The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 4 “Indifference” Recap

walking-dead indifference

In The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 4, a member of the group is banished!

Continue reading for a spoiler filled discussion of The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 4 entitled “Indifference”. Let’s dissect the episode!


I’m going to very briefly touch on a few points in this episode. This post is more of a conversation starter than a detailed recap. As always, please feel free to share your thoughts and insight in the comment section. I look forward to discussing with you further.

Let’s start off with some general thoughts on “Indifference”. Aside from the cold open, the episode is set outside the confines of the prison and away from the infected survivors. Although I didn’t find the first few episodes too claustrophobic, it is a welcome change of pace and a breath of fresh air to be outside the prison.

Last episode ended with a one-word conversation: “Yes”, when Carol admitted to Rick she’s responsible for the murder and burning the bodies of Tyreese’s girlfriend and David. “Indifference” is an entire episode that is dedicated to continuing that conversation.

The Walking Dead is effective when it poses moral dilemmas for the audience on what they would do if they are in a character’s shoes. If you are Rick, would you keep Carol’s secret to yourself? Would you leave the decision up to the ruling council on what to do with Carol? Or take it upon yourself to oust her out of the group?

Don’t Call Me Mom

Carol is in survivor mode. She’s disconnected her humanity and put up a wall between her emotions and what she believes must be done to survive. She doesn’t want to be called Mom because she wants to insulate herself from sentiments that’ll cause her to make poor emotional choices or a mental breakdown. Carol went through an immense grief after Sophia died and now Lizzie’s life is in danger. She doesn’t want to go down that road again. Talking to Lizzie with a wall of glass separating them perfectly depicts Carol’s state of mind.

Of all the survivors, Carol’s has gone through the most dramatic evolution. She’s changed from a battered housewife to a mopy, grieving mother to a mentally tough killer. From Carol’s view, she didn’t necessarily lie to Sam & Ana about not having a dead daughter, it’s more that she doesn’t see herself as the weak helpless Mom anymore. The mother of Sophia is a broken, feeble lady while this version of Carol is the guardian of two young girls.

Carol has let go of the past and changed into the person who can keep the group alive even if it means doing things she knows is not entirely moral. It’s the survival of the fittest and if people don’t change or adapt, they’ll die sooner than later. In her mind, she’s facing the reality of their situation head on and making proactive decisions for the benefit of the entire group rather than the needs of the few. She tells Rick, “you can be a farmer, but you can’t just be a farmer.”


Skin Eaters

Similar to when Rick took Michonne out on an expedition in “Clear” to evaluate her, he does the same with Carol in this episode. There’s no judicial system in the post apocalyptic zombie world but Carol is very much on trial and making a strong defence for herself. We don’t hear Ana and Sam’s answers to the three questions because it’s actually Carol that’s being assessed. Introducing Ana and Sam is like a case study that showcases everything that is good and troubling about Carol.

With Hershel in death row, Carol’s medical knowledge is a strong benefit to the group. She didn’t give up relocating Sam’s shoulders when he wanted her to stop due to the pain and it was the right non-emotional decision.

Carol overruled Rick’s decision by accepting Ana & Sam’s offer to help gather supplies. She was indifferent to the fact that Ana’ foot is gimped and Sam’s shoulder is hurting and put their lives in danger. She put the objective over the welfare of the individuals and it cost Ana’s life.

After weighing the pro’s and con’s, Rick’s decision comes down to his belief that Carol’s a liability to his family. In a way, Rick did what Carol did and what she wanted him to do: make a difficult judgement on his own that not everyone (certainly not Daryl) would agree with but is for the greater good of the people he cares about. I think Carol recognizes that and respects that Rick is stepping up out of his farmer’s role, which might be why she readily understands his decision. She accepted her own decision to kill two people in her group and she accepts Rick’s decision, even if it’s not what she would have done.

Anger Makes You Stupid

Michonne is flirting with Daryl but he can’t accept her nomadic tendencies. Perhaps she’s goes out on the hunt for the Governor as an excuse because she’s reluctant to stay and build an open, meaningful connection with the prison survivors.

Though Tyreese is a mental wreck, he’s fairly perceptive to Michonne’s underlying obsession with the Governor. Tyreese is a time bomb right now. He already exploded on Rick, what would he do to Carol if he found out? If doesn’t get a control of his anger, he might get himself or other people killed.

A difference between what Carol did and Bob not getting any medicine and instead hoarding the alcohol, is that Carol did it for the benefit of others. Bob might think the deaths of the infected survivors is inevitable and he’s preparing himself for the “quiet” like what happened when everyone in his previous groups died, leaving him alone. While taking one’s own life by drinking anti-freeze is not the same as numbing yourself with alcohol, Bob is noticeably sympathetic to those car garage walkers.


Let Go

As Chris Jericho said on The Talking Dead after show, this episode has characters letting go while others are unable to do so. Bob can’t let go of his dependency on alcohol and Tyreese can’t let go of his anger & anguish. On the other hand, Rick let’s go of Carol and Carol let’s go of the group. But I think Carol will return just when the groups needs her the most.

What did you like and didn’t like in this episode? Are you Team Rick or Team Carol?

More Posts You Might Like:

The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 3 “Isolation” Recap

The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 2 “Infected” Recap

The Walking Dead Season 4 Episode 1 “30 Days Without An Accident” Recap

About Sidekick Reviews

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

Posted on November 4, 2013, in Television, The Walking Dead and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 22 Comments.

  1. In the first 3 minutes of the episode, I said Rick is going to drive Carol somewhere and exile her. He packed the car with things that she would need if she were alone, including extra guns and ammo.

  2. Chris Jericho broke another wall ! He scored many lucid and clairvoyant points on TTD.
    Funny thing is, this episode of TWD was pretty much about submission moves (cf. Wall of Jericho).

    –Episode centered toughts (Spoiler)

    In regard of what happened in the end of the episode, If Carole didn’t admitted to Rick
    that she burnt the bodies, it could have been Rick doing it in attention of making Carole
    accused. Maybe he still killed them however, but Carole would have saw him and offered
    him to cover his act and taking care of the bodies because she understand that 2 souls
    are a “benign pain” to save more, but Rick would have discover that she burnt them and
    so this could explain his very “gray” facial expression when she admits she burnt them
    in the end..

    –General toughts (major spoiler)

    I think Rick is slowly but surely keeping the group back in check.
    However, his addiction to authority seems to drive him sort of more tactfully than before.
    Back in the days he left Merle to a promised death on a roof, evicted then killed Shane,
    Tried to deadly trap The Governor and call his fellow people to a bloody insurrection.

    I think Rick tried to hold his need of leading people since the Governor left the picture,
    but the brawl with Tyreese showed us than Rick still has to make a statement when
    weakened. Carol was a member of the council and a rising persona in the group.
    I noticed that Rick left his gardening therapy soon after he learnt about Carol teaching.

    I think it’s a run-up time for Rick-tocracy. If Daryl and Herschel let it go, Rick will be free
    to rules again. Not a coïncidence I guess if the prison fences started to collapse as the
    council was ruling the group and then Rick fixed it by himself before he paid with blood.
    The former law enforcer needed to retire for some time after being challenged by a
    satirical version of himself that was The Governor. He needed to be quiet and unobstrusive
    as the group kept in mind how dangerous can be a free wheeling empowered man.

    But Rick is being needed one more time, and I think he knew his time would come again.
    That could be why he refused to help Tyreese and let Carl do whatever he was asking for.

    Herschel is no fool. He wisely picked the words he told to Rick in the firsts episodes.
    But now he seems to be on the edge of quitting the fight. Beth is getting cold, but he
    spend his time with thoose who are already gone or soon. He don’t care about wearing
    a mask, that’s a strong thing about the man as he stands strong by facing off the problems,
    but at the same time let his own fences against what could weaken him goes down.

    Even his talkings with Rick has been reversed. Now when Rick talks, Herschel deals with.
    Same with Michonne and Daryl. Michonne lost Andrea, and Daryl lost Merle.
    They are fragile right now, because each one lost kind of a crutch. Daryl took the hits
    from Tyreese without responding to it and cared about dealing with Tyreese by words only.
    Michonne almost broke her ankle in a very unusual way for a skilled warrior and survivor.
    She also let her indiffence go when handling the baby.

    Rick has kind of got rid of this. He spent some time with Judith at first, now Beth does.
    He also gave Carl a new fast-thinking-daddy (understand gun) to get rid of him too.

    So at this point, I think every survivor has proven his strenght but some learnt to take
    care of the group because they recently got weakened themselves, and some others
    acts carefully because they feels being watched.

    I think Rick doesn’t trust his fellows able to defend themselves right now. Because they
    are either happy or sick. Maggie and Glenn have answers no blood calls ’cause they’re
    happy. As Michonne and Daryl who found some new family-like connection with others.
    I think Rick is in the exact same state as The Governor when he became The Governor.
    He starts feeling alone in his thoughts and decisions as former weak links like Carole or
    Herschel are currently ruling the group and getting stronger in everyone opinion.

    In the end, Carole’s Rick self-proclamed banishment might not be an isolated stone.
    I think Rick started building his own prison before that event, and things has just begun.
    He could very well be the one feeding the walkers with rats to motive people to give him
    back his authority and ruling power due to a weakened council lack of motivation..

    Very interested to see what Rick is gonna tell to the group about Carole.
    He might give us some clues here about what his future moves will be.

    Could Rick be a more dangerous man of power than the Governor in the end ?

    • “Chris Jericho broke another wall ! He scored many lucid and clairvoyant points on TTD.”

      – Jericho should be a regular guest, he made a lot of good points.

      “In regard of what happened in the end of the episode, If Carole didn’t admitted to Rick
      that she burnt the bodies, it could have been Rick doing it in attention of making Carole accused”

      – At the end of episode 3, there was a lot of speculation on who actually killed and burnt the bodies. The way Carol simply said Yes, seemed like she could be covering from someone. For Carol’s development, I’m glad it is her actions. There’s still other theories floating around, but I haven’t thought much about them.

      “I think Rick is slowly but surely keeping the group back in check.
      However, his addiction to authority seems to drive him sort of more tactfully than before.”

      – Yeah, Rick is slowly making steps to assert his will and take control of the situation. I think that’s an interesting point that a consequence of Carol leaving is that the council is weakened and it sets up Rick taking a leadership role again. With Hershel and Sasha in death row, there’s even less people active in the council.

      – I think the dictatorship was explored really well with the Governor and Rick in Season 3. If or when Rick regains his authority I hope the writers handle it in a new or different way.

      – I’m also very interested to see how Rick handles telling the group what happened. Emotions are going to run high as I suspect from big deaths sooner than later. :0

  3. Another fantastic review, sidekick. Bravo.

  4. Agree that TWD is good with the moral delimmeas – how does one maintain morals in a world where walkers rule. Have to say I was surprised that Rick left Carol like that. I don’t know which side I’m on – I can see both points of view. Wonder if Rick let her go becuase he knew the repercussions from Tyresse finding out would not be good. I recall on The Talking Dead, it was said something happens that deeply divides the group. I’m guessing this has to be it 🙂
    Bob is still distrustful and seems like he’ll do something bad soon. Nice to see that Daryl does care about the group when he got in Bob’s face. I’m liking how we get to see more of Michonne and that she is letting herself become part of a group.

    • I didn’t see it coming either that Rick would leave Carol behind. I like these dilemmas where there are strong points to be made on both sides.

      Yeah, Rick did save Carol from the wrath of Tyreese. At the same time, Daryl is going to be upset with Rick. It will be interesting to see which side each character will take and I can envision it dividing the group.

      For a moment, I thought Daryl might push Bob off the building. Daryl felt really betrayed because earlier in the episode he reassured Bob it wasn’t his fault at the supermarket and that Bob won’t have to be alone no more. Seems like they are setting Bob up for something bigger. The Michonne parts were good and I liked seeing her interact with Tyreese which we haven’t seen that much of.

  5. I like Rick and I would not ever compare him to the governor in any way. Rick is not evil. Remember, Rick had to deal with a lot of issues beginning with his wife and best friend…I did not like Shane, he could not see that nothing could ever be the same after Rick came back into the picture. Rick was understanding about the whole situation after he found out and accepted it. Shane, however, would not let it go. Shane almost raped Lori at the CDC and so on and so forth. Shane killed Otis, remember. Yes, he killed Shane, but Shane tried to kill him…Rick was defending himself. Rick has a lot to deal with, he has to keep his family, Judith and Carl safe, as well as the group. However, I am mad at him for banishing Carol. My opinion, I think Carol is covering for someone that she suspects killed Karen and David. I don’t think it is any of the children, either. Remember there is a sabotuer in the mist, I think it is the same one that fed the rats to the zombies and we will all be surprised as to who it is. I hope Carol will return. Hopefully, Daryl and/or Rick will go after her. As for Tyrees, he is acting totally out of character, even when his sister is in danger from the virus. I think they are all suffering from PTS in some form or another. Look at Beth, she has totally set her emotions aside. Well, I think Bobby is a liability, he is in love with the bottle. That is my opinion and I am sticking to it. .

    • I completely agree with you about Rick. I never saw him as evil even when he spoke to Merle about handing Michonne over to the Governor. I’m not disappointed that Rick banished Carol but I understand those that feel he made an error in judgement. It wouldn’t be the first time he made a mistake.

      There’s a lot of theories still floating around. It’s very possible there is a saboteur still lurking among the survivors. I’m pretty sure Carol will return sooner than later. Yes everyone is suffering loss and trauma, including Bob who I think is trouble. Thanks so much for checking out the blog! 🙂

      • Interesting !

        I’m very surprised you would be all behind Rick so truthfully. Can you imagine someone handing over a woman to a proven violent man abusing of power these days ?

        I think Rick acts like he has his own rules but doesn’t see that what makes perfect sens for him, doesn’t for others sometime. I think Rick is blinding himself in way to make things more acceptable, more normals. That very might be what makes him last. But still, he does things like shooting a teen, handing over a woman, abandon a pre-retired woman alone into the wild or.. you know.. Going machete-style.

        In other hand -just my point of view- there might be people like Beth, Michonne, Carole or Shane who accepts (-ed) the things as they comes to them and acts bluntly but kind of punish themselves by daring the devil in some opportunities because they are very aware of what they looks like and maybe disgusts themselves sometimes to the point they deny their own name and acts more and more like outcasts until they reaches their breaking point.

        The point I’m trying to make is that -I think- Rick may have no breaking point, no limits since he acts like Judge, Jury and Executionner. I think that makes him a very dangerous man for himself, and worse for others.

        What do you think ? 🙂

        • Hi there. I agree handing Michonne to the Governor is of course wrong in every way. It’s one of the leadership decisions Rick regrets and why he became a farmer. Even though there are decisions he would like to take back, I don’t think of Rick as evil or a villain which what I was trying to say. Rick has gone to both extremes – the dictator who make the rules for everyone and the farmer who made no decisions. So far this season, as Rick’s is learning to trust in his own judgement again, the writers have posed moral dilemmas for him where both sides have made good points to make. I believe Rick is trying to find the middle ground between both extremes. His intention is what is best for the group and his family, so even if he ends up making the wrong choices, I don’t consider as him becoming evil. As always, great discussing with you :).

  6. Bye Carol! See you soon!

    Didn’t see that coming and I like it because I had a horrible feeling this story would linger but its moving on quite quick and I like it, Wasn’t a huge episode for action but plenty of character development 😀

  1. Pingback: The Walking Dead up to Episode 4 | allthingshorror666

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