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Erick Von Erich
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Joined: May 13th, 2005, 9:06 pm

November 8th, 2017, 4:14 pm #101

Another week continuing the confusing shoot-out. Aside from Aaron, neither side was recognizable...and Aaron spent most of the fight on the sidelines attending to his dying boyfriend, Eric. So the takeaway is: some kind of FIGHT happened!

The Return of Morales lasted all of five minutes, as Daryl barged in and killed him with an arrow. "I know who he was. Don't matter". Truer words may not have been spoken on this show. We are spared the Morales Flashback Episode. Gotta' admit: I snickered when Morales died. In the end we were left with a very stupid gimmick, that was yet another part of Rick's "what have I become" drama. "I have no humanity. I've become a MAWN-STAH! MAWN-STAH! And it keeps getting strong-ah". In case you didn't get it, this episode was, in fact, titled "Monsters".

But before Morales was offed, he had a Deep and Meaningful Conversation of Ethics with Rick. Funny part was that Rick mentioned everybody who died from the Season One cast. Glenn, Lori, Andrea, Shane... and completely skipped over T-Dog and Dale.

Later, Rick and Daryl ran into a scared solo Savior, who took a shot at them. Rick talked him down, but Daryl blew his brains out after he provided information. Had to look it up, but this turned out to be "Todd", a scrawny guy who was bullied at the Saviors' weapon compound, last episode.

I still enjoy King Ezekiel and his theatrics. Like I mentioned before: he's probably the only guy in the entire series who doesn't seem like an asshole. He'd make great halftime speeches. After a few seemingly flawless assaults, his team was attacked by a sniper with a machine gun. Carol and Ezekiel will obviously survive, but there might be a little concern for Jerry. Note that it was a machine gun (a Browning, as were led to believe), so accuracy at 100 yards isn't its specialty. Although I' suppose if a vet is stumbling across this post via Google, they might be able to educate my potential ignorance of military armaments.

Morgan and Jesus also had a little throw-down. "Should we kill the captive Saviors" was also repeated back at Hilltop. It's actually a good question for viewers and characters, as we've seen multiple times that these clowns will attack you as soon as they get the chance. Oh, and Jeffrey's still around as a cowardly asshole. He didn't eat those pancakes...whatever the hell that meant.

No Negan/Cyrus, for the second consecutive week, so he's still stuck in a trailer with Gabriel, talking about shitty pants.
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Erick Von Erich
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Joined: May 13th, 2005, 9:06 pm

November 14th, 2017, 8:29 pm #102

Season 8: Episode 4: "Some Guy"
An episode-long beatdown of King Ezekiel. Boo. They take away everything that was unique and fun about him, so now he's just another survivor. They killed Shiva (yet I assure you, no CGI animals were harmed in this production) and trampled all over Ezekiel's trademark optimism. Again: boo.

Sure, the fact that I'm ticked off about a character getting beaten down shows that I was hooked on the episode. Well...maybe. We had the entire LAST SEASON all about our heroes getting beaten down. This is like the heels always going over in wrestling. I'm sure someone else will be killed off, this season, and we'll get the cliched "what price victory?" at the finale.

Jerry made it out, too. So that's something. He saved Ezekiel from Yet Another Asshole Savior by splitting him in half, like something right out of Itchy & Scratchy. See, the writers were trying to be CLEVER, as the Asshole mentioned "Symmetry" right before being sliced in half and bi-sected from top to bottom. Jerry's sort of become Walking Dead's version of "Hurley from LOST". Big lovable guy with a sense of humor. Liked when Jerry's axe broke and he said: "shitballs!"

Carol had yet another One Woman Gang, as she took out roughly 80% of the Savior Machine Gun Squad. Things were finished up with Rick and Daryl going all Mad Max and finishing off the Saviors in a high-speed chase. They appear to have gotten the big Machine Gun, for what that's worth. Of course, with the way this show goes, they'll probably have it taken away from them, soon.
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Erick Von Erich
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Joined: May 13th, 2005, 9:06 pm

November 21st, 2017, 4:01 pm #103

Season 8: Episode 5 "The Big Scary U"
Wherein Gabriel and Negan do some bonding inside a trailer. What was funny, to me, was that the entire Savior complex had supposedly been breached with Walkers, but everybody just goes back inside their buildings and continues as if nothing ever happened. Eugene even played Activision boxing.

A groan-inducing scene was when Negan returned to his people; and is apparently the only guy who can WHISTLE; then gave a terrible speech about his balls and leather jacket.

Gregory's pancakes may have been identified, as well. Simon (Negan's jerkish lieutenant guy with the stache) appears to be an even bigger idiot than previously thought.

As expected, Rick and Daryl lost/destroyed the Big Machine Gun, after a confrontation over blowing up the Saviors. The gun, itself, was probably the "Fat Lady" the Saviors were talking about. So the duo split and Rick apparently headed off to the Scavengers/Garbage Gang, again.

Yet on the way there, Rick saw a helicopter. He was alone, just like he was in the second-ever episode when he saw a copter over Atlanta, so there's a chance he was hallucinating. The original copter (supposedly) turned out to be part of the National Guard enclave that the Governor's men took out. It crashed and that was considered that. Check back about 3 pages and you'll see me in a happy li'l tizzy over the original helicopter.

There have been several references to the first season, so far, so the copter was probably another one. In some ways, is it a stunt to get fans to remember how much they liked this show back in 2011-2012? Maybe it IS that original copter? There was also a split-second scene of a helicopter on the horizon, last season... but that looked like a bird, to me. At the least, it hints to a storyline beyond the current Negan crap. I've read theories that it's the teased cross-over with "Fear the Walking Dead"... which, dammit, I suppose I'd have to finally watch, if so.

Oh well, three more episodes before the mid-season hiatus. No way they wrap up the "War" then. Probably some mini-cliffhanger, then finally finish things off in the second-half of the season.
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Erick Von Erich
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Joined: May 13th, 2005, 9:06 pm

November 27th, 2017, 7:12 pm #104

Season 8: Episode 6 "The King, The Widow, and Rick"
The semi-annual "calm before the finale" episode. Inventory of who and what's been going on (minus Negan) and maybe setting up some future plots. The details of Rick's big battle plan were finally revealed: take out all the Savior outposts, cut off their supplies, and force them inside with Walkers. This played out over the first 5 episodes, but it's good to have some closure and identification.

Daryl and Tara have gone ROGUE. Rosita and Michonne have also gone ROGUE. Rick kinda' went ROGUE...and ended up naked and stuck inside a box in the Scavengers' dump. The box Rick was in was marked with an "A", which makes me wonder if the Terminus cannibals are still around and have worked out a deal with the Scavengers. Terminus was way down in Georgia, but given the rail car connection, they could theoretically work the eastern seaboard up to DC.

Carl also officially met a new friend, Sadiq. The guy he was passing food to to, a few episodes back. Seems like an okay guy, but his motivations were a little too similar to Morgan's "CLEAR" phase. He wants to kill Walkers to "free their souls".

They may have teased a romantic connection between King Ezekiel and Carol. While the actor, Khary Payton, is younger, the character of Ezekiel is probably supposed to be closer to Carol's age. Carol also talked to a little kid about getting lost in the woods and turning into a "monster"-- a direct reference to Season 2 and Sophia.

Also: the captured Saviors are shuffled into a barbed wire pen inside the Hilltop. Reminded a little bit of one of the original "Apes" movies. That One Long-Haired Savior Guy continues to be a dweeb, just for spite. Gregory gets tossed in with them, because he's a weasel.

Really a big "meh" episode. I think we were supposed to be more involved in all the EMOTIONAL OVERTONES, but it wasn't happening.
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Erick Von Erich
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Joined: May 13th, 2005, 9:06 pm

December 8th, 2017, 9:50 pm #105

Season 8- Episode 7- "Time for After"
To the surprise of nobody, Rick turns the tables on his Scavenger captors and their weird plan to "sculpt him. After". Why the hell Rick is still smitten with these worthless weirdos is beyond anybody. They've shown no formidable skills and bring nothing to the table (after turning on Rick, they were a non-factor is last season's big fight). So, yeah...they're still around.

After much talking, Daryl and Tara actually execute their plan to crash a dump truck into the Saviors' compound. But it really doesn't matter, because the "next week" trailer and Negan's dialogue, this week, indicate that the Saviors will strike back against Alexandria and/or Hilltop (I know, I know: "in the comics, they bomb Alexandria"). Regardless, it's not something I'm looking forward to.

Eugene got the Characterization Spotlight. And another fun line when Gabriel told him:"you look worse than me". "I do not appreciate that, because you look like a potato and shit casserole". Eugene's leaning more towards the Saviors, now, and will probably not last much longer. Rumors are flying that CARL will die in the finale, but I think Eugene, Enid, Gabriel, Tara and even Daryl are potential goners. Not Negan, though (dammit). Fanboys love him, so he'll probably stick around...and they'll drag out "All Out War" for 9 more episodes, in the spring.

I'd love to see a conclusion to the Negan Crap soon, but I don't think it's happening and I'm losing my interest in this show rapidly. At least with "only" 8 episodes per half-season, you don't get too worn out...so I'll probably be excited when it returns.
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Erick Von Erich
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December 11th, 2017, 4:28 pm #106

Season 8- Episode 8- "How It's Gotta Be"
There was a scene, last night, where Rick and Negan are finally in an isolated one-on-one setting and begin fighting. It ends when Negan suddenly falls through a window and escapes...reminding me of the recurring gag in the Australian series "Danger 5", where Hitler ALWAYS escapes by falling through a window, every episode. Big difference is that "Danger 5" is total comedy, whereas "The Walking Dead" is supposed to be serious.

Negan's near-death escape scorecard has had two more tallys added-- escaped his entire complex being over-run by walkers and escaped a face-to-face conflict with Rick the Killing Machine (who even had possession of Lucille for a brief moment).

Bigger deal is that CARL appeared to have been bitten by walker. Occurred, off-screen, while he was trying to help his new pal, Saddiq. Or did the bite happen a few episodes ago, when Carl and Saddiq faced off with some walkers...and Carl's been hiding it? In a close-up, we saw that Carl has to shave, now. While his physical growth hasn't been as much of a distraction to me, I could see how that might've led to writing him out. Although... we've thought that Carl was a goner, before, and he's lived. Still, I like Carl and was surprised that he's supposedly hated among fans.

Also felt like I missed something, early on. Rick, Jerry and Carol appeared to have been in a vehicular t-bone accident. Yet, they all showed up fine, later. It appeared that Jerry had been captured by Simon's Savior group...but I guess that was just some random guy? Shortly after, Siimon appeared to shoot Jesus... but it also turned out to be some random guy. The Saviors then attacked Alexandria with what appeared to be flare guns... yet they all hit and immediately blew up buildings, as if the buildings had been wired for demolition from within.

Like I mentioned before, had this been a continuous season of 16 episodes in a row, I probably would've bailed. Definitely need a break from this ongoing "YOU CAN'T GET ONE OVER ON NEGAN" bullcrap.
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Erick Von Erich
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February 19th, 2018, 1:02 am #107

Wanted to get this out there before the season returns, next week: Carl definitely got bit... but I think there's a chance he might NOT die. If they want to have closure to the overall story, it could be that Carl turns out to be immune to the Walker plague. Then you have an end in sight as well a new plot point, as everybody would want a blood transfusion from Carl.

Why Carl is immune? Nobody knows, but they could figure it out in a season's time. Maybe.
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Erick Von Erich
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February 27th, 2018, 5:27 pm #108

Well...so much for that theory. Carl's dead (although we didn't see whose exact body they were burying) and that's that. We got THE longest death bed scene ever filmed. Almost an hour of Carl coughing out his last words. It was actually a nice way to go and Carl faced death with the most dignity of anybody on this show.

Yet, now Rick's Batman is without Carl's Robin. I've said before that they've been the focal point of the entire series and for the most part, it's worked. Yet, aside from Rick, who do you really give a darn about? Michonne, maybe. Fanboys LOVE Daryl, but I honestly wouldn't be surprised to see him drop out. Everybody else: just filling out the roster.

The flash-forward dream segments were annoying. Not only because Jerry was there (I love Jerry, but I don't think Carl has met him), and so was Negan. There was an underlying theme of how you don't have to kill everyone and that there's hope... but again, it's a little too late for this show to suddenly have a conscience.

In other news, King Ezekiel sure is a fast healer. No mobility problems at all. They finally killed a significant Savior-- Gavin, who seemed like the most reasonable one. I want Simon to be next, but we'll probably get Mean Butch Chick, before then.
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Erick Von Erich
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Joined: May 13th, 2005, 9:06 pm

March 6th, 2018, 4:18 pm #109

Season 8- Episode 10- "The Lost and the Plunderers"
For no reason whatsoever, the directors tried to be all ARTSY, mix up the linear narrative, and label each segment with a character's name. At first, you thought the names would be tied to the letters Carl wrote... but that wasn't the case. So just an annoying ARTSY effect.

But aside from that, this episode delivered. It did the impossible by making the trash people interesting. Jadis dropped her weird minimalist act and snapped on Simon the Douche. After all her peeps were gunned down by Simon's crew, she had no choice but to lead them to a compactor and grind them all into Walker Bolognese. Mmm....bolognese....

I finally "get" Jadis, I think. She was a hippy/trippy Art Chick who used "found objects" at the dump. Probably thinks she's a "minimalist", so that'd explain her "art" and her weird demeanor. Even the fact that she's at a dump. She's a little like King Ezekiel in that sense. Once society collapsed, she decided to jump in, head-first, on how she'd like to create society (or, more likely, act out against it). Think of her DumpVille Commune as a big middle finger to what came before in society. I get the Art Chick vibe, but others might not... so you can say she's like your pretentious hipsters who sip weird drinks at the bar and brag about being gluten-free.

Then Simon dropped the bombshell that the garbage folk have a helipad AND solar panels. The latter sounds like a catch-all plot device for future episodes, but both explain a lot. When Rick was on top of the heap, last season (the famous "UFO scene"), he just MAY have seen those things...which would absolutely explain why he's been so hard-up to get the garbage folk on his side. Of course, a future episode may ignore that, as Rick may be surprised to find these things... but it's a good explanation, for now.

I also softened a little bit on Negan, this episode. Amazing, considering my well-documented hate for the character. His conversation with Rick wasn't him just being his usual galavanting asshole self. He spoke some hard truths and it seemed justified, for once. He also offered some explanation for how he's trying to "save" people... but I call bullshit on that, as he's still a shallow bully and that ignores a LOT of past transgressions. Like, killing all the men and boys at Oceanside (if it comes out that THAT was an exaggeration, then it's further proof of shitty writing that caters to Negan fanboys).

It also looks like they're trying to put all the crappy tactics on Negan's lieutenants (Simon, especially). Probably the writers falling in love with the Negan character and trying to spin things so he sticks around.

Think this show's rebounded and looks to be headed in a good direction for the rest of this season.
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Erick Von Erich
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March 26th, 2018, 9:42 pm #110

...and the last three episodes (up to Season 8- Episode 13) have all stunk like a moldy sock. We got the semi-annual and traditional Culling of Extras and yet-another Savior attack. Of course, seemingly NO Saviors were killed.

A few weeks ago, they decided that the zombie infection is a thing, once again. The last time somebody was bitten, didn't die, and turned was probably Bob about three seasons ago. Now, the writers have suddenly started thinking this is "28 Days Later", where one drop of zombie blood can turn somebody. Okay..so how do we explain EVERY walker fight scene this show has had, where Rick and Company survive with walker blood all over themselves?!

The writers also seem to be going all-in on pinning all the bad stuff the Saviors have done solely onto Simon. Negan survived roughly 24 close calls with Rick's machine gun, axe and an entire house full of walkers, last week. He's currently a captive of Jadis, but that's about as dangerous as going on a Kiddieland Roller Coaster. Sure, it COULD kill you...but only if you're a complete numbskull and give the coaster a lot of help. I'm going to punch my monitor if they end up killing Rick and having Negan as the main guy, going forward. Sure, it always seems like Rick's immune from any peril, but now with Carl gone, everything's off the table.

It looks like Morgan is set to crossover into "Fear the Walking Dead" in the final three episodes of this season. I haven't watched "Fear", but if I'm still into this show at the end of the season (3 weeks), I might follow the fourth season of "Fear", which is set to continue airing in the same time-slot. It'll basically be "The Adventures of Morgan" for people like myself.

Only interesting plot point, recently, was the introduction of "Georgie". An old broad (and her crew), who are trying to help people live off the land with medieval/non-electrical methods. That came form completely out of left field, but will probably be covered, next season.
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