The Walking Dead: Too Far Gone

walking dead too far gone 1

Here we are at the end of another mid-season finale of The Walking Dead.  I stopped doing my weekly recaps of the show early in this (the show’s fourth) season.  But I figured the mid-season finale was a good place to check back in and take stock of where things stand with The Walking Dead‘s TV incarnation.

Lots of spoilers follow.  I’m going to talk about the show as well as the comic book it is based on.  So, be warned.

You really can’t discuss the first half of season 4 without talking about the show’s third season.  Season three was a horrible misfire.  It took the best story arc from the show’s source material and completely mangled it.  The prison/Woodbury arc is the highlight of the comic book series.  But the TV version was completely unrecognizable.

One of the many frustrating things about season three is that the story line should have been relatively easy to adapt.  Yes, there would need to be some changes made for TV.  But the changes could have been largely cosmetic.

The original story consisted of two parts.  The first took place in the prison as Rick and company built what they hoped would be a new future for themselves.  The second part took place largely in Woodbury as Rick, Glenn and Michonne were held prisoner and escaped.  It ended with a showdown at the prison very similar to this week’s episode, Too Far Gone.

That is the structure season three of the show should have followed.  But instead, some odd choices were made.  The show kept bouncing back and forth between the prison and Woodbury.  Most of the interesting prison story lines were dropped in favor of humanizing the Governor and destroying Andrea in the process.

Most puzzling of all was the decision to end the season in the least climactic way possible.  After the entire season built to a conflict between Rick’s group in the prison and the Governor’s Woodbury militia, the season ended with the Governor killing his own men and everyone moving into the prison.

Clearly, new show-runner Scott Gimple recognized how badly his predecessor dropped the ball.  Because he dedicated the entire first half of the fourth season to putting the pieces back in place for a do-over.  That’s what Too Far Gone was.  It was a do-over of the season three finale.  And for the most part, the show got it right the second time around.

The bigger question is whether or not a do-over was worth doing.  We have now spent the first half of the season tying up loose plot threads that should have been tied up neatly last year.

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Posted on December 2, 2013, in TV, Walking Dead and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I thought this was one of the more satisfying episodes of TWD that I’ve seen since before the farm. I agree that the previous episodes this season have been leading up to this, seemingly in order to get the show back on track. It also felt like they were taking serious pains to bring the show back into better alignment with the comics – which isn’t a bad thing. Frankly, up until this one, I was just about ready to write the show off. But based on this one, I’ll stick it out a bit longer.

    • The irony is that they have realigned the show with the comic book at the exact moment when the comic book started its decline. But I am interested to see where it goes from here. Honestly, there is nothing else like it on TV. Even when it is bad, I enjoy watching it and making fun of it.

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