Mania Grade: B-
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- TV Series: The Walking Dead
- Episode: Trigger Finger
- Starring: Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies, Laurie Holden, Norman Reedus,
- Written By: David Johnson
- Directed By: Bill Gierhart
- Network: AMC
- Series: Walking Dead
Walking Dead: Trigger Finger Review
Good, not Great
By Joe Oesterle
February 20, 2012
At the risk of receiving numerous comments telling me I’m an idiot, or words to that effect, I didn’t love this last effort by The Walking Dead team. Sure, there were some taut scenes, and nice acting as always, but aside from a handful of zombies and a gunfight, this episode felt a little more soap opera-y than I prefer. By the way, let’s keep in mind that I wrote I didn’t “love” it. Even with the flaws, there was still enough to like.
What I didn’t like:
I wasn’t too sure why Lori went out on her own (and at night and unarmed) last episode to bring back Rick, Glen and Hershel. Lori’s nagging may be an efficient weapon against her husband, but so far, walkers seem impervious to constant ball-busting haranguing. Looking back now. Lori’s decision to grab a car and race after Rick only really served to show that Shane is willing to lie to get what he wants – or protect what he believes is his. But regardless of Shane’s motives, a pregnant woman with a 9-year old son going running after her husband, an armed veteran police officer, and another armed partner (Glen) did not seem real to me, and the only reason to do it is to set up the plotline of Shane becoming more and more dangerously possessive. I am enjoying the potentially deadly and ever-widening rift between ex- besties, Rck and Shane, but I’d prefer if it’s all handled in a more believable manner.
As tense and authentic as the gunfight between our heroes and the Philly gang was, I was once again taken out of the moment, when in the midst of Rick and Hershel’s arguing with each other, they both decided the best thing to do was to perform a leg amputation in the middle of the night, while surrounded by dozens of hungry zombies, and possibly another angry, gun-toting Flyers fan or two. I don’t know how long it takes to cut through bone with a knife and a hatchet (which was still in the car when the decision was made to carry out this midnight surgical procedure) but I know Hershel does, and if that amount of time is any longer than it takes to jump in a car and throw it in drive, it would have been the safer and humane thing to just put a slug in ol’ Randal’s skull and hope the boys from Philly don’t hold grudges. (Spoiler alert, I was born there, so I have a sneaking suspicion they just might enjoy having a bona fide reason to kill someone other than Eagles head coach Andy Reid.)
Another thing I don’t like is Darryl has been pushed into the background for the last couple episodes, and that character is capable of single-handedly making a good show great. I enjoyed the rage he displayedagainst Carol, and will assume he feels (and justifiably so) that he and Sophia shared a common pain or two. Darryl clearly has issues with his upbringing, and as we’ve pointed out in this forum before, we’re not exactly positive what kind of abuse Sophia suffered at the hands of her late father, and it has been hinted at that it was possibly worse than beatings, but whatever it was, Carol, her mother, sat in silence and allowed it to happen. Darryl has taken the reveal of Sophia being just another walker in the barn particularly hard. First, he is enraged he put his own life on the line looking for her. Couple that with him feeling Carol had never done enough to protect her own child, and you have one justifiably pissed off, mommy-issued hillbilly.
The Dale and Andrea relationship here in the television version is much different than the one they share in the comic book – and while their bond in the graphic novel never seemed far-fetched to me, this one, the one with Dale convoluting things, is just as valid – if not more so.
As Lori whispered into Rick’s ear, like some Shakespearian queen, about upcoming battles with a former trusted ally, Rick would be wise to heed her advice. If Shane is incapable of luring Lori back to his bed, he will become hell-bent on proving he’s the only alpha dog worth listening to, and his bark is just as bad as his bite. Shane scared Lori during their little talk-to-talk. He’s now aware that Rick has knowledge of their affair, and Rick, to his credit, has so far handled whatever feelings of betrayal or infidelity he may be carrying. The problem is Rick has likely been cracking ever since he shot what used to be Sophia point black in the face and realized it was his actions once again that placed his family and his group in danger once again.
My suspicions are much of this episode was so much fodder for upcoming great episodes that I’m willing to forgive and forget. The inevitable Rick vs Shane showdown has been on slow boil for a while now, and it appears that pot is about to bubble over very soon.
I sincerely trust there are more great stories coming down the road in the second half of Season Two, and while I felt this episode may have set some interesting things in motion, I just didn’t think this episode was a winner on its own. Now I can look forward to the name-calling in the boxes below. See you there.
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