Archive for the 'Talking Walking Dead' Category

07
Nov
11

Talking Walking Dead: Episode Three

Welcome to the third installment of Talking Walking Dead, a weekly email exchange of AMC’s smash-hit, fun-t0-nitpick show about zombies. This week we’re joined by Jenn from the Pretty Little Losers podcast.

Mark: this is going to be a very Shane-heavy installment. Jenn, I’m going to leave a few lines here since I’m sure you have very strong feelings (I do and I don’t even hate the guy like you).

Jenn: Why is he alive, should be shot in the face by carl. I hate him, etc, etc. Nothing new.

Mark: Okay, on with the thing. Continue reading ‘Talking Walking Dead: Episode Three’

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28
Oct
11

Talking Walking Dead, Episode 2

Welcome to Extended Play’s weekly roundtable chat for AMC’s The Walking Dead. As usual, I’m joined by Heather from The Electronic Shrug and Jenn from the Pretty Little Losers podcast.

Mark: We kick off the episode with a flashback to Shane breaking the news to Lori that Rick’s been shot. It’s an interesting scene for a few reasons: Lori’s dishing to somebody about how rocky her marriage is and it shows that Shane’s never been able to connect with Carl; he removed himself from dealing the kid. When I think back to the last episode, maybe there’s a little more going on there than I thought.

Jenn: Do you remember in the first few episodes last season I predicted that they were going to make Lori and Shane’s affair something that had happened pre-zombies? Because I totally got that vibe again here. She’s talking to her friend about her marriage falling apart and not being sure if she loves Rick, Shane pops up, they look distraught (or guilty).

This is going to be the big reveal when Rick finally finds out about them. Shane will be all “whatever man, screw you, I was there for your family when you weren’t” then Rick will be all “I was in a coma!” and Shane will go “that’s not what I meant!” and the penny will drop and everyone will turn to Lori and she will look away, ashamed, and Rick will brood. Hard.

Damn I could write this show! Next time they fire all the writers I should submit my resume.

Well, Rick, my mother was a fish

Heather: They’re totally doing naughty things at this point during the flash-back. Probably have been for a while. A woman doesn’t talk or think like that unless her attention is elsewhere and it became quite apparent as soon as Shane showed up that her attention was on him. I hope Lori gets a nice hard slap from someone. I don’t care who. She deserves it. Slappity-slap!

Mark: Later, Rick, Shane and a fat man we’ll find out later is named Otis running through the forest to a doctor’s house (who we find out later is not that kind of doctor; more on that later). They get to this idyllic house in the woods and thanks to some old, old school doctorin’, Carl’s life is saved. And there’s a whole new slew of people to meet, too: Otis, Hershel the doctor, a girl I think named Maggie and some other people whose names escape me. Always cool to see fresh blood in this show and they provided some of the better moments in this episode. We also see Crew Two, who are arguing about a gunshot and decide to keep wandering around in the woods, like that’s going to solve anything. Spoiler: it doesn’t.

Back on the highway, T-Dogg is sick, getting high and acting crazy. Was it last week I was saying I want to see more of him? I liked this: he’s scared too and it only comes out after he smokes up + does pills. Rick is all messed up over his son being shot and is a huge trainwreck: it’s cool to see Shane stepping up and taking control. Everybody’s starting to crack up, which is fun to see for a few episodes. For me, it’s cooler to see how Shane and RIck interact. I think Shane’s quickly becoming the Pete Campbell or Kate Austen of this series: somebody you love to hate but would hate to see go. The bro hug rules, too.

Jenn: I do love to hate Pete Campbell, but Shane is much more Kate Austen in that he needs to die and I will complain about his existence for every episode of this show. I feel like they wrote Shane so unevenly before that I can’t buy him stepping up to the plate and being a good friend here. Like, you nailed this dude’s wife and went a little crazy and thought about shooting him, and since then you’ve just been weird and angry and not talking to anyone, oh but now you’re his bff and will do anything to save his kid and help keep that family together?

Things in Yoknapatawpha County seem less than idyllic these days

I guess the guilt is getting to him but I just am not convinced by his actions. Nothing he does makes sense to me. Especially living. It makes no sense to me that Shane is still living.

Heather: I’m with Jenn on the whole why is Shane alive deal, but at the same time I was trying to look at it from a set of eyes that have not read the comic books this time (because they’re going to continuously tease the hell out of me by vaguely following the storyline in the books, so instead of losing my cool regarding this every episode I’m going to lose my cool over other things every episode).

I was left feeling kind of funny after this episode. Part of me felt a tiny bit better about Shane, but still wanted to smother him into the ground. Watching Rick & Shane talk is thrilling for me. Just waiting for the moment for Rick to say “by the way, I know you were banging my wife, nerdlinger” and watch the tension unravel and grow at an explosive rate.

Mark: Speaking of Shane, are he and Otis fucked? Maybe somebody should have kept watch?

Jenn: They had to create a huge diversion to sneak past the zombies on their way into the trailer, but thought they could just open the door and stroll out? Morons.

Heather: I want Otis to make it.

Mark: One thing I kept thinking throughout this episode: it doesn’t handle the drama too well (still not a great scripted show), but it handles the action stuff pretty good. I keep making notes like “Damn some Sleepy Hallow shit, cool” when I watch this. It’s not a great show, but it’s great fun to watch. A blog I read made a good point about this: yes you care later about details like the zombies not smelling people (when they totally did earlier) but when you’re watching? It rules.

Jenn: As evidenced by my twitter feed, I definitely do notice those things during the episode and it does drive me crazy. I might have a more critical eye than the average viewer though.

Heather: You’re right, Mark. It is fun to watch. I’m like – half Mark and half Jenn here. I hate it. I love it. I hate to love it, but most of all – I love to hate it.

Mark: A couple of quick notes:

  • Remember in the last episode, how Dale was saying not everybody should have a gun? And then Carl takes a hit? MHMMMMMM.
  • I’m digging how funny this episode was. I wasn’t expecting any humor from it at all, but lines like “Merle gets the clap sometimes” or “We can talk about this until next Sunday” made me laugh
  • I think it’s worth noting the show does gruesome well. I’m thinking especially of the operating-sans-painkiller scene in particular.
  • The little girl is dead, isn’t she?

Heather: I hope so.

Jenn: If that little girl has somehow survived on her own for two days and not made it back to camp, I will give up on this show. (please note, the show will have to get a lot worse before I actually give up. I made it to season three of Heroes).

Mark: Did either of you catch the blue meth?

Jenn: I didn’t catch the blue meth but I heard it was an intentional nod to Breaking Bad, which is cool. Although at the same time, confusing because Breaking Bad is set in present day and there are no zombies so does The Walking Dead exist at a certain point in the future, after Breaking Bad has finished, but not too far in that they could have still bought blue meth from Jesse and Walt? Also, how good is that meth if they went all the way to Albuquerque to Atlanta for it? (please note, this scene really does not require as much thought as I’ve put into it).

Heather: You just made my brain mush.

Jenn: I actually didn’t hate this episode. It was far from perfect, believe me, but I can see that they’re trying to get onto the right track. There’s still a while to go, and who knows if they’ll even get there or just derail again into stopping for a chat at the CDC or a zombie autopsy, but I’m starting to see potential.

Heather: I love you guys. Until next week!

21
Oct
11

Talking Walking Dead, Season 2, Episode 1

Mark: They’re moving on to Fort Benning. I’m not sure where all their cars came from – notably the sweet chopper – and I’m not sure how they’re moving (weren’t they out of gas?), but, like Willie Nelson, they’re on the road again. Until they hit what looks like the 401 at rush hour: a pile of discarded cars blocking the highway. And a horde of zombies, too.

I thought it was a nice intro, even if it did push it a little. A nice touch was Daryl helping T-Dog out. Wish he got more screen time (and maybe a real name), though. Continue reading ‘Talking Walking Dead, Season 2, Episode 1’

16
Dec
10

Talking Walking Dead Part Five

Your weekly roundtable chat for AMC’s The Walking Dead. New to Talking Walking? Read any of the previous entries here. Joining myself and Jenn this week is Chel, one third of the Pretty Little Losers podcast.

Mark: This is a very Shane-centric episode and kind of presents two sides to Shane… which may really be one, big side.

Continue reading ‘Talking Walking Dead Part Five’

05
Dec
10

Talking Walking Dead – Part Four

Your weekly roundtable chat for AMC’s The Walking Dead. New to Talking Walking? Read any of the previous entries here. Joining myself and Jenn this week is Chel, one third of the Pretty Little Losers podcast.

Mark: It’s nice that Rick is still keeping a vigil with the guy we saw back in the pilot. While we still haven’t heard from him again – and he may be dead, given how he was shooting at zombies and drawing attention to himself – it’s still nice of Rick. But I’m thinking, between the calls and notes Rick leaves, isn’t it a bad idea to advertise where you are? They already had that one skirmish, who knows if there are other people out there who actually are a gang with no qualms about looting and such?

Jenn: I thought the same thing, to be honest, when Rick left a map pinned to the car. Do you really want just anyone to stumble across that and find your whereabouts? I mean leave it in the glove compartment for your buddy to find, sure, but taping it to the driver’s seat door of a bright red maseratti convertible with “MAP: FIND US” written in big letters isn’t the best plan Rick’s had. Although I’m hard pressed to think of any good plans of his so far… Continue reading ‘Talking Walking Dead – Part Four’

26
Nov
10

Talking Walking Dead – Part Three

We’re four episodes into AMC’s The Walking Dead now. If you’re just joining our chat for the first time, read the previous installments (and meet the panelists) here.

Mark: Things are a-gettin’ ominous up on the mountain. There’s some heavy foreshadowing (something I’m noticing this show likes to do now and then) in the boat over fishing – “People change..” and all that – and Jim has completely flipped his shit, digging a bunch of graves out in the sun. And frankly, I’m kind of surprised more people haven’t completely lost it, what with the world coming to an end.

Chel: I have to say that I love Jim in this episode. He might be my new favorite character. But you know… lets just tie him up to the tree because his digging is scaring the kids! There’s a zombie apocalypse and most of their family is already dead but no, a guy minding his own business digging some holes (soon to be graves because he had a dream some bitches would die) is something they must stop immediately. But Jim at the end, going crazy with his bat was amazing. A+ for Jim. Continue reading ‘Talking Walking Dead – Part Three’

19
Nov
10

Talking Walking Dead – Part Two

We’re three episodes into AMC’s newest smash hit, The Walking Dead. This week’s roundtable chat has Mark, Chel, Jenn and Heather arguing about what constitutes a lie, crossbows vs rifles and just how the hell Merle got down from the roof with only one hand. Oh and Jenn drops a spoiler, but I’m probably the only one who hasn’t read the books yet. Here’s last week’s chat.

Mark: To me, both Rick’s wife Lori and Shane are interesting characters only in how they’re kind of conflicted. I think on one level, how quickly they attached to each other shows they’re kind of scummy… but I can’t say I entirely blame them, either. The world ended. Pretty much everybody they knew is dead. Lori was under the impression Rick had died and Shane made what I’d call an entirely good call in assuming he was (after all, not much was left alive in that hospital). So I can’t say I think their affair was entirely awful. Plus, I’m getting the impression the marriage was on the skids even before Rick got shot (good call on that, Jenn!). I’m not going to agree with it, but I understand why it happened.

So, why is Lori getting all upset? I’m getting mixed signals: she volunteers Rick to go off and fight zombies and she keeps getting this crazy glint in her eyes, but she’s also on the defensive, kicking out Shane and telling him to go off and not bug her kid any longer. Maybe seeing Rick again was too much for her? That’s what I’m leaning towards. It seems she had her life kind of set into an order again and seeing Rick alive shattered that world, her world, for another time. Life just got complex really fast and she’s got two guys coming to her doorstep. I can’t really say I’m surprised she’s little wonky.

'Stop! What do you mean you've never had kimchi?"

Chel: I don’t really care for the love triangle at all. They’re trying to stretch it out to be overly dramatic and they don’t need to; it’s become annoying. That they cheat is a tad bit retarded, considering the guy is not good looking and they haven’t even been stranded that long. I guess when you have to fuck, you just settle, even if it means fucking in a tent while your son sleeps a couple of steps away. Also, Rick volunteered himself for the rescue mission. His wife just pushed him towards the idea he already brought up, because she wanted to keep him distracted. Why are they diving down into this boring side plot? I don’t think I’m the only one that doesn’t care!

Jenn: Lori is a dumb bitch. I don’t know what she expected to happen. She starts a brand new, shiny happy thing with Shane despite it being the end of the world, despite her comatose husband having supposedly just died, despite Shane being a raging douchebag pre-zombie apocalypse (remember his speech in the pilot about how all women are dumb) and despite him obviously having rage issues. Was she just hoping for the best? Granted, it’s not like anyone could have expected Rick sauntering back into the picture, but I hate how she seems so thrown off. Now that he’s back she has to stop playing house with Shane and deal with what’s really going on: not just with the literal end of the world but her fucked up relationships and life.

Heather: I’m just glad someone enjoys hating her as much as I do after reading Jenn’s response. But I don’t agree with Chel. I enjoy hating Lori as much as I get to in the TV Series. I don’t understand what you mean by Lori pushing Rick towards the idea of volunteering for the rescue mission. She didn’t want him to go at all. She doesn’t want to lose him again. Having sex next to their kid was a bit much, but where else are they supposed to go? I’m not saying it was right, as I would never do it, but the world they live in now is supremely screwy. Can’t go into the woods, Zombies might eat me. Got a kid? Too bad. If you want to bump uglies, it’s happening in the tent.

Shane sucks. I could feel sorry for Lori, but I don’t. She’s punishing Shane for making a pretty good call on Rick probably being dead, but now she’s just looking for someone to blame for her mistakes. She’s irrational and she’s a bitch. I feel more sorry for Shane than her, and that says a lot because I don’t like Shane’s character too much either.

Mark: As for Shane himself, I still think he’s a simebag, no matter how much he tries to be nice. He basically lied about Rick, he seduced his partner’s wife, he’s trying to encroach himself as a Dad. And when Rick went off to play boyscout, he got all pissy. You’re a cop too, Shane, so act like one. They’re really painting him a the villain here and while I think it’s a tad trite, they’re not going to give him any redeeming qualities: even when he was trying to a good ol cajun dad, he was still a slimeball. I’d hope he dies, but there’s no way he actually puts himself in danger.

Chel: How did he lie about Rick? I think through the panic of things everybody just assumed he was dead. But yet again I don’t really care about his horny ways. Not unless he gets jealous and kills the wife in spite. In my perfect TV series about zombies, it would happen.

Heather: He lied about Rick by saying he was dead when it wasn’t confirmed that he was at all. It was assumption, and when you assume, you make an ASS out of U & ME. Remember?

Jenn: I can’t wait until Carl shoots him. I think this season is going to end with Shane’s death which is a shame because I felt like the story really didn’t begin until that point, with Rick taking over as team captain. I also feel their attempts to turn Shane into the “big bad” are kind of weak. I’d rather be seeing the personal turmoil, the dealing with loss, and the struggles and squabbles of these complete strangers being forced to live with each other than this love triangle.

Heather: Fair enough, but remember what they’re probably preparing us for. It’ll be over soon enough.

WE HEARD YOU HAVE PIE

Mark: Merle, oh Merle. He’s absolutely losing his shit up there on the rooftop and although he’s under attack by zombies (and seriously fucking up his wrist) he probably is kind of completely crazy. But here’s what I don’t get: they – Glenn, Rock and the others – had to cut the chain to get up to the roof, but Merle was gone. He couldn’t have gone down the stairs, since it was still chained. So where did he go after he cut off his hand? And where did all those zombies go? Did he kill them all one handed (which would be pretty badass, actually)?

Chel: The roof was not that high…he could just climb off the side one armed and be fine. There were a whole bunch of vents and pipes in that area too so he has got plenty of options. Also I just wanted to say to the side – This season is only 6 episodes long…why the fuck did they waste an entire episode on the rescue mission? I thought he should have cut and run last week…I didn’t have to wait an entire episode just to see his hand at the end. We are half way through and that was not a really big climax to the episode.

Heather: I think they’re trying to make this season entirely the first trade of the book series, so this would explain why they wasted an entire episode on a rescue mission and character development. As for Merle cutting off his hand, I would have waited until I lost my mind before I chopped off my wrist, too, that is if I could find the balls within myself to actually do it.

Jenn: I’m with Chel here. I figured that Merle had climbed down the side of the building rather than using the barricaded staircase. And I also agree that seeing his amputated hand was pretty anti-climactic, as in the first few minutes of him still on the roof we were shouting “you have a saw! you can cut yourself free!”

Mark: And his brother Daryl is cool too. Why doesn’t anybody else use a crossbow? It’s such a great idea. And while he doesn’t seem quite as racist, he does seem much more crazy, which is always fun to see.

Chel: I have the crossbow vs rifles fight with Jenn all the time. I think crossbows are a good idea in theory, but they’re not suited for hunting in a zombie swarm. They would definitely be handy in training when it came to hunting food. But even that guy Daryl…it took him how many days to hit something? And he had to walk up and stab it in the eye to get the brain of it. You can’t really use them unless you’re a trained professional. I am will be over here with my rifles and guns with silencers.

Jenn: BOWS VS GUNS WILL NOT HAVE A ROUND TWO OKAY! Bows are totally useful. On a random side note, I’ve always wanted to see a horror movie where someone is asked for a gun/handed a gun and they respond with “uhh I don’t own a gun, I’m a Democrat.” Although this is the south, so maybe it won’t happen for me.

Heather: HAHAHA!

"Why yes, I think I will have another slice."

Mark: Was it just me or did the show seem really slow this week? Even right as it ended I kept hoping something was going to happen and it just didn’t happen. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like a zombie show should have at least one moment a week where a zombie pops up at you or something spooky happens. And it just didn’t happen. Looking at the preview for next week gives me the idea something is going to happen – there appears to be a cool gang – but still. Plot holes – the staircase stands out especially – and a fairly dull plot aren’t really fanning my fire here. I hope the show picks up and soon.

Chel: I think my biggest issue here is that I love the zombies, action, blood, guts, and gore more than the character drama. Saying that, I am trying my hardest to get into the character story and drama that AMC is known for. The weak story plot so far just leaves me not caring about anything. Kill off most of the cast and have something interesting happen and I will be back into it.

Jenn: Here is my mini-rant about the show this week (and in general): I will never understand why someone makes the effort to adapt a book (short story, comic, tv show, movie, play, real life, etc) if they’re just going to throw the source material out the window and create their own story. Our band of survivors have a lot to deal with – death, distrust, murder, the upcoming winter, attempting to rebuild society, etc – but we can’t get to any of that until we deal with the racist tied up to the roof? Ugh. If you wanted to deal with racism between the characters why not use the instances that actually came up in the comics? And now we have an invented abusive white trash husband. So instead of a story where the end of the world brings out the worst in people (looking at you, Lori), we’ve got the most shallow, one dimensional caricatures of bad people dealing with the end of the world. This show is far, far below AMC standards and I’m wicked disappointed.

Heather: I don’t agree. I’m still on the I Like This Show bandwagon.




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