In The Walking Dead season five premiere it is Carol to the rescue as she steps up and takes it to the cannibals at Terminus like a curly headed Rambo. AMC continues to deliver with a show that has viewers on the edge of their seat, looking through their fingers at the action one moment and then sobbing like baby Judith the next. In No Sanctuary it almost all comes together as the gang reunite. It is “almost” since Beth is still missing and as she was not hanging like a side of beef in the Terminus meat locker, she must still be alive.
Greg Nicotero helmed this season opening episode of The Walking Dead with his usual finesse and kept the action bloody and fast and disturbing. In this season premiere the cannibal origins of Terminus are revealed and the depths of Carol’s ingenuity are on show. The woman does a “MacGyver” and blows walkers and a huge portion of the fence to pieces. She also does her version of the Shaun of the Dead zombie impression sans comedic touch.
Leaving Ms Peletier for the moment, it was great to see Rick back on form, or pre Herschel, where he lets the deadly side of himself out. The moment where he declares that no one from Terminus will be allowed to live was almost as chilling as the butcher’s scene with the one man “practising his swing” before bludgeoning the kneeling victims.
As usual, this episode of The Walking Dead had more than its fair share of outstanding zombie moments and allowing Carol to come to the rescue in the season five premiere means that this will be a pretty hard act to follow for the rest of the survivors. The backstory of how the inhabitants of Terminus turned into cannibals was sad and terrible, “cattle or butchers,” says BBQ Mary before the walkers head over to chew on the cook.
This opening episode was the perfect antidote for The Grove and A from the last season. Allowing Rick and his group to escape and mete out punishment to Gareth, who looked like a prime candidate to become zombie chow before the group clamber over the fence was just brilliant. This touch of vengeance was almost as good as the sight of all the walking dead shambling through Terminus.
The lump in the throat award has to be shared between the reunion moment between baby Judith, Rick and Carl along with Daryl rushing over to hug Carol. The big surprise in the episode had to be Eugene’s “information” that turned out to be a pathogenic disease warfare type thing which could not ever have been anything guessed by fans of the show. Chances were that the mullet haired “scientist” did not really have anything to offer and, admittedly, still may not. At least he had an answer when pressed by Rick’s group.
Tyreese finally snapping out of his The Grove state and dispatching the nasty Terminus man in the woods, who was threatening to kill Judith, was a real hooray moment. When he repeatedly punched the Kevin Durant look-a-like in the face, it was obvious that Tyreese was back in a big way, of course the sound of Tyreese taking out the walking dead that surrounded the shack was the first signal that things were going to work out.
Morgan showing up at the very end was the other real surprise in The Walking Dead season five premiere and was nearly as satisfying as Carol turning all MacGyver/Rambo and coming to the rescue of Rick and the others. Kudos this week have to go to Melissa McBride, yet again and to Andrew Lincoln for continuing to shine, not to mention Greg Nicotero for directing an episode that totally rocked. The only thing missing from the show was Michonne’s samurai sword, although her double stabbing weapon was pretty kick ass and hopefully Beth will turn up unharmed. The Walking Dead airs Sundays on AMC, and on a side note, how many people recognised Oswald Cobblepot at the trough? Answers on a postcard please…
By Michael Smith