Where we left off: Lori tried to end her pregnancy by taking Morning-After brand pills but barfed them up. Rick knows that she is pregnant and also knows that she was boffing Shane. Dale and Glen know that there are zombies in Hershel’s barn. Smugface Andrea and Shane had car sex while they were out looking for Sophia, who is still missing.
Where we pick up: Well, there’s Zombie Barn! Still full of zombies, the way we left it. Over at the Still Alive’s campsite, Carol is cooking while Smugface Andrea sharpens a knife. Rick looks particularly shellshocked this morning. Glen exchanges a glance with Maggie, who is standing on the porch shaking her head. Glen looks at Dale who nods his head. Glen stands up like he is about to make a toast at wedding. “Guys … so, the barn is full of zombies.” Cue ominous music!
The Still Alives go investigate the barn. Shane sticks his face up to a crack in the wooden siding and a gross zombie eye stares right back at him. Shane is full of vim and vigor. “We either have to go in there and make things right, or leave,” he announces. But how can they leave when Sophia is still out there, a million days later, because clearly she is still magically surviving in a forest filled with hungry zombies? Daryl insists that they stay. He and Shane fight about it. They get all riled up and make lots of noise so the barn zombies definitely know there’s human-food right outside the barn. Rick needs to talk to Hershel before they do anything about Zombie Barn, because, after all, it is Hershel’s barn and they are Hershel’s zombies.
Uncle Dale explains that Hershel thinks the zombies in the barn are sick people, illin’ like villains with a disease. He has known about Zombie Barn since last night but didn’t say anything because Glen wanted to share the news with the group. Besides, they’ve been surviving just fine next to Zombie Barn for this long, so why stir things up? It’s just a barn, full of zombies, no bigsy. The zombies must know the Still Alives are talking about them because they start shoving against the barn door and making snarling noises. After the credits, Shane stares at Zombie Barn, jiggles the chain holding the door closed and makes his patented angry face.
Maggie gathers farm-fresh eggs from the chicken coop while Glen begs her to talk to him. Maggie is still super pissed off, and she takes his hat and cracks an egg over his head. Glen is astonished – why would you waste a perfectly good egg by smashing it over someone’s head and ruining his baseball cap? Seriously, Maggie. Throw some chicken poop or something. That egg could have been breakfast. Do you think eggs just grow on trees? They come from chickens – you know, the things you keep feeding your pet zombies?
At the Still Alive campsite, Lori makes Carl the Kid do schoolwork. Carl wants to know why Shane is so angry. Is it because he thinks Sophia’s dead? Lori tells him it’s because Shane is anxious about Zombie Barn. Carl announces that they can’t leave until they find Sophia. And he never wants to leave the Greene Farm, because he knows Sophia will just love living there, with the peaches and the jerky and the horses and all that fun stuff, and he and Sophia can grow up there and repopulate the earth and everything. Lori snaps at him to do his math problems.
Over in the horse stables, Daryl is about to steal another horse to continue the search for Sophia, even though he is still recovering from the Smugface Andrea-induced gunshot wound. Carol insists that he needs to rest, and she is worried that if he goes out there, she’ll lose him, too. Does Carol love Daryl? (Awww, they rhyme!) Are they going to kiss? No! Daryl chucks a saddle across the stable in frustration and tells her to leave him alone.
Glen borrows Dale’s hat because his is covered in egg goo. Smugface Andrea tells Dale she’s going to go hang out with Shane and keep watch over Zombie Barn. Dale is concerned that Andrea is spending so much time with Shane and he warns her to be careful; he doesn’t warn her to turn into a mean guy who shoots and threatens people. Andrea is like, “Back off, dude! Stop worrying about me! I am no longer suicidal! Things are different ever since I had car sex with Shane!” Glen hears this conversation from his perch atop the RV, where he’s keeping watch. He asks if Dale is okay, and Dale says he needs minute alone. Glen goes off to get him some water.
Inside the farmhouse, Hershel is eating lunch at a very fancy table. During a zombpocalypse, it is so nice to celebrate creature comforts such as lace tablecloths and silver candlesticks. He is trying to catch up on his Bible reading because he is so busy these days, taking care of the farm and saving the Still Alives from various gunshot wounds. Rick shows up and says that they found the barn. You “found” the barn? The barn has been there the whole time. I think you mean, “We discovered that your barn is full of zombies, although it is strange that we’ve been here so long and we never noticed that your barn was making snarling noises.” Rick offers to help out around the farm, but Hershel says that the Still Alives need to leave by the end of the week.
Rick wants to discuss the Zombie Barn situation with Hershel. He explains that his merry band of Still Alives have been out there in the real world, and it’s a horrible place. His people are alive, and those zombies are definitely not. If they leave the farm, they will get eaten. Rick reveals that Lori is preggers – a new baby would be a joy on the farm and a curse in the outside zombie world. He urges Hershel to think about it some more and let them stay. Maggie eavesdrops on this conversation.
Shane and his angry face sit on a trailer, staring at Zombie Barn. Rick tells him that he’s negotiating with Hershel about the fate of the Sick People with Zombie Disease. Shane asks, “Why do we want to stay here if it’s not safe?” Rick argues that they can make it safe and besides, they can’t leave because Lori is knocked up.
Back in the farmhouse, Maggie confronts her dad. Note: there is a bowl of fruit clearly displayed in the foreground. Either the Greenes are super into still-lifes or they have a crazy abundance of pear and apple trees on the farm that we haven’t seen yet. Maggie wants Hershel to let the Still Alives stay, but Hershel is adamant that Carl is all better and they’ll be okay because they’re strong and they know how to fight. Besides, they can go find another farm somewhere. Maggie quotes scripture at Hershel: “Love one another as I love you.” She learned to love her stepmom even though all stepmothers are evil! And Hershel taught her to love everyone. Hershel demands to know if all this is about that Asian Kid, who has a name, and it is Glen. Maggie insists that it has nothing to do with Glen, although Glen just saved her life from a zombie – and that zombie was definitely a gross, dead non-person. She is upset that Hershel has changed. Nobody likes change! Especially not when one’s loved ones change into horrible zombies.
Just as Maggie and Hershel are really getting into it, Jimmy runs in. He cries, “Hershel, it happened again!” Oh goodness, what did?
Hershel rushes over to where Rick and Andrea are looking at maps for the never-ending Sophia hunt. Rick starts to apologize that their guns are out (no guns allowed!) but Hershel cuts him off and says he needs his help. Just Rick’s help, not Smugface Andrea’s help.
Meanwhile, Angry Shane tries to convince Lori that he is a really awesome dude. After all, he has saved Lori’s life a whopping four times, and Rick has saved her life zero times. In fact, Rick’s insistence on going back into ATL to save Merle is why zombies attacked their old camp and why Amy and Jim (remember them from the first season?) died. Lori knows that he is trying to prove that he is more important to her than Rick, but she insists that her unborn baby belongs to Rick. In fact, even if that baby comes out with a shaved head and an angry face, it will still be Rick’s kid. And there is nothing Shane can do to change that, not even if he acts all fatherly to Carl and tells him to stop cussing.
Shane stalks off and goes to the RV, looking for the guns. But, alas! The guns are gone, and so too is Uncle Dale!
Jimmy leads Hershel and Sheriff Rick to a patch of quicksand, where two zombies are stuck and struggling. Oh, so this is what is happening again. How often does this happen? Hershel recognizes one of the zombies as his neighbor Louise from the sweet corn farm up the road, and the other zombie is wearing overalls so we’ll call him Farm Boy. Hershel still believes that the zombies are sick people. He wants to know how many sick people Rick shot along their journey. “Too many to count,” Rick replies. Hershel needs to know if he can stop killing zombies. “These people can be saved,” he says. “If you want to stay, you need to see them as human beings. My farm. My barn. My way.” (Or the highway!)
Hershel and Rick catch the zombies with something that looks like a cattle yoke or some farm device one uses to catch wild animals. It is definitely not Temple Grandin approved. Hershel teaches Rick how to walk zombies – be the carrot, not the stick! Let the zombies come to you! Louise and Farm Boy do not like being leashed. They hiss and snarl and really want to eat the human carrots.
At the farm, Maggie and Glen have a little couple’s spat. Glen spits out that he had to spill the secrets about Zombie Barn because he’s been so caught up in everything that he forgot the zombies were dangerous! I mean, heck, he even let them dangle him down a well! But after yesterday’s Zombie Pharmacist incident, he remembers that the zombies are evil nasty monsters and he doesn’t ever want Maggie to be in danger ever again. Awwww. Maggie and Zombie Bait make out. Hooray for young love.
Dale is trying to hide the guns in a swamp when Shane sneaks up on him. Dale is like, “Busted! Man! Okay, what are you going to do, shoot me like you did Otis?” So Dale totally knows. Shane threatens Dale and Dale takes aim with a rifle. Shane knows Dale will pussy out so he steps forward until the gun is touching his (strong, magnificent) chest. Good Uncle Dale despairs that Shane is an outlaw and is thriving in the zombpocalypse outlaw world. Shane sneers that Dale is pretty much dead already. And, poor Dale – he’s clinging to his principles and refusing to let the shitty world make him a shitty person. But he gives up and Shane gets the guns.
All the Still Lives are just straight chillin’ on the porch. Maggie offers to wash Glen’s egg-cap because he looks like an old man wearing Dale’s hat. And where is Rick? Why are they postponing the Sophia hunt? What could be more important than going out and looking for a little girl who is clearly dead? Shane marches up and he has ALL OF THE GUNS. “Let’s strap on a set!” he shouts. “Let’s grow up! This place ain’t safe! You gonna protect yours?” Maggie insists that if he goes after Zombie Barn, Hershel will forcibly evict the Still Alives. Carl freaks out, because he doesn’t want to leave without finding Sophia. Shane gets all Rambo and shouts that Hershel will have to understand. It is motherfucking go time.
T-bone gets his one line of the week when he spots Rick and Hershel dragging Louise and Farm Boy towards the barn. Shane is like “Ohhhh, fuck.” Hershel insists that these zombies are people – they’re people! Shane will have none of it. He shoots Louise three times in the chest to prove that she is a non-person. “These things ain’t sick! They’re dead! They killed Amy! They killed Otis,” he shouts. (No, Shane – you killed Otis! And you are also people!) Louise keeps on snarling. Shane fires bullet after bullet into her body and she keeps on standing. Shane is over this zombie bullshit. No more risking their lives for Sophia and living next to Zombie Barn! They are going to fight, right here, right now. (Cue the Jesus Jones.)
Shane goes ballistic and runs to Zombie Barn, hacking into it with an axe. Hershel is stupefied. Rick makes a sad Dawson face, but the zombies are free. They surge out of the barn because they are so very hungry. Shane and Andrea shoot them and it’s like a bonus round in Buck Hunter. Pop, pop, pop. Hershel is absolutely stunned as the Stills mow down the zombies. Goodbye, zombie stepson! Au revoir, zombie stepmom! Adieu, zombie neighbors!
The humans stand in front of a huge pile of dead zombies. Team Greene cries. The Still Alives think their battle is over, until we hear one last snarl. Could it be … is it … that snarl sounds so childlike … holy shit, it’s Zombie Sophia! Carol runs to her but Daryl hold her back. Lori protects Carl as the zombie little girl lurches forward, stepping over her dead zombie barn mates. Carol weeps. The Still Alives stare. Sheriff Rick draws his weapon and aims it at the little girl he’s been trying so desperately to save. He shoots; Zombie Sophia crumples. Mid-season finale time!
People, they are a-changin’. Sometimes they think zombies are sick people. Sometimes they sleep with their presumed-dead husband’s best friend. Sometimes they fall in love. Sometimes the little girl they’ve spent an entire season looking for turns out to be a zombie locked up in a barn a few yards from their campsite. Let’s spend the new few weeks mourning Sophia (and also the other ex-people) until the season comes back on February 12th.
Zombie-free is the way to be!
Humans: Finally, we’ve found Sophia. And now she is a dead zombie.
Zombies: The Zombie Barn inhabitants are extinguished, including new zombie friends Louise and Farm Boy. I’ll miss you the most, Louise.
LAST EPISODE: Who is Lori’s Baby-Daddy?