Walking Dead season 4 episode 5 review

By Max Maier | Nov 11, 2013

This show is at its best when an episode can mix great character moments and tense zombie action. This episode is a great example of this winning formula. While elements of this episode still make common sense take a field day, there was enough in this episode to carry it to be one of the best.

The disease is still spreading. People are dying and becoming zombies. In the sick ward, Hershel is taking charge and helping these people in these dire times. Hershel made it clear a couple weeks ago that he is tired of not helping in an attempt to not die, because now it is up to chance. With this disease in the air, anybody can become sick. So Hershel is going to live up every minute and help the sick, because he is that caring of a person. Hershel is the character who gets the most attention this week, as we see his rituals and methods in the sick ward. Everything goes well until the sick start dying at the same time, thusly creating more zombies than Hershel can handle handily. With Glenn on the verge of death and Sasha down, it's up to Hershel to clean this mess. Will Hershel make it out ok? Will he gain control of the sick ward again?
Meanwhile, Rick and Carl have some touching moments between father and son. Until the zombies finally break down the fence and storm the gates and Rick and Carl have to kill all of the zombies. Rick also gets right to the point and starts telling people how he handled Carol. So far, he told Maggie and Hershel, one we know the reaction to.
Also, Daryl, Michone, Tyreese and Bob don't make it back to the prison until the end of the episode, and we don't get to see Daryl's reaction, that's next week.

As I mentioned, the star this week was Hershel. Scott Wilson has always been a strong actor as Hershel, but he absolutely blew it away this week. Last season, Hershel was always there as a guiding voice, a support system, but this week we see a little bit more of Hershel and what he is dealing with at the prison nowadays. Hershel's care and determination is inspiring. His self sacrifice for people he barely knows is admirable. He even put his health on the line for all of them. Even when it was time to put down the zombies, he made darn sure to do it. Although, why he didn't grab the gun sooner baffles me. And yes, I get Hershel doesn't want the 2 little kids to see him kill a zombie. He is a man of God, so he doesn't want to subject them to that violence. Thank God nobody died because he hesitated. Aside from that, Hershel was amazing this week. His moment at the end of the episode was one of the most powerful this show has had yet.

Rick and Carl had great moments this week, from mowing down zombies, to sweet fatherly moments. It's so nice to see these 2 like a family again, and Rick didn't give Carl crap for using a gun. Because Rick realizes that Carl can handle it, and he is good at it. Good stuff from the Grimes boys this week.

 Maggie also gets props for being a badass this week. She was hardly in the episode, but when she rolled in towards the end, it was great. It makes up for her dragginess in the past episodes of season 4.

Aside from the nitpicks about the Hershel situation earlier, I have 3 points to make. First off, How could it have possibly taken Daryl and the gang this long to get back to the prison? It took nowhere near this long to get to their location, and we have seen nothing that should be obstructing their journey back, so I call total bull on that and that it has taken this long because it is just for story convenience. It's just sloppy.
Also, if Glenn comes back from all of this without a legitimate reason, this disease storyline will lose all credibility. I hope they keep it good.
Lastly, Rick and Carl would have had this problem IF THEY HAD PEOPLE MONITORING THE FENCE!!!!! Sorry, I vented that in an earlier review, but it is still infuriating.

Overall though, this was a great episode. Hershel stole the show and gave us enough strong character moments to last us awhile. Plus, this episode gave us a HUGE surprise at the end. Yes, it had to happen eventually, but in the manner it was presented, it was awesome. Unfortunately the spoilers are out for it, so if you haven't seen the episode and want to be surprised, don't look hard. This was a great episode, and I now believe Hershel is my favorite character.

 

I give The Walking Dead season 4 episode 5 a fence-breaking 4 out of 5

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