"The Walking Dead" Episode "This Sorrowful Life" - A Review and Reflection

Last night's episode of The Walking Dead, "This Sorrowful Life," was a very powerful, character driven episode that kept me hanging on the edge of my seat.  And what I'm about to chat about could be considered spoiler-based if you're a time shifted viewer.

Be it as it may, last night we came into the episode with Rick (Andrew Lincoln) plotting to capture Michonne (Dannai Gurira), and turn her over to the evil, twisted man we call the Governor (David Morrissey).  You know that Rick only has the best intentions for the group in mind, but can he really go through with this?  This is crazy stuff, and yet, there he is plotting with Daryl (Norman Reedus) and Hershel (Scott Wilson).  Neither of them like it, but the arguments of humanity can't seem to outweigh the safety and future of this group of survivors that have stayed together for this long.

But then Rick needs help.  He's not quite up to this and asks Merle (Michael Rooker) for help.  Merle laughs in his face, while dispensing advice on just how to capture Michonne.  For instance, use wire to tie her up so she can't chew through it.  Rick walks away, weighing things out in his mind.

But Merle had his own plan in action, captures Michonne himself and drags her towards Woodbury.  But Michonne talks his ear off and then they find themselves in a situation with walkers.  I'm not sure at what point Merle changed his mind, or if it was changed. Was this his plan all along?

Meanwhile, Rick changed his mind about giving up Michonne, but no one can find her... and then they all realize that Merle took her for himself to work a deal with the Governor.  Daryl goes after them.

Merle lets Michonne go and heads towards the meeting place with the Governor, leading a pack of zombies behind him.  It's rather ingenious to blast a radio and drive dog slow, as he collected a healthy herd of walkers.  And as the walkers invade the meeting spot, the Governor's men open fire to defend themselves.  All the while, Merle is taking one shot after the other, taking down the men.  No one is noticing in the rukus that a single shot is taking out men.  That is, until one errant shot is deflected.  The one meant for the Governor himself, and the tide changes rapidly for Merle.

I had always thought of Merle as a tough son-of-a-bitch, but the Governor wipes the floor with him and I was sorely disappointed.  Not only disappointed, but saddened when the Governor shoots him.

But the heart wrenching moment that came at the viewer later on, was when Daryl happened across the slaughter scene.  And he finds his walker brother.  And Rooker played this walker to such a degree that you could swear he was in there, while he was shambling towards Daryl.

It was a heart wrenching moment and Daryl had the hardest time putting him down.

This is only conjecture on my part, but this event may put Daryl on the Governor's case, and could mean the end for the evil, lying tyrant.


It was a touch episode to watch, not knowing for sure what Rick was going to do.  And then watching Merle take the lead, and you're still now sure what's up.  Not until this Grinch finally did grow a heart, and sadly, pay the ugly price of going up against the Governor.  But in the end, Daryl paid the ultimate price.  It's a rough world he lives in.  Let's see what kind of motivation these set of events create.  It could be a most satisfying end to the Governor.  But then again, he keeps dodging that bullet these last few episodes.  Grr.