In The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 8, the survivors are emotionally devastated when a beloved character dies after the Governor shows up at the prison with a tank!
Continue reading for a spoiler filled review of The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 8 mid-season finale entitled “Too Far Gone”.
Prison Showdown Version 2.0
Let’s start off with some general thoughts before getting into the specifics. I can count on more than one hand the number of awesome moments in “Too Far Gone”. For fans waiting for something major to happen all season, we get everything happening within a jam-packed episode. The Governor’s saga is brought to a satisfying conclusion and we finally say goodbye to the prison. You still remember the prison right? It’s only been a couple of episodes since we’ve spent quality time with the prison crew. 😉
“Too Far Gone” is an example of where the sum of the individual great scenes doesn’t necessarily elevate a very strong episode into an amazing one. Although the episode delivered everything I wanted, I can’t help but to wonder if it’s half a season too late. I’m was open-minded to the Governor returning and immensely enjoyed his character-centric episodes this season but the story is retreading on familiar territory.
To a certain extent, there’s a bit of predictability and inevitability by coming back full circle with the Governor vs Prison storyline. By taking a Mulligan or do-over, I get the feeling that the writers are checking off a list of things they should have done the first time around. This is an unfortunate nitpick but it should be pointed out considering the TV show is already that second chance to correct or improve upon whatever happens in the comics.
Spaghetti Tuesdays (On Wednesdays)
In Season 2, Hershel was ill-equipped to survive outside the safe confines of his farm. Over time, his kindness, perseverance and belief in hope grew on me. Hershel’s a beloved father figure and moral anchor in which all the other the survivors can rely on when they lose their way. He’ll definitely be missed.
However, Hershel’s brutal death wasn’t a shock to me. The first half of the season was building up to the moment his head is hacked off. His passionate speech about choosing what to risk his life for and selflessly helping those infected prepared me for his expected demise. I had already accepted the possibility of Hershel’s death in “Internment” so in my mind he was living on borrowed time.
I appreciated that in Hershel’s last moment he didn’t have a look of fear or regret in his eyes rather he’s at peace with his fate. Hershel can smile knowing that he positively influenced Rick to believe that each person can come back from being morally or psychologically damaged.
Too Far Gone
While Rick is reluctant to make decisions for the prison group, the Governor returned to his dictatorship ways by staging the coup in Martinez’s camp. Their differences also lie in their beliefs whether someone can come back from the things they’ve done and who they’ve become.
I don’t know if Rick really believed that the two camps could peacefully co-exist in the same prison complex but he was willing to put the offer on the table to save Hershel’s life. In the Governor’s case, he has too much blood on his hands to be redeemed or rehabilitated. The Gov’s need to inflict pain and put people under his control is so deeply embedded into his being it can’t be undone.
To paraphrase what Robert Kirkman said on the Talking Dead after show, the Governor sliced up Hershel because he dropped the veil or pretense and embraced who he is: a sadistic killer. The fist fight between the Gov and Rick is a long time in the making but I think it’s fitting that Michonne gets in on the action because she’s really the Gov’s true nemesis.
While the Gov couldn’t let go undead Penny he instantly blew Megan’s brain. Lily saw the Governor for who he truly is. She realized that the Governor used ‘protecting the family’ as a justification for the terrible things he wanted do. Whatever was going through Lily mind when she shot the Gov, she prevented him from coming back as a zombie or eaten alive by the approaching walkers which is a kinder fate than he deserved.
Zombies Ate My Baby
Fans held their breath when Daryl was about to get bit. I think everyone would throw their remote control at their screen if Daryl died. The thing about this show is that anyone could die. If or when Daryl does die, it would have to be in an incredibly heroic way. I would have loved an epic battle of the bad-asses between Daryl and Mitch but I was satisfied with the quick arrow to the heart.
Another moment that caused my jaw to drop is the girls saving Tyreese. That came out of nowhere. If it wasn’t for Carol teaching the girls, Tyreese would be dead. It’s something he needs to think about if he ever learns Carol killed Karen.
With all the blood in Judith’s baby seat it might be too easy to draw our conclusions especially with Rick and Carl in tears. Robert Kirkman was evasive on what actually happened to Judith and said to tune in next episode, so it’s possible she’s not dead. No-one we saw had her when they left the prison. If she’s still alive and kicking, who saved her?
Don’t Look Back
I’m looking forward to seeing each separate group of survivors on their own to start the next half of season four. Now that they are out of the prison it rejuvenates the show because there is so much more possibilities on what can happen and in facing dangers at every turn.
Overall, the character focussed stories of the first half of the season are nicely paid off with this action intense episode. The fate of the Governor and Hershel were written on the wall but the episode delivered many memorable moments and a climatic conclusion which was missing from last season’s finale.