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The Walking Dead Recap, 4×4: “Indifference”

It's both the name of the episode and the emotion you will feel throughout most of it.

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Last time, Tyreese was very understandably upset about his girlfriend getting set on fire, and it was revealed that Carol was the one who did it. She seems… hey, indifferent! That’s the name of the episode!

Also, we were all exceedingly upset about Glenn and Sasha getting sick. Well, I was. Nobody else with a name in the opening credits better die this time around, guys.

We pick back up on Rick wrapping his sprained wrist — you know, the one he got punching an inconsolable dude in the face, like you do. Here I was hoping we could come right back to the moment where Rick confronts Carol, because that was a great scene, but I guess he’s gotta tape up his wrist just in case he wants to punch Carol in the face, too, so that’s fair.

Meanwhile, Carol is doing roughly the Carol equivalent of wrist taping, which is to put on this fearsome thing:

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Is that a set of brass knuckles with a knife coming off the end? Damn, Carol. Lizzie (the little blond girl who’s currently in quarantine) comes to meet her across the glass of what must be the prison’s visitor center. Carol lies through her teeth and tells Lizzie that she’s going on a run with Rick, and we cut to Rick trying to fill up one of the leftover cars with gas. This scene would have been way more effective if we could actually watch Carol lie, I think, because I care way more about Carol’s ability to emote than Rick’s. But fine, show, we’ll do your thing.

Lizzie points out that no one’s died yet. “It makes me sad but at least I get to come back,” she tells Carol. Oh, honey. No. She knows that walkers aren’t really the people they once were, but at least they’re “something.” Noooo, baby. I have never wished Jesus more on anybody than I have in this moment. Being raised Catholic mighta messed me up a little bit as a kid, but I wasn’t this messed up. At least when Jesus comes back from the dead, it’s a reasonably good time for most people.

“We all change,” the girl says, and Rick starts having flashbacks of what Carol must have done to Karen. “We all don’t get to stay the same way we started.” Symbolism, guys. Which Carol is not happy about, because she tries to tell Lizzie that it’s more complicated than that, but Lizzie is a fucked up little ten year old who’s been told one too many times that she’s weak, so it’s probably too late for nuance at this point. She also calls Carol “Mom” while she’s being told how to run and kill and survive, so that’s… that’s not great.

Also, Rick is packing knives in the trunk or whatever. Jesus christ, every time they cut to Rick in the middle of what should be Melissa McBride’s goddamn Emmy moment over here, another kitten dies or something.

After the cold open, we’re back to the supply run gang. Tyreese didn’t die! Yaaay Tyreese! He’s cleaning his wounds in the river while Michonne, Daryl, and Bob work out a strategy for getting back to their car or whatever. Bob continues to call Tyreese “Ty,” and goddamn if it isn’t the cutest thing. I like Bob, you guys. Tyreese has, unfortunately, already given up. What’s the point of finding a nearby town when his sister is most likely already dead from the flu she’s caught? Bob tries to suggest that it helps if they keep moving, and Tyrees denies the concept outright. But Bob waits for Tyreese anyway, because he’s the best.

Rick and Carol are having the most awkward car ride of their lives. Carol points out that Maggie had wanted to come on this run, but Rick wanted someone to be back at the camp to “watch over things.” And not to watch you punch a lady in the face, I guess. I mean, granted, killing two people is messed right the hell up, and Carol’s actions clearly need to be addressed, even if she is an asset to the community. But this is a weird way to do it.

Finally, Carol can’t get over the silence and explains her reasoning. How they were sick and suffering and she wanted to grant them quick deaths, how they were the only ones infected at the time and she wanted to keep the rest of the group healthy, how nobody stepped up and did anything to solve the threat but her. I mean… it’s pretty convincing. But then again, the last confession-in-a-car scene I think I’ve been witness to was that one from Breaking Bad‘s “To’hajiilee,” which was a little less persuasive. Rick, however, does not look convinced.

Daryl finds a piece of jasper on the ground as they’re walking. Michonne says it brings out the color of his eyes. God damn it, Daryl. Is your dick magic or something? He says something to the effect of “Hey maybe you should actually stay in one place for more than three seconds and you’ll learn other people’s names and stuff,” and Michonne makes this face.

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Rick and Carol come to their destination, which is in the middle of a creepy deserted suburb. Somebody’s written “Pardon Our Dust” on the side of an SUV, which would be funnier if the SUV were filled with walkers. Instead, it’s empty with the keys in the ignition, and Rick theorizes from the clean windshield that its owners can’t have been gone for longer than a day or so.

Meanwhile, come on:

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It’s one thing to write in the dust on a car, but to rearrange the letters on your gas station sign in the middle of a zombie apocalypse? Dude. I hope that asshole thought he was real clever right as he was getting his face gnawed on. Nobody on the supply run team notices, either.  They’re too busy trying not to die.

They find a car, but it needs a battery, and there’s a lovely jump scare as Daryl goes to look inside the gas station office and finds a very angry walker up against the window. I bet it’s the guy who sat around making that stupid sign. Serves him right. They try to clear a path into the office through the brush, which Tyreese hacks up with all the fury of somebody who’s about to rage quit life. He gets his machete caught in the doorframe and comes back with…. a bunch of wires?

If you were expecting an explosion, you clearly don’t know this show very well. Walkers jump out of the brush instead. Tyreese is the only one left struggling with one, and only because his was stuck in the brush and he pulled the sucker out and on top of him. Yeah, Tyreese has got a seriously fucked up death wish right now. “Why the hell didn’t you let go?” Michonne asks. Symbolism!!

Rick steals a bunch of medicine out of a cabinet while Carol keeps watch. She’s doing a real shitty job of it, though, because a walker in pajamas is coming down the stairs (that does not have quite the same ring to it as bananas in pajamas) and Rick has to pull her out of the way before the walker literally tumbles onto her. Carol takes care of it, and then another noise puts them in alert mode. Hey, it’s… these guys?

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“We have fruit!” The lady says. I like her already. Her gentleman friend (who’s wearing a baja hoodie of all freaking things) throws one of the fruit to Rick and it goes awkwardly down the stairs. Rick doesn’t even lower his gun. Possibly the funniest thing that’s happened so far all season.

After a commercial break, we cut back to Carol treating Baja Hoodie’s wounds. “And I thought everyone was an asshole before this all went down,” he says. My love for his lady friend is tempered equally to my immediate hatred for him. Carol fixes his dislocated shoulder anyway, but she does so by causing him a ridiculous amount of pain, which I appreciate. He’s being a real weenie about it, too. Rick looks on, astonished that a woman who killed two of her community members in cold blood would be so willing to help such a loser in distress. They start telling their story and then it’s Carol’s turn to be astonished that such idiots were able to to survive without any knives or bullets or anything. They call them “skin-eaters” where our team calls ’em “walkers,” though. Hey, maybe there’s a Haitian/New Orleans contingent that really does call them zombies!

At the gas station, our team of heroes finds a battery. Michonne won’t let Tyreese not letting the walker go… well, go. “I just don’t want to see you die. Is that what you’re trying to do? Do you even know what you’re trying to do?” She tells him that his anger is making him stupid. She’s already let go of her anger about the Governor, she says, which is why she’s still alive — to which Tyreese responds, “then why are you still going out looking for him?” Michonne doesn’t have an answer for that.

Rick and Carol tell the stoners about their prison and they think it sounds better than throwing fruit at strangers, even with the horrifying illness. Carol also calls Lizzie one of “her girls,” so… so much for that not being called “Mom” thing she had working earlier. Rick tells the stoners to sit tight but then Carol suggests they help with the food run, and Rick gives her a look like, “Hey wait, we’re not done talking about those people you killed! I was gonna punch you in the face!” But the stoners are already way too on board, and they break Rick down with their puppy dog eyes. He gives them his watch and a couple of guns.

Daryl and Bob are talking about Bob’s backstory. Apparently he was the last one standing in two different groups before coming to the prison, and called himself “witness” — “Like I was supposed to see it happen over and over. Like it’s some kind of curse.” He also talks about his alcoholism and the bottle he picked up that broke down that shelf and got Zach killed. No, Bob baby! Daryl tells him that’s bullshit and then makes him help out with the engine. The car starts up. Okay, Daryl might be magic.

“Did you think it was right, letting those kids come back with us?” Rick asks Carol. He’s pretty hung up on the “rightness” of it, probably because, you know, Carol killed two people. “If they’re strong enough to help us survive this thing, then yeah,” she replies. I mean, I’ve gotta with her here — they’re stupid hippies with badly healed injuries but they’re doing surprisingly okay for themselves.

And then Carol brings out what we’ve been thinking literally all. Episode. “Rick, I killed two people and you haven’t said a word about it.”

“What do you want me to say?” he replies. God damn it. It’s not about what he says, she replied — it’s about facing reality, which they have to do in order to survive. “You can be a farmer, Rick,” she says. “You can’t just be a farmer.” She tells him that he’s a better leader than she gave him credit for. Yeah, well I never killed two of our own, he says. No, just one, she replies. Oh snap. 

“You don’t have to like what I did, Rick,” she says finally. “I don’t. You just have to accept it.” I don’t know about accepting it,  but I get what she means. He at least has to acknowledge that it happened, which he hasn’t done.

The supply team finally finds the veterinarian’s college. Rick and Carol find some vegetables. Rick asks Carol where she learned to fix a dislocated shoulder and she tells him she learned how to do it on herself. Yeah, remember how Carol was a domestic abuse victim? “I didn’t think I could be strong. I didn’t know I could. I already was,” she says. Fuck, Carol is so goddamn fascinating. She’s probably going to die by the end of this episode so that Rick can feel sad and conflicted. Screw Rick.

Then Rick starts going on about Lori and blah blah blah, and then they find Hippie Girl’s leg in a field.

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Whoops. So much for that, then.

Back at the college, they’ve gotten everything on their list. However, we’ve still got ten minutes left, so something awful is going to happen. Yup, their exit is completely blocked off by walkers, all of them bleeding from the eyeballs. Someone suggests slicing through the ones that have closed in on them as opposed to the giant horde outside. “NO! They’re infected,” Bob finally explains to all these idiots. “Same as at the prison. We fight em, get their blood on us, breathe it in? We didn’t come all this way to get sick.” YES, BOB. THANK YOU. WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN FOR THREE EPISODES. So horde it is. And it’s actually only a few, so they get out of the doorway pretty easily. Tyreese throws a fire extinguisher at a window and they all jump out onto the roof — except Bob overshoots it and almost throws the medicine over, and all the walkers grab at it. They manage to pull him to safety, but apparently there wasn’t medicine in the bag after all — it was booze. Oh, Bob. 

Daryl says something shitty about how they should have left him behind when they first found him, and goes to throw the booze away.  “Don’t,” Bob says, and his hand instinctively goes for his gun. Bob!! I had such high hopes for you. Daryl is piiissed, and Tyreese of all people tells him to let it go.

Carol and Rick are now waiting for Hippie Guy. Carol’s already prepared to leave him behind. “He might be fine, but he’s not here, and we have to go.” She says. Then she thinks for a second. “It was a nice watch.” To which Rick responds in this way:

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I can’t tell whether he’s reacting to the fact that she thinks he’s only interested in getting his watch back, or whether that’s actually what he’s interested in and she has successfully called him out on it.

They get back to the car, and Carol’s door won’t open. She looks at Rick expectedly. “Karen and David might have lived,” he tells her finally. “That wasn’t your decision to make. When Tyreese finds out, he’ll kill you. When the others find out, they won’t want you there.” And then he even goes so far as to say that if the supply team doesn’t make it back and everyone infected dies, and it’s just them and Rick’s children, he won’t want her around them.

“It’s me,” Carol says. “No one else has to know.” Oh, Carol, honey. It’s too late for that, and you know it. At the very least she wants Lizzie and Mika to stay with her, but Rick won’t even allow for that. She’s not that woman who was too scared to be alone anymore, he tells her. She’ll start over and survive. And then he helps her pack up the hippie car, but not before she gives him her watch and drives off into the sunset. Carol, you might make bad decisions but you are freaking magnificent.

But what about Daryl and Carol? That was going to be a thing, damn it! Except now Michonne going to stay at the prison from now on — or so she tells Daryl in the second most awkward car ride of the episode — so I imagine he and his magic dick will bounce back.

So that’s a series wrap for Carol, I guess. I’m pretty bummed that she’s gone and we’re still stuck with stupid Rick, but at least there’s room for her to come back, possibly. I mean, Merle came back there and it was pretty rad. But as happy as I am that she didn’t go out in a violent blaze of glory or whatever, the way this storyline resolved itself was entirely too subdued for my tastes. Someone at least needed to raise their voice at some point during the episode. There was barely any tension throughout most of the episode, and honestly? If Carol had come back instead of Rick, I would have been incredibly happy with that. But then again, I’m coming off of Breaking Bad recaps, so I might be a bit biased there. What did you guys think?

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