This week's recap of The Walking Dead finally catches up with Andrea and Michonne -- and the Governor [SPOILERS]

Last night's episode of The Walking Dead took us away from the prison and back to Andrea and Michonne and their misadventures in zombieland. When we last saw Andrea, she was what doctors call "seriously illin'," and she reminded us of this by puking, if her zombie-like makeup job was not evidence enough that she was under the weather. But good news -- they have found help! What's the catch? Their help arrives in the form of Merle Dixon. And later, the Governor. But he seems so nice! Nothing like that greasy-haired Gov from the comics... right? Wrong. Also noteworthy: a helicopter with more survivors in it! Oh, and there they go, plummeting into a tree...

In the first episode of the show to not feature Rick Grimes at all, "Walk With Me" provided us a needed cutaway to Andrea and Michonne's side story featuring one of the most fearsome characters in the series. But the Governor, played by David Morrissey, is looking a lot different than he did in the comics and, therefore, a lot less threatening. And for the vast majority of the episode, it's easy to wonder if this is going to be a different Governor completely.

In the first moments of the show, we (briefly) meet three military-looking types in a helicopter that soon crashes. Two out of three of them die -- one of them graphically. Michonne and Andrea follow the smoke trail, but the Governor and his men find the wreck first, taking the survivor with them. In an attempt to draw less attention to themselves, Michonne beheads her hungry, armless pets while Andrea tries to limit her hacking cough to a more Southern, ladylike volume.

But they are soon found by Merle, who is now sporting a makeshift bayonet attachment as a replacement for the hand he cut off when he was abandoned by Rick and the survivors (a great name for a '50s cover band, by the way), and both women are blindfolded and put in a vehicle. For some reason, we see this from the perspective of the nearly unconscious woman and not the suspicious and alert one. When we rejoin a lucid, medicated Andrea, the two are in a cozy little house with a real live doctor (who has the first real hairdo I think we've ever seen on this show) -- but to Michonne's dismay, their weapons have been taken away. That rubs her the wrong way, and she's immediately mistrusting everything in this town down to the green, green grass. (It's a little too green...)

Meanwhile, there is a scientific operation going on, where someone who probably isn't qualified to do this kind of stuff is looking into how zombies work. This includes keeping the heads of Michonne's pets alive, which immediately made me think of the movie The Brain That Wouldn't Die, and if any of you have seen that movie, even a semi-living, disembodied head can cause a lot of problems. This will become relevant by the end of the episode.

But let's talk about the Governor again. He seems perfectly polite, welcoming, friendly, maybe a little bit aloof when it comes to talking about himself. And everyone in Woodbury is wearing ModCloth dresses and boots from their own secret Zappos, and they're happy and healthy and take hot showers! Andrea is totally into this, but Michonne is giving everyone in this town the stink-eye until she gets her weapons back, which isn't going to be easy because it was noted that she was more than happy to behead these pets of hers for the sake of her own survival. She also won't divulge who they were before they became zombies. So, everyone is suspicious of everyone, except for Andrea, who's so happy to see pancakes and coffee, so these people must be totally nice!

This is a good example of a "slow-burn" episode of The Walking Dead. By three-quarters of the way through, it looks like the Governor is not going to be the monster he was in the comics. And then, we find out he definitely is. Earlier, the survivor of the helicopter crash told the Governor that there are still people at his camp; the latter promised to bring the men back to Woodbury. Instead, he guns them all down and steals their weapons and supplies. Oh. Okay, then.

But then it gets even more twisted. At the very end of the episode, when it seems like everyone has calmed down and made themselves at home, we meet up with the Gov again. After it appears that he's had himself some sex, we see him gaze at a photograph of his family -- a wife and a daughter, then walk into a different room and close the door. He sits down with his drink and gazes again -- at a wall of severed heads in tanks, including those of Michonne's pets and the helicopter survivor who, I guess, didn't survive for very long.

So, in case there was any doubt, the Governor is, indeed, a total bloody psycho. Or a seriously misguided fan of Futurama.

Photo credit: AMC

Previously: The Walking Dead heads into "Sick" territory in this season's second episode [SPOILERS]


  1. Why did the governor take a huge risk to kill a group of soldiers?  Because he is evil…   After sexing his concubine, why does he enjoy a glass of scotch and watching zombie heads in fish tanks.  Because he is evil….   Why is he so friendly?  Because he is evil…

     Its like the writers know how a story works and how dialog works but they have never actually met real human beings.  Were these guys sit com writers before this?

    1. Also, when having tea with a scientist, you think Andrea would remember being briefed by the CDC and relay what she remembered of that.

      1. She never got told that everyone was infected, only Rick… and he didnt share with anyone until after they got ran off the farm… which is when she was sepreated from them. She knows the progression of the disease, but nothing about there not being a need to be bitten. What is weird to me is that Michone is the only one that figured out the Zombie/Zombie thing… hasn’t anyone considered taking a Zombie captive to see how long they can go without eating, etc…

    2. Tricking, outnumbering and then ambushing a small number of unsuspecting soldiers isn’t exactly a huge risk. 

      There was enough subtext, if you noticed, given to the Governor’s character and his actions that lead (present tense pronunciation, “leed”) to answers to these evolving questions. 

    3. Also, I think she just brushed over a whole bunch of dead friends with “and other people died..”  I mean, I count at least six mutual friends dead.

    4. Soldiers represent the kind of outside authority the Governor doesn’t want invading his little fascist paradise.  But, hey—guns and Humvees.  Luckily, Guv’s crew includes play soldiers who can make headshots with bows and a one-armed man with sniper-level rifle skills.

  2. When you look back over the series as it stands so far, Andrea of any of the characters should have died a long time ago. And at the hands of survivors rather than walkers- she’s so gullible, and it’s really difficult for me to give a rat’s ass about what happens to her. For awhile there, Dale kind of directed her, then she had a teen-rebellion phase and went off with Shane, a bad and borderline crazy person. Now that she’s with Michonne and has arrived in Woodbury, clearly Michonne is the dumb one for being skeptical and nothing peculiar could possibly be afoot, because coffee and pancakes. Then she flirts with the Governor near the end of the episode, I guess because there’s not enough crazy in her life. 

    I get the Lori hate by fans of the show, but the character that drives me to distraction is Andrea.

  3. Thank you! Very well-spun for non-initiates. I haven’t read the series. I know I’m exactly the kind of guy the true believers are gonna hate. I understand enough to know Govna=dick, but I’m holding out hope that it’s not because of the new-Eve rape trope of 28dL8. That would be disappointing.

    Sci-fi/horror is thrilling because of its plausibility. A woman can shoot me in the face just fine. So post-apoc-man-god is getting stale. Sure, you can use a post-zomb dystopia to comment on the relationship between men and women as it exists now. But if the main genre draw is its proximity to our lives, then the king from Jitterbug Perfume is a strange string to pull.

    PLEASE tell me the Guv is pragmatico-machiavellian in a NEW way for the genre. I mean, don’t ACTUALLY tell me. It’s just a turn of phrase. 

  4. I think Andrea’s putting on an act. I think she knows things are not as they appear and figures it’s safer to act like she doesn’t know.

  5. You are all insane. I clearly saw them feasting on scrambled eggs and tea. Where the hell do you get pancakes? And yeah, the Futurama hall of heads was awesome :-)

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