Latest News: Technology |  Celebrity |  Movies |  Apple |  Cars |  Business |  Sports |  TV Shows |  Geek

Trending

Filed under: News | Also on the Geek Mind

 

The Walking Dead Season Finale: It's Bye Bye, Hamlet, Hello, Rick 2.0

Mar 31 2014, 1:23am CDT | by

1 Updates
The Walking Dead Season Finale: It's Bye Bye, Hamlet, Hello, Rick 2.0

Photo Credit: AMC
 
 

YouTube Videos Comments

Full Story

The Walking Dead Season Finale: It's Bye Bye, Hamlet, Hello, Rick 2.0

Even though it ensemble features more than a dozen characters, The Walking Dead has always been Rick Grimes’s story.  The first episode began with him lying in a hospital bed with a gunshot wound. And the last episode of this season ends with him morphing into the Rickinator. Or maybe just My Favorite Monster. Or both.

The fascinating—and frustrating—thing about Rick Grimes is that he’s always been Hamlet of the Post-Apocalypse. His indecision runs deep. Is he the guy who handcuffs Merle Dixon to the roof of a building? Or is he the guy who risks his neck to come back to try to rescue him?

Is he the guy who makes peace with The Governor? Or the guy who can kill his best friend? The answer is, of course, both, but until this episode Rick himself could never come to terms with both sides of his persona. As he tried to hold on to vestiges of the old world in the face of a scary new one, his yin and yang were in perpetual conflict.

But on the road to Terminus, Rick finally embraced his inner monster. When Joe puts a gun to his head and threatened his son, and his son’s best friend (that would be Michonne) he made like a walker and did what needed to be done. Meet Warrior Rick. He won’t get fooled again.

Consider how far he’s come in such a short time. As Episode 401 opens, he’s Farmer Rick,  cultivating his garden in the prison yard. He finds a gun buried just below the surface. He looks at it, then tosses it into a bin with the weeds.  But we catch a glimpse of what’s simmering just beneath the surface when Tyreese starts a fight, and he finishes it, seemingly ready to kill him until he’s pulled off.

But when The Governor rejects his attempts at mediation and instead lops off Hershel’s head, it’s as though Rick Grimes finally realizes that the times they have changed. In that moment, the Rick who could take a chunk out of Joe’s neck was born. It’s a hard-won lesson, of course, one that cost him his home, his friend, and, he thinks, his daughter.

With his face caked in blood, he tells Daryl, “You’re my brother.” Sure, it’s an expression of loyalty and affection. But Rick Grimes saying something else: I’m as ruthless a son-of-a-bitch as Ol’ Merle.
The only thing that gives Rick pause is the example he’s setting for Carl. But the kid’s got it figured this out already. He came face to face with The Beast in Me during the last season finale, when he popped a cap in the kid from Woodbury.

His dad—and Hershel—tried to teach him to tamp that impulse down. But he’s seen a lot since The Turn, too much. He shot Walker Shane after he tried to kill his Dad. She shot his mom to keep her from turning. And he watched both Dale and Hershel go from being peacemakers to dead peacemakers. The lesson he learned was a more practical one: calibrate your trigger finger a little better.

As Rick is disemboweling the last of Joe’s guys, Michonne tries to shield Carl’s eyes. But he’s not afraid. He’s not revolted. He’s taking notes. And when they reach Terminus and the head termite asks about whether the other guy deserved it, Carl says “Yeah” without a moment’s hesitation. Whether or not he’s wearing that silly hat, Carl Grimes is his father’s son.

This episode, directed masterfully by Michelle McLaren of Breaking Bad fame, puts The Walking Dead in an interesting place. The story line takes our heroes into a dark place—and what can be darker than a locked railroad car?

But from a character point of view this satisfying episode gives us nothing but hope. Out gunned and out manned, Rick 2.o is feeling empowered. He’s found his mojo and embraced his inner warrior. And there’s every reason to think that this confidence will be contagious, and Daryl and Glenn and Abraham will soon be beating their chests too.

This long strange season ends with a cliffhanger but also an improbable boast from an improbable source: “They’re screwing with the wrong people.” The prospect of watching Rick & Friends make good on that promise and kick some Termite tail might just be enough to sustain a Walking Dead fan through a long walker-free summer.

In the days that led up to the finale, there was endless speculation about who would die in this episode. And in the end, the answer was every bit as shocking as the creators’ suggested: Farmer Rick? Won’t see him no more.

What was your take on the season finale?  Do you like the new Rick? What do you expect from Season 5? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

For the best-curated television news about The Walking Dead and other great shows, follow me on Twitter (@allenstjohn).

Allen St. John is the author of Newton’s Football: The Science Behind America’s Game, published by Ballantine Books

 

You Might Also Like

Updates


Sponsored Update


Advertisement


More From the Web

Shopping Deals

 
 
 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/31" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

 

Comments

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Rihanna and Drake truly madly deeply in Love with each other
Rihanna and Drake truly madly deeply in Love with each other
The popster, Rihanna and rap artist, Drake are reportedly truly, madly and deeply in love with each other. This comes two years after their infamous split.
 
 
Kim Kardashian reveals a Few Factoids from her Life
Kim Kardashian reveals a Few Factoids from her Life
The gorgeous chunk of feminine beauty, Kim Kardashian has revealed a few factoids from her semi-charmed life.
 
 
Hershey’s New Logo looks like a Steaming Pile of Poo
Hershey’s New Logo looks like a Steaming Pile of Poo
Hershey’s new logo is out now. But the only problem with it is it looks eerily like an emoji symbol of a steaming pile of poo.
 
 
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt exchange Wedding Vows
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt exchange Wedding Vows
The actress in Tomb Raider, Angelina Jolie, and Brad Pitt exchanged wedding vows recently. They make a lovely couple and both are from the cream of the crop in Hollywood.
 
 
 

About the Geek Mind

The “geek mind” is concerned with more than just the latest iPhone rumors, or which company will win the gaming console wars. I4U is concerned with more than just the latest photo shoot or other celebrity gossip.

The “geek mind” is concerned with life, in all its different forms and facets. The geek mind wants to know about societal and financial issues, both abroad and at home. If a Fortune 500 decides to raise their minimum wage, or any high priority news, the geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants to know the top teams in the National Football League, or who’s likely to win the NBA Finals this coming year. The geek mind wants to know who the hottest new models are, or whether the newest blockbuster movie is worth seeing. The geek mind wants to know. The geek mind wants—needs—knowledge.

Read more about The Geek Mind.