The Walking Dead S4E7: Dead Weight
Original Airdate: November 24, 2013
Recap by Sarabeth Pollock
“Holy shit,” Martinez said at the end of last week’s episode upon discovering the Governor in the pit. Holy shit, indeed.
Brian (aka the Governor) plays chess with Meghan. “Your move, Pumpkin,” he says to her while he does laundry. She’s thinking about her next move. This was a flashback as the Governor hands the girl up to Martinez on their way out of the pit. Brian explains that she can’t think forever, and he learned from his father that you can’t win at everything. She wants to know if his dad was mean. “Sometimes,” he replies. “Were you bad?” she asks. “Sometimes.” Martinez realizes that the Governor had been on the run this entire time. The sisters call him Brian and this gives Martinez pause. In the flashback, Meghan wonders if she was bad since her father was so awful to her. Brian says that it’s not possible for her to be bad, and he’s going to take care of their little family. Back in the present, Martinez tells Brian that he’s in charge, and there’s no “dead weight” allowed. Can he live with that? In the flashback, Meghan prompts Brian to make his move on the chess board. “I’m thinking,” he replies, and the camera pans back to see that they are standing between a trailer and an army tank.
Water drips from the ceiling. Lily asks if Brian is going out again, and Brian says they’re going on a supply run. Lily wants to set up a nursing station for the camp, and Brian apologizes for being stuck in this situation. He hugs her.
Out on the supply run, Brian asks if there is fishing, but the lake is dead. They can still catch small animals. The men head toward a cabin. Along the way Brian comes across a dead body with no head. It has been tied to a tree with the word “Liar” written on a paper pinned to the shirt. Hmm.
Lily tends to Alicia’s knife wound while the women talk about the military and guns. Looks like the women in this camp are tough.
As the men reach the cabin, they find another body. This one is in a reclining chair with the word “rapist” pinned to it. Inside the porch is a man with “murderer” written on his paper. He has a picture of a family with him. They go inside cautiously, as someone seems to be inside. They have trouble finding the source of the noise…and then a rabid Walker jumps out. The heads from the headless bodies are still chomping away. A Walker jumps on Martinez and Brian takes them out.
Later on, Brian ponders the photo as Martinez builds a fire. He admits that if Brian had been alone he wouldn’t have brought him to the camp. He says that Brian seems different and asks if it’s true. “I am,” Brian replies. The men find supplies, and beer, in the house. They crack a few open and relax, but they want to know what happened in the cabin full of Biters and heads. The men wonder if “One-Eye Bry” was always so stone cold. Martinez says they should have seen him back in the day. The other men are all ex-Army. One has a tank. Brian doesn’t want to open up about what he had been doing before.
The next day, Martinez joins Brian’s little family for beers. The women feel safe in the new camp but they want to know about the old camp, meaning Woodbury. Martinez says he was trying to recreate it with the new camp. They’re all a little drunk, and Meghan notices that the hole in the trailer’s ceiling is still leaking so Brian goes to fix it. Martinez returns with a surprise—golf clubs. Up on top of the trailer, the two men hit balls out into the Biter pits and discuss how they’re old associate (the one who had been left standing after the massacre) went crazy. Martinez killed him. Martinez says that Brian’s family really seems to have changed him. It’s not something he’d be willing to risk himself. The risk of losing another family is too great. Brian asks if he’s worried about keeping the camp safe, and Martinez is worried, but maybe now that Brian is there, they can share the burden and the power. While Martinez contemplates the need for golf lessons, Brian hits him with the club and pushes him off the trailer. He drags Martinez to the pit and keeps saying “I don’t want it” over and over. He pushes Martinez into the pit, where the imprisoned Biters eagerly pull him down.
In the trailer, Brian is having a meltdown when Lily and Meghan return. He says it was a bad dream that he can’t remember.
Martinez’ men tell the camp they found Martinez in a pit. He must have gotten drunk and fallen into the pit. One man assumes power while another suggests a vote. They decide on “business as usual” until they can have a vote. The men go out hunting. Mr. Democracy tells Brian he could use some help, while Mr. Dictatorship scouts ahead and finds a camp that has a ton of supplies. Pete, Mr. Democracy, doesn’t want to raid the camp. He wants to find his own supplies. At the end of the day they find squirrels and condensed milk. Brian wanders back to the newly discovered camp to find that the camp had been slaughtered. Mitch is furious that they didn’t get the supplies. A man is still alive, but Mitch jumps the gun and kills him. Pete sees that this is a dangerous situation.
Brian returns to the trailer and tells everyone to pack. It isn’t safe in the camp anywhere. “Things are about to go very wrong here,” he tells them. He’s seen it before. He asks if she trusts him, and she does. They need to leave tonight. Meghan jumps into action.
The car departs. Tara brings girlfriend Alicia with her. They drive until they come across a pit that is blocking the road. The pit is full of mud and Biters. Brian gets out and looks at them, and then he turns back and looks at the car. They can’t get out in the car.
The next day, Lily sees Brian getting ready. “What are you doing?” she asks. “Surviving,” he says. Brian goes to Pete’s trailer and knocks on the door. Pete invites him in, but Brian stabs him as Pete says he knew this was coming. He moves to Mitch’s trailer with his gun drawn. Mitch thinks this is because of the old guy at the camp. Brian says they should have taken the supplies. Mitch’s brother, Pete, was wrong. Brian suggests that Mitch have a cigarette, and Brian tells the story of the first cigarette he smoked with his brother, and how his brother took the blame, and beating, when their father discovered them. Brian says that he’s running things, and he’s going to protect the camp. Mitch can be with him or not, but they must do whatever it takes to survive. Mitch asks what they’ll tell the camp, and Brian says they’ll say he died on a supply run “saving their asses.” They’ll believe it because “people believe what they want to believe. Everyone loves a hero.” Brian dumps Pete’s body in the swamp.
The camp is hard at work building a perimeter. Brian sits at the command table and receives reports from the different areas. They have food, ammunition, and a safe place. He warns everyone to stay away from strangers. Later he tells Lily that they might be able to find a better place, but she says they don’t need to. This is home.
Meghan and Tara play while Lily goes to check on Brian, who is cleaning his eye. Lily looks at him and says he doesn’t have to do it alone. They share a tender moment. Meanwhile, Meghan goes running around the trailers and through the laundry and she comes across a Biter. It chases her under a car. Tara tries to pull it away but she can’t grab its rotting leg. A gunshot rings out. Brian lowers the gun while Lily races to her daughter.
Brian goes to the pond and sees Pete flailing around under the water. Then he goes out in the car. He stops the car in the woods and walks to a clearing. In the distance we can see a chain-link fence, and beyond it we can see Rick and Carl working the field. He walks back into the woods and comes across Hershel and Michonne. He aims his gun.
It looks like there is going to be a battle soon. Battle for the Prison, Round 5. (How many times have people tried to take over the prison?)
Again, I’d like to draw attention to whether or not the Governor can become a “good” person given all the horrible things he has done and continues to do. Is it possible? Can he be redeemed? Rick’s Three Questions revolve around killing Walkers and killing people. If Brian is killing people to protect his family, is it justified? Would Martinez have been a risk? I personally think he got rid of Martinez because Martinez wasn’t sure he’d be able to protect them all. In that situation, you have to be sure. Survival has to be the number one priority, and getting drunk probably wasn’t a good way to prove that you’re capable of protecting the camp. Pete had to go because he had a conscience. Mitch was willing to kill to survive. He is a much better second in command for Brian at this point.
At any rate, Governor Brian is here to stay.
What did you think of tonight’s episode? Leave your comments below!