“Thank You” marks the first time Breaking Bad cinematographer Michael Slovis has directed an episode of The Walking Dead and if nothing else, the episode looks great. By now I’m going to assume that you’re all caught up and are aware of the big surprise this episode. Yes! It’s true. Rick hates RVs. But seriously. He really fucking hates RVs. I know that this episode is getting a lot of love for the intensity of both our heroes trying to find a way to avoid the walker herd and for Rick’s borderline insanity, but right up until the moment that we all dread (but knew would come sooner or later), I wasn’t very impressed. Sure, it looked good. Slovis is a master of setting up shots and framing the image, but the script was a bit lackluster – especially after the last two episodes – coming complete with some early seasons staples like excessive exposition, characters we’ve barely seen before dying horribly without emotional impact, magical zombies that pop up from out of nowhere, and worst of all, characters acting as though they are idiots. This last bit is especially annoying when it came to Michonne (Danai Gurira) and the others not clearing out the pet shop they’ve holed up in, only to discover that after all their talking and planning it was only when the herd was outside that the “surprise” walkers in the back room make themselves known. It was kind of a cheap way of creating tension that I thought the series had moved beyond. We also had a furthering of the antagonism between the townies and our heroes, as Heath (Corey Hawkins) gets up in Michonne’s grill as though he’s been in the shit. That wouldn’t have been so bad if her reaction hadn’t been such an over-the-top cliché that was clearly telegraphing the end of the episode where Heath takes a poignant look at his reflection in the creek, seeing himself covered in blood. At the same time, Michonne wipes off the hopeful message she wrote on her arm for the new character who got bit but suddenly had an entire backstory in the ten minutes he was on-screen. Oh yeah. He died horribly while Michonne, Heath, and the other new guy watched instead of PUTTING A MERCY BULLET IN HIS HEAD. The Walking Dead hasn’t been this blatantly cheesy in years. On the plus side, Rick (Andrew Lincoln) may have lost his goddamn mind by the end of this episode, if the look on his face is any indication. Sorry to keep posting pictures from this bit, but I kind of loved it. Rick running like a mad bastard all the way back to the RV, stopping along the way to kill a few roadkill zombies (and cut the fuck out of his hand at the same time) and then finally getting to the rendezvous point only to meet with radio silence and a surprise attack by the last of the Wolves. You remember them? The ones Morgan (Lennie James) let walk away WITH A LOADED HANDGUN? So that doesn’t come back to ironically haunt him in the future, and Rick puts them down handily, so I’m not really sure what the thinking was in the writers’ room to even let them get away with the gun in the first place. It’s a wasted plot point used to force melodrama that doesn’t even develop into anything. The attack by the Wolves does serve to motivate Rick into machine gunning his own RV, because otherwise how would he be stuck there as the zombie herd emerges from the forest? Yeah, so overall, this episode was okay, but leaned too heavily on storytelling crutches from the first couple of seasons. It wasn’t all that enjoyable, to be honest, and there weren’t any real surprises. Oh wait. I almost forgot. Because Glenn (Steven Yeun) gave piece of crap Nicholas (Michael Traynor) a second chance, he’s most likely dead now. There’s a lot of online debate at the moment about whether or not he can make it out of this tight spot, given all the other tight spots he’s been in, but come on. Look at that. That little bloody splotch in the middle of all those walkers is Glenn (and Nicholas). And I’m pretty sure there’s not room under the dumpster for him to squeeze. Without a doubt, those guts begin yanked out and eaten in the picture above aren’t his – unless his intestines are in his chest. Those are Nicholas’ guts, since his suicide corpse clearly landed on Glenn after they fell. Which means that the makers of the show intentionally shot the scene in a way that made it look like Nicholas’ guts were Glenn’s in order to manipulate the audience reaction. That in itself makes me think that they plan on letting Glenn survive this somehow, but given that they’d written him into a corner (literally) with no way out, I have to wonder if his survival could be stretching disbelief a little too much. So it looks like Glenn is dead and I see no way out of it, barring a ludicrous scene of Glenn crawling between the legs of hundreds of walkers who can’t reach him because they’re packed into the alley so tightly they can’t bend over. If he’s really dead, I’ve got a lot of emotions to process about that, but if they’re pulling a fake-out, I don’t really feel like committing to that emotional rollercoaster. So I’m gonna just roll with this as if he’s going to be back eventually, and if he’s dead – say Maggie (Lauren Cohan) finds him shambling around as a walker when she inevitably goes looking for him – I’ll deal with it then. For now, it’s just another potentially poorly handled major character death (Beth being the last one) that seems designed mainly to torture Maggie. Next week’s ninety minute Morgan-centric episode should provide an interesting distraction for those of us who won’t really believe Glenn’s dead until we see his undead corpse. The Walking Dead 6.03 "Thank You"Paul's Rating3.0Overall ScoreReader Rating: (0 Votes)Share this:TweetShare on TumblrLike this:Like Loading... Related 2 Responses Dignan October 29, 2015 Glen better be dead. If they have him survive by some ridiculous plot device it will reek of cheap manipulation, which this series should be well beyond. Log in to Reply Paul Brian McCoy October 29, 2015 I agree. I think he’s probably still alive, though. Log in to Reply Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.