OH BOY, Zombie fans! It’s October and that can only mean one thing: ZOMBIE TIME! The Walking Dead is back for its fourth season under the regime of new showrunner Scott Gimple. What happens now?
Remember where we left off? It seems so very long ago. Let’s see. . . . The Governor turned on his own people and abandoned Woodbury. Andrea bit the big one. Rick and his posse brought the remaining Woodburians back to their prison complex and everything seemed hunky-dory, or at least as hunky-dory as life can be during the zombpocalypse.
Where we pick up: Rick abdicated his leadership role and the prison is now governed by a democratic council. The new community has made great advances in survival – they’re growing crops, raising livestock, and they’ve surrounded their perimeter with zombie-killing booby traps. Daryl went out and killed a deer and everyone is thrilled to grub down on some fresh meat – especially Patrick, a new character who wears thick glasses so we know he’s a nerd. We meet a bunch of new people although we don’t quite catch their names. There’s Tyrese’s Girlfriend, Beth’s Boyfriend (Zach! Zack? We learn his name later, but only after he dies during the Big Sp!t ambush), a newbie named Bob and a flock of children. We also meet Violet, a pig who isn’t doing so well, and we’re not supposed to name our pigs because they are food, not pets.
The new people are on fence duty, jamming sticks and hoes into zombie faces. We spend some time staring at Eyeless Zombie, and he must be very important because we see him twice. Oh shit, I gave him a name. We’re not supposed to name the zombies! They are not people, nor are they pets. Don’t name your food, and don’t name your zombies.
Daryl is planning a run to a nearby big box store – it’s Big Sp!t, which either means Big Spot or Big Spit, but it has an exclamation point in its name (just like P!nk). Glenn doesn’t want Maggie to join the mission, possibly because they are having lots of sexytimes and now she might be pregnant. Michonne arrives on horseback with a fresh load of comics for Carl. Michonne never used to talk and now she’s a veritable Chatty Cathy. Welcome back, Michonne! The Big Sp!t team heads off on a supply run, but not before Zach tries to say goodbye to Beth. She doesn’t like goodbyes. She never says goodbye.
The Big Sp!t has seen some better times, structurally speaking. It also can’t help that there’s a downed army helicopter on its roof. As the survivors scavenge for supplies, Glenn pauses at a display featuring baby pictures. (See? Maggie is totally preggers.) Bob walks through the liquor aisle, shaking his head. He changes his mind and selects a bottle, then chides himself and puts it back on the shelf. And then the entire display comes crashing down, trapping his leg. The zombies on the roof hear the ruckus and are so very excited. The roof can’t contain their joy and the walkers start pouring in from above. Undead from above! Holy shit, it’s raining zombies! And assorted disgusting and goopy body parts! Daryl and Glenn lead the team in taking out the walkers, but poor Zach gets a real bad bite in the fleshiest part of his calf. So long, Zach. We barely knew you. It was cute how you were trying to discern Daryl’s pre-zombpocalypse career. I bet you would have been excellent comic relief if you lasted longer than one episode. Heck, you even got Michonne to laugh.
Rick goes out to check the snares and runs into Feral Irish Waif. She begs him to help her bring a dead boar back to her husband Eddie because they haven’t eaten in days. They were on their honeymoon, you see, Feral Irish Waif and Eddie, but they never made it to Puerto Vallarta because their connecting flight never connected. And she’s had to do some terrible, terrible things like eating rotten fruit and animal carcasses and she’s afraid she can never come back from all this badness. She asks to join Rick’s camp but she and her husband must answer his questions three before Rick will let them meet his people.
Rick follows Feral Irish Waif back to her tent, where we learn that Eddie is now actually Un-Eddie and just as we’re wrapping our brains around that, she pulls a knife on Rick because Un-Eddie enjoys eating fresh kills. Daaaaaamn, girl. Rick defends himself and Feral Irish Waif rams her knife into her own stomach, because she just wants to join her beloved husband in the after un-life. What were those questions, Rick? 1) How many zombies have you killed? (Eddie did the killing.) 2) How many people have you killed? (One. Just herself.) 3) Why? Because she’ll never come back from the terrible things she’s done.
And speaking of terrible things! Carol reads to the children at Storytime. Except as soon as the lone adult attendee leaves, we learn that Storytime is actually a lesson about self-defense and offense with knives. What! Carol, you sly fox! Carol begs Carl not to tell his dad. And Patrick is really not feeling so good – even though he might come across some zombies when he’s about to yak, he begs off and runs away to puke.
Maggie’s not pregnant, it turns out. Glenn demands to know how she knows and she doesn’t say "Because I got my period, dummy." Daryl tells Beth that her boyfriend didn’t survive the mission, and she doesn’t cry. She never cries anymore. And Rick tells Hershel that he’s afraid of not being able to come back from all the badness. But Rick made it back, even after all that hallucinating-Lori business. And Carl came back even though he murdered that boy. And Judith is back, because Judith is just a baby. Everyone made it back! Except for Violet the pig, who is now an ex-pig. And except for Patrick, who tried to take a shower but collapsed into a pool of his own blood. Whatever killed him sort of might have made his eyes explode? Just like Eyeless Zombie? Is there a mysterious plague that makes people and pigs die when their eyes explode? And now there is a Zombie Patrick inside the bathroom. Well then! Onwards and upwards until next episode!
Death toll: Beth needs a new boyfriend. And Feral Irish Waif can unlive in eternity with her beloved husband un-Eddie.