Sunday night (although Monday night for me because I watch it via Amazon’s digital download) was the second season premier of AMC’s “The Walking Dead.” The gang has left the CDC and is on the road again.I could summarize the plot (which I feel was slightly lacking. Too much time was spent looking for Sophia) and who is angry with who (I could care less about Shane at this point), but the point in the narrative that struck a cord with both my husband and I came when Rick went back into the zombie church (as I call it) to have a moment with Jesus.My husband was bothered because he thinks this is out of Rick’s character both in the comic series and in the show. Rick is a pragmatist. He sees the world as a set of problems and solutions. It’s not that he couldn’t have a spiritual side, but more like he wouldn’t expect the guidance he needs to come from something so far removed from the situation. After all, this is a man who took charge of a situation (and continues to do so) and chose to go to a place where he thought he could get answers to what the hell was going on (the CDC). He’s never looked to God or Jesus for answers before, he’s looked to the men and women around him to help formulate his plans.
But, the writers (sans, Frank Darabont now) have chosen to have Rick take a moment to bow down before another man that died and rose up from the dead (*cough*) to ask for a sign. As he exits the church Shane asks if he got what he needed. Rick replies, “we’ll see.”
Shortly there after his son is shot. Cut to Rick’s reaction. Then cut to black.
If this is the sign Rick asked for it sure is a shitty one. If it’s a sign of anything, I’d argue that it’s a sign that God abandons in the zombie apocalypse. After all, what more of a sign would you need when the dead start to rise up that there is no god? The bible says something about the dead returning to their bodies when Jesus returns, but I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t look anything like bicycle girl or the zombie that attacked Andrea in the trailer.
One thing that “The Walking Dead” does really well as a TV show (I can’t speak for the graphic novel as I haven’t read it) is that it gives a great sense of isolation. In fact, this season started out reminding us that there is a man out there all alone. Maybe he’s found other survivors. Maybe he’s dead or turned. Maybe not. And this group of survivors have each other, but only just. It’s hard to believe there is a higher being out there in a world as empty and dire as this one.
Besides the obvious appeal of Walking Dead, the underlying appeal is that it says something very real about our current state of existence. A sort of mirror is being held up to us. A lot of us do live in a state of lost hope. Look to your nearest city and you’ll see the 99% that feel something has been taken away from them. I like that about this show; that not only does it take place in almost a parallel world but that it is also making a philosophical statement about the one we currently live in. All good SciFi/ Fantasy usually does.