The Walking Dead 2.08: "Nebraska"

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Posted by erik_norris (191 posts) - - Show Bio

Man, these past two months have been excruciating, haven't they? Well, we can now thank our lucky stars, because The Walking Dead has finally returned after a brief mid-season hiatus.

Since this show has deviated so heavily from its comic book source material, it's in our best interest to not harp too much on what the show does differently from the comics, for better or worse. Instead, we're going to break down some of the most poignant moments in this week's episode and discuss why they're important (or could be important later down the road).

Lastly, if there's something I don't cover in this write-up that you feel is an oversight, share it in the comments below. Let's turn these weekly roundups into a little constructive community back and forth. Sound good? Okay, let's dive right in…

Oh, and this should be obvious… spoilers, ahoy!

== TEASER ==

Staring down the barrel of remorse

The midseason premiere picks up right where episode 7 left off, with Rick staring down the barrel of the revolver he used to put a bullet in zombie Sophia's head. Much of the first half of this episode plays up the extreme tension on the farm between the main group of survivors and Hershel's family. What's maybe most important is the scene between Rick and Shane where the two once again share words, furthering establishing the dividing line between team "Optimism," led by Rick, and team "Lost Hope," led by Shane.

Moving on...

This was an interesting scene because it works on multiple levels. For starters, the mystery of Sophia's fate has been solved, for better or worse, and now it's time for the characters to move on. Likewise, viewers who have been complaining that The Walking Dead has been moving about as fast as a zombie should find comfort in the fact that the show is essentially breaking the fourth wall to tell them that they are moving on to bigger and (hopefully) better things.

Funeral for friends

Andrea shows a little bit of a cold heart for the members of Hershel's family who've been turned into zombies. She mentions to Shane and T-Dog that they should only break a sweat to bury the ones they love, meanwhile burning the rest. Man, that's cold as ice.

Meanwhile, Rick talks to his wife Lori to acknowledge that no matter what they do to make things right, stuff continue to get worse, whether it's Carl getting shot or Sophia getting turned into a zombie. Is Rick's sense of optimism fading?

Shane and Dale, BFFs

It's an understatement at this point to say Shane and Dale don't care much for each other. Shane calls out Dale for being pretty much useless as of late (he's not wrong, honestly), while Dale continues to point the finger at Shane for being pretty much a bad influence on everyone (he's not wrong either).

Carol accepts Sophia's death

This is a beat we've seen before in The Walking Dead, but it doesn't make this particular scene any less poignant. Carol has accepted her daughter Sofia's death, claiming she died a long time ago, far before she became a monster.

Hershel is a sharp-dressed man for funerals

Here's a quick note: why is Hershel the only one dressing in a suit for the dead's funeral? Yes, most of the camp doesn't have a spare pair of underwear, let alone a dress suit, but still… Hershel can't lend out a suit or two to pay proper respects? What a one-upper!

Andrea and T-Dog take out the (dead) trash

Andrea and T-Dog show off their skills as zombie trash collectors, drawing attention to how desensitized our group has become. They now have no problem hauling off corpses and carrying around severed limbs without gloves or protection. Gross.

Carl turning stone cold killer?

Lori confronts Rick about Hershel running off to his favorite watering hole, mentioning that Carl said he would have shot Sophia himself if it came down to it. We might finally be seeing the first traces of Carl's story in The Walking Dead television series mirroring his path in the comics. That's very exciting news.

Dale plays the blame game

In a conversation with Lori, Dale lays it all out on the table and outs Shane as the one who killed Otis to save himself last season. He admits he doesn't have the proof, but he justifies his claim by stating that he's known men him Shane before, and "sooner than later he's going to kill someone else,"

First rule about gun use...

… don't point the barrel at your own face, Glenn. Come on!

Daryl continues to reject his posse

Lori tries to convince Daryl to head into town to pick up Rick and Hershel. However, Daryl continues to slip mentally, feeling out of place amongst this group of survivors, turning down Lori and giving her an ear full in the process.

Plus, he's got a sweet-ass stick to sharpen. So, honestly, his priorities are in line.

Hershel tosses back the sauce

Hershel has finally accepted his ignorance towards storing the zombies in his barn. It's a mistake that has led him back to grandpa's old cough medicine. Hershel has also officially joined team "Lost Hope," explaining to Rick that "there is no hope for any of us."

But Rick is quick to make a solid counter-argument, further showcasing his drive to stay optimistic. As Rick explains it, death has always been around. Whether it's cancer, heart attack or a walker, death has always been a threat. The zombie apocalypse is no different than it was before, it's just a new challenge that they have to overcome together.

The road - 1, women drivers - 0

That's a joke, of course. I'm not that insensitive. But in all seriousness, Lori's impatience once again gets her in trouble here. Never the one to stand idly by, Lori decides to drive into town to find Rick, but before she gets there she's makes the bonehead decision to not keep her eyes on the road -- instead choosing to look down a map -- leading her to hit a roaming walker and then fly off the road, flipping her car in the process.

Philly natives, Dave and Tony, walk into the bar…

At the end of this week's episode we meet two new characters, Dave and Tony, both Philadelphia natives (clearly Tony has eaten his fair share of cheesesteaks) that have been making their way across the country to find a safe place to live. They run into Rick, Glenn and Hershel at the bar, leading to a tension-filled conversation about the duo coming to the farm to stay. Dave and Tony also confirm that Fort Benning -- where Rick and his group were originally headed before arriving at Hershel's farm -- is overrun with the dead, effectively killing that pipe dream of a military-protected safe haven.

What's also interesting about this scene is that it's a role reversal. Dave makes the same case for himself and Tony that Rick originally did with Hershel, only now Rick's on the other side of the coin, telling Dave and Tony they can't come to the farm because they don't know them.

Then Rick goes all old west on Dave and Tony, killing them both in cold blood to protect the farm. Where's that sense of righteousness you've been parading around, Rick? Well, it's lying dead on the floor in a pool of blood, it seems. Things should be interesting from this point on, no?

And that wraps up this week's episode. Outside Lori doing her best Dukes of Hazzard impression and Rick playing executioner, "Nebraska" was a relatively slow midseason premiere. It didn't feel much like a fresh start, but instead the aftermath to plot developments from three months ago. However, the show still continues to build up its characters (introducing a few new ones in the process as well), which is better than nothing. Hopefully more action is right around the corner in the coming weeks.

See you guys next week!

Staff
#1 Posted by Uncanny_Doom (360 posts) - - Show Bio

I thought it was a good episode but really didn't take advantage of the hype and note that the midseason finale left us on.

#2 Posted by Billy Batson (57705 posts) - - Show Bio

Still haven't watched the series. Need to start watching it at some point.
BB

#3 Posted by NightFang (9812 posts) - - Show Bio

The end of the episode was a shook.

#4 Posted by Bobzenub (120 posts) - - Show Bio

It's hilarious how Lori is devolved into an inept idiot. Furthermore no sign of Tyreese on the horizon. The show is like a bad parody of a redneck's wet dream, where only southern white men can be competent in any way.

#5 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32129 posts) - - Show Bio

Cool write up. I think down the line some time Shane and Dale are going to come to a head and tbh I dont see the old guy coming out of it alive but I hope I'm wrong since I like Dale. It's pretty cool that Shane and Rick play off the duality of the group and if Shane stops flipping out so much he could eventually force a schism with members having to pick a side. I hope Daryl doesn't distance himself to much from the group because along with Glen he's my favourite character.    

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#6 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32129 posts) - - Show Bio
@Bobzenub said:

It's hilarious how Lori is devolved into an inept idiot. Furthermore no sign of Tyreese on the horizon. The show is like a bad parody of a redneck's wet dream, where only southern white men can be competent in any way.

dude Lori was always an inept idiot 
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#7 Posted by KainScion (2973 posts) - - Show Bio

this show seems pointless to me. they're just dragging everything out. i'd rather watch a zombie flick than this.

#8 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32129 posts) - - Show Bio
@KainScion said:

this show seems pointless to me. they're just dragging everything out. i'd rather watch a zombie flick than this.

your kind of missing the point of the walking dead
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#9 Posted by chalkshark (1180 posts) - - Show Bio

Rick didn't kill them in cold blood. It was self defense. The guy behind the bar positioned himself with his friend to put Rick in a crossfire... which Rick didn't miss.... then drew down on him. While Rick was always prepared to use his gun, he didn't until his life was actually jeopardized. Nothing cold about it. Shane shooting Otis in the leg was cold blooded. Rick's actions were not.

#10 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32129 posts) - - Show Bio
@chalkshark: that was some quick ass drawing though
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#11 Posted by KRYPTON (1891 posts) - - Show Bio

Good recap, can't wait to see what happens in the next episode. Anyone else see Tony fall into his own pee at the end of the episode?

#12 Edited by Decept-O (7274 posts) - - Show Bio

Rick didn't just kill Dave and Tony in cold blood; they were the ones who went for their guns first and had designs to kill Rick, Glenn, and Hershel in the bar in the first place. Gotta get the facts right. He was protecting himself and the others.

Daryl is having reservations about the group because either A. he is missing someone in his life he possibly loves, B. may be falling for someone in the group, C. is still concerned about his low-life brother, or D. more than likely, has something he wants to admit to but can't bring himself to admit it because of fear of being rejected. His reaction to Carol in the previous episode, calling her a "stupid b!tch" seems to indicate either he doesn't want to get close to her or...maybe he's gay. Just speculation on my part.

#13 Edited by fodigg (6130 posts) - - Show Bio

They did bury Hershel's family. They were two of the "ones we love." The rest that they burned were all "strays."

This episode was very much a "Western"-themed episode, and it was awesome. As for Rick, well the guy already threatened to kill them all, and that was before they went for their guns first. It was coming down and he had to do it. If anyone suggests those guys had to shoot first for Rick to be in the moral right I might just flip out. Hopefully Hershel will recognize that the alternative to Rick would be guys like those jokers and he'll mellow out.

Actually, screw that, hopefully everybody but Shane, Rick, and Daryl dies and they just ride off into the wilderness to be badasses together.

#14 Posted by erik_norris (191 posts) - - Show Bio

@chalkshark: Okay, maybe "cold blood" is a strong phrase to use for what Rick did. He was definitely in the mind set of it being self defense for sure, but he was very quick to pull the trigger on Dave and Tony. Then pumping multiple bullets into Tony's chest didn't make a strong case for Rick being really in control of himself. It's clear he's starting to get paranoid and lose it.

Staff
#15 Posted by laabitres (354 posts) - - Show Bio

yay!

#16 Posted by wolfmangideon (23 posts) - - Show Bio

@Decept-O: I think he's falling for Carol and just doesn't know how to show it.

#17 Posted by chalkshark (1180 posts) - - Show Bio

@erik_norris: It's possible that I watch way too much Justified, but in my opinion, had Rick drawn any slower, he'd be dead. He needed to take out two targets, before either one of them could shoot him. I think what that scene reveals is a side of Rick that we've, heretofore, never had a chance to see. I'm guessing that when he was the town sheriff, he was an absolute badass.

Drilling Tony was over the top, but I chalk that up to adrenaline. Rick's on the edge, but I think he's hanging tough. Of course, the next episode could prove me to be completely wrong.

#18 Posted by cacarl (138 posts) - - Show Bio

This was my last episode. I'm done with this series.

#19 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32129 posts) - - Show Bio
@cacarl said:

This was my last episode. I'm done with this series.

how come?
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#20 Posted by mikeclark1982 (424 posts) - - Show Bio

@cacarl: thats pretty stupid to say. i am sure we will not miss you when you leave.

#21 Posted by fodigg (6130 posts) - - Show Bio

@erik_norris said:

@chalkshark: Okay, maybe "cold blood" is a strong phrase to use for what Rick did. He was definitely in the mind set of it being self defense for sure, but he was very quick to pull the trigger on Dave and Tony. Then pumping multiple bullets into Tony's chest didn't make a strong case for Rick being really in control of himself. It's clear he's starting to get paranoid and lose it.

As for pumping extra bullets, I understood that as plugging the head so they don't turn into walkers. As for the look on his face, the horror at what he'd had to do, I'd say that speaks well of his mental state/morality. If he'd been totally cool with killing two dudes I'd be more worried.

#22 Posted by Decept-O (7274 posts) - - Show Bio

@wolfmangideon: That is what came to mind and is why I said I think he may be falling for someone in the group. You could be right and I want to think that....yet I can't help feel there is something else, something more than that. I could be way off base. I've not read the comics and I know the TV show diverges from the source material but it just seems for Daryl, it may not necessarily be Carol he has feelings for. Guess we will have to watch and find out!

#23 Posted by Nova`Prime` (4156 posts) - - Show Bio

This show better pick up the pace or it can count me out as a viewer. I don't mind the building of the characters and not seeing a zombie massacre every week, but to spend the entire first half of the season on the farm and barely leaving for anything was just to slow for me. They went into town once? Besides looking for Sophia, which we didn't really see much of outside of Daryl, which is alright because he's my favorite character. They didn't scout around the farm for anything not food, water, or survival supplies, heck they haven't once, the entire season mind you, went looking for spare gasoline.

#24 Posted by Decept-O (7274 posts) - - Show Bio

Also interesting to point out is that Rick knew that Dave and Tony were lying about Nebraska because they referred to it as the "flower State". That isn't the slogan for Nebraska. Right on the State signs and what is well known to most Midwestern residents of the USA is that Nebraska is called the "Cornhusker State". Granted, not everyone knows that, but if Dave and Tony had actually been through Nebraska they would have remembered that because that is all you see...corn fields.

So that still leaves open the possibility other areas of the USA may be walker free or not affected or safe havens may exist.

#25 Posted by Comik Book Guy (43 posts) - - Show Bio

ehh I wouldn't say Rick is a stone-cold killer now for killing the two Philly guys. It's like star wars, you can't forget to mention that Dave shot at Rick first. Rick was just better. After all, Han shot Greedo first and that says a lot about his character.

#26 Posted by wolfmangideon (23 posts) - - Show Bio

@Decept-O: Another possibility is that Daryl needs some sort of purpose - a "reason to be there" so to speak. For the first half of the season, that was finding Sophia. Now he may be feeling lost and in search of another purpose.

#27 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32129 posts) - - Show Bio
@Decept-O: Well Daryl is not in the comics so anything goes for him
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#28 Posted by Crowingaboutcomics (58 posts) - - Show Bio

Fantastic Episode! This is the second review I read and it didn't mention the sick Hershel girl, as the plot devise that made Lori run into town. My theory is that she got the zombie virus from her mother, perhaps got scratched and recognizing it, Lori slightly freaked. Also as someone else mentioned, they did bury Hershel's step wife and son (hence he wore a suit). Sophia: I'm one to think that after running all night, she came to the farm from the direction of the barn, crawled in and was bitten - and was able to escape from being eaten completely but not from being turned while still inside. I find it funny about all these complaints that they are still on the farm...come on - everyone is suffering from post traumatic stress syndrome and it's only natural that they would stay at the first place that seemed normal. Also everyone has to keep in mind that this is a television series - it costs a huge amount of money change scenery/locations every few episodes. It's rather sad that some of the people only have the attention span to fill an hour and a half Zombie movie. That not-with-standing that this ISN'T a video game and once done with this level they get to go to another.

#29 Posted by frozenedge (1121 posts) - - Show Bio

I think Daryl's hallucination about his brother is what's making him uneasy being around the group. The fact that his brother told him he was being a lapdog to the group might be whats getting to him. He might be starting to believe it himself. It doesn't help that Lori told him to go find Rick. Its not like they didn't know where he was but she still asked him to go find Rick. If you look back at the beginning you can tell Daryl has at least somewhat changed from what he used to be. Once he finds his brother alive or zombiefied he might decide to leave and then the group loses one of their main fighters.

#30 Posted by RedheadedAtrocitus (6885 posts) - - Show Bio

I loved the show to be honest, even if really the show did seem more like an aftermath to the events from three months ago like you said. The most intriguing part of the show to me though was the Philadelphians Dave and Tony. That has Governor's agents written ALL over it to be honest, especially from what I'm hearing that we may actually see the Governor sometime in this second half of the second season. I liked Dave's explanation though for what else is going on round the country in midst of the zombie apocalypse and how it all relates to "Nebraska" even if for my part I think that was just a bull$#it story to try and bring in Rick and company's confidence. Everything else seems to be falling into place for me except Lori's initiative which cost her on the road. Really didn't see that coming to be honest. As far as Shane, I agree with Dale..he's just far too dangerous. As a plot device to the show he's necessary, but if that group hopes for survival, they just can't have a screw-loose like Shane with them. He's shown he's broken and cracked under pressure with his screw ups come back to haunt him. You could all see it in his face when Hershel told everyone that Otis herded the zombies into the barn...thinking "Damn and I sacrificed him back there..." No, Shane is slipping, and he's going over the edge bit by bit until either he or someone else dies.

#31 Posted by Daywing (4443 posts) - - Show Bio

I truly hate hearing peoples negative opinions on this show, it's by far one of the best comic adaptations EVER. For the people that complain about the lack of zombies on the show they clearly don't read the comic. There has been issues where there were absolutely NO zombies, then we had to wait a whole MONTH not a week for the next part and I'm not even complaining about that. This comic is about the people, NOT the zombies and how they react to, literally, hell on earth.

Plus Rick killing Dave and Tony was no way in "cold blood." Rick is a cop and he acted like a cop the whole time. When Tony began to yell Rick calmed down the situation, when Dave was reaching for something Rick readied his gun, but calmed down when he saw it was the liquor. When Rick saw Dave reach for his gun, he put a bullet in his chest, like any cop would. Then he did the same for Tony. Also the zombies they burned weren't family members of Hershels.

But anyway I loved this episode, every little detail! I loved that Daryl was making arrows before Lori came and I died when he called her Olive oil. Everyone needs to get off Rick's back though! Uh Lori you're having a baby, Hershel is a doctor, YOU NEED A DOCTOR. T-dawgs annoying me, I liked him in season 1 but he's down nothing as of yet, I'm calling that he'll be zombie meat this season.

#32 Posted by danhimself (22212 posts) - - Show Bio

@Decept-O said:

Rick didn't just kill Dave and Tony in cold blood; they were the ones who went for their guns first and had designs to kill Rick, Glenn, and Hershel in the bar in the first place. Gotta get the facts right. He was protecting himself and the others.

Daryl is having reservations about the group because either A. he is missing someone in his life he possibly loves, B. may be falling for someone in the group, C. is still concerned about his low-life brother, or D. more than likely, has something he wants to admit to but can't bring himself to admit it because of fear of being rejected. His reaction to Carol in the previous episode, calling her a "stupid b!tch" seems to indicate either he doesn't want to get close to her or...maybe he's gay. Just speculation on my part.

I think of it as more of a case of him being torn between his old nature and his new nature that he's had to adopt with the group....we've seen it already with "Chupacabra" and his visions of his brother

#33 Posted by Dernman (14610 posts) - - Show Bio

@Crowingaboutcomics: I read somewhere that they had their budget cut in half somewhere.

#34 Posted by Ganthetsward20 (687 posts) - - Show Bio

Them Philly dudes were skeezy at best and should have been shot when they walked in, it practically oozed off of them as they spoke!!! I missed the first half of the show so I cant say much but i enjoyed what I saw.

#35 Posted by Crowingaboutcomics (58 posts) - - Show Bio

Just to throw another bone out there - what I would like to see and hear about, is cities being decimated by Nuclear Factories going - well nuclear and all the other issues that would come up from humans no longer taking care of the things that they built...haven't the producers watched the History2 series: "World Without Humans?"

#36 Posted by haydenclaireheroes (8838 posts) - - Show Bio

This was an okay episode but a little slow. I think the Lori accident was interesting though and might make an interesting story for the next episode.

#37 Posted by Decept-O (7274 posts) - - Show Bio

@danhimself: I was thinking about this when I was off the site and I agree with that. I am over-thinking Daryl's actions. Perhaps his actions can be equated to Wolverine's portrayal in the X-Men movies to a degree? That is a good point and think that may be it. But...there might be something else as well, I just can't shake that feeling.

#38 Posted by Decept-O (7274 posts) - - Show Bio

@wolfmangideon: You bring up another point as well. I think you and Danhimself bring something up regarding Daryl, in that he is "finding himself" to a degree. As witnessed by a lot of things he's done and the show's focus on him at times, that seems to be what is happening. Again, I think there is more to Daryl than is being let on right now.

#39 Posted by Cypher4 (72 posts) - - Show Bio

Rick didn't kill them in cold blood. Dave went for his gun first.

#40 Posted by The Stegman (22735 posts) - - Show Bio

meh it was a decent episode, still think the previous one was the highlight of the whole season so far

#41 Posted by ARMIV2 (8271 posts) - - Show Bio

Rick shot in self-defense. The guys talking to him were dropping so many hints that they were up to something.

I really hope Glen doesn't die.

#42 Posted by KidSupreme (824 posts) - - Show Bio

Personally I found this episode really boring.

#43 Posted by Punisher007 (56 posts) - - Show Bio

Maggie is a hottie.

#44 Posted by TheWholeDamnShow (758 posts) - - Show Bio

It's strange because in the comics Glen and Maggie end up parenting Sophie and in the show they didn't even get a chance to see that one through. Also, I have been seeing A LOT of Andrea hate on other websites simply because she shot Daryl.... She is my favorite and I hope they don't kill her off simply because everyone hates her.

#45 Posted by happypup70 (32 posts) - - Show Bio

it is like the cantina scene in Star Wars: A New Hope Han knew Greedo would try to kill him so he shot first. George Lucas got it wrong when trying to change the story, a true rapscallion knows when to shoot first.

#46 Posted by Lt_Cmdr_Kicker (71 posts) - - Show Bio

Is it just me or does the whole idea of BURNING HUMAN BODIES, ON THE FARM, DURING THE DAY is just CRAZY?! Personally, the first thing that came to mind when they mentioned the idea of burning them was ATTACK!! With the potential plot of other survivors being in the area, the smoke created from the fire alone would be enough to attract any desperate survivors. Now the smell of burning flesh might be enough to attract a roaming horde, if not other animals. They've made a tactical error & I believe we'll be seeing the end of the farm soon enough. Anyone else agree?

#47 Posted by Croi (157 posts) - - Show Bio

POW! Right in the kissa...

#48 Posted by Sky_Jokiel (304 posts) - - Show Bio

To defend Daryl and his stick carving scene I'm sure he could always use more arrows and why not do it while sorrowing away in self pity lol

#49 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32129 posts) - - Show Bio
Does anyone read the book? I just made it to #83 at nearly spat cereal all over my self at the last page!!!!!!!
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#50 Posted by Deranged Midget (17599 posts) - - Show Bio

Pretty sick episode although it went almost no where until the last 5 minutes.

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