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The Walking Dead: 314 “Prey” Review

walking-dead-314

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

Is that the distant sound of a penny dropping?

Finally Andrea gets it. It’s been a torturous season for the character and the evidence around the governor has piled up so high, it’s hard to understand why she hasn’t gone blind. That fact that it’s taken this long for her to rebel from Woodbury is tediously annoying but at least she’s finally made a decision.

In all, this was another well put together and constructed episode that served as a third isolated story, in as many weeks, designed to gives us some more insight into these characters before they attempt to blow each other up in the highly militarized finale. Albeit we didn’t see any sign of the two camps coming to lock horns this week, what this episode gave us was a deeper understanding of Tyreese and his group and gave Andrea a chance at redemption when threatened by the Governor.

Before talking about Tyreese, it’s worth tipping a hat to the special effects team on the show. They’ve tackled some tough kills since the beginning but the BBQ walker pit has to be up there, as a brilliant piece of horror, make up and SFX. The sight of the dead walkers all limply moving yet still very un-alive was truly disturbing and brutal.

It’s a different approach to the comics to have Tyreese inside Woodbury and I for one think it’s a positive move on behalf of the show. After Michonne and Andrea’s involvement with the town, it’s nice to see someone taking a more level headed approach to the environment and it’s inhabitants. Tyreese and Sasha want to be part of the community and are willing to pull their weight but aren’t ready to lay down their ideology for a Tsar-like Governor who’s subjects seem to be devoted to him.

Milton is another growing element of Woodbury that keeps me strongly interested in this part of the storyline. We now know he knew the Governor before the world went to hell in a basket. Does he have some sort of romantic feelings towards him? We don’t know but there was definitely an undertone to their interactions this week. Fingers crossed when the dust settles he’ll end up on the right side of the prison gates.

Who torched the zombies? Milton seems the prime suspect but I have a feeling it’s too obvious and could either be another character in Woodbury who wants out or an entirely new character that could serve as a link between this season and the progression into the next.

It’s action stations from next week as the likely battle is about to begin. It’s going to be an adrenaline-fuelled finale following on from the last few weeks of, somewhat, calm. I’m assuming Milton or the unknown fire starter (if they’re not the same person) will have something to do with rescuing Andrea as Rick didn’t get a good enough look. Will she make it to season 4? Who knows…but I’m slowly starting to care once again.

8/10

Scene of the Episode: Behind The Door – The hunt inside the abandoned factory was a brilliant piece of entertainment that was paced effectively throughout. Andrea managed to kill two birds with one stone by letting the tidal wave of walkers attack the Governor in the best moment of the episode.

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