It’s The Walking Dead Season 2, Episode 6 entitled “Chupacabra”, and either that’s gonna be a metaphor for someone’s faded idea of something they once saw or this show is about to take a seriously weird turn. Maybe this week a chupacabra falls in the well and they spend twenty minutes devising an elaborate pulley system to remove it (Glenn is the pulley) then they turn it into a physics report and throw that physics report at a walker who again turns out to be Daryl?
We open on The Rick Kidz Klub discussing yet another expedition to search for Sophia (after 5 episodes, they’re allowed to just leave, right? Like the ‘college professor not showing up’ 10 minute rule?) So why will this search be different? Because Rick has sketched out a map with GRIDS and QUADRANTS and SECTORS and seriously it’s just a big green blob and some arrows:
Rick and Shane use the search for the dead and/or zombified child for some quality male bonding time, with Rick bringing up Shane’s past loves in order to butter him up for a more serious conversation about their ethical dilemma. It works, and Shane quickly flings into ‘Braggy Gaston’ mode, telling Rick about all his high school flings: The Dairy Queen Girl, the Girls’ Volleyball Coach, Lori Grimes, WAIT NO I mean, Lori……..GRIMES… no! That’s the same person I mean not your wife I meant Dairy Queen girl again. Rick’s like “cool.”
Shane then uses the conversation about Rick’s high school romantic failures to seamlessly segue to a related point:
Shane drops the bombshell that he thinks they should call off the search, since it risks endangering the entire group over one likely dead girl, and Rick takes the news semi-shocked, though he’s conflicted because he seems to know deep down that cold, logical SpockShane is actually correct, but he’s still too governed by emotions to make the tough call (especially after almost losing his own son). Shane also discards the entire concept of his and Rick’s reminiscing, saying that memories of that past world are now meaningless and adding “Nostalgia is a drug, it keeps you from seeing things how they really are.” I hear that, Shane – I felt the same way the last time I tried to watch an old G.I. Joe episode.
Daryl is policing another sector on his own, and his horse gets spooked when it runs into a snake (it’s a cross-over character from The Slithering Alive; Richard Belzer is gonna make a crossover appearance next episode as Munch). Daryl’s horse throws him and runs away, and Daryl humorously cascades down the mountain, not unlike Chris Farley in Black Sheep:
Daryl lands in a quarry or something, and managed to get his one arrow stuck completely through him:
He attempts to bandage the wound and climb back up the steep hillside, motivating himself by thinking about a racist “Hang In There Baby” poster, but again tumbles back to the bottom and passes out. While delirious, he begins hallucinating visions of his brother Merle, who manages to shoehorn an N-word into the imagined ridicule of his failing brother (though that’s technically you thinking of that, Daryl):
Fake Merle then turns into a real walker, but it fortunately only bites Daryl’s boots because zombies I guess do that and Daryl smashes its head, then he pulls the arrow out of his side just in time to shoot another walker in the face (the second walker did appear to be a black guy, too, so MerleVision likely approved of that.) Daryl then picks himself back up and charges back up the hillside, with Fake Merle egging him on (and throwing in stuff about how Rick and Company don’t care about him because he’s just some dumb redneck, but so are kind of everyone?) and Daryl reaches the top. Success! Except they didn’t find Sophia again for the billionth straight episode (but found her doll!) and Daryl almost died twice.
Also, earlier in the episode Daryl claims he once saw the mythical monster el chupacabra (even though suddenly-reasonable Merle later mentions that Daryl was on mushrooms at the time), and the group does ridicule him, which makes some sense because obviously there’s no chupacabra, but makes less sense because in a world of zombies all ‘what’s real’ bets are kind of off, right? Although, I did kill el chupacabra earlier this year (video evidence!), though it just appeared on Doug Benson’s Podcast last week, so I’m confused. Maybe it’s real?
Fortunately, it wouldn’t be a complete Walking Dead episode without some stupid parts that make us say “really?” (remix of this song) and this episode had two big ones. First, Daryl finally stumbles back to the farmhouse with his cool new ‘Nam-like “zombie ears” necklace (although really, if you weren’t entirely clear on the zombie-blood rules, would even delirious Daryl take this risk? We’re not even at the stupid thing yet, let’s keep going…) and the group mistakes him for a walker. Andrea is about to shoot him from the RV, but the group of guys rightfully tells her not to, because gunshots attract walkers and there’s a million walkers everywhere, and they run out to bludgeon the presumed-walker to death, but Andrea decides to disobey them and shoot the thing in the head anyway:
Just as you’re saying “come on, show, don’t…” the show does not come on, and Andrea shoots Daryl in the head from the RV. So, they knew Daryl was missing, plus three other humans were standing right around him, and gunshots attract zombies and everyone told Andrea a bunch of times not to shoot it, and MerleVision just told Daryl how little everyone in the group cared about him, and she shoots him. Whatever you say, show. We’ll call that even for the zombie-arrow-headshot scene.
Fortunately for Andrea’s sake, she gets some good news:
Carol and Lori decide to cook a really awkward dinner for Hershel to thank him for taking them in, but Hershel is in an extra-bitchy mood this episode, taking out his whole “I don’t want to get to attached to these new people” angle in the form of passive-aggresiveness towards every character. He doesn’t approve of the dinner, he’s mad that he never approved of Daryl’s decision to take his horse out (“I coulda told you Throwy Joey was gonna throw him”), he’s mad at Rick for taking his son out (“Why have I never seen that character before?”), and he even cracks down on Maggie’s decision to get close to Glenn, not because he’s an overprotective father, but just because Glenn can’t complete one action without being a bumbling, slobbering fool:
Glenn tells Maggie “I still have eleven condoms left!”, which in real life would already ensure that she wouldn’t go near him again (so much so that it’d probably also somehow delete their one encounter that already happened), and Maggie is cold to him, which makes Glenn all confused because maybe she’s on her period. Is he f***ing twelve?
The episode concludes with the big group dinner, though nobody is speaking because they’re all too busy drinking milk and Crystal Light or whatever, then Maggie slips Glenn a note that says “Tonight? Where?” because she’s suddenly interested in him again and couldn’t have slipped him this note at any other time during their entire day of sitting around being alone. Devil’s advocate-ly, maybe she does this conspicuously on purpose to rub it in Hershel’s face? Because realistically, no one has passed a note since 1953 (“Malted? Where? Never mind, the malt shoppe”) and certainly not a sex-note from a hot cowgirl to a total idiot in front of a dozen distraught people who’ve spent days searching for a dead child in a zombie-infested forest.
Then, before Maggie even has a chance to answer (huh? How? Wouldn’t she have read the note as soon as he handed it back to her? Why didn’t they go over together? What were either of them thinking? When?? Who??? Which????) Glenn has written back “Ever boned a f***ing loser in a locked, isolated hay barn?” and he walks over to the hay place by himself and sneaks in to wait for Maggie, who has presumably said ‘yes’ and is on her way over because otherwise Glenn is sitting alone and unarmed in a locked hay barn during the zombie apocalypse.
Unfortunately, Glenn doesn’t instantly get bitten – he sees something far, far more disturbing:
It’s the video for “Cotton Eye Joe”. DEAR GOD – What could it mean??? Hershel has some splainin’ to do next week. Especially when Shane stumbles across the guy from the “Sex And Candy” video sticking through his floor. That was in the “next week” segment, right? I can’t wait.
Episode thoughts? Favorite / least favorite parts? Stuff we missed? Predictions? Leave ‘em in the comments! (great comment thread last week, let’s keep it up, even though Hershel disapproves of it for some reason.)
(All pics via AMCTheWalkingDead.com, especially the Steve Martin one)