The Walking Dead Season:05

With the finale a week behind us, it’s time to take inventory of Season 5. I thought things started off very strong, on which I will expand later, but began to meander, then went insane, but came back around to an acceptable norm by the end. It was also literally all over the place. Where Season 2 was clearly “The Farm” and Season 3 was “The Prison/Woodbury,” Season 5 would be “Terminus-Church-Hospital-Road-Alexandria.” It’s not necessarily a bad thing to have the Group on the move, but it almost feels like too much was squeezed into 16 episodes, or it simply wasn’t connected strongly enough. Most particularly, the hospital.

If anything felt like a random add-on it was the “Save Beth” plot. Of course her disappearance had to come to light, but for the big showdown of the mid-season finale to be crooked cops in a nearly abandoned hospital, it all felt weak and poorly planned. Other than that, I really enjoyed the first half of the season. Once returned though, it took on an air of tedium as the Group wandered (almost aimlessly), on the verge of dehydration and starvation until Aaron found them and brought them to Alexandria, where everything went to hell as Rick disintegrated into a madman. He came back to the realm of decent in the finale, but next season has a lot of cleaning up to do to make Alexandria worth our time. Thankfully the final moments left big consequences to deal with next time around.

Favorite Episode: No Sanctuary

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The season premiere takes the crown, easily. It started off with sheer terror, as the Terminites started cracking skulls and slitting throats to add a little protein to their diet. Then Carol steps in, blowing everything up, an action-packed escape ensues. And finally the beautiful family reunions I’d been holding my breath for since the mid-season premiere of Season 4, all with a Morgan post-credit stinger. That’s how you start a season.

Favorite New Character: Aaron

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On his own, Aaron isn’t that exciting (though he has loads of potential). But his scouting partnership with Daryl has brought out some great character development in Daryl that has been lacking as of late. When the two were trapped in the car during the finale, I didn’t only fear for Daryl, as I wasn’t ready to see anything happen to Aaron yet. And, of all the Alexandrites, he is the only truly competent one who can handle this post-apocalyptic world outside the walls.

Saddest Death: Tyreese

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Bob’s and and Beth’s deaths weren’t really surprising, nor emotional to me. I never grew attached to Bob and Beth always felt like an expendable, side character. Noah’s was more shocking, only because he was brand new and I thought surely he’d have more time, so no opportunity for real attachment. But Tyreese…that one hurt. We had just lost Beth, so I was not expecting another main character death so soon. And the attack came early, so there was a lot of suffering to endure for the next 45 minutes. I had little hope they would be able to chop off the infected area and save him. So it wasn’t the quick death in the final minutes of the episode, as most are, but one we were meant to really feel. All of this coupled with my love for Tyreese, for reasons stated in my review of the episode, and this is one TWD death I’m still not over.

Season 5 may be done, but I’m not. Until the show returns (or Fear the Walking Dead starts) I’ll be going back to the beginning, starting next week with a review of the series premiere, “Days Gone By.” See you next week.

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2 thoughts on “The Walking Dead Season:05

  1. I felt that the `all over` nature of this season broke things up a bit from the expected formula we`ve come to know and love. It brought back the desparation and frustration of Season 1, where there was no safe haven and being `on the road` was a necessity. It`s those elements that made discovering the farm, a possibly permanent residence appealing and important. However, the next seasons focused on that element of a safe haven almost too much with the Prison, Woodbury & Terminus. A lot of things this Season was almost coming full circle to Season 1, with comparison of crazy beard Rick`s philosophy to Shane. Even the finale, the look on Morgan`s face before the cut was similar to how Rick would react to Shane in season 1. And you know Season 6 is going to be Morgan being Rick`s conscious for a large part of it.

    But I agree with everything else you said, especially Tyreese` death. It was possibly one of the best episode I`ve ever seen.

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    1. For me, the problem with the “on the road” scenario this season was that it was done better during the second half of last season, after the fall of the prison. So by the time they reached Alexandria, it was a bit tedious to watch. I did love the setting in the church through the first half of the season. If only the hospital hadn’t been thrown in.

      I hope Morgan is in more than the S6 premiere. After rewatching the pilot, he and Rick are just perfect together. His brief return in S3 was the best episode of that season by far. Now that the dynamic has vastly shifted, I can’t wait to see what will become of their friendship, for lack of a better word.

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