The Walking Dead Season 3 Recap – Episode 12: Clear

Carl (Chandler Riggs) grows up in Episode 12 of AMC's The Walking Dead


How completely awesome was this episode of AMC’s The Walking Dead? It was so nice to be out of the grim, grey prison and on a road trip. I missed Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) and Carol (Melissa McBride), but I sure as shit didn’t miss the Governor (David Morrissey) and Woodbury!

Rick (Andrew Lincoln) goes on a road trip in Episode 12 of AMC's The Walking Dead

So Rick (Andrew Lincoln), Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Carl (Chandler Riggs) are going back to Rick’s home town of King Country, Georgia to pick up some more guns and ammo. And they are NOT picking up hitch-hikers. I’m sorry, but Rickhoney, you need to start giving a shit about people! Blood will be on your hands regardless of the decisions you make – it’s the zombie apocalypse after all. You need to stop worrying about that and get back to doing the right thing! And, hello, that hitch-hiker could have been one extra body against the Governor’s army.

At least Carl has the decency to look shocked.

Speaking of Carl, wasn’t this episode his alone? First we find him deluded by the prejudices of his father (ie. he doesn’t trust Michonne), and then, given enough time with the woman, he discovers that sometimes people you love can be wrong about things. Hopefully this insight will steer him away from the ‘horrid little serial killer’ path I have been fearing…

Now the ammo run doesn’t go quite according to plan. It seems that there is nothing left – who would have thought people would think to search the police station for guns? Rickdecides to search the town in a few known gun hot spots. Instead of finding anything useful, he finds this:

Rick finds dead people in Episode 12 of AMC's The Walking Dead

and then this:

Crazy King County in Episode 12 of AMC's The Walking Dead

Now who do we know that Rick left behind in King County? Someone he should have tried a little harder to contact via walkie talkie perhaps? Enter Morgan (Lennie James). So we all thought Rick was the crazy one! Try being the only living person in a ghost town. Anyway, Morgan tries to shoot the Rick’s Lampoon Vacation crew and as a result, Carl shoots the shooter. Lucky (erm…maybe…) for Morgan he was wearing a bullet proof vest. Rick won’t stop for a hitch-hiker, but he will check out the guy who tried to kill him. *shakes her head at Rick* Next we get to find out just how many levels of crazy Morgan is when Rick takes him back to his booby-trapped home of doom.

Rick (Andrew Lincoln) meets crazy Morgan (Lennie James) in Episode 12 of AMC's The Walking Dead

We also find out that his son, Duane (Adrian Kali Turner) is dead. To make matters worse, he was killed by his own zombie mother – the one Rick wanted Morgan to kill. Finding this out, along with the walkie-talkie gives Rick a heads up on not being the only loony in the bin. Enter more guilt for Rick once Morgan wakes up.

When Morgan does wake up, it turns into a big cry-fight about who has suffered the most. In the process Rick gets stabbed and Morgan tries to get shot. It clears the air somewhat and Morgan is a little less crazy for a while and Rick is somewhat more lucid – I sure hope it stays that way!

Carl, meanwhile is on a mission of his own. While he tells his dad he wants a proper crib for his sister, Judith, it is pretty apparent that there is something else on his agenda  Especially when he escapes from under Michonne’s watchful eye (nice going thereMichonne, you promise Rick you’d look after him and you’re outwitted by a kid in under five minutes!)

So Carl wants to pinch a picture of his family from the King County Cafe. It turns outMichonne is just the thing he needs to help him get in – and out – while avoiding these all the zombies inside.

So using Morgan-patented trapped rat technology, the pair of them are able to foil thezombies while they rescue the picture. Of course, being a TV show, you just know it’s all gonna go pear-shaped – and it does. In a nut shell: Carl drops the photo. They escape before Michonne realises. Michonne manages to single-handedly get back in AND get back out with the photo as well as a crazy cat lady statue in less time than it takes to read this sentence.

Michonne, it seems, has just proved herself to Carl.

Carl, in turn, vouches for her to Rick.

It also helps that Michonne owns up to being her own version of bat shit crazy…

In the end, Morgan wants to stay in Crazy King County and Rick leaves him there. Gee, think we’ve heard the last of Morgan? I think not!

The trip isn’t wasted though, since they do manage to score some of Morgan’s gun and ammo stash.

Is the Hitch-Hiker in Episode 12 of AMC's The Walking Dead in honour of Stephen King's story, The Hitch-Hiker?

And was it just me (and the fact that I’d read that King County was named in veneration to Stephen King) or did the demise of the hitch-hiker at the end of the episode remind you of the classic King novella The Hitchhiker?

So, what did you think of this week’s episode? Was it good to go on a road trip? And what do you think the significance of the zombie named Erin was?

***EDIT 14th March 2013***

It has come to my attention (after watching this episode again), that the zombie called Erin has a bit of a sad back story. It turns out the sign we see as Rick is driving (before they got bogged) reads as such:

“Erin: We tried for Stone Mountain. -J”

Of course, this leads to more questions than answers. Who is J? Where is Stone Mountain? Why didn’t J return? How did Erin turn? Could J (and the rest of the group as is implied by the term ‘we’) possibly be in Woodbury?

I hope this is cleared up further on down the track.

And, alas, no recurring zombie man this week.

Erin the zombie in Episode 12 of AMC's The Walking Dead

(Photo Credits: AMC)

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