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May 10, 2017

Walking dead mid-season finale impresses

Warning: This article contains spoilers for the AMC show “The Walking Dead.”

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This Sunday marked the beginning of what will surely be a low point in the lives of many: the mid-season finale of the hit AMC show “The Walking Dead,” which will not return to finish its third season until Feb. 10.

Based on the popular comic series by the same name, the television adaptation of “The Walking Dead” premiered in October 2010 and quickly took off. Many have seen the show as a refreshing break from the vampire craze that seemed to have taken over the entertainment industry at the time. Others are drawn to the post-apocalyptic setting and the adventure aspect. Some watch the show out of hardcore devotion to writer and creator Robert Kirkman’s vision.

Whether a viewer has read the comic series or not, the show remains among the most compelling dramatic series currently on television. The show deviates significantly from the textual plot, and several main characters in the show don’t exist in the books. Familiarity with the comics does provide viewers with more insight into certain characters and relationships as well as the foundations for how the story will progress in the show.

Season three has been building up to several inevitable boiling points: the reunion of Daryl with his brother Merle, who hasn’t been seen since season one; the Governor’s attempt at taking the prison from Rick and the group; and the birth of Judith, to name a few. Of course, the show’s writers have saved the best for last and saved the upcoming battle between the Governor’s group and Rick’s for the second half of the season.

Much to the excitement of the comic’s fans, writers have brought in the character of Tyreese, who will surely serve as a useful new member of the group. In the brief time that we saw Tyreese in the mid-season finale, it was made clear that he has a stronger moral compass than the other men in his own group, and it appears that he may abandon them for the sake of protecting his new comrades.

The mid-season finale left viewers’ minds burning with questions and theories about what’s coming next. Certain changes made from the plot in the comics have added curveballs that will undoubtedly affect the group’s ability to survive. For example, they now have an infant to care for, arguably the most vulnerable and fragile being possible, and the noisiest addition to the group. Because Judith was killed along with Lori in the comics, one can only guess how Rick and Carl will manage to keep her alive in the show, or if she will survive the impending attack on the prison.

Another anticipated moment in the show was the face-off between Michonne and the Governor, which was underwhelming at best; readers had a strong understanding of Michonne’s rage against the Governor in the text as the scene seemed to have been designed to create sympathy for her as a victim of a brutal and violent rape by the Governor.

While viewers expected Michonne to completely dismember the Governor for what he did, the two had a short fight instead; it was unclear why Michonne wanted to attack him in the first place since they had interacted so little. She didn’t seem to have a reason to want to attack him. However, the moment when she stabbed the Governor in the eye with a shard of glass was, for lack of better phrasing, pretty sweet.

The episode ended predictably with a cliffhanger involving the Dixon brothers. Because we have yet to see them interact beyond a very tense moment of eye contact between them, it’s unclear what the dynamic between them will be like. One thing is for sure: Daryl will no longer be the “little brother” in the relationship as he has come into his own as not only the muscle of the group, but as of late, the co-leader with Rick.

Speculation about these things has been flooding blogs and forums since the mid-season finale aired. If the show continues to loosely follow the plot of the comics, viewers won’t be disappointed. One can only hope that the time between now and Feb. 10 moves swiftly.

Ellie Rulon-Miller can be reached at ellie@dailycollegian.com.

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