The Bitching Dead Issue #51: ‘The Walking Dead’ Season 11 Finale Offers an Unsatisfying Series Ending

the walking dead season 11 episode 24 review
Negan and Maggie in ‘Rest in Peace’ (Screengrab: The Walking Dead Season 11 Episode 24)

The Bitching Dead issue 51 had Bekah, Tara and I discuss the final three episodes of The Walking Dead season 11 and share our opinions about the series finale.

One thing is for certain. The Walking Dead season 11 finale could have been much better. We couldn’t help but feel that the writers didn’t go as far as they could have when constructing an “ending” to a story that audiences have been a part of for 12 years. The season 11 finale, which was supposed to be the series finale, didn’t stand apart from the usual season finales we have watched over the years. And that was disappointing.

A major reason was likely that the series finale wasn’t really supposed to be a “finale” because the creative team behind The Walking Dead is still very much interested in creating a Walking Dead Universe that, frankly, no one really asked for. There are three spin-offs coming soon!

The Bitching Dead issue 51
The Bitching Dead Issue 51

Anyway, before we talk about the spin-offs, let’s go over the viewership numbers. Episode 22 ‘Faith’ got 1.39 million people to tune in live. Episode 23 ‘Family’ got a bit of a bump with 1.47 million viewers. And of course, due to it being the finale, episode 24 ‘Rest in Peace’ got 2.27 million people to watch it live. The premiere of The Walking Dead season 11 got 2.22 million watchers back in August of 2021. So while the series finale numbers aren’t as impressive as TPTB likely wanted, at least, they are (kind of) respectable.

Here’s The Bitching Dead Issue 51 webcast!

Here are the highlights in no particular order:

  • We all liked the scene where Mercer showed up to rescue Eugene. Mercer’s been one of the rare new characters that we actually liked.
  • Eugene’s arc was also enjoyable, especially the speech he gave to the public (while making it feel pointed at Mercer) to encourage them to stand up to someone like Pamela.
  • While they didn’t start as the best characters, the writers allowed Eugene and Gabriel to grow in an organic manner, faults and all. We were able to side with them as the series progressed, in contrast to the writers trying and failing to redeem Negan in our eyes.
  • Having said that, Negan’s reaction to seeing the Variant zombie climb an obstacle is definitely one of the top funny TWD moments ever.
  • We really liked the conversation between Maggie and Negan where Maggie stated that while she agreed that Negan and his wife had made a place for themselves in the community, she was still unable to forgive him for murdering Glenn. Here’s hoping Maggie’s very valid feelings toward Negan don’t change in the upcoming Dead City spin-off.
  • Getting shot is really a Grimes family tradition at this point. Judith getting shot was eye-roll inducing. Daryl running to the hospital with a shot Judith in his arms was supposed to be a callback to Rick running with a shot Carl. Stop trying to be “artsy”, TWD!
  • We finally got to see a character die from blood loss due to getting their limb chopped off.
  • The series finale really needed more deaths. A character or two should have died while sacrificing themselves to ensure the big explosion to kill the zombie herd went as planned.
  • Why the heck is Pamela still alive?
  • We would have rioted if Jerry had died.
  • Having Mercer and Ezekiel be the ones to lead the Commonwealth made a lot of sense for their characters.
  • We couldn’t figure out how it was possible for Rosita to get bit when she, Eugene, and Gabriel were trying to get the babies to safety.
  • Of course, Eugene named his baby daughter after Rosita! Having Eugene be with Rosita during her final moments was a good choice.
  • Even though Carol’s goodbye to Daryl was appreciated, it felt like an after-thought and weirdly out of place, as if the writers really wanted to give their characters some kind of an ending after Melissa McBride (who plays Carol) said no to being in the planned Daryl and Carol-centric spin-off.
  • Adding that closing scene featuring Michonne and Rick as a teaser for their upcoming spin-off felt unnecessary.
  • The final season of The Walking Dead should have focused on a tighter narrative. It would have benefited from being only 12 episodes long.

I really had to make this because of how “queer” Daryl acted during his goodbye to Judith!

What did you think of The Walking Dead season 11 finale? Are you excited about the spin-offs?

Let us know.

Author: Farid-ul-Haq

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.

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