“The Walking Dead,” Season 1, Episode 2: “Guts”

When we last saw Rick he was trapped inside an Army tank surrounded by an army of zombies. With the help of another survivor, he’s able to escape, setting the tone for the entire episode and likely the entire season.

Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and his new friend Glenn (Steven Yeun), make their way into a building where a group of survivors are waiting. It turns out they’re from the same survivor’s camp where Rick’s wife and son are. Of course he still doesn’t know. The group ventured into the city to pick up some supplies for the camp. Rick kind of foiled their plans of an easy return to camp.

Speaking of the survivor camp, Rick’s wife Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) and his partner Shane (Jon Bernthal) had sex in the woods with only a slight touch of guilt over Rick. I kind of can’t wait to see how it plays out when they’re all reunited next week.

OK, back to Atlanta. The group is already having some inner turmoil because of a disgruntled and racist member named Merle. He’s throwing punches and throwing slurs. Why’d they bring that a-hole along in the first place? I’m sure his ignorance isn’t a new trait he’s picked up. Rick earns some respect by handling him and handcuffing him to a rooftop.

So now there’s an entire group of people trapped in a building surrounded by “Walkers.” They can see a construction site equipped with a truck large enough to hold them all in the distance. But how are they going to get there? Rick has a brilliant plan. And it really is quite brilliant.

He decides he and Glen can cover themselves in one of the dead-again zombies and walk right through the crowd, blending in via smell. So they chop up a zombie and rub themselves down with blood, guts and gore. It’s disgusting and amazing at the same time.

The two head out into the crowd and remain undetected. It’s really working. The dead are ignoring them because they smell dead. Then it starts to rain. Uh oh. The rain starts washing away the guts and gore and pretty soon the zombies are onto them. So they run. They manage to make it to the site and get the truck.

Back at the building, the others are preparing to jump in the truck as soon as they return. T-Dog goes to uncuff Merle and loses the key. Merle isn’t happy, of course, and T-Dog has to leave him behind. I’m guessing that won’t be the last we hear of Merle (especially since the preview for next week shows he has a brother back at camp).

So the group make it in the truck and they head back to camp as the episode ends.

The second episode was as strong as the first. I didn’t think it was possible, but it was even more gory. I can’t recall a zombie movie using the idea of wearing zombie guts in order to escape. Someone please comment below if I’m wrong.

“The Walking Dead” has to be the only TV show I’ve ever seen that produced instant gratification. It usually takes four or five episodes for a show to really get off and running. Of course there are only six episodes this season so they had to get us in quickly. At any rate, it’s as good as it can be and only on Episode 2.

What are your thoughts? Are you loving it? Hating it? And are you fans of the genre or new to the living dead? I’m really curious as to what kind of people are watching this show. Because it appears a lot are. Last week’s premiere broke AMC records.

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