Review: The Walking Dead: “Triggerfinger” Season 2, Episode 9

Suspense, gore, characters’ on the brink of death: one would think these would be common elements in a television show set in the zombie apocalypse but for much of Season 2, The Walking Dead has focused on character development and drama with varying degrees of success. In “Triggerfinger”, the show returned to emphasizing the inherent dangers of living in a world infested with flesh eating corpses and characters defining their own moral code when they are no longer bound by law or social norms. After Rick shoots two strangers, named Dave and Tony, the sound of the gunshots draw the attention of the strangers’ companions to the bar. From the outside of the bar, the companions question Rick, Glenn and Hershel if they know the whereabouts of their friends. Rather than telling a lie that might have prevented further violence, Rick confesses Dave and Tony are dead which results in the strangers firing at them. The expression on Hershel’s face is priceless as he reacts to Rick telling the truth to the strangers. When Glenn exits from the back of the bar a bullet nearly kills him and without hesitation Hershel shoots the gunman in the chest. Walkers descend upon the downed gunman who is still alive, gruesomely bitting of his nose and devouring his flesh. The gunman yells out while Hershel looks on with gun in hand, unable to end the life and suffering of the man he just shot.

In the street out front, one of the strangers in a truck calls out to his friend named Randall on the roof of the pharmacy to jump down because walkers are approaching. When Randall lands, one of his leg is impaled on a sharp pointed tip of a gate. Randall’s friend in the trucks tells him “Gotta go, I’m sorry” and quickly drives off. In contrast, Rick puts Hershel’s, Glenn’s and his own life in jeopardy rescuing the stranger that was shooting at them moments earlier. Meanwhile, Lori, who has just survived a car accident and narrowly survived an attack by two walkers, is discovered walking on the highway by Shane. In order to convince Lori to come back with him, Shane lies to her saying that her husband Rick has safely returned and is waiting for her at the farm. In the morning, Rick and company return back to the farm with a blindfolded Randall. The survivors have a heated discussion on what do with Randall once he’s able to get on his feet. Rick suggests that they drop him off on the main road with a canteen which Andreas says it’s almost like leaving him for the walkers. Shane is frustrated because he sees the potential danger of releasing Randall who might come back with his friends; starting a war between the survivors.

At this point, one could argue that the biggest danger to Lori is herself, not Shane. Lori is willing to risk her life, her unborn child’s life, and leave her son an orphan to go alone into town to bring back her husband. Shane is volatile but his actions are usually for the greater good. He shot and left Otis for dead because he needed to live to bring back the medical supplies for Carl. In “Pretty Much Already Dead”, Shane confronted Dale because he needed the guns to kill all the walkers in the barn which was a time tomb waiting to explode. (It was actually Dale that pointed the rifle at Shane.) As Andrea explained, Shane’s actions were to protect the group, he just needs to work on his presentation. Shane does believe that the child is his, because he tells Andrea he can’t leave anymore. Still, Lori has made a lot of assumptions in presuming how far Shane is willing to go to be with her. Now she is planting the seeds in Rick’s mind that he must do whatever it takes to protect his family even if it means taking a life, which she makes her no different than Shane.

This episode did a solid job in setting up the moral ambiguity of the dilemmas the survivors must face everyday. Whether the audience is Team Shane, Team Rick or Anti-Lori, there are defintely strong points to make on either sides. In the next episode, we hope to see the consequences of Rick’s decision to save Randall’s life and if it will change the group’s opinion on who is best suited to lead them in this world.

Likes

• Unlike the previous episode where all the suspense was contained in the final scene at the bar, all the action and thrills were in the first half of “Triggerfinger”.

• Great moments when the walker was pushing his head through the windshield and also the walker that surprised Lori from behind.

• Dale on the talk: “Don’t look at me, that’s your father’s job.”

• Shane questioning Dale if he knew about Lori going to town because he usually knows what everyone is up to. Dale: “I dunno.”

• Maggie running past her Dad and gives Glenn a hug.

• T-dog (pointing): “Who’s the hell is dat?”. Glenn: “Its Randall.”

• Lauren Cohan, the actress that plays Maggie, gave another strong performance this episode.

• Darryl lashing out at Carol because he was hurting and trying to push her away and she just took his verbal abuse. Everything he said about Carol was just him projecting his own insecurities, feeling alone, scared and sadness because he didn’t save Sophia. By morning, he made some progress as he was ready to join the group to head into town looking for Rick – something he refused to do the day before. He was also present at the group discussion about Randall which was nice to see.

• The two characters that I’ve been the most harsh on had some good moments. Andrea who is usually focused on her own problems was empathizing and caring for other people. For example she took the time listen to Maggie’s story and she made sense in her talk with Shane.

• Hershel standing up to Shane, “Keep your mouth shut.” We also see how much his family depends on him when he is missing.

Dislikes

• Lori still going into town after narrowly escaping death … twice. She would have died if she went to town that was swarming with walkers. She should thank Shane for lying to her.

• Glenn freezing up when he was almost shot and killed is understandable. But he pushes Maggie away because he thinks his feelings for her put himself, Rick and Hershel in danger. Glenn thinks his love for her is selfish when he should realize her love is a reason worth living for.

• Did Rick really think they could cut Randall’s leg off with a pocket knife with less than minute before walkers arrive?

• The long story by Maggie about Beth finding her birth control pills was a bit pointless. It was a cute story but I already like Maggie. It didn’t make me care about Beth or wish that she’d come out of her catatonic state. It would have been more effective if Andrea told us a story about herself so the audience could begin to empathize with her (if anybody cares 😉 ).

Note: This review contains some speculation on what might happen in future episodes. It is only my opinion. I actually try to avoid any spoilers and don’t watch any previews or trailers for this show. I also have not read the graphic novel(s) that this show is based on.

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About Eddie@Jaccendo

Movies, TV shows, comics, and video game news & review.

Posted on February 22, 2012, in Television, The Walking Dead and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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