“The Walking Dead” returned on Sunday, Oct. 13 for its highly anticipated fourth season, and the prison is a lot different than fans will remember.
While the prison yard was previously overrun with walkers thanks to the Governor, a couple months has turned the prison yard into a little village. There's now plant life, outside seating and cooking area, pigs, horses and a small farm.
But the overall look isn’t the only thing that has evolved. Daryl is referred to as “sir,” Tyreese is now hooking up with Karen, Beth has a boyfriend, Hershel has a fake leg, Michonne goes on runs to look for the Governor and Rick refuses to carry a gun.
After Rick broke under the pressure last season, the prison has now started a council (consisting of Daryl, Glenn, Hershel, Carol and Sasha) to help make decisions. The council has welcomed new people into the prison -- like Bob, a former Army medic who Daryl found out by himself -- and helped put new plans in place to benefit the prison. Some of those plans include supply runs and animal traps outside the prison walls.
Episode 1, “30 Days Without An Accident,” kicks off with Rick going to collect the animals from the traps. But he discovers something he wasn’t expecting -- a woman! The woman, Clara, approached a sick boar on the ground, leading Rick to initially believe her to be a walker. He was shocked to discover that she spoke, begging him, “please, please, please, please help me.”
Explaining that she’s trying to bring the animal back to her husband, Clara asks Rick if they could go back with him to his camp. Rick tells her yes, but only after he asks the couple three questions.
As Rick follows the Clara back to her husband, a separate group including Daryl, Michonne, Tyreese, Sasha, Glenn and Bob go on a run to a Big Spot store for supplies. Previously planting music to draw a majority of walkers out of the store, the group believed they would have an easy run. Unfortunately, they were wrong.
Turns out that Bob is a recovering alcoholic. Picking up a bottle in the store, Bob was able to resist the urge to take it, but put it down a little too strongly on the shelf. The shelf collapsed on Bob, and while he was still alive it resulted in a lot of noise and a lot of zombies.
A helicopter had crashed on the roof of the building before the military lost control, making the roof of the building unstable. The noise from Bob drove the walkers to start heading toward the group but instead of using a doorway to get to them, the walkers fell through the ceiling.
As they are overrun with zombies, mass chaos breaks out inside the store. While Bob was able to make it out from under the collapsed shelf, Beth’s boyfriend became the first casualty of the evening.
As the Big Spot group struggles to escape, Clara finally brings Rick back to her husband. The only catch is that her husband isn’t alive. It appears as if he’s just a zombie head in a bag.
“I wanted to take the boar but I knew I’d get you here so much quicker,” Clara explains to Rick as she attempts to attack him with a knife. “He’s starving.”
In an insane twist, Clara stabs herself in the gut, telling Rick not to kill her because she wants to be with her husband. As she takes her last couple breaths, she asks Rick what his three questions were.
-How many walkers have you killed?
-How many people have you killed?
Inside the prison, Carl attends story time with Carol and is disgusted to find that she hasn’t been reading to the prison children. Instead, she’s been teaching them how to use knives. As Carl runs out of the library, Carol begs Carl not to tell his father.
Everyone (except Beth’s boyfriend) manages to make it back to the prison in one piece and try to get back to their normal lives. “Walking Dead” viewers learn:
-One of Rick’s pigs died (just like that injured boar in the woods).
-Maggie and Glenn had a pregnancy scare.
-Rick’s still worried that he could lose his mind, just like Clara did.
-Beth has become hardened by her surroundings, not crying when Daryl broke the news that her boyfriend died. Instead, she took down a sign that said “30 Days Without An Accident,” changing it to zero days.
-Michonne is planning out her next move to find the Governor.
-A new group member named Patrick wasn’t feeling well. Stumbling through the prison while the group was asleep, a sweaty and ill-looking Patrick collapsed in the showers, and died.
Amanda Remling studied journalism at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, NJ.
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