The prison storyline is in full swing, and after a visit to Woodbury for an episode we return to Rick and company. As a fan of the graphic novel I’ve been anticipating this season with a bit of trepidation. The show has changed things, mostly in a favorable fashion for the new medium the story is being told in. But how would a Governor who doesn’t look like a skeevy drowned rat looking Harbinger work out? The man on screen is no where near what anyone would picture the Governor looking like, and the show has done a fairly decent job of translating the basic aesthetic of the characters to the screen.

In the end, who plays the Governor isn’t what matters. As last week showed, the Governor is an idea. A force. He’s an opposing ideal to Rick’s in a world where survival may take everything from you, or twist you beyond all measure. Oh yeah, it’s been a bit but we’re back to covering The Walking Dead again here at TV Blend. Let’s cut through that chintzy wire and see what’s up in the prison, shall we?

No matter what Rick does, no matter the hard line stance he takes, there is no way he can protect everyone. Including his family. This episode saw us begin with Rick and the prisoners having it out again about the deal made two weeks ago, where the prisoners could stay locked in their cell block or hit the road. It’s interesting to note that T-Dog is the voice of reason, even maybe a bit of the old ways. When asked if he’d rather have his friend’s blood on his hands or the prisoner’s, T-Dog replies that he’d prefer neither. You know, what most sane and good people would want.

But it’s a harsh world now, and Rick has been pushed to the limit by what happened with the Shane standoff last season and the hordes of zombies. We may be rooting for team Grimes as he’s the hero, but the man is using similar tactics to protect his people as the Governor does for Woodbury. The difference is that Rick wears his emotions out in the open, and the Governor is secretive. The walls may be made of physically different media, but the ideas behind them are the same.

The contention in the end is that while they may be able to trust the prisoners, they can’t know for sure. It’s safer to keep them out of the group. Despite pleading with Rick that they’ll do anything to prove themselves, the prisoners are told they’re not welcome. Rick has Glenn provide the two men with a week’s worth of goodies, and that’s that.

Before we move on to the chaos that happens next in the prison I’d like to take a moment to at least acknowledge the changes that have already happened between the graphic novel and the show. Dale was killed last season, so he obviously can’t lose his leg. That task goes to Hershel, but that also means no work is being done on the farming aspect. Lots of talk about planting crops in the prison yard, but little progress made as the farmer is out of commission. It’s a little ingenious to trade Hershel for Dale in this story as what’s happening would really be helped by a man who is skilled in healing and growing food. A lot of what happened this week would have gone differently had Hershel been at full capacity.

So there’s this pregnant lady, kid, and a cripple standing in a prison yard. Stop me if you’ve heard this one. Yeah, that lineup against a new zombie horde doesn’t look promising. The gate that was broken open by a mysterious man in the opening sequence (my two guesses were that somehow the man Rick abandoned survived, or more likely it was one of the prisoners that wasn’t Axel or Oscar) has allowed an infestation of walkers into the prison.

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