Better Late Than DEAD

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Season 3, Episode 14 “Prey”

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[photos: Gene Page/AMC]

Timothy: We are late. Very late.

Dustin: Really very late.

There are reasons.

There are! Reasons!

We were both unusually busy this week.

Very busy.

There were technical issues.

My computer died.

It did.

That means I didn’t take notes this week.

And you are, indeed, a serious note taker.

So I had to do the whole recap by memory.

Right.

So this one is gonna be really short.

I have faith in you.

I don’t see why. I can’t remember people’s names from week to week, what makes you think that I’m gonna be able to remember what I saw last week without notes?

… we are so doomed.

ON TO THE RECAP!!

Walker - The Walking Dead - Season 3, Episode 14 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
I’ve been waiting for this review too. Jeez it’s late.

Wait, wait. What about your predictions?

Dude, I am writing this on SATURDAY.  Haven’t had a home computer all week, and I work at a law office.
Also: NO NOTES. Also also: I’ve seen the episode already.

Come on, for me? And all the kids at home?

Fine.

  • Milton will ask Martinez to the First Annual Woodbury Sadie Hawkins dance, but in a moment of passion, they’ll both call out Daryl’s name and things will get… awkward.
  • Andrea and The Governor will participate in a high stakes game of Cat and Mouse about where Andrea left the remote. Shovel will be revealed to be Tyreese’s SISTER in a huge ”Couldn’t have mentioned that before, Show?” moment.
  • There will be a conflict between characters no one cares about.
  • Rick will see Andrea during an inopportune moment and just assume it’s his CRAZY acting up.

Really?

Really.

FINE. On to the recap. As always, Mr. Adair and my reviews of AMC’s The Walking Dead are chock full of SPOILERS, although in this case, that probably isn’t an issue for most of you, questionable behaviour and commentary, and, like the show we are reviewing, meant for adult audiences. This be the warning folks.

Now. Proceed sir.

Finally.

So The Governor is building a super creepy torture room, and its very existence is the last straw Milton needs to force him to give up his man crush and move on to outright sedition. After a tense moment where The Governor and Milton argue over the place revenge has in the new society, The Governor basically shuts the guy down and sends him packing.

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You’ve been waiting? Seriously, I’d give my right eye for a on-time review. Oh wait…

Milton runs directly to the waiting arms of everyone’s favorite hag and tells Andrea everything he should have told her, like, weeks ago: The G is cray; all your friends are gonna die; that ponytail makes you look super butch; you in danger, gurl.

To her Idiot Credit, Andrea has a hard time believing him until he takes her to The Most Well Lit Rooftop Ever, where she can see down into The Governor’s shiny new Murder Room. Andrea finally has all she needs to grow a pair of Ovaries and decides to take The Governor out right them, but Milton stops her. Milton is concerned that if The Governor is assassinated, someone worse will step up and take his place and it won’t save Andrea’s friends from being killed, and would probably get them killed too.

To which I can only say… Okay? I was kind of under the impression that Andrea had slept her way up the ranks well enough, at least in the People of Woodbury’s collective eyes to be considered a viable replacement for The Governor if he suddenly came down with a bad case of Dead. Also: If Milton and Andrea are the only other people besides The Governor that know about the Magical Murder room, and if The Governor is killed there, what’s to stop them from covering it up long enough to establish themselves as the new leadership? Also Also: Say Martinez DOES become the new leader. His vendetta isn’t with Team Zombie; we learned as much about him last week, so he probably wouldn’t put as much stock in destroying them as The Governor did. So why not let Andrea pull the trigger?

Oh, right, we have drama to manufacture.

Logic. It’s a bitch. Let’s not forget that Milton tells Andrea that he knew “Philip” before the zombie outbreak, and that “that man” is still in there. Despite all the evidence to the contrary. Way to hold on to your delusions, Milton.

But for God’s sake, Andrea… after all you’ve learned in the past few episodes? You really need convincing? Really? Really?

So instead of ending all our problems 2 episodes early, Milton convinces Andrea to go to the Prison and warn Team Zombie. Andrea asks him to come with her, but he declines, stating that his place, for better or worse, is in Woodbury.

On her way out of town, Martinez confiscates Andrea’s pistol, but not her tiny pen knife. I guess he figures if the FAA thinks they’re safe, who is he to argue.

After a tense non-conversation with The Governor, Andrea beats a path to where Tyreese and Shovel are guarding a portion of the wall. Turns out Tyreese is a crap shot, and Shovel is more than willing to allow him to waste ammo trying to take out one walker.

You’d think that after a year he’d have had time to practice, but sure. Whatever.

Andrea tells them everything they need to know: The G is cray; the writers of this show will only allow 2 people of any one non-white race to live at one time, so Shovel, you in danger, gurl; and they best be beating a path just like she is. Then it’s over the wall and out into the wilderness for Andrea.

Good thing it’s only like, a 20 minute walk from Woodbury to the prison.

You know, as close as these two places are, it almost makes sense that Woodbury is where the prison guards would have lived, because, well, prisons are close to towns, due to the whole staff/guard place-to-sleep thing. Surely this can’t be the case, because everyone is so surprised that the other group exists, and there would be tons of info about in both locations… ah forget it. I’m trying to apply logic again.

And that gets you nowhere with this show. Anyway. Fearful for their place in Woodbury, and with maybe a little more bowing and scraping than I would have been comfortable with,  Shovel and Tyreese take the news of Andrea’s abandonment right to The Governor. He assures them that Andrea is just troubled, and that he will go out and find her. I kind of love the look on Shovel’s face during all this. I think that because black women have spent 400 years in contact with the bull@#$% propagated upon them by both black men and white people in general, they have an innate ability to see through it when it’s flung their way… at least in pop culture representations of black women. Which is a thesis paper I may have to explore later when I have time, but for now, just know the look on Shovel’s face tells me that she believes not a word of The Governor’s story, but her posture, slightly behind Tyreese, arms pinned to her sides, tells me that she is not about to reveal her hand and expose herself to danger. Tyreese, on the other hand, buys it all.

Back to work, Tyreese.

Actually, no, not before we have a character building moment where we learn that all was not good with The Tailies even before they arrived at the prison. Turns out Angry White Dude’s wife maybe had a thing for Tyreese before she was killed, and he is pissed about it. Angry White Dude does not want Tyreese to mess things up for The Tailies in Woodbury by asking questions or making waves. Tyreese tries to tell the guy that it is not his intention to mess anything up, but Angry is not hearing it, he storms out.

Meanwhile, The Governor confronts Milton, who has grown a pair of Ovaries of his own and not only admits that he warned Andrea about the coming Team Zombie massacre, but tell him that he encouraged her to go. Instead of beating his ass in public, The Governor leaves Milton to think about what he did and heads off to find Andrea.

What follows is 30 minutes of Andrea wandering through the woods between Woodbury and the Prison, playing a life-sized game of Duel and I’m not going to cover it here.  Just imagine Andrea running through fields while the Governor chases her in a pickup truck, and you’ll know the gist.

Whoa, whoa, whoa. We do have to point out here that we had the oh so welcome return of both the Stealth Walkers AND the Teleporting Walkers this week. While running from the Governor, Andrea hides behind a tree, which, in the grand Walking Dead tradition, means that a Stealth Walker will immediately appear behind the tree, despite the fact that we just saw behind the tree, and it was suspiciously short on the undead. As soon as Andrea is in its clutches, two Teleporting Walkers… er… teleport into the woods right in front of her, cementing the theory that The Walking Dead is secretly a science fiction show, and that the writers and editors have given up on any real pretense of things making sense.

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Hey, maybe they keep the reviews back here…

Finally, Andrea finds an abandoned factory to hide in. She slinks around corners and occasionally stabs a zombie in the FREAKING EYE with her tiny, tiny pen knife until The Governor finally corners her.

But not before she hides in a terrible hiding place that the Governor can clearly see her in. Oh, he “doesn’t” see her, but not because he’s toying with her or anything, no no. He doesn’t see her because the script calls for him to not see her, even though she would be plainly visible from where he’s standing. Like impossible to miss plainly visible.

Again, proving that this character could be a major badass if the writing would just allow it, Andrea unleashes a stairwell full of trapped walkers on The Governor and leaves him to fight them and most likely die at their teeth while she escapes to the prison unscathed.

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Nope. Dammit.

This was the best moment she’s had in ages, and the look on her face, both when she walks into the stairwell and is confronted by the walkers, and when she turns them on the Governor? Fantastic. Now, how the Governor survives such an onslaught, considering the sheer numbers of the walkers? Wellllll, that’s fantastic too. As in fantasy. ‘Cause no, I really don’t think so.

Of course, right before she emerges into the field surrounding the prison, The Governor grabs her and pulls her back to Woodbury, where she has the honor of being the first guest in the Magical Murder room.  

And Rick, our home team crazy person is keeping watch when she gets to the edge of the field and, for an instant, sees motion at the treeline, but when he looks again, sees nothing. Missed it by… that much.

Oh, and Milton burns a bunch of walkers and Tyreese and Angry get into a fight. But none of that is really that important.

Well, I certainly agree that the subplot with Tyreese and Allen is an attempt to build up some character beats that probably doesn’t matter, but I’m going to disagree on the walker burning scene. First, we don’t see who did it, and for a moment, both of us were thinking, “Oh @#$%, the Governor is going to send Flaming Walkers into the prison!”, and briefly, oh so briefly, we were looking forward to that. Then, when the Governor returns, and tells everyone that he couldn’t find Andrea, we find out that the walkers in the pits have all been torched, and are Crispy Walkers. At first the Governor thinks it was the Tailies, but then it’s clear he knows Milton did it, further reinforcing the fact that Milton’s days are numbered.

And yes, we end on Andrea in the Magical Murder Room. Dun Dun Dunnnnnnn!!!!

And that’s it for last week’s episode, just in time for tonight’s episode, and one week out from the season finale. Methinks there will be much of the dying coming.

Is there any point in going over your predictions?

Not really. I do wish we had the Sadie Hawkins Dance scene though.

Actually? I do too. 

Do you have a lesson of the week?

Actually, I do. So, kids, when being chased by a psychotic, especially one who knows where you’re going?
Don’t take the shortest route there. Because you’re being chased. By a psychotic. Who knows where you’re going.

Uh huh. Words to live by. See you…er… in a few days? We are so late.

We are. But hey, we’ve got an episode to watch. See you later folks!

>>>>>

[Official Show Site at AMC]     [Previous recap: “Arrow on the Doorpost”]

Timothy Harvey

Timothy Harvey is a Kansas City based writer, director, actor and editor, with a passion for film noir movies. He was the art director for the horror film “American Maniacs”, and serves on the board of directors for the Independent Filmmakers Coalition of Kansas City and the Kansas City Film Commission.

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