Talking Out The Dead: Prelude to “No Sanctuary”

Thomas Crawford: It’s TIME… It’s…TIME… It’s TIME… for The Walking Dead ya’ll.  Sorry for the fake, sort of Michael Buffer introduction.  The fact is, I think his opening fits.  Let’s be honest, he has opened for many famous boxing and wrestling matches, and his brother Bruce has opened for many UFC fights.  There is just something about both of their voices that brings me to attention.  Don’t misread that folks, it is about anticipation for an upcoming event.  Let’s get to it.

As always, SPOILERS…

Unless you have been hiding under a rock, then you know that Rick, Daryl, Michonne, and Carl fell for the “Terminus” trap.  They are now locked in a boxcar with Maggie, Glenn, Bob, Sasha, Abraham, Rosita, Eugene… you get the picture.  The heroes, if you want to call them that, are up shit creek, neck deep, without a boat (the original saying is up shit creek without a paddle, according to my grandma, RIP, but they don’t have a paddle or a boat in my view).

The viewers are left with Rick’s famous last words, “They’re messing with the wrong people!”  Okay, I am paraphrasing, honestly you know you wanted him to say something else.  The man is locked in a box car and has no weapons.  He is reunited with all of his lost friends. Yay! However, he is still locked in a boxcar by a bunch of strangers who obviously have a devious plan.

The fact is, this was a cliffhanger for most who watch the show.  Those that have read the comics, or at looked at some excerpts, this ending wasn’t quite that surprising.  I am not a faithful reader of the comic, I will say this now.  The show is at fault though, since it has driven me to look up and find out what the original writer or writers thought about these scenarios.  Let’s just say they have some sick minds.

At this point, with the hints from the ending of Season 4, I am near one hundred percent certain that the friendly folks of Terminus are cannibals.  The keeping people in boxcars, the bones set out during the final scenes of last Season, the hunting trap that Rick and the crew fell into… it just screams eating people.  The fact is that the writers of the show still pay homage to comics in some ways, even though they deviate regularly.

According to the trailer, we know that there is some smooth talking that allows the heroes to live.  I like to think that Rick plays a part in this.  Though to be honest, he doesn’t seem much like a smooth talker to me.  He has shown  a wide spectrum of character traits.  The fast talking and quick selling sort… just doesn’t fit.  Abraham and Rosita don’t quite fit that mold either.  Is it possible that Eugene saves the day?  It is possible though not likely.

It seems like a ramble, but honestly the creators and producers of the show have done a good job.  It makes the fans question and ponder what is coming next.  Don’t blame me, blame them.  All we know for certain at this point is that the heroes save themselves from certain death, and become colleagues of the so called friendly “Terminites”.

What is coming next?  We have met Gareth… who seems a likable fellow.  That is of course if you don’t mind him eating your flesh.  We know the core group is together, including a few new faces.  I am actually dying to know how Abraham, Rosita, and Eugene play into the storyline.  The fact is that there are so many stories to tell must make the writers feel like they are in Candy Land.  At this point, 99 percent of the possible outcomes will satisfy the majority of the audience.

The opening of Season Five is just days away, and I am chomping at the bit (sorry for those in urban settings, it has to do with wild horses and training them).  I am not sure that says much about me… wanting to see this grisly decor of art.  Can you judge me?  Whether it is the dynamic interaction of characters, the sudden loss of familiar faces, or the storylines… what is it about a show that “everything goes to shit” appeals to us?  Sorry, being too philosophical.

I’ll pass it along to you to make rhyme or reason of this show.  By the way, it has been cleared for a sixth Season.  That means that no matter what happens… we will get another year to watch and think about this crazy story that draws us in week after week.

Kelen Conley: The reason people like to see when everything goes to shit is because it’s not happening to them. We sat there this time last year on the edge of our seats watching those last Breaking Bad episodes. The whole series had had its “oh shit” moments but when Hank and Walt had that confrontation in the garage, you just knew that this series didn’t end well for anyone. It’s the same reason people slow down when there’s been an accident: human curiosity gets the best of them.

TWD hasn’t hit that point yet and that makes it more compelling than ever. It keeps topping its “oh shit” moments. Season 1 – the CDC. Season 2 – the barn full of walkers, which was then topped by the farm getting overrun by walkers after Shane tried to kill Rick so Rick killed Shane but when Shane reanimated he was killed by Carl. Season 3 – when the bad inmates let the walkers back in the prison, which led to Judith’s birth and Lori’s death. Then the assault on Woodbury which led to the Governor losing his eye. You get the picture. The writers have an incredible ability to keep the stakes high.

The reason I’m so excited is the way the show keeps me guessing. If this was a show about people grouping together only to eventually be killed and replaced by a new person, I don’t think it would work for me as well. I don’t think it would draw the massive ratings either. People can complain when things are slow and the walker kills are minimal but the series made huge strides breaking the group up last Season. And it looks like we’ll be full steam ahead going into Season 5.

Gareth does not seem like a nice guy! This dude is nuts. I really think he’s going to be worse than the Governor. I mean, he’s already created this society that survives by eating people. I’m anxious to see how the show tries to humanize him after that’s revealed. One of my favorite arcs with the Governor was after he was on his own and left Woodbury. He had a moment where he could have turned it all around. Not for our group but to everyone else he encountered, he could’ve went “straight”. In the end, he couldn’t resist that power that being in charge provided him and he couldn’t stay away from the prison. But I was pulling for him. I bet they do the same for Gareth at some point.

The character to watch this Season has to be Carl for me.  As much as I hate him and he’s pissed me off (Dale might still be alive if Carl had just shot that walker that was stuck in the mud back on the farm), this could be the Season he starts growing up and stepping up for the group. One of the guys won’t be around this whole Season (I’m holding off on the Kill Watch until after the Season premiere), and he’s at the age where he can’t be a scared little boy so much. He can’t be the sociopath he hinted at being when he shot that guy at the end of Season 3, but there has to be a balance. I’m interested to see how that will play out.

And can we please get Beth out of that weird prison she looked to be in from the trailer and have her and Daryl get more time together? I love the dynamic they built for them once they got stuck on the road together. Which means she’ll die. All my favorite characters die unless their names are Rick, Daryl, and Michonne.

I hate to cut this column short since we normally do two entries each, but with Season 5 Episode 1 less than 30 hours away, I’d rather save ourselves for all the reactions we’ll have in next week’s column. So until then, AMC is showing all the episodes up to the premiere tomorrow night, Netflix has all four Seasons on streaming, and we have have half a Season’s worth of columns you can revisit. No excuse not to be fully prepared for 9 PM tomorrow.

I just wonder how poor ol’ Morgan is doing right now. And how long it’ll be until the second TWD show starts. And how Daryl never runs out of arrows.

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