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Cult Recap

'The Walking Dead': 'Pretty Much Dead Already' recap

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The Walking Dead S02E01

© AMC / Greg Nicotero

Season 2, episode 7

Last week, 'Secrets' were spilling out on The Walking Dead but we're not done yet - "The barn is full of walkers," Glenn tells his pals. Shane wants to leave Hershel's farm immediately - he thinks that the hunt for Sophia is a waste of time. This angers Daryl and the two men clash, but the noise excites the walkers, who begin to thrash against the barn door...

Carl tells Lori that he is determined to stay with Hershel, at least until they track down Sophia. Daryl is also determined to find her and prepares to head out on another search, despite his recent injury.

Bu he's stunned when Carol tells him not to bother - she's starting to lose faith and doesn't want to lose him too. Daryl reacts badly, snarling, "Leave me be! Stupid bitch!"

Rick is also preparing for another Sophia hunt, and Andrea plans to accompany him. But Dale is worried about her state of mind, as well as her relationship with Shane. "You don't know him," he warns...

Rick decides to talk to Hershel about the walkers in the barn, but the old man loses patience and tells his guest that he and his group must leave the farm by the end of the week. Rick tells Hershel that he will be sending them to their deaths, but he sternly replies, I've given you safe harbour - my conscience is clear."

But Rick still believes that he can talk Hershel round, and argues with Shane when he once again insists that they should leave. "Lori's pregnant - we need to stay!" snaps Rick. Shane is stunned by this unexpected news...

Rick Grimes and Dale

© AMC



Maggie is also working on her father Hershel. After her violent encounter with the zombie in the pharmacy, she's no longer convinced that it's safe to keep the creatures around. "Things aren't what you think they are!" she protests.

Rick and Andrea plot their search for Sophia, but Hershel interrupts - he needs Rick's help with a private matter. Meanwhile, Shane begins to question Rick's leadership. He tells Lori that her husband "ain't built for this world" and starts to blame him for the deaths of Amy, Jim and the others they've lost.

Shane also tells Lori that he knows about the baby - and he's confident that the child is his. But she tells her former lover, "Even if it's yours, it's not gonna be yours."

Shane storms off in a fury, but is surprised to find himself confronted by Carl. The young boy tells Shane that giving up on Sophia is "bulls**t" (go Carl!) and argues that they have to stay until she's found. "Then we stay," concedes Shane. "And that means we gotta do whatever we gotta do to make that happen..."

Marching to the RV, Shane is determined to retrieve the group's guns. But they're already gone and he suspects that Dale is responsible...

Meanwhile, Hershel, Maggie and Jimmy lead Rick to a nearby swamp - two walkers have become trapped inside and Hershel wants to escort them back to the farm. He tells Rick that if his groups wants to stay, then they must treat the walkers as human beings...

Maggie and Dale

© AMC



"My farm, my barn, my say!" demands the old man, and Rick reluctantly helps him to pull the zombies from the water.

Back at the farm, Daryl apologises to Carol for his earlier outburst. She's curious as to why he's so determined to find Sophia. "Cos I think she's still out there," replies Daryl. Daryl's faith seems to restore Carol's own - she believes she'll see her daughter again.

Another pair also reconcile - Maggie was angry at Glenn for telling his friends about the walkers in the barn, but he finally stands up for himself, telling her, "I don't care if they're sick people or dead people - they're dangerous!"

Glenn tells Maggie that he's determined to protect her from danger and his words win her over - they kiss passionately.

Shane tracks down Dale in the woods and demands the bag of guns back. Dale won't give up easily and points his rifle at his rival's chest, but Shane marches towards him, defiant. Defeated, Dale lowers the weapon and says, "This is where you belong, Shane - this world, what it is now…"

He hands over the guns, adding "At least I can say, when the world goes to s**t, I didn't let it take me down with it."

Rick Grimes

© AMC



With Rick still absent, Shane returns to the farm. "Time to grow up!" he cries, distributing the recovered guns among the group. Of course, the one thing that could light this tinderbox is Rick and Hershel's return. The pair emerge, dragging two walkers with them...

Shane races towards the two men in a fury. He shoots one of the captive walkers multiple times, in an effort to prove to Hershel that they cannot be considered human. Finally, he ends the show - shooting the creature in the head.

Shane has now tipped from angry to full-on crazy. "Enough risking our lives for a little girl who's gone!" he rants. "Enough living next to a barn full of things that are trying to kill us! Enough!"

Shane starts busting open the door to the barn and Rick cannot intervene, stuck holding his captured walker at bay. The zombies in the barn burst free and the group are forced to gun the creatures down, one-by-one...

Dale returns from the woods, stunned. Moments later, one last zombie stumbles from the barn, and the group are horrified by what they see...

The final walker is Sophia. Daryl is forced to hold Carol back as she attempts to rush towards her daughter. With his friends frozen in stunned terror, Rick slowly marches forward and shoots the young girl in the head. The search for Sophia is over and Carol sobs uncontrollably...

'The Walking Dead' Season 2 Promotional Photo
Watching Dead...
• 'Pretty Much Dead Already' is an excellent Walking Dead episode and a fine mid-season finale. The tension slowly ratchets up to an almost unbearable level, leading to those amazing final scenes.
• This writer actually felt a sickening feeling in his stomach as Shane's behaviour spiralled wildly out of control - the Walking Dead cast was snubbed at the last Emmys, but if Jon Bernthal doesn't receive some kind of awards recognition for his incendiary performance here, then it's an absolute crime.
• If we have one criticism, it's that the 'Sophia is a zombie in the barn' reveal was a little obvious. Many of the show's fans called it weeks ago.
• That said, the Sophia twist does open up a whole new can of worms, story-wise. How will Carol react to her death? What about Daryl? And did Hershel know that Sophia was a walker all along?
• Overall, we've been hugely impressed by the first half of The Walking Dead's second season. Some viewers have complained that the Sophia arc dragged, but with that dangling plot thread throughly severed, we're excited to see where this amazing drama goes next...

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