I guess the best word to describe this week’s episode of The Walking Dead would be: intimate. “18 Miles Out” certainly starts off with a bang. Rick, Shane and Randall, the young man rescued in last week’s episode, are in the middle of a zombie fight. Making the scene that much more intense, Randall’s hands are tied behind his back, making it impossible for him to defend himself. We then get a flashback to bring us up to date.
While this episode doesn’t do much to advance the overall plot, it does delve a little deeper into the personal struggles that the characters are dealing with. Maggie‘s sister Beth, who has been in shock lately, is starting to come out of it, only to reveal that she may not want to go on much longer. Lori and Andrea get involved, which opens up a whole new can of worms, and the pair has an uncomfortable confrontation that left me wondering which one of them I sided with. Maybe that’s the beauty of the writing. Both of them have a point. Neither one is right or wrong.
Across town, you know, 18 miles out, Shane and Rick are tranporting Randall far away from the farm. They’ve tied him up, blindfolded, earmuffed and gagged him, so he won’t know where they were or where he was taken. On the way there, Rick and Shane have it out. They have the conversation I think everyone has been waiting for, discussing Lori, the baby, Rick (all the way back in the hospital), and whether or not Rick can actually keep everyone safe. They seem to come to some sort of resolution, until they get to their location and a small secret about their new companion is revealed. Then everything goes to hell, and we are brought full circle back to the beginning of the episode.
Back at the farm, the suicide watch continues, and Andrea proves she’s the last person you want keeping an eye on your suicidal sister. Maggie confronts Andrea and tells her she is not welcome in the house any more.
All in all, this episode has more action than we usually get, but I’d actually give up some of the action if the story would just move forward a bit more. Or, better yet, include some action AS the story moves forward…or action BECAUSE of the story moving forward. Considering most fans of The Walking Dead know what could possibly be ahead, I think we’re just sitting by, waiting for a good story point to discuss. Come on! Give us that moment!
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