Rick became a darker character last week, but now he is pitch black. It is hard to believe that the man who once eulogized a zombie is now swinging a machete in between the eyes of a human. Rick still wants to do the right things and cares for his crew, but his current form almost is a reincarnation of Shane. Will Rick be able to stay on the right side of sanity or will this season become one large tragedy play? There are moments Rick is still trying to cling to humanity and seems shocked by his own actions, but will those soon disappear in the coming episodes?

So Much for the New Guys

We’ve already learned that new humans often mean more trouble rather than help. Did anyone expect such a short appearance from the prisoners? Or more importantly, did you expect Rick to be responsible for two of the deaths? Sure, Tomas is insane and untrustworthy. He quickly turns Big Tiny’s head into a bowl of blood soup, and that really isn’t a guy you want to share dinner with. I can understand Rick not being a fan of a zombie being pushed into him. Does anyone think season 1 Rick would have responded by lodging a machete into the guy’s head?

What about Andrew? There is a chance he aligned himself with Tomas, but he also could have just wanted to play a game of tag. Even if Rick feels death is the only solution, throwing Andrew out to a sea of walkers is a pretty sadistic way to kill someone. I’m shocked he spares the other two prisoners, but I’m sure they believe his warning about not leaving their cell block.

Rick Makes Lori Sympathetic

Lori pours her heart out to Rick and confesses that she was an awful wife and mother. She begs for forgiveness and asks if anything can be done to salvage the relationship. Now, Rick promises her that she isn’t an awful mother (but doesn’t say she was good, either). He ignores anything about their relationship, and just coldly thanks her for saving Hershel’s life. I actually feel bad for Lori, which may be the first time ever for this series. Lori is either finally going to do something to win back Rick or she is going to end up more crazy than him in a few episodes.

Glenn Tries to Take Charge

Glenn is put in charge of looking after Hershel and making sure Maggie is fine. This episode displays how much Glenn has grown and become far more confident. He’s a strong source of comfort for the emotionally crushed Maggie. He also is convinced by Carol to leave his post and go on a zombie cadaver hunt. I’m not really sure why Carol feels she has to practice cutting walkers while all the men are away fighting zombies. Glenn is trying hard to provide for as many people as possible, but hopefully it doesn’t sabotage his relationship with Maggie. Glen is the character that has had the most positive growth in the series. It looks like he’ll get several major storylines over this season.

Mystery Stalker

Someone watches Carol play operation on a walker. I doubt the person is going to come with a basket of cookies. My guess is that it will end up being Darryl’s brother, who has been missing ever since he cut off his hand in season 1. Considering there seems to be a blooming romance between Carol and Darryl, the best way to complicate things would be to throw in the cruel older brother.

The recovery of Hershel brings some hope to the group. We get a very powerful and emotional moment when Maggie gives her father permission to die. It looks like he isn’t ready yet, and the group gets one small moment of happiness. It is a rare occurrence. If the descent of Rick is any proof, things are just going to get much bleaker.

(Image courtesy of AMC)

Chris Spicer

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV