'The Walking Dead' recap, season three premiere: 'Seed'

Hey that's my leg, not a $5 footlong!

(Gene Page/AMC )
October 14, 2012|By Andrew Conrad, aconrad@tribune.com

Well, well, it seems that much has changed since last we checked in with Rick Grimes and his merry band of ZombiePocalypse survivors.

In Sunday night's season three premiere, 'Seed' (referring to Lori's gestating baby, I guess?), we catch up with the crew, who have apparently weathered the winter by bouncing from zombie-ridden house to zombie-ridden house, stopping occasionally to murder owls and scavenge cans of Smeat and Champion's Pebbles dog food.

Judging by the epic sweatstains under Rick Grimes' underarms, spring has returned to Georgia.

During the passage of time, though, the dynamic of the group has changed up a bit:

  • Old Man Hershel looks much more gaunt, and has grown a Denver Pyle beard.
  • Rick is really giving Lori the cold shoulder treatment. Maybe if he took some Cialis or Levitra he and Lori could sit out on a beach in separate bathtubs, holding hands.
  • Carl looks older and more awkward, and his voice is starting to change. It's like when Walt aged in "Lost", so they just made him disappear into another dimension. (Another Lost reference: this season starts with a close-up of a zombie's eye. Eh?) Carl also seems to be developing a romantic interest in Beth. He's like "I got a real funny feeling in my dungarees."
  • Daryl and Carol also seem to be cozying up together. Daryl gives Carol a back massage, and she's like "This is pretty romantic, wanna screw around?" and he's just like "Aww shucks..."
  • Andrea come down with something, but Michonne will keep her safe.
Luckily for us, while much has changed during the long, cold winter, the producers of the show are still giving us just what we want: violence and gore.

As opposed to some episodes last season, which sometimes had just a zombie or two here and there, this episode featured so many zombie kills that my zombie-kill counter broke. I think I need to invest in a baseball pitch counter to keep track of all the zombie kills from now on.

Even that might not have helped tonight, though. I started off by typing something like "Glenn impaled a zombie by the fence" and then it became "Glenn two more" and then I just started typing "i" for each kill and pretty soon my screen looked like Jack Nicholson's typewriter in "The Shining."

If I had to come up with an educated guess, I'd say that somewhere around 75 or 80 zombies were laid to rest with all the prison clearing and all that. (UPDATE: I went back and watched again, and I'm pretty sure there were 60 on-screen kills.) I don't know if they'll keep up this pace, especially once the West Georgia Correctional Facility is secured, but I do get the feeling that we're in for an especially bloody season.

Some of the highlights of all the slaughter:

  • Rick peels the gas mask off of one prison guard zombie, and its face comes off at the same time. Then Rick stabs the guys face up.
  • In the house (useless information, the address was 565) they find some frail old woman zombie, that actually appeared to be some sort of animatronic thing and not an actor in make-up. It reminded me of the talking half-corpse zombie woman in "Return of the Living Dead."
  • Rick hacks the heck out of Hershel's leg with a blunt axe to prevent the spread of his zombie bite (oh yeah, Hershel got bit by a zombie, BTW). Hershel passed out from the pain. The best part is how they didn't bother to just show Rick swinging an axe and squirt little shots of blood up and make gross noises. They actually showed the axe hitting the leg, close-up, and then they showed an extreme close-up of the raw, oozing stump. LOL, I love this show!
So aside from all the violence, the plot was advanced by the survivors starting to secure the prison, Michonne and Andrea setting out from the Sportsman's Deer Cooler to look for the others, and the cliffhanger at the end, a group of non-zombie prisoners turning up in the prison cafeteria!

Rejoice my friends, "The Walking Dead" is back, and better than ever!

Did you notice?

  • As the survivors run away from that first house, there is a blue soccer cleat stuck in a pile of dirt outside. What, did Diego Maradona live there or something?
  • There is also some weird Christmas display on the wall inside the house. Only it's not something normal, it's like three little stuffed Santy Clause dolls tied together. Those people that like to buy Christmas decorations year-round are an odd bunch.
  • The sign on the wall of the Sportsman's Deer Cooler says "The Buck Stops Here". Hey, those hunters must be Orioles fans!
  • Rick and Carl have home-made silencers on their guns now! I don't know what Carl's was, but Rick's looked like a flashlight. What is he, MacGyver?
  • Michonne's awesome walker pets were carrying all of her luggage for her, including what appeared to be a guitar case!
Maggie and Beth sing the blues

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