It's a safe bet that a whole bunch of you -- even the most rabid zombie fans in the city -- missed last night's Walking Dead episode, due to the Giants' incredible World Series win (twice in three years!) and the street parties that erupted directly afterwards. Well, fear not -- not even awesome, baseball-related activities can get in the way of our weekly Walking Dead recap. Here's what you missed.
The Walking Dead Episode 2: Rick's on the Rampage!
The Walking Dead Returns: More Gore, Guts, and Glory
The sight of a flying helicopter in an episode of The Walking Dead is far stranger than any number of zombie beheadings, so when Episode 3 starts with just that, we had to wonder if we had the right channel on for a second. But -- oh right -- there it is: the helicopter, (with four soldiers on board) almost immediately crashes and hits the earth in a cloud of black smoke. This is definitely The Walking Dead.
The plumes of black smoke are seen by Andrea (looking very pale and unwell still) and Michonne on a road in the distance. So they, along with Michonne's two armless zombies on leashes (of course) start heading in that direction. We've finally figured out what the undead pets are for too -- carrying all of Michonne's bags. Women are terribly practical, you know.
When they reach the crash site, Andrea pukes everywhere and Michonne sits her down and tells her not to push herself. Michonne then finds one of the soldiers, dead, chopped in half at the waist, guts everywhere. She peers through the wreckage, only to see two cars approaching from the other side. She and Andrea hide in the bushes and watch this new group of survivors shooting zombies in the eye with arrows for a while. There's some pretty stellar activities involving a baseball bat too.
Then Michonne's pet zombies start making too much noise and attract the attention of the new survivors. Michonne swiftly beheads her pets to shut them up and the new group appears to leave. Or so we think. Next thing we know, the ladies are being rumbled -- by none other than Merle: Daryl's long-lost brother, who got handcuffed to a roof by Rick in Season 1, then promptly disappeared, leaving only his hand behind. He was gone for the entire second season, so we'd kind of forgotten about him.
Merle, being the sketchy dude that he is, then blindfolds our ladies and drives them -- as well as the helicopter pilot, who has survived -- back to a compound of some sort. We don't like this. We don't like this at all. But are grateful that Angela finally has some medical attention from a female doctor, who is kind, but also refuses to tell the women where they are.
Then of course, Merle comes in and talks about how he almost died on the roof. Andrea explains that Rick and Daryl did go back to rescue Merle, but he'd already gone. "Well," Merle laughs, "not all of me!" Then, helpfully, he shows off the stump at the end of his right arm where his hand used to be. Andrea gives Merle a handy summary of all the major cast members who have died in the last two seasons (Merle offers condolences when he finds out Andrea's sister Amy was killed), as well as getting him up to speed on how Daryl is and the fact that it's been "seven, eight months" since she's seen him, or any of the group, after the farm meltdown.
"What do you want from us?" Andrea eventually asks. Merle struts around and tells the ladies they should be grateful. Eventually a dark and mysterious man -- apparently nicknamed Governor -- enters, accompanied only by a Liam Neeson
vibe. Andrea and Michonne request their weapons back. He tells them they can have them back only when they leave. They point out that they've been locked up in a room since they arrived. "You're being cared for," he says, not entirely convincingly, before telling Andrea: "You wouldn't last another day in your condition." He might have a point there. He also says he'll let the women go the next morning with food, medicine and a car if they want one. "No hard feelings."
As Michonne and Andrea leave the hospital, they are faced not with a compound, but an actual small town. "Welcome to Woodbury," says Governor. You get the sense that, if it weren't for all the strange men running around with "heavy artillery", it'd be quite nice. Michonne and Andrea are taken to a room with fresh food, water, a shower, and a bed. The women look comfortable but suspicious that access to their weapons is still being denied.
The following morning Andrea takes a walk through town with a woman who tells her that the town has 73 people (including a pregnant one) and that Governor keeps everything in order, to keep things as safe as possible. Everyone looks clean, men wear pink t-shirts and ladies wear pretty summer dresses. It all looks rather sanitary, but hey! That still might be better than having your face eaten.
Meanwhile, the surviving helicopter pilot is telling Governor how his community of survivors had recently descended into death and chaos in a matter of hours. Governor offers to head back and check for survivors. How terribly sweet!
Governor enters a lab and has a chat with a geek who is studying the cadavers of Michonne's pet zombies. The geek explains that, arms and jaws removed, the undead lose interest in attacking humans and become "docile." He also explains that they act as a repellant to other walkers and that that is valuable camouflage. (He doesn't mention that they also make for extremely useful bag-carriers, but you get the idea).
Governor makes breakfast for the ladies and the geek asks Michonne and Andrea a series of questions in an increasingly creepy manner that the women don't really answer. Instead, Andrea asks Governor about Woodbury. "It's about getting back to who we were," he says. "Who we really are." He also says he'll die before he'll compromise the security of the town. Michonne looks aggravated. Undoubtedly because she wants her massive sword back (she is really great with that thing). Andrea raises a toast to civilization, directly before Michonne asks for their weapons back again. Clearly, the women are on different pages all of a sudden. Michonne remains untrusting, but Andrea asks that she give Woodbury a few days.
Next thing we see, Governor is arriving to the helicopter pilot's waiting soldiers, waving a white handkerchief and assuring them that the pilot is alive. Then, just as they start to relax, he, along with a gang of his men, opens fire on the waiting soldiers, wiping them all out. Which, of course, means they're going to turn into zombies imminently. We don't see how that part ends.
When Governor and his men return to town in the military vehicles, Governor tells the townspeople that the men they found were already "biters," but that they took the men's supplies so the town could benefit. After he heads home and sits down for a nice drink, Governor then sits down in his man cave. A room that contains a nice leather armchair and, oh yes, an entire wall of fishtanks, full of zombie heads. The head on the very top belongs to -- dun-dun-duuuuun
-- the helicopter pilot who survived the crash.
Oh Lordy, that's an ending! So, where does this leave Michonne and Andrea? Are they safe? Is this man really psychotic? Or just trying to stockpile zombie bodies to experiment on? We'd put money on the latter. But we'd also put money on him offing Michonne if she continues to ask for her sword back. Without weapons, the entire town is at Governor's mercy. Ai-yai-ai! Until next week!