*SPOILER ALERT! SPOILER ALERT!
UNKNOWN FORCE OF IMPENDING EASILY OFFENDED FANS DETECTED*
Has anyone else ever noticed that Republicans and Libertarians call trigger warnings and content warnings an “affront to free speech”, but stay completely silent or get seriously bent out of shape over someone posting show spoilers on social media? It’s just me who sees the irony? Okay then, just remember no one is above criticism or being hypocritical in some way or another as it’s human nature. But enough “Lefty Socialist” ranting from this social justice blogger, onto the show.
This episode that has something that I like to call “Naruto Shippuden Syndrome” in that last week’s episode ended on a colossal cliff hanger. The writers of The Walking Dead made us wait one to week find out Glenn’s fate, only to make us wait another week (or two) with a filler flashback episode. Anime fans are fairly used to this technique of drawing out cannon material, but mainstream American audiences prefer instant gratification and hate waiting for such a huge reveal (especially in the age of social media). I’m right up there with the American audience in that I hate that I have to wait another week, even though I’m a huge fan of anime such as Naruto. That’s not to say this episode was terrible, it was a brilliantly written episode; it’s just that the timing for it couldn’t have been worse. This entire pattern of drawing stuff out from cannon material this season’s really starting to grind my gears. I’m starting to think that season six of The Walking Dead is the new season two of TWD; and the first half of season two was terrible. Frustrated ranting of this episode aside, here’s what I enjoyed and didn’t enjoy.
What I liked: It was great to finally know Morgan’s back story, that’s where this episode truly shined to help define where Morgan stopped being psychotic from his PTSD and started coming into his mantra of not killing people anymore. I enjoyed the acting chemistry between Lennie James (Morgan) and John Carrol Lynch (Eastman) in that both were fantastic at portraying their roles. I enjoyed seeing how Morgan came back to the light, and finding out Eastman’s back story of how his family died, and how he never felt whole with the revenge he received on making the convicted felon who killed his family starve to death. “I found my peace in never killing again”, said Eastman to Morgan after he was fatally bitten by a walker (one that Morgan killed earlier in the episode by strangling it while the walker was still a person). I also like how Morgan locked away the Wolf leader in the house as that will most certainly come back to bite Alexandria in the arse. Morgan’s struggle was the focal point of this episode, and I’m happy to see he overcame it. This was truly a well written and directed episode that made me like the show version of Morgan much better than the comic book version of Morgan. But punctuality matters when you build up a mystery, and the placement of this episode would have better after the midway season finale (which is something I would have liked much more).
What I didn’t like: How do I say “timing” without sounding like a broken record? Well, I’m sad the goat didn’t make it out alive. I’ve otherwise said my peace about the writers teasing us with Glenn’s fate, now I will just say that I find Morgan’s pacifism is problematic for the rest of Rick’s group (especially with the wolf leader still alive). As a pacifist myself I’m not saying that last sentence to insult Morgan, more like it’s a pro-war jab from the writers against my beliefs. But everyone has their own opinions, and in this type of a setting there’s a clear difference between war and self-defense. On that note, hopefully next week’s episode won’t leave us high and dry again with what’s happening. Otherwise, this walker heard story could take all season.
I tend to use this blog as a soapbox for a lot of my opinions, and if I offended you then I don’t apologize for what I’ve said, but I will apologize if I’ve said it like an A-hole. So for this blog post, I will be leaving Elle King’s “Song of Sorrow” to both offer my sentiments for upsetting some people, and help commend both Eastman and Morgan’s emotional struggles from their pasts.