The butcher or the cattle?

The Walking Dead, Season 5, EP 1

The butcher or the cattle?

Kristen Kudla, Lifestyles Contributor

Last night’s episode of the Walking Dead was all that I could have hoped for and more. Going into the season five opener, we knew that this season the group was going to head down a very dark road. Fire fights, walkers, and cannibals, yes cannibals, were all things that die-hard fans were looking forward to this season, and so far, the creatures have yet to disappoint.

The last time we saw the group, they walked into the new “sanctuary” Terminus. They then quickly found out that it was the exact opposite, and the last thing we saw in the season four finale was the group being forced into a train car one-by-one.

At the start of this episode, we get a little back story of the Terminus group with a flash back. This flashback can be seen as the breaking point for Gareth, the leader of Terminus. But what made him crack? Later on in the episode, we find out that Terminus, at the time, was being occupied by another group, forcing Gareth’s group to do unthinkable things.

Rick, Daryl, Bob, and Glen are taken from the car to the “prep room” where we get our first glimpse of this dark road this season is heading down. The first thing we see in the room is two men drilling and prepping a dead body similar to what they do for animals in a slaughterhouse. Later on, we do find out that the man on the table is Aaron, Gareth’s brother, who was killed in the season four finale.

This was the first real indication of the cruel and ruthless people the group of Terminus are. What happened next was probably one of my favorite parts of the episode and also the most gruesome.

Rick, Daryl, Bob, and Glen along with 4 other people, were thrown on their knees in front of a trough, where one-by-one, the butchers cracked their skulls, then slit their throats to drain their blood. The entire time, the butchers are calm and relaxed as if this was something they did on a regular basis.

The real saving grace of this season premier was Carol. If there is anyone who’s really evolved as a character through the past four seasons, it has to be her. Carol has grown so much and we really see that in this episode.

Last season Carol was exiled from the group, and yet she still goes back to save them from Terminus.  On top of that, the things she does to break them out are ridiculous.

She camouflages herself as a walker, a technique we first saw in season one, so she can move to Terminus without having to worry about the walkers. After getting to the fence and exploding a tank, she made her way inside where the people of Terminus are being over run. This is a big part of Carol’s newly developed character because it shows the viewer that she is willing to do anything for her group and won’t stop for anyone in the process.

Rick has also made a drastic change going into this season. From the moment Rick and his group are introduced into the episode, Rick is ready for battle. Just from the way he acts and the way he talks to Gareth in the “process room”, Rick is ready to make the tough decisions.

The season 5 premier was a suspenseful and thrilling way to start off the season. If the show does continue down this dark road, be prepared for some unexpected events that only readers of the graphic novel will see coming.