The Walking Dead: 209 “Triggerfinger” Review
Triggerfinger (Season 2 | Episode 9)
WARNING – FULL SPOILERS
This was a decent enough edition of The Walking Dead with some great individual moments and a strong acting performance from Steven Yuen. However, what started with a bang ended with a whimper, as the latter half of the episode contained little excitement and very sombre interactions. It really feels like the show isn’t going to be moving off the farm anytime soon, which would be okay, if not for the constant references of moving on and the survivors splitting up.
First things first, Lori’s head-on-collision with a tuft of grass resulted in her waking up on the highway to hell, as the road-kill zombie tried to get revenge by biting his way through the windscreen. Hats off to the make-up team as the walker looked terrifyingly awesome, the glass genuinely seemed like it was pulling the skin back as his teeth came further into the car. Lori took a leaf out of Daryl’s book and chose the eye socket as the perfect kill spot, after such a sweet execution she wasn’t expecting to see another walker lurch at her, and neither was I. This was pretty intense and although, being a main character, you knew she was never in any real danger, that didn’t stop this from being a really extreme moment. My personal favourite bit of this was when Lori used the wheel trim as a weapon – nice.
Rick, Hershel and Glenn were probably expecting the rest of their evening to play out like George A. Romero ‘s Night of the Living Dead, instead what they got was night of the living hicks, as the rest of Dave and Tony’s crew showed up to terrorise them. Rick’s failed attempt at negotiating was frustrating to watch – why did he give away their position? Surely, it would’ve been better to either escape or barricade the door whilst the rest of the Dixie mob were pacing up and down the street.
Yuen really brought it as Glenn in the shoot-out. The way he approached the back door, shaking with fear and reluctance, was topped off when he dove behind the dumpster with fright. It made the scene later on between Glenn and Maggie all the more significant when Glenn spoke about his fearfulness.
As for newcomer Randal, well he won’t be playing hopscotch anytime soon with that leg. Jumping off the building like that was too risky a move and his buddies gave him the Shane treatment, leaving him as live bait while they drove off into the distance. Interestingly, Rick when faced with a similar scenario instead chose to save the life of an enemy, rather than sacrifice a friend like Shane. In what was by far the best scene of the episode, when the three discussed Randal’s fate at the worst possible moment as the hoards closed in. This was done so well that it was impossible to tell what was going to happen, at one point I thought Glenn might have just executed Randal as he screamed hysterically. The amputation was a nice thought but it was never going to happen in that situation, Rick made the only rational choice in the absurd circumstances. I’m sure Hershel will patch him up in the weeks to come but what will they do with him once he’s back on his feet?
The episode should have ended there because the remainder didn’t have too much worth talking about. Carol is developing a nice mothering relationship with Daryl, he was out of line letting out that torrent of insults at her but it’s good that he’s finding a way into the group. Andrea’s obsession with Shane is heading to the next level, she’s even starting to dress and walk like him, let’s just hope she doesn’t go for the same hair style – otherwise it’ll be impossible to tell them apart. As for Carl, he’s got a lot of learning to do about the birds and the bees, a topic that Dale avoided discussing in style by passing the book to Rick. Carl’s suggestion to name the baby after Sofia was quite touching; it’s easy to forget that he’s lost his only friend in all of this.
The final scene in the tent wasn’t fantastic, why Lori felt she had to tell Rick about Shane’s desires in such a ‘Lady Macbeth’ way was very cold. She seems to want Shane gone so much that she’s willing to manipulate Rick into killing him. The music accompanying this was unnecessary and high-pitched, a cheap tactic to try and squeeze some tension out of a pretty calm climax.
Overall, this wasn’t a bad episode by any means it just weighed very heavily on action at the start and stale drama towards the end. The trip to the bar and back has taken up two episodes and, with only four left of this season, it’s clear to see that it’s just been an excuse to delay the eventual spilt in the group. What’s most annoying about all of this is that the trip to the bar, the shootout and Lori’s car crash were all caused by Hershel’s daughter’s weird shock-coma. It’s not like she’s been shot or bitten. She just fainted – that’s what’s stupid in all of this. Who knows what chaos might ensue if she broke a nail, or, heaven forbid, she got a splinter in her finger.
Scene of the Episode | The, almost, amputation – Rick, Hershel and Glenn arguing about what to do with the helpless Randal was fantastic. Filled with tension and pandemonium, this was a real test for Rick and he made the tough decision that was key to this scene’s climax. It’s just a shame we didn’t see more of the escape.
Reviewed by Rich Jepson, cult TV enthusiast and author of 24: Terrorism Through Television.