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The Walking Dead: 311 “I Ain’t A Judas” Review

walking-dead-3-andrea

Reviewed by Rich Jepson, cult TV enthusiast and author of 24: Terrorism Through Television.

Andrea…The Walking Meh

That’s right, the one character that we can’t get any less of right now took over the majority of the episode in what was definitely the weakest outing of the show since it’s return this year. Okay, maybe it wasn’t that bad because we got to see a lot of the other characters, including the whereabouts of Tyreese and his crew, but it definitely didn’t match the high standard that’s been set so far.

First and foremost though was Andrea. I feel bad for Laurie Holden because she tries to do the best with the dialogue she’s been given and from the other films and shows I’ve seen her in she’s a capable actress. What frustrates me in particularly is the way the TV show has adapted one of the comics most prominent and admirable characters.

Kirkman created a young, innocent female that develops exceptionally during horrific circumstances. She grows from being an unconfident, naive young girl into a sharpshooting, independent powerful woman that gives the likes of Lara Croft a run for her money. She’s someone who female readers can connect with and look up to throughout the books.

On TV though, it’s the opposite. She’s depicted as this annoying, nagging over-the-top voice of uncertain authority that struts around like the Woodbury hive’s queen bee. She’s been there a matter of weeks and has already gained such esteem over so many that I just don’t buy it. Not to mention it’s the exact same situation that happened with Shane (who she soon seemed to forget about when she found out that he was dead at the prison). It’s been done and it doesn’t add anything new to the plot.

One shining moment that did come out of Andrea’s visit to the prison was her conversation with Carol, which basically equated too “give him a good night (wink) and then kill him”. She wins the prize for best post-apocalyptic agony aunt in my book.

It seems that the writers are keen for Merle to stick around as they used a couple of scenes with Michonne and Hershel to integrate the character a little more. An apology to the keep-fit samurai queen herself was a good start and a bit of bonding over lost limbs with Hershel helped as well.

In a way I’m glad that this is happening because it keeps Daryl in the group, but more interestingly I think the difficult choice of keeping Merle around is ultimately a good decision for the group as they prepare for war. In an apocalyptic situation such as this it’s impossible to see Glenn & Maggie ever forgiving Merle for his actions, however, should he save one or both of their lives during a gunfight then there may be a chance yet.

The finale brought the speed of the season down a gear or two as we were given a subdued montage to finish things off. At least we were given a few hints from Rick about next week’s episode and the thought of him teaming up with Michonne sounds like it could make good viewing.

As long as we have less of Andrea next week, I’ll be watching.

7/10

Scene of the Episode:  “They want a war they got it” – Although Andrea was the centrepiece in this scene, she acted as a great catalyst for the others to get riled up over. The battle for the prison is going to be a bloody one and its less than half a dozen episodes away.

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