Season 3, Episode 3 – Walk With Me (a.ka. 57 Channels and Nothing On)
This episode is ALLLLLLL about Woodbury and the introduction of The Governor. I will admit that I was a tad skeptical when David Morissey was cast. Don’t misunderstand, Mr. Morrissey is a fine actor (anyone who’s seen the Red Riding trilogy know’s what I’m talking about). But we’re talking about The Governor here; one of the most memorable villains in contemporary fiction. The Governor exudes menace in the comic book. From the very first time you meet him, you sense that something is very, very wrong; and while that worked out very well in the comic book, I have to give props to the show for their slightly more subtle interpretation of the character. More on that in a moment.
COMPARISONS TO SOURCE MATERIAL UNAVOIDABLE
The show opens up with a helicopter crash. Michonne and Andrea see it and beat feet to the wreck, arriving at the exact same instant as an armed convoy. Wisely, they decide to conceal themselves and observe the convoy from a distance. There is a rather annoying moment, where the ailing Andrea looks like she’s about to blow their cover by coughing. This is one of my least favorite plot devices, and certainly one that’s been done to death. I might have stopped watching if she had actually coughed, but she did not. The writers just tossed it in for suspense sake. Bastards.
Anyway, we watch the group pull one survivor from the wreck and ice any zombies or soon to be zombies in the area. While this is going on Merle (yes that’s right, Merle) gets the drop on Michonne and Andrea. Andrea, upon seeing Merle, faints. I guess if I was stuck in the apocalypse and a crazed racist asshole, from my past, with a grudge, was pointing a gun at me I probably wouldn’t be at my best either.
When Andrea comes to she finds herself in the hospital of Woodbury. Merle arrives to welcome her (in as much as Merle is capable of being welcoming), followed by The Governor. Here is where the more subtle approach to The Governor’s character comes into play. This Governor exudes no menace (unless your Michonne, who’s wise to him from the jump). In fact he seems like a much less desperate and harried version of Rick, and no doubt the writers did this intentionally to show you what Rick might become now that he’s started adapting more…ahem…extreme tactics.
Woodbury seems like the bee’s knees, a haven of calm in a world gone horribly wrong. The Governor affords Michonne and Andrea every courtesy, show them around town, and even cooks them breakfast. Nice guy right? Wrong. Oh so wrong.
Later The Governor interviews the survivor of the helicopter crash and ascertains from him the location of his group. Promising to bring them back alive, The Governor sets out to find them. He and his men quickly massacre the group and steal their supplies. Not a nice guy. Not at all. Although at least he does have the courtesy to thank his victims in a speech to his unwitting town, about the sacrifice of those poor bastards. He does of course leave out the part where he was instrumental in their demise.
The show wraps with Andrea flirting with The Governor. What is with that girl? Is she just drawn to psychos? After The Governor brushes her off he settles in for a quiet evening; which for him means unlocking a secret room, kicking back in a nice armchair and staring at a wall full of literal dead heads in fishtanks. And what’s in the top and therefore probably newest tank? The head of the lone survivor of the crash. To quote the original Governor (non readers may not get this): “57 channels and nothing on”.