The Walking Dead 4 x 03 Review: Isolated

Last week we saw the survivors facing a new threat coming from inside the prison. An unknown virus started to infect people, make them cough blood, and killed them; which then made them come back as zombies. The main mystery last episode left us with was about who killed Karen and David, the only two sick at the time. This week gave the answer along with a lot of things to look forward to in the season.

The title, “Isolation”, encompasses everything shown in the episode. The actors give amazing performances, especially Chad Coleman, who plays Tyreese. The actor brought a lot of emotion when faced with Karen’s death. Someone in the prison killed two flu infected people and burned the bodies. Tyreese wants to find out who it was. He even gets into a fight with Rick over this. The scene connects to what we saw last season when Rick lost Lori. He went on a rampage and took his time to cool down. Tyreese goes into the same rampage and Rick beats him up because he knows what it’s like to lose control. Rick is still trying to find a balance when it comes to managing things in the prison, but this episode laid the groundwork of a potential threat to his leadership in the form of Tyreese.

The council decides to send a group to a veterinary college in order to get antibiotics, and the infected are sent to another part of the prison where Dr. S is trying to take care of them. Daryl, Michonne, Bob and Tyreese leave to get the medicine while the rest of the main cast stay back to take care of things in the prison; which are dire indeed.

The episode showed characters deal with the term ‘isolation’ differently. Beth has become more unemotional. She’s afraid to care too much and we can clearly see that when she’s talking to Maggie about doing ‘their jobs’ and not being allowed to be upset. Glenn gets infected as well and he’s isolated from Maggie, who in turn is isolated from him. The same was true from Tyreese, who couldn’t be with his sister once she gets infected too. Hershel felt isolated from being able to help the people in need which led him to venture out into the woods to get some medicinal plants for the infected. He then puts his own life at risk and goes to help them, isolating himself from his own daughters.

There was also a major parallel in the episode, the one between Carl and Carol. Carl began to lose his innocence as the series progressed but then Rick helped him remember he was still a kid. The same wasn’t done for Carol. She grew into a strong woman through the seasons and would do anything to protect the group. Her determination to protect the group at any cost was what led her to kill Karen and David. I wasn’t expecting such a revelation. Carol was always portrayed as an innocent and caring character but now she’s different. In a sense, she can be the person that Carl would’ve become if Rick hadn’t intervened, a person who would do anything to ensure the safety of the group, no matter how immoral.

This episode gives us a look into what the characters have now become and I’m looking forward to seeing how things develop. Carol told Rick about what she did near the end of the episode, and now Rick has to make a decision about whether or not to tell Tyreese, who’s out for revenge. Carol’s actions, though wrong, do tend to be justified because of her intentions. How the show handles this and what becomes of her is something to look forward to. I love it when a show focuses on the ramifications pertaining to a character’s actions.

This is not to say that there weren’t any ‘zombie-killing’ scenes, because there was plenty of that! Daryl and the group find themselves in a horde of zombies, but not before catching a frequency on the car’s radio (which I know will be touched upon as the season proceeds).  The group fights off a lot of zombies and Tyreese gets to vent his anger by single-handedly taking on a large group of zombies and surviving.

All in all, the third episode brought the focus back on the characters we love. No matter how many survivors there are, the ones we started our journey with will always be our favorites. It’s good to see that the season is giving some interesting story arcs to the characters, such as Michonne with Judith, and especially Carol, who has evolved further than her comic book counter-part.

Human Casualties: None, no one died this week, though a lot of people got infected.

Zombie Casualties: A lot of them!

Stupid Moment: Dr. S coughing blood right in Hershel’s face. I mean, come on! You are a medical professional. Sneeze into your sleeve!

Daryl, or anyone else in the car, not keeping their eyes on the road. Learn something from Lori, people!

Carol going to clean the water pipe alone, mainly because she kicked over the group’s water supply. Don’t you know doing things alone is always a bad idea!

Weirdest Zombie: One of the zombies that Carl and Hershel encountered in the woods looked like some wood-spirit which had let itself go. The first time I’ve seen a zombie with plant-life growing on it.

Author: Farid-ul-Haq

Farid has a Masters in Psychology and an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Arousing the Legacy, Missing in Somerville, The Game Master of Somerville, and The Escaped Murderer of Somerville. He gives us insight on comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.



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