Comic Vine Review

43 Comments

The Walking Dead #409 - After Review

4

The prison is no more. Now Carl and Rick must find a way to survive and Michonne decides what she wants to do next.

*Yes, we try to avoid big spoilers in here*

Instead of hitting us with an epic and explosive mid-season premiere, The Walking Dead decides to return with character-driven episode, focusing completely on Michonne and the relationship between Carl and Rick. The best part about this strong focus on each character is the fact they're able to tell us a whole lot about the three without blatantly spelling everything out for us. There's some legitimately creative shots and somewhat subtle moments that are totally appreciated throughout this one.

The decision to shine the spotlight on Carl more than usual is certainly going to be a polarizing move. Sure, Carl isn't nearly as likable as he is in the comic and yes, you'll want to scream at him in this one, but despite this, it was still a surprisingly effective character study. Although, who else gets insanely frustrated when zombies seem completely unable to bite someone's legs even though they have all the time in the world to do so?

Watching Carl go through this struggle is interesting (albeit annoying a few times), but the real highlight is with Michonne. Her dialogue is incredibly limited in this episode, yet "After" is still able to speak volumes about who she is as a person and what she wants. Plus, there's quite a bit of her slicing and dicing zombies, and who doesn't enjoy that?

Focusing on three main characters is good and all, but it's a surprising approach for the mid-season premiere. Yes, it's a good reminder of what they need to face again and allows them to show their true colors, but to give us no hint of the greater picture is a bit of a letdown and it also makes me somewhat concerned the post-prison source material could be drawn-out just like in Season Two. Also, this episode does drag at times, so the pacing is likely going to make or break it for some of you. Lastly, there's a scene taken from the comics (between Carl and Rick) which didn't translate all that well and went on longer than expected.

"After" is a great character study of Carl and Michonne. It doesn't build the hype for what's to come and definitely feels a bit too slow at times, but it's a good reminder of what life outside the prison fences is like and, more importantly, it's a solid analysis of two key characters. It may not be the most exciting or gripping episode yet, but it's one that's sure to give you a better connection to these two very important characters.

50 Comments
Edited by Jayc1324

Carl was a prick in this episode and I wanted to kill him but him learning his lesson at the end and the other big thing that happened at the end (no spoilers) made the episode come full circle and really sealed it for me. The big thing that happened at the end was extremely powerful. So I liked it

Posted by The Stegman

I love this episode, and unlike some, I don't mind the slower episodes, not every minute has to be non stop action, character development is even more important.

Posted by Transformers1024

Loved this episode. The acting was top notch. The writing was utterly phenomenal. And Michonne's dream sequence? One of my favorite scenes in the entire series.

Posted by MadeinBangladesh

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

Posted by mak13131313

I loved this episode. I can understand the reasoning for Carl acting the way he does in the episode. He lost his mom and sister. And he thinks everyone from the prison is dead. He's going to do what most teenagers do and takes it out on the only one he has left. Michonne's scenes in the episode are phenomenal!

Edited by mak13131313
Posted by Jphu8414

More Michonne and less of Carl running around like an idiot please

Posted by Fallschirmjager

Promising.

Character development is fine, but please try to move the damn story along at the same time. Its not that hard.

Edited by AllStarSuperman

Yawn

While Carl is starting to develop, and at this time in the comics he wasnt that cool either. You kinda have to be threw the big whiny baby phase.

Michonne is cool though.

Imo this was only 2.5 or 3 star episode.

EDIT: this was a 4 star episode for the sole reason that the Governors not dead!

Posted by AllStarSuperman

Also the Carl crying scenes were so bad they were funny.

Posted by Erik
Edited by Jacobin_Wisdom

I'm glad they producers, and writers of the show decided to go this route of showcasing a few characters per episode to help develop them further. It'd be rather challenging if they had them reunite at first 20 or half hour of the show. That way, when they do reunite then the dynamics would have changed, and everything will feel fresh.

People complaining about the storyline taking too long to progressed, or don't like the slow burn of characters developing just want action, action and action. Kinda sad in a way.

Posted by skfalcon

Carl wasted 5 bullets and a shoe.

Edited by MadeinBangladesh

Yawn

While Carl is starting to develop, and at this time in the comics he wasnt that cool either. You kinda have to be threw the big whiny baby phase.

Michonne is cool though.

Imo this was only 2.5 or 3 star episode.

EDIT: this was a 4 star episode for the sole reason that the Governors not dead!

ummm the Governor is dead. They showed his dead body in the first 2 minutes. Did you miss it?

Posted by AllStarSuperman

@allstarsuperman said:

Yawn

While Carl is starting to develop, and at this time in the comics he wasnt that cool either. You kinda have to be threw the big whiny baby phase.

Michonne is cool though.

Imo this was only 2.5 or 3 star episode.

EDIT: this was a 4 star episode for the sole reason that the Governors not dead!

ummm the Governor is dead. They showed his dead body in the first 2 minutes. Did you miss it?

I saw it, his eye twitched then the camera went to michonne. I think he is alive.

Posted by timelord

The big problem I had with is I felt Carl was never in any danger. They would not kill of him because it's a TV show so the whole episode fell flat to me.

Edited by batsymyplaything

@allstarsuperman: no, it was the blurry close up shot focus that made it look like he was twitching, but wasn't. He is dead. Plus, I don't think it would be productive to bring him back and the writer from this season is orientating himself more towards the comic series guideline than his previous predecessors

Posted by AllStarSuperman

@batsymyplaything: I watched it twice, I am pretty sure his eye is twitching/about to open. And killing off the Governor was a mistake in the comics, I don't think he is surely dead.

Posted by MadeinBangladesh

@madeinbangladesh said:

@allstarsuperman said:

Yawn

While Carl is starting to develop, and at this time in the comics he wasnt that cool either. You kinda have to be threw the big whiny baby phase.

Michonne is cool though.

Imo this was only 2.5 or 3 star episode.

EDIT: this was a 4 star episode for the sole reason that the Governors not dead!

ummm the Governor is dead. They showed his dead body in the first 2 minutes. Did you miss it?

I saw it, his eye twitched then the camera went to michonne. I think he is alive.

I'm 99% sure he's dead. I rewatched that part several time, and he barely moved. You are looking too much into it. Even if he was alive, the zombies would have gotten him while he was laying in the ground.

Posted by batsymyplaything

@allstarsuperman: Oh come on, the new guy is awesome. I think he beats The Governor by a mile just with his charisma.

Posted by AllStarSuperman

@allstarsuperman: Oh come on, the new guy is awesome. I think he beats The Governor by a mile just with his charisma.

F NO! Negan is okay, but Governor was much much better.

I'm 99% sure he's dead. I rewatched that part several time, and he barely moved. You are looking too much into it. Even if he was alive, the zombies would have gotten him while he was laying in the ground.

ehh, just like how that 1 zombie should have got Carl? its all plot. I truly hope he is not dead. I hope he lives but doesnt return on screen for quite some time. If he is dead then a Zombie Governor should bite Ricks hand, so technically Governor is still the one to take his hand.

@rogueshadow your thoughts on the episode?

Edited by batsymyplaything

@allstarsuperman: Lol. Like how you used his favorite word's abbreviation to disagree of not liking him over The Governor.

As for him in the show, he has a bullet hole in his temple. So, he won't be gnawing on Rick's hand. Sorry, lol.

Posted by AllStarSuperman

@allstarsuperman: Lol. Like how you used his favorite word's abbreviation to disagree of not liking him over The Governor.

I did that on purpose. lol

As for him in the show, he has a bullet hole in his temple. So, he won't be gnawing on Rick's hand. Sorry, lol.

Dammit! I never saw the giant hole in his skull!

Edited by IronAngel89

Sometimes, slow is better. I'll be honest, Season 2 was probably my favorite season.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

I don't even like Carl in the comic :- \

Edited by danhimself

@jonny_anonymous: SAY WHAT!!!??? I can agree that he's not that great on the show but he's my favorite character in the book

Posted by RogueShadow

@allstarsuperman: I think I might start doing a blog for this. Not sure. I'll tag you if I do.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

@danhimself: if been hoping since like the second arc that he'd get eaten

Edited by G_Money_Christmas

Did no one read the comic? A lot of the comments on here sound like you haven't. This episode follows the ninth(? I think) chapter very closely. Of course, some stuff was added but this one was fairly good about following the original story. I personally was a little disappointed. I thought it was a little anti-climactic but then again, so was the ninth chapter. I'm just waiting for them to find Abraham (I like the actor I'm pretty sure it is).

Posted by The Stegman

@allstarsuperman: Oh come on, the new guy is awesome. I think he beats The Governor by a mile just with his charisma.

I hate Neagan, he's just a foul mouthed version of the Governor.

Edited by JediXMan

I really want Carl to die. It probably won't happen, but I'd cheer if it did. I hate that kid.

Moderator
Posted by k4tzm4n

@jedixman said:

I really want Carl to die. It probably won't happen, but I'd cheer if it did. I hate that kid.

Well, it's possible we'll see him get shot in the face this season.

Staff
Edited by JediXMan
@k4tzm4n said:

@jedixman said:

I really want Carl to die. It probably won't happen, but I'd cheer if it did. I hate that kid.

Well, it's possible we'll see him get shot in the face this season.

Yeah, yeah, I know...

Moderator
Edited by batsymyplaything

@the_stegman: Do you know how hard it is to create such foul riddled mouth of his, i mean I think he created whole new art genre, lol. Plus, I like his way of thinking compared to The Governor, which was kill kill kill and rape.

@k4tzm4n said:

@jedixman said:

I really want Carl to die. It probably won't happen, but I'd cheer if it did. I hate that kid.

Well, it's possible we'll see him get shot in the face this season.

Oh man, don't reminder me. Had to pop couple of Xanax after seeing that in the comic series.

Edited by viin

A little slow but I guess you will have that. All of Michonne's sword slicing was probably the best part. Theyve really done a great job this season on that as well as giving Michonne more sword/zombie time.

The Walking Dead has also been on a kick the last year about making slow episodes and showing scenes that really are not that important and dont need to be shown. The only scene I had a problem with in this episode was Michonnes dream..for some reason I got a weird Resident Evil feeling and the acting was not as good as other scenes that Michonne did. I also think Rick's acting is slipping either that or hes just overacting way to much.

CAAARRRLLL!!!!!

Oh and that overhead shot from the opening scene with the tank was a great callback to the first episode(s).

Edited by MaximumGeyser5

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

that door did what Rick should have

Posted by bloggerboy

Wooden doors beat aliens and kids.

Posted by The Stegman
Posted by SSJDarthPlagueis

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

Door: 1 Carl: 0

@allstarsuperman: Lol. Like how you used his favorite word's abbreviation to disagree of not liking him over The Governor.

As for him in the show, he has a bullet hole in his temple. So, he won't be gnawing on Rick's hand. Sorry, lol.

You wont believe how satisfied I was when I saw this. But I wanted something more gruesome for his death.

Posted by MadeinBangladesh

@madeinbangladesh said:

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

Door: 1 Carl: 0

@batsymyplaything said:

@allstarsuperman: Lol. Like how you used his favorite word's abbreviation to disagree of not liking him over The Governor.

As for him in the show, he has a bullet hole in his temple. So, he won't be gnawing on Rick's hand. Sorry, lol.

You wont believe how satisfied I was when I saw this. But I wanted something more gruesome for his death.

Door Vs Carl: Door Wins

Tank vs Daryl: Daryl Wins.

Posted by SlickyMike88

I like these episodes with less characters , it's more focus and exciting to watch if you ask me.

Posted by shonen3

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

oh shit it started back ?

Posted by kuonphobos

I watched the parasite show "Talking Dead" (which comes on just after) and was astounded by the contrast between Michonne's anti-verbosity and Danai Gurira as a non-stop psuedo psychological/philosophical chatterbox.

Nicotero's Herschel head was cool until Chris Hardwick tried to feed it pudding. Seriously? Who comes up with these lame ideas which are clearly attempts to fill out an hour with only 15 minutes worth of material.

The episode was a little slow but important. Some of the acting was hard to watch (Chandler Riggs) but although I cringe a little whenever Carl appears (both page and screen) I think what he represents as the "new post-apocalyptic person" is interesting. Glimpses of this can also be seen with Carol's other little disciples and their new morality. Slight genre hints at Golding's Lord of the Flies.

One thing is for sure, if you did watch Danai Gurira wax eloquently on Talking Dead, at least in her mind, Michonne is a powerful new metaphor for our post-modern age. She certainly squeezes as much as is humanly possible from the character.

Posted by MaximumGeyser5

@shonen3 said:

@madeinbangladesh said:

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

oh shit it started back ?

i know that door was ready

Edited by shonen3

@shonen3 said:

@madeinbangladesh said:

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

oh shit it started back ?

i know that door was ready

Imagine dying because of this. You try to act badass and knock through a door,only to fail and fall over. At which zombies chew u up

Edited by MaximumGeyser5

@shonen3 said:

@maximumgeyser5 said:

@shonen3 said:

@madeinbangladesh said:

It was great slow episode.

This killed me.

oh shit it started back ?

i know that door was ready

Imagine dying because of this. You try to act badass and knock through a door,only to fail and fall over. At which zombies chew u up

exactly, that and the Door has better Durability and Disciplinary skills than Rick