by Sherry Lipp
Let’s get right to what was cool about The Walking Dead episode “Self Help.” I’m a little mixed on this episode. I liked the overall story, but I felt like it was dragged out in order to fill time. I’m not one that’s only looking for action or walker kills, but there really wasn’t enough here to fill an entire episode.
The truth about Eugene is revealed – Anyone who had read the comics already knew this, and even as a non-comic reader I was starting to suspect that Eugene (Josh McDermitt) wasn’t the savior he proclaimed himself to be. While it wasn’t the most shocking revelation in the world, the lead in to it was good. Suspicions rose straight to the surface when Eugene revealed to Tara (Alanna Masterson) that he sabotaged the bus and then his theories about how he would stop the infection started to become a little too outlandish to be true. Still, Eugene is pretty smart and does have ideas, so maybe he will have some usefulness after all – provided he doesn’t have brain damage after falling flat on his face on the concrete after being punched in the head by Abraham (Michael Cudlitz).
We learned a little more about Abraham – But why did his wife and kids hate him so much? Through a series of flashbacks we see that Abraham was once a family man. However, his wife looked downright disappointed when he survived a walker attack even though he saved all their lives. And then she was willing to risk her and their kid’s lives be leaving without him. What was up with that? Abraham lost all his will to live after finding their mutilated bodies. That is until he met Eugene and made it his mission to get him to D.C. So what will he do now?
Eugene provides some comic relief – So we found out that pretty much everything Eugene ever said was a lie, including that the director of the Human Genome Project said the mullet made Eugene look like a “fun guy.” It might not have been true, but Eugene has quite an active imagination. He also enjoys watching Abraham and Rosita have sex. I guess real porn is hard to come by in the zombie apocalypse.
The not so cool:
The truth about Eugene is revealed – Alright, so I enjoyed learning the truth in this episode, but now they have no reason to go to D.C. I liked the idea that we would have a change of scenery and that there was an objective. This puts everything back to where they started and there is no real hope for progress. It’s not that I don’t like the survival aspect of the show, but I was ready for something more. It feels a little too easy – too convenient – to get out of this plot thread in such a manner, regardless of how the character is written in the comics (since when did the comic book version stop the writers from throwing in variations?).
This episode didn’t need to focus only on the bus crew – Slow pacing made this episode drag a bit. It felt like they could have conveyed everything in half the time and spent the other half with Rick, instead of making us wait another week for anything at all with the other group.
Images: Gene Page/AMC