TWD: All out war

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TWD: All out war

Sean Koepfinger

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“The Walking Dead” has consistently been one of the highest rated shows since it premiered in 2010. But since season six, the show has shown a rather steady decline in viewership with the recent seventh season hitting record lows. A lot of this can be attributed to slow, meandering plot lines and long episodes where nothing of importance happens. With the return of the seventh season after its mid-season hiatus, the show has come back swinging. Spoilers ahead.

TWD

Since February, “The Walking Dead,” or TWD for short, has moved away from their unsuccessful trend of long episodes that hyper-focus on one character. This pattern was exhausting and meant that weeks would go by without ever seeing some of the principle cast members. Thankfully, the show has mostly ditched that in favor of 45-50 minute episodes with a more diverse set of characters and multiple plot lines. This style keeps the audience’s attention better and helps keep the complicated story together.

The second half of the season also had the unified goal of working towards creating an army with which to take on the villainous Negan and his army of “Saviors.” This goal gave the show something to work towards; however, it also highlights one of the show’s consistent shortcomings. TWD, like most cable shows, saves important events for premieres and finales. The problem with running a show like this is that a viewer can tune out for several episodes in between and not miss much–a trend that can easily be seen by glancing at show ratings. TWD could really use a bit more variety in their execution during these in-between episodes to keep things interesting.

TWD

That being said, Sunday’s season finale finally delivered on the promise of all-out war. While the first half of the episode dragged a bit with the various groups arming themselves for battle, the episode took a dramatic and unexpected turn with the Scavengers turning on Rick and the Alexandrians. This was exactly the kind of twist that the finale needed to really make things interesting–especially for comic-book fans. It is always a breath of fresh air when the writers throw us something new.

The rest of the episode had some great twists and fantastic action-moments. Special shout-outs go to zombie-Sasha and Shiva’s well-timed entrance. The season seven finale even brought back some of the wild action that the show is known for, and for the first time in a long time, it gave the heroes a victory. It has been a long time since Rick’s group got some slack. Season seven has been especially brutal. It is really a relief to see the good guys win for once.

TWD

Of course, we all know the real war is just beginning. When the show returns next October, we will be in for an entire season’s worth of battles and action that should prove to be a nice change of pace for a show that tends to get bogged down by slow action-less episodes. Hopefully, season eight continues to deliver the quality content that the second half of season seven brought.

In the meantime, let’s all thank the writers for not pulling another cliff-hanger finale.

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EDITOR’S NOTE _ For more Walking Dead fun, check out these past reviews:

Season 7 mid-season review

Season 6 premiere review

Season 5 finale review

Season 5 premiere review

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