The Walking Dead Rewatch – Season 1, Episode 5 (Wildfire)

Because The Walking Dead season 10 finale has been delayed thanks to the real-world virus, I have decided that to fill the void left in the schedule, to start a re-watch of the series. I live tweeted the episode as if it were playing live in the regular 9pm GMT slot on FOX TV UK. You can see all the tweets here or embedded below.

Wildfire never really gets going. It deals with the aftermath of the attack at the camp, but spends too much time lingering on the death. I understand this is the first real loss of living characters we know, but we are hardly invested in them so it makes their deaths just that.

We know Amy (Emma Bell) had a sister who was considerably older than her and their father loved them, treating them as they needed to be treated. We really know nothing about Jim (Andrew Rothenberg) other than he helped around the camp. Morales (Juan Gabriel Pareja), despite surviving the attack decides to leave, there are tears from the others, but why do we care that he is leaving? We don’t know these characters.

The only person this dwelling on the dead benefits is Carol (Melissa McBride) and her mourning is rather glossed over as she smashes her former husband in the head repeatedly with a pick-axe, getting a sense of relief and pleasure as she does so.

The tensions continue to rise in the camp between Shane (Jon Bernthal), Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) and Rick (Andrew Lincoln) as they try to reach an agreement about heading to the CDC, each hoping Lori will side with them. But Rick gets his way and they’re off.

Upon arrival, the place is in a heck of a mess. Bodies are piled everywhere which only makes you wonder why other cities don’t sport this type of body count later in the series. After some desperation and begging from Rick at the closed shutters of the CDC, the single doctor alive inside decides to take pity and help these new-comers out.

It’s a transition episode, moving the characters from one place to another. Exploring a little bit of grief and dealing with death, both the instant sort and the played out one with Jim’s bite. The problems come with dwelling too long on characters we hardly know and not focusing enough on the main protagonists and their delicately balanced relationship. Sure, Dale (Jeffrey DeMunn) walks in on Shane holding a gun to Rick contemplating shooting him as his back is turned. But nothing comes of it, not yet. Hopefully the finale will be more explosive.

Overall Rating: 6