Last night’s episode of The Walking Dead, “Say the Word,” was a much-needed respite from the heavier, more intense episodes this season, giving us some time to process the events of last week while also setting up future conflicts. We learned more about The Governor and Woodbury, suffered Rick’s emotional setback, witnessed a lot of great zombie kills, and got a very curious phone call. Before we get to it, a quick reminder: Book spoilers belong at the bottom of the page in the book-spoiler thread Maske set up for you. Please don’t spoil it elsewhere; I ran across a major spoiler online this morning, and I’m furious both at finding out, and knowing what is (potentially) coming.
1. Rick’s Gone Zombie Bat-Sh*t Kill Kill Kill — I kind of love this iteration of Rick: He’s channeling Jack Nicholson from The Shining, and honestly, if you’re in that much psychic pain, it’s nice to have a passel of zombies to kill. There’s no better way, really, to work through one’s grief than to take a machete to undead head or cut open the belly of the zombie who filled up on your wife’s carcass.
2. Daryl Goes On a Formula Run — Daryl takes Maggie on a run to find some formula for lil baby Ass Kicker, which does little to advance the plot, but at this point in the season, a little downtime at the prison is well deserved, allowing Rick some time to process. There was also a sad moment in seeing the name of Sofia in a day care, but on the bright side: DINNER.
3. Daryl Officially Sexiest Male AMC Character? — People, PEOPLE: How adorable does Daryl look holding a baby? YOUR MOVE, JON HAMM.
4. Oscar and Axel Ingratiate Themselves — Really, is there a better way to endear yourself to a tight-knit group than to help dig graves for loved ones lost in the zombie apocalypse? Awwwww. Seriously, though: I think T-Dog 2 has already had more lines in three episodes than T Dog 1 had in three seasons, and no offense to T Dog — who wasn’t “just a good guy; he was the best” — I think I like Axel more. Also, if you didn’t already adore Daryl for his Daddy skills, he’s also sweet, leaving a Cherokee Rose on Carol’s grave.
5. Two Unanswered Questions from the Prison — One: Is Carol really dead? (Surely not, right?) and Two: Who the hell was on the other end of the ringing phone that Rick answered? (I have no idea). The phone call memes are already in full effect this morning, too. If it a “Call Me, Maybe” meme hasn’t happened by the time this post publishes, I’m sure it will soon thereafter. Meanwhile, here’s my favorite.
6. The Governor Really Loves His Daughter — The Governor proved what a devoted and loving family man he was last night by taking time out of his busy day to brush his daughter’s hair. Oh, what’s that? His daughter is a zombie whose head he puts a bag over before giving great big Dad hugs? Whatever. FATHER OF THE YEAR.
7. Michonne Is a Walking Stink Eye — The woman has one expression: Side-eye.
Michonne continues to be incredibly distrustful of The Governor, for good reason. When Michonne gets her sword back, she finds The Governor’s journal with some names and a lot of lines. “You get off on that? Poking around in other people’s things,” the Governor asks. “You got nothing to hide here.” “People who got nothing to hide don’t usually feel the need to say so,” Michonne correctly replies.
Speaking of people who have a lot to hide, when Michonne let out the imprisoned biters and went katana on their face, it may have been the first time we’ve seen her smile.
8. “You can’t leave unless they make you” — Frustrated that The Governor wouldn’t kick her out, and uneasy about what was going on in Woodbury, Michonne took leave of the place, although Andrea wouldn’t follow along, concerned that Michonne was being paranoid. ALWAYS TRUST THE WOMAN WITH THE KATANA. Also, again, what the hell happened to Andrea? Of all the great things about this season, the one glaring issue I have with it is that destruction of Andrea’s character. She was last season’s bad ass. She was the one about to get in bed with Shane. She was the one meant to be with Daryl. Maggie has transformed herself into last season’s Andrea, while Andrea has morphed into an eye-lash batting Stepford. Why does she insist on being the one dumb character in this season of The Walking Dead?
9. Zombie Kill of the Week — It’s a close call between Michonne’s katana assault, and Rick’s grief-killing rage porn, but the edge goes to Rick.
10. “Mere words cannot adequately describe the festivities ahead.” — The night’s big celebration was basically a UFC match with the added element of biter-less Biters to give the crowd something to cheer about. The Governor thinks it’s good for morale (WOODBURY! F**K YEAH!), while Andrea thinks its barbaric. All I know is, when Merle is around, I actually find myself feeling sorry for the Walkers.