Monday, 26 September 2016

The Walking Dead- Season 1, Episode 5: Wildfire

"I bet there isn't even a single son of a bitch out there listening, is there?"

This episode consists of a desperate exodus over dozens of miles, to an uncertain promised land (the Centre for Disease Control in Atlanta) with a great deal of faith required: it's not difficult to see a religious subtext here. It's also an episode defined by moving scenes of the wounded and infected Jim  volunteering to be left behind to face certain death out of sheer selflessness. As is becoming habitual for this show, these scenes are dwelt upon, with lots of lingering for the camera, but the script is nicely restrained in letting us decide for ourselves how we ought to feel about it. That's a sign of quality.

It's a superb episode for character development generally as these individuals continue to be fleshed out more and more. Andrea's vigil by Amy's corpse, and her insistence on personally shooting the zombie as it wakes in her sister's body, is handled no less superbly than is Jim's death. Death brings out character in a way few things do. It's an episode about the human side of undeath.

We end with our friends, surrounded and seemingly doomed, being allowed into the CDC by a mysterious scientists whose desperate broadcasts we have been made privy to throughout. It seems the finale will explore new ground, but if this is anything to go by then it will probably be excellent.

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