Friday, June 1, 2012

Review: The Walking Dead 98

Non Spoiler Review:
Something to Fear hammers home to Rick and the group just what we've been suspecting—they're a tad overconfident about handling Negan and his followers. As Abraham and Eugene head out on their search for supplies, they encounter additional followers who are a little annoyed at what happened on the road.

This was a tense and leaned down issue, dealing with the crisis brought on by Rick's actions on the way home. Has Rick's overconfidence finally met its match?

Spoilers Now!
As they walk towards the potential bullet-making factory, Eugene is actually behaving in a non-dicklike fashion, apologizing for his behaviour earlier with Abraham. The latter takes it all in stride and encourages him to just behave less like a weirdo around Rosita and she should start to find him attractive (plus there's little opportunity to be picky these days). Abraham explains he still has feelings for her, but he just wants her to be happy without him. And he's shot through the eye with an ARROW.

Carl happens to find Andrea in bed with Rick, but doesn't feel it's a big deal. Before Rick can give him a talk there's gunfire, and they recognize it to be Abraham's machine gun. Outside the gates a man has Eugene tied up at his feet. He's obviously from Negan, annoyed at their treatment of his comrades on the road, and demands to be let in or he'll blow out Eugene's brains.

Eugene isn't so helpless and bites his crotch. One of the other men goes to pull him off and is shot in the head by Rick. Negan's men open fire on the gate as Andrea gets the others to take positions on the wall to return fire. The invaders get the hint and cut their losses and run off, leaving Eugene.

Rick gets a party to follow so they can't come back. As he tells Eugene to get inside, they find Abraham's body is already being consumed by walkers. That only hardens his determination, but he and Andrea run into a crowd of undead. Andrea sees they have to fall back and lead the assembling zombies to the trenches.

They get Abraham's body back inside the town, and given the arrow went through his brain, he won't be coming back. Andrea asks what they do now, but Rick admits he doesn't know.

The Verdict:
Something to Fear promises to be an exciting arc. Rick learns some humility, and Abraham suffers for his mistake. Negan in some respects appears to have his act together as far as tracking Rick's group. But as far as actual planning they don't seem to have much aside from blind devotion and strong-armed tactics. Rick's going to need strategy and cunning in order to defeat him. But has Abraham's sudden death shaken his confidence? 

It's a nice bit of turnabout that Kirkman was building Abraham up as a possible rival to Rick's leadership, then pulls out the rug and has him die in such an unexpected manner. Sad to see him go. I'm a bit skeptical that Eugene managed to survive the whole ordeal and not get a bullet in the brain from Negan's men before they took off. But I'm also pleased to see that character develop more.

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