creator: Frank Darabont
show runner: Glen Mazzara
starring: Andrew Lincoln
number of episodes: 16
first aired: October 14, 2012
Its amazing how one show with such a huge fanbase and viewership can still get so much negative criticism. "Walking Dead" still offers a good amount of entertainment, however I think we also watch it based on its potential for greatness. We all saw something in that first season and the potential it had to be this gritty drama of survival in a world ruled by the dead. Unfortunately another season is gone and that possibility hasn't arrived yet. In the mean time were left still with the mediocrity of a fumbling melodrama, with badly written characters, constant on and off quality of effects/makeup work and a plot that requires expensive set pieces & events that the show can't deliver on.
After the Hershel farm storyline that compromised most of what Season 2 was. The group has now moved on and with Rick (Andrew Lincoln) fully in charge. He leads them to a secluded prison complex where they will have to fend off biters, inmates and other possible dangers.
On the other side of this area lies an old friend of the group Andrea (Laurie Holden) and her new samurai sword wielding friend Michonne (Danai Gurira). Both are trying to survive in the wilderness until they get into a protected town/community called Woodbury. This town looks safe with running electricity and water and is controlled by one man the Governor (David Morrissey). While everything seems fine and dandy. Michonne starts poking around and finds out the real ugly truth behind Woodbury and its enigmatic leader the Governor.
Time will tell when both sides will collide and who will survive the aftermath. It will be up to the many of individuals of both groups to choose sides and for common sense to prevail. But in a world ruled by zombies, common sense is the last thing you should expect.
In general "Walking Dead" did have one major improvement above all else from last year and that was its pacing. No longer did we feel as the whole season's story kept dragging on for far too long or that the group were always remaining in one location. In Season 3 we had a good balance of locations with Woodbury and the prison. Also the fact that we have now more characters to deal with. Helps the show with the possibility of differentiated subplots and character traits.
With the new season everything felt fast with many changes arising, quite a few big moments and deaths. Nonetheless it didn't forget to have some quiet character moments to blend in with big set pieces as "Walking Dead" is already known for. Unfortunately the show couldn't also also afflict itself of the nasty television habit of filler episodes. That provide no substance and effectively ruined the last half of season 3 and a little bit of the climax.
Additionally the show couldn't avoid once again in writing its characters into potential pitfalls, but also into incredible amounts of hatred from viewers and die hard fans. Primarily this can be seen with the character of Andrea, who was the punching bag of this season with bad decisions, actions and emotions. Worst of all she was put front and center of the show providing us with a supposed emotional depth that the show needed. The problem was she didn't provide that depth and only proved to be the most utterly frustrating factor of the show. Last year it was Lori who got the brunt of the hatred, but after the downright stupid crap Andrea pulled. Many might be wishing for Lori to return.
Nevertheless Andrea wasn't the only one to blame for shows negatives. The fact of the matter is that Andrea, the Governor and Woodbury took around 50% of the story this season and we really lost touch with the main group and their leader Rick. It cant be that the leading character of the show is sidelined throughout the season either by being a pansy or a nut. Its about time that we get a true leadership mentality out of Rick, otherwise why did the show even begin with him as the lead.
Furthermore I hate to say it, but some of the creative decisions made on the show compiled with the budget are just tragic. Its either in the amateurishness in production with the ever-change of bullet squibs and makeup, to the abrupt change of fake CGI blood and effects. Also having episodes at times end with a licensed mopey song and montage stuck to it. Made me wonder what network produces "Walking Dead" again? AMC or ABC family.
For all of "Walking Dead's" issues, which are many. It still remains the only choice for steady zombie action and gore. That in combination with its soap operish romances and character inanities. You will have to be prepared for a real surf and turf mix of entertainment and character development.