Monday, March 5, 2012

Preparedness Review of The Walking Dead Episode 211: Judge, Jury, and Executioner


Rick (to Dale): "He's a threat."
Synopsis:  Dale pleads the case for civilization, but it mostly falls on deaf ears;  Carl tries to show just how tough he is, and indirectly causes the death of Dale.  Daryl steps up to become a leader.

Judge, Jury, Executioner

It's tough to write a preparedness-themed review of this episode.  The human drama on display here is on par with great works like 12 Angry Men.  The issue at the central core of the show is what makes us human, and what this world does to the characters that forces them to compromise their humanity.  I cannot think of a better episode that displays this theme than Judge.


Dale has been the odd man out for most of the season, constantly being outmanuevered and outflanked by Shane and others as he sought to be the moral center of the group.  In this episode Jeff DeMunn's acting prowess is on full display as he pleads for the life of Randall.  He's unsuccessful, and one wonders if he would pack up in his RV and leave had he survived another episode.

He has a point.  If they were going to kill the kid anyway, why in the world did Rick go to the trouble of saving him if they were going to end up shooting him?  The group wasted valuable medical resources and potentially compromised their group security.  


Dude, really?
I just have one thing to say:  What does it say about camp security and the the security of their arsenal if the 12-year-old can wander unseen out of camp, grab a .45, get tangled up with a walker and LOSE THE DARN GUN!!!!  I know it is a cruel, hard world, but as the potential future father of humanity, you might want to keep tabs on the kid.    Not that this kid minds.  The fact that he was cheering his dad on to shoot some guy in the head speaks volumes about how far this group has moved from a group of humans trying to survive the Apocalypse to a hard, broken band of people threatening to tear each other apart.

I honestly don't know what is worse, the walkers or the people.  At least with the walkers you know what you've got.


Mercy killing:  Daryl puts an end to Dale's suffering.
Daryl is all business.  Randall has to die, and he is okay with it.  He was okay with Shane shooting Otis, pointing out to Dale that he didn't believe Shane's lie for a minute since Shane returned with Otis' gun.   I was wondering when someone was going to mention that detail.  There was a very quick scene right as Dale was attacked that showed Randall in the barn, strung up, with Daryl sharpening a knife.  It appeared as if he was about to take care of the job for Rick when the walker attack went down.  I don't know if this show has room for two Colonel Tigh-type personalities.  Also note that it is Daryl who shoots Dale at the end of the episode instead of Shane when Rick falls apart.

So what are we left with, preparedness-wise from this episode?  First, the group is running low on ammo as expressed when Andrea goes rummaging through the gun bag.  Also, it's getting colder, and Rick and company are going to have to move of the tent city soon.  They'd better get cracking on grabbing food out of the town and the surrounding houses before a big freeze or vermin ruin it as well.

Finally, there has got to be improved security.  If a walker can just traipse through the meadow and attack Dale and that cow, they are in for a rude awakening.


  1. Re: Carl, It's not so much what it says about camp security as what it says about Carl's parents. In a zombie apocalypse world would you not keep your most vulnerable in a safe place? Even animals are smart enough to protectively herd around their children but here all we get is lori asking someone, can you watch Carl? Really? Didn't he take a bullet and almost die? I would think his mother at least would have her eye on him right now 24/7.
    Carls' behavior on his own makes perfect sense as the combination of the curiousity of a child and the fact that he is now living in a largely structureless world. Pre-Z he would be in school, being groomed for life as a worker and a member of a community somewhere, now he's just surviving from day to day and place to place. In his kid brain (especially after his dad's lecture about talking less and thinking more) standing there and exploring the zombie that he thinks is totally trapped makes a lot of sense. His new vocational training is surviving but the group as a whole hasn't really figured this out yet.

  2. Cow attack was stupid. These sombies don't appear to have any supernatural strength...human fingernails and teeth simply can't penetrate a cow's hide.

  3. They're short on ammo because Shane is stashing some in the trunk of his car. ISTR 3-4 boxes of pistol caliber stuff in his hands going into the spare tire.