After what could generously be described as a bumpy second season, AMC’s “The Walking Dead” set itself up for an intriguing third season during last night’s finale. In what was a heart-pounding first half, the surviving members of the ragtag gang of zombie apocalypse survivors were forced off the farm of Hershel Greene (Scott Wilson) by a hungry mob of walkers that, as we found out, were lured out of Atlanta by a helicopter.
The crew finds themselves in the middle of nowhere, short a few members, and wondering if they’ve hooked themselves up with the wrong leader after Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) admits some things to the group that makes them recoil.
But, amidst all the chatter and running, there were signs of hope that season three will be filled with more action and intriguing characters. But first, we have some questions after watching last night’s finale:
How did everyone in the group learn to shoot so well? During the scenes where the gang drive around Hershel’s farm, trying to round up the walkers while picking off the ones they could, everyone managed to get a head shot off, using short-range shotguns and pistols, all on the move. We knew Shane (Jon Bernthal) was a good shooting instructor, but we didn’t think he was that good. Too bad he’s not around anymore to see the results of his efforts.
Why did Rick hold on to Dr. Jenner’s secret for so long? “We’re all infected” was what Jenner whispered to Rick at the CDC in the season one finale, which was something we had an inkling of once we saw Shane and Randall (Michael Zegen) pop up as zombies after dying, even though they didn’t get bitten or scratched by a walker. We guess Rick didn’t want to concern anyone until he knew for sure, because he felt it might be easier to control people if they had a shred of hope, but it seems like a whopper of a secret to keep. It also makes us wonder how everyone will react if they know that as soon as they die, they’ll wake up and roam the earth as a mindless walker unless they get a bullet to the brain.
How long will the group follow Rick now that they know he’s crazier than Shane? After he admitted to the group that he killed Shane, telling them that “this is no longer a democracy” and inviting anyone who didn’t want to listen to him to leave and try to survive on their own, why did everyone stay? At this point, they can’t see Rick as a stable guy, and they have to know that he’s made some hairbrained decisions that have almost gotten himself and everyone else killed in the process. You’d think that, at the very least Daryl (Norman Reedus), would just say “screw this guy” and take off on his motorcycle. But everyone stuck around, even though the looks on their faces said “um, tell us why we follow this guy again?” It’s a conflict that will make for some interesting stories next fall.
When will Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) get a consistent personality? After she more or less told Rick a few episodes back that Shane needs to be eliminated, she recoiled in horror when Rick told her he did just that. It really feels like the writers don’t know what to do with Lori, because in some episodes she’s so dense she can’t even keep track of her son Carl (Chandler Riggs) or realize Glenn (Steven Yeun) shouldn’t be sent into town for pregnancy supplies, in others she’s Lady Macbeth, and now she’s horrified at the very thing she all but told her husband should be done. We tend to think that if Lori died and came back as a walker, it would be an improvement for her character.
Who is the mysterious hooded woman with the sword? Andrea (Laurie Holden) somehow managed to outrun the tireless hungry walkers, but needed help from this mysterious hooded woman who seems to have two walkers enslaved to help her. Fans of the comic series know this woman is Michonne, one of the series’ more popular forces of good. Right after the episode, Glen Mazzara and Robert Kirkman announced that Michonne will be played by Danai Gurira, and it seems that she’ll bring a bit of a mystical and mysterious element to the show that has been lacking for some time.
What is behind those prison walls? At the very end of the episode, we got a shot of a prison that is a few miles away from where the gang made camp. We imagine that it’ll be where they make a home for at least part of the third season, which will make them safe, but also could become a festering trap once people realize that they’re stuck behind those walls forever… and a walker could be lurking as soon as someone dies. But we don’t know who’s already fortified themselves there, so once the gang makes it to the prison, it’ll be interesting to see what they find.
How does T-Dogg (IronE Singleton) manage to stay alive? And why didn’t he just let Lori and Beth (Emily Kinney) walk when he had the chance? His continued survival despite minimal screen time is becoming the show’s best inside joke.