talking about it being far in the future. But judging by Judith (and Carl), it seemed like it might be more along the lines of just a year or two. When we first saw the footage last year people were referring to it as "Old Man Rick" but watching it last night, he really wasn't much older. He just had a fuller beard and a limp/cane that could have been from any injury. So what was the point? Was it a fantasy of what he'd like things to be like, or were they showing us an actual moment from the future? Frankly I'm not sure this technique works well on a show like this. Similar to FTWD's artsy drowning sequence, it seems like they are trying too hard when they really don't need to. There are plenty of characters and unexplored story arcs to go around; they just don't need this added dimension IMHO.

    All in all I was a bit disappointed, but I say that even though I was completely riveted while watching "in the moment."
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    And we're back. You guys watch the Season 8 premiere yet?

    Without any spoilers, I again am completely blown away by how lazy and illogical the writers of the show have become over the years. I fail to see what the point is of all the random time jumping. Artistic expression? Trying to be clever? Whatever it is, they need to stop because it's getting distracting.

    There is a big scene where, based on everything that has happened to Rick and his group over the past two seasons, you'd expect him to behave a certain way-- shoot first and ask questions later. However the big scene never played out that way and it was painful to watch because it was completely unbelievable.

    And of course, it wouldn't be Walking Dead if one character does something so patently stupid at the end to put him/herself in mortal peril.

    I'll keep watching, for reasons I cannot quite figure out, but it was not a great first episode of the season. It has to get better...right?

    Ha! Just saw this as I was composing mine. But definitely agree with everything you said!
  • Bullwinkle
    Bullwinkle
    GT Member edited October 24
    The only shot we saw of Judith in the show was from present time right as Rick was heading off to war. She was referenced in the fast forward as the one who put on Weird Al (by Carl, who we only saw from behind). Rick's hair had thinned and was grey. Michonne did look the same (or even younger), but, as the saying goes, "black don't crack." This was definitely forward in time a few years. However, I think it's a fantasy, because we also see shots of Rick with red eyes, filled with tears. Someone doesn't make it, and Rick cracks.

    Carl is of to college in the real world. I know they keep saying he can do both, and maybe so, but maybe the kill him. Judith doesn't need to stick around, really, does she? Actually, I'm betting yes, mostly because it seems like a smart business decision to shoot for L'il Ass-Kicker: The Series in 2023. Michonne?

    Here's what I predict actually goes down. All of those people are in Alexandria. I bet Rick returns to find Alexandria in flames. So in flames that it's unlikely anyone got out. But they got out. Rick just won't find them until February.

    Personally, I liked the fast forward stuff, because it got me wondering and predicting (which will likely be wrong, given my track record with this show), but I can see why some found it pretentious.

    As for the rest of the ep, while I agree it felt like we were playing catch up through most of the episode, by the end, I'd figured out what the pieces were to the plan. The end result was that Negan's camp is now overrun with walkers. These seemed to be what it was all about, but I still don't get why Rick didn't shut the hell up and just shoot Negan in the face.

    Speaking of shutting the hell up, did we need three speeches before the big fight? I can see why it happened. Rick has to speak, he's the defacto leader and the star! King Thespian has to speak, he's a fellow leader and anyway you just try to keep an actor from speechifying. And Maggie is the real leader. But man, there were just too many words that said nothing at all.

    However, I enjoyed Rick's pledge of loyalty to Maggie afterwords, so maybe it was worth it?

    As for the zombie timing crew. First of all, how old would that Twizzler have been? Ugh. Secondly, so, what, these guys are walking in a circle on some loop in Virginia and they don't wander off of it at all? I know this was the horde that Rick and Michonne did some car slicing with, so it does seem like they're corralled, but does it really seem likely to expect walkers to be punctual? I don't know what Fistbump Notcop was thinking (maybe the stale Twizzler fried her brain).

    I can't believe they killed the RV! That thing has been around longer than Rick!

    Bonus prediction: Next week we'll get to see Negan's meeting.

    Alright, I know people are angry about Gabriel's stupidity. Not just for forgetting his shitting pants, but because he went to rescue Mayor Douche. Look, he's a priest (maybe conflicted, but he still wears the damned collar, despite the laundry issues, seeing as he only has the one shirt). Anyway, the priest is going to rescue a fellow human. It's part of the deal. The mistake was leaving the damn door open and car running with that human being Gregory. Jesus, what a moron. But he's never been the smartest sheep in the flock.

    But everyone seems to losing sight of the greatest part of this whole episode: T'Pol and the Trash Talkers were not in it at all! Thank god, too, because T'Pol is a leader, too, and would have to be up giving her speech. "We war. War is not good. But here. War is good. War gun Rick war!" Might have been more articulate than Rick's speech, though.
  • Roman
    Roman
    GT Member
    Rick has already pledged twice to kill Negan - but ends up talking and talking and talking some more.
    Lame.
    I will still watch but the writing is super fucking lazy if for nothing else to extend the story arc. I suspect season 2 farm house antics (dragging it out longer and longer)
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Hmm I'm gonna have to rewatch some of that because I thought we saw a talking Judith with Carl and Michonne in the "fantasy future." Or was that scene supposed to have taken place in the present? Color me confused!

    They did acknowledge that stale twizzler in the talk show. Apparently she was tossing them off the bridge and hitting people below without knowing. And for the record, I've had some pretty old/stale licorice lol, I'm sure I'd be all over it in the apocalypse.

    LOL at T'Pol, she makes me laugh every time I see her or just see that name appear anywhere now. Maybe she'll get a guest stint on the new Star Trek after she dies here.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Hmm I'm gonna have to rewatch some of that because I thought we saw a talking Judith with Carl and Michonne in the "fantasy future." Or was that scene supposed to have taken place in the present? Color me confused!

    They did acknowledge that stale twizzler in the talk show. Apparently she was tossing them off the bridge and hitting people below without knowing. And for the record, I've had some pretty old/stale licorice lol, I'm sure I'd be all over it in the apocalypse.

    LOL at T'Pol, she makes me laugh every time I see her or just see that name appear anywhere now. Maybe she'll get a guest stint on the new Star Trek after she dies here.
  • Blackjack
    Blackjack
    GT Member edited October 25
    I enjoyed the season opener for the most part but all the entertainment news sites are focusing on a rapid decline in ratings since the show's peak around seasons 5-6. The 2-hour Talking Dead at a large theater in LA was a blast, and it was fun to see many former cast members appear.

    I don't like Negan as a character. I think he lacks any compelling back story, and while the actor's fine, he's just being asked to play a one-note, obnoxious, annoying character. imho the character never gets more interesting, just more annoying.

    I don't think The Governor was perfect, but I found his tragic back story compelling, and his occasional forays into doing (seemingly) good things made him more interesting and multi-dimensional. When he killed Herschel I felt something.

    When Negan killed Glenn and Abraham last season, I'm not sure what I felt. I guess I felt like the show didn't give two of its most beloved characters the proper finales they deserved.

    You can't tell me that getting their brains pulped into mincemeat like an outtake from an Eli Roth Hostel sequel was entertaining. I think that episode alone blew off a lot of fans who just said, "I've had enough. I'm not watching this anymore." I can't help thinking those folks aren't returning, and the show might not reach its ratings of a couple years back even if season 8 is attempting to 'restore optimism' and be more action oriented.

    I'm invested enough to keep watching, but I have been concerned that the show has seemed "stuck" on characters huddling in one place, trying to protect it, etc. etc. I think I enjoyed Season 1 the most because it was a journey with a specific goal (CDC In Atlanta), and to me the show in recent years simply gets stuck on on place for each season, and it's just always some dreary dump in the Atlanta region where they film.

    I've never heard for sure what 2nd showrunner Glenn Mazzara's confict on story was with Kirkman/AMC, but sometimes I wonder if he really wanted to change the show's environment, when AMC just wanted to keep shooting at dumps near Atlanta to keep costs down.
  • Bullwinkle
    Bullwinkle
    GT Member
    It's much less stressful (and cheaper) for a production to shoot in a specific location for extended periods. When you've got a long running show, the cast and crew are more likely to move on anyway, and keeping them around sometimes requires adding less stress to the production.

    However, that amounts to compromise, which is never a great idea in these situations.

    I agree, the show works better when they are heading somewhere specific instead of wandering or meandering in place.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    Over on the Quartertothree forum, Desslock, who old time gamers will recognize as a fairly well known RPG games reviewer from the Computer Gaming World magazine days, wrote up a post that perfectly critiques why the season 8 premiere episode was so abysmally bad:

    This was terrible. Greg Nicotero is a very talented make-up guy, but he is an inept director and because of his importance to the show he keeps getting big episodes and completely butchering them. He has a terrible, terrible habit of trying to be an “artist” (by trying to be stylish with non-linear storytelling) and he is just not intelligent enough to pull it off - he is just imitating artists without being capable of understanding what they were actually doing.

    As a result, we get heavy-handed, incoherent messes. The non-linear storytelling was technically inept (the average viewer probably has no idea which scenes go where, and which aren’t in sequence and which are), as there are several timelines here:

    the main one, which starts with putting the metal on the cars at Hilltop, then the speeches in the field, then the taking out of the scouts, and then the attack on the main Savior base, followed by the attack on 3 separate Savior outposts.
    the scene with Rick at either at the graves of Glenn/Abraham which either predates the above sequence or at the graves of 2 unknown victims of the war (I’m fine with the ambiguity here);
    the scenes with Rick and Carl and the Indian guy scavenging for gas - unrelated to any of the above and uncertain timing, but likely before the above;
    the scenes with Rick with bloodshot eyes and talking about Mercy (must be set after the attacks above);
    the scenes with older buzz cut Rick with beard waking up and seeing his older daughter and preparing for the harvest festival. Outdoors looks like it’s changed into medieval holland, but we’ll dismiss that.
    …and narratively catastrophic, because it’s incoherent (how many viewers even understood that the plan was to take the main base out of the fight by surrounding it with walkers, and then attack the 3 outposts before they could reinforce each other or the main base? How many even knew there were outposts? or 3 of them?), and it also removes a lot of dramatic tension by revealing the resolution of certain plots if the show continues to jump to those timelines, which will make it clearer where they fit in and what has happened.

    And the writing is just awful. The constant congratulatory lauding of Rick, Maggie, and Carl as great leaders and/or important seems completely unwarranted given what we’ve seen, and yet they constantly praise them. Rick and Carl have often been depicted as just lucky at best, and often as outright fools, while Maggie has been more flatteringly portrayed but the only thing we’ve seen her do to warrant leadership praise is effectively respond to a single attack on the Hilltop. But the actual content of the “Henry V” speeches given by Rick, etc. were terrible - who the fuck would follow someone extolling such vapid rhetoric? Why not instead spend that time actually explaining the plan to viewers?

    It’s a real shame how badly the “big” episodes from the comics are being butchered. And this season should be pretty good, for those viewers on the fence, but it is definitely the last storyline before the narrative goes completely off the rails into boring absurdities, so this is as good as it’s ever going to get.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    IIRC I've often found Desslock himself pretty pretentious, so there's that lol.

    I didn't think the premiere was as bad as all that, but I do think whatever it was they were trying to achieve felt like it was chopped in half. Or perhaps just needs to be addressed over the course of the season. If the episode is left to stand alone as is without addressing the future flash fantasy scenes, then I guess I'd agree it was kind of a mess. But if the next episode, or the entire season, actually develops to actually get to that point, that would change the way I viewed this episode.

    As for the way they are writing the bigger picture, all I can say is they are more or less following the way the comic developed. While details and characters have been changed dramatically, the overall core of plotlines have been pretty much right on track with the comic. In which case be prepared to see a lot more stagnancy location-wise, and then the introduction of a pretty cool new set of villains. And more Negan, yes a lot more Negan lol. I'm quite a few months behind in the comics now, but he was a major part of the next set of storylines, and they actually did a standalone origin story for him that was fairly interesting. If they decide to keep him around (and I suspect they will), I think you'll get to see a few more dimensions to the character.

    As an aside, it's definitely interesting to see how a comic book based show has worked in the TV genre. I can't think of a single example that has done something similar. The mediums are so different, but they seem to have found a formula that is working for the most part.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member edited October 25
    The problem is that for viewers who have not read the comic, like me, we have no context as to what is going on so it all just looks like a confusing and poorly written mess. Maybe that's part of the reason why Fear the Walking Dead works a lot better for me, even though that show has it's own set of problems.

    I have to agree with Desslock that the whole plan of what Rick and his group were trying to do was so poorly structured that I didn't realize that the herding of the walkers to Negan's compound was to cut them off from reinforcing the outposts. That's just reckless storytelling.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    The problem is that for viewers who have not read the comic, like me, we have no context as to what is going on so it all just looks like a confusing and poorly written mess. Maybe that's part of the reason why Fear the Walking Dead works a lot better for me, even though that show has it's own set of problems.

    I have to agree with Desslock that the whole plan of what Rick and his group were trying to do was so poorly structured that I didn't realize that the herding of the walkers to Negan's compound was to cut them off from reinforcing the outposts. That's just reckless storytelling.

    I didn't realize that until you just said it LOL. Of course since they now seem to have teleportational abilities, I'm not sure that plan matters one way or the other. ;)

    I don't know if it's bad storytelling or direction or production or what, but it's really unclear to me what the numbers game is like. I was rewatching last season's finale and it seemed like they wanted to make the Kingdom's army appear really formidable, but really it was just the main dude, his tiger, and about 10 others. Ditto on Maggie's group, where actually it's the opposite. Earlier it seemed like they had only a few fighters, but when she came to the rescue she appeared to have as many as the Kingdom. Same problem with the Saviours. Just how many are there? And how many per location? Don't forget our "heroes" just recently slaughtered everyone at the satellite dish outpost and blew up a number of others, not to mention the ones Carol killed earlier. Are Negan's numbers in the hundreds or even thousands so that he can replenish areas with fighters all the time?
  • Bullwinkle
    Bullwinkle
    GT Member
    I haven't read the comics, and I followed the plan just fine.

    I think "so abysmally bad" and "terrible" are too hyperbolic by far.

    The only thing I agreed with in the Desslock opinion was about the speechifying.
  • Jimmy the Fish
    Jimmy the Fish
    GT Member
    I guess you're just smarter than me. :p
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    Just to be clear, details like how they did the planned attack aren't necessarily the same in the comics (I actually don't remember the specifics), I was commenting about the overall larger story arcs being similar.
  • rittchard
    rittchard
    GT Member
    So... Ep 2, hmmm. I felt a bit numb watching it. Not bored per se, but even as I was riveted by the moment to moment action, I can't really say I was following it very well. Pretty much all the reviews of the episode blasted it and while I didn't think it was that bad, it definitely was a disappointment relative to my expectations. No sign of the flash forwards from ep 1, so that's not good.

    I try not to think too much about the plot elements when I'm watching, but in the aftermath, there's just so much that was confusing. Like what exactly was Aaron's team assaulting, and why was his lame-ass boyfriend (who as far as we know has barely fought in one or two fights) one of the critical fighters? As much as I wanted to get rid of him, this was a pretty silly/strange way for it to happen. The Carol/Ezekiel storyline was also confusing. Where are they headed and why does it matter if one scout gets some info across? By this point it doesn't seem like there's any element of surprise left? Then Rick and Daryl - I don't even know where they were supposed to be except that they were looking for guns. Now that they can teleport and move back and forth in time, it's really hard to figure out what's what. I liked when he found the baby, but the return of the guy who no one remembers was a pretty lame end reveal. Add in some crazy Morgan and stupid Tara/Jesus conflict, and pretty much every subplot seemed either forced or a retread of something we already covered.

    I think I noticed this a while ago, but it seems like every episode Maggie isn't in suffers. You'd think with so many of the other "big" main cast members in the episode, it wouldn't matter, but maybe there are just too many characters now for these writers to handle properly. Or they just stink at this kind of larger scale "war" writing. At this point, I'm kind of hoping for the war to just hurry up and end. They keep mentioning "the first four episodes" so I hope the next two will more or less take care of the main battles. Then again, I think the war in the comics lasted a full 12 or more issues (not sure on this), so maybe it's meant to go the entire season. Yikes.
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