The Walking Dead S4 Ep9 – After

Michonne leads her new pets onward.

The Walking Dead is back, which means a fresh new boatload of emotional trauma and zombie gore each week, and my Sunday nights once again have meaning I’m pretty happy about it. I gotta say though, that for a mid-season ‘premiere’ it turned out kinda weird.

Recap Time!

Michonne makes her way back to the Prison, finding it in flames and overrun by walkers. She creates some new ‘pets’ out of two of them, then dispatches Hershel’s zombified, severed head (dear God, writers, why would you do that?) before leading her new pets away from the place she was beginning to call her home. She discovers a set of tracks in the mud that obviously belong to some of the Prison group, but doesn’t follow them.

Meanwhile, Carl and Rick struggle to find somewhere safe where they can rest and recuperate. They dispatch a zombie in a barbecue house and raid the supplies. Carl is obviously angry at his father, opting to not follow his lead when clearing out the house they’re planning to make their camp for the night, swearing and shouting unnecessarily, and naming Shane as the one who taught him how to tie knots (collective wince from the audience). He discovers a room that clearly belonged to a boy his age before the zombies came along, and spends the morning after the attack leisurely reading. Later, when he tries to wake his dad, Rick doesn’t budge, even after Carl shakes him and screams at him. This smart-ass, angry, thirteen-year-old is on his own, which, as you can imagine, is a spectacular recipe for trouble.

Michonne stands over a pile of dead walkers.Michonne has an unsettling nightmare about her life before the zomb-pocalypse, and we see her two original pets before she chopped off their jaws and arms (they were originally her boyfriend and his friend, possibly Michonne’s brother), and also catch a glimpse of her son who (I assume) died during the first wave of chaos. Wandering around aimlessly, she finds herself in the middle of a zombie horde, and comes face to face with her zombie twin. She at first tries to brush off the eerie feeling one would get from seeing a zombie version of oneself, but when the Zombie-chonne appears again, Michonne breaks and attacks, instigating a crazy, monster takedown of all the zombies in the horde, including her pets. She then runs back to where she came across the tracks and begins following them.

There are now a pair of walkers at the door of the house where Carl and Rick have holed up, attracted by Carl’s screaming at his dad. Being a super-great smartypants, Carl sneaks out the back of the house, then lures the walkers away from the house. And then Carl enjoys a treat after a hard day's work.just keeps going, and going, talking to them the whole way. Surprise, surprise, another zombie shows up behind him and Carl is very, very nearly ripped apart, only barely managing to stay alive underneath a zombie-pile. He then returns to the house and talks to his dad’s comatose body, coldly stating that he doesn’t need his father and he’d be just fine if Rick died. (Yeah, keep telling yourself that, you aggravating little twerp.)

Carl explores some more, finding a GIANT can of chocolate pudding, and then encountering another zombie. He again barely escapes, missing the headshot, tripping over a pile of books, losing his shoe, and then almost not being able to close the zombie in a room because of the books he tripped over. He celebrates by eating the entire can of pudding. (Gross, but also impressive.)

Following the tracks, Michonne comes across a familiar barbecue house with a familiar walker inside. It’s the one that Rick and Carl raided before going to the house, and she stops her search for moment to speak to her dead boyfriend, saying she has an answer to the question he was desperately asking her in her nightmare: “Why?” She continues on, finding the empty giant can of chocolate pudding in the street.

Carl sulks near his father's prone body.


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