Michonne and Carl form a bond, Rick deals with a home invasion problem and Glenn finds out that Abraham is on a mission to save the world…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
The formula for The Walking Dead in the second half of season four seems to be sticking around for at least a couple of more episodes because following last week’s trek where we saw what happened to Daryl, Glenn, Maggie, Beth, Tyreese and the rest of the prison cast offs, we venture back into Rick-world this go round where the episode focuses primarily on his adventures alongside Carl and Michonne. Luckily it seems the stories are going to start bleeding together because we did get a heaping helping of new character Abraham and his co-horts as well as Glenn’s mission to get back to Maggie.
The first episode back from the break was like a bad episode of tween angst focusing on Carl’s rollercoaster ride from anger to resolution, and while this latest offering titled ‘Claimed’ still split our survivors in half, all in all it was a much more satisfying hour of television. The hope I have here is that The Walking Dead producers are purposefully splitting up the group by episodes so when they do find each other again it feels like a special moment. One thing I can say, however, is the group being broken apart and brought back together can’t happen every time a major event goes down.
This is twice already — let’s hope there is not a third.
Carl Needed a Friend, Michonne Needed a Story
What we learned in the first episode back from the mid-season break is that Carl can be rather annoying when left alone to wander about and yammer on about how he doesn’t need anybody when clearly he does. So it was a nice touch this week that Carl got paired up with Michonne for the biggest part of the episode. From a breakfast table chat about soy milk (I’m with Carl on that one), which unfortunately gets broken up when he mentions Judith’s formula still assuming that she’s gone forever. Carl and Michonne decide to go look for supplies while Rick stays behind to rest because this is all taking place the following day after he was passed out and seemingly dead to the world. On a continuity note, it would be nice if only 24 hours had passed that Rick’s face didn’t go from grizzled meat to pristine, but maybe that’s just me.
Carl and Michonne go house to house looking for supplies, but the young kid is now down in the dumps after the brief mention of his baby sister. Michonne does her best to cheer him up with canned cheese and a few jokes, but he’s not budging. This is when Michonne mentions that her act is hilarious to toddlers — which is when we finally get the revelation that she had a three year old son that passed away during the zombie apocalypse. We saw her in a dream sequence acknowledging the baby, but this is the first time we’ve heard her talk about it.
Turns out Michonne’s son was named Andre Anthony, but he passed away after all the end of the world stuff started to hit the fan. Carl is enamored to hear Michonne say more than two words much less open up to him like this. Meanwhile in the house, Michonne finds the horrors hiding behind the doors as an entire family has taken their own lives, shot dead and rotting in one of the children’s bedrooms.
Michonne keeps Carl from seeing what’s inside as they leave to head back to the house where Rick is at waiting for them.
The comic book version of Michonne took some time to finally get a back story on her character, but ultimately she was more or less (and remains so) the ‘Daryl’ of that world. Obviously for the TV show, there’s already a Daryl so giving Michonne a more human side seems like a great idea and now we have a little more detail about where she came from and what drove her to become what she is today.
Mission: Save the World
At the very end of last week’s episode we met Sergeant Abraham Ford, who stopped on the side of the road to help save Tara and Glenn after they fought off some walkers and the latter passed out following a bout with the flu that nearly killed him.
By the time Glenn wakes up this week, he finds out some awful news from Tara — they’ve been driving along the road in the back of Abraham’s truck for nearly three hourse and along the way they passed the bus from the prison and everyone nearby was dead. This of course was thanks to Maggie, Sasha and Bob but Glenn doesn’t know that.
So Glenn insists that the truck stops and he gets out because he has to go back for Maggie. Abraham makes two big mistakes in trying to prevent Glenn from going any further. First he says Maggie is probably dead and second they are on a mission to get to Washington D.C. with Dr. Eugene Porter, who is a government scientist that not only knows why all of this happened, but he believes he can help stop it. Eugene looks like Kenny Powers’ older and slightly less in shape brother and he’s definitely an odd ball, who when pressed by Glenn about why this all happened he can only offer a response of ‘it’s classified’.
Glenn’s had enough and he hauls off and punches Abraham, but as the two of them scuffle, walkers start drifting out of the nearby cornfield and towards the truck and the other survivors. Eugene’s solution is to grab a machine gun and fire it at everything near him including the walkers and the truck’s gas tank that they were traveling in at the time. The walkers are dispatched, but now they have a bigger problem — the truck isn’t going anywhere.
So Abraham, Rosita and Eugene decide to follow Glenn and Tara back the way they came as he continues his search for Maggie.
With Michonne and Carl off scavenging for food and supplies, Rick decides to catch 40 winks but his sleep is so deep that he fails to hear a group of armed men invading the house and setting up camp for themselves. He quickly ducks under the bed to hide because these men are packing machine guns and are quite violent. One gets knocked out downstairs, which is what alerts him to their presence in the first place and another is killed when he refuses to give up the king sized bed to another person in the group.
Rick escapes the bed and gets into the bathroom where he runs into the scene from Pulp Fiction where Butch decides he just wants some pop tarts and instead runs into Vincent Vega, who was helping himself to the facilities. Rick catches the man with his pants down (literally) and chokes him out, steals his gun and slips out a window and downstairs to hopefully catch Michonne and Carl before they get too close and end up running into this sociopathic group of gun-wielding psychos.
It’s here that we briefly see Mayor Jacob Hale (Jeff Kober really) pop out to eat some fruit cocktail and almost run into Rick. Before he jumped out of the window, Rick managed to leave the door to the bedroom open so that the dead henchman killed for his spot on the bed could get out once he awoke as a walker. The distraction is perfectly timed so Rick can catch Michonne and Carl to make a run for it.
Now, it’s safe to say given Kober’s status as an actor and being a regular guest star on shows like ‘Sons of Anarchy‘ that he’s probably going to shot back up again in some capacity. How he will eventually run into them is hard to say, but I don’t think we’ve seen the last of him.
Meanwhile, Rick, Michonne and Carl run into a banner for the town of Terminus, which we also saw last week, which is where Carol, Tyreese, the girls and of course Judith are also headed.
Next week we once again shift directions as we find out what’s going on with Beth and Daryl and most likely find Maggie, Sasha and Bob have been up to.