‘The Walking Dead’ recap: Season four, episode seven, ‘Dead Weight’

November 25, 2013

Warning: This recap contains spoilers.

The Governor is keeping his promise to protect Megan.

Last week, we questioned what the Governor’s loyalty to Megan (and subsequently her mother Lily and aunt Tara) would lead him to do. The answer becomes clear in this season’s seventh episode — he’ll do quite a lot.

The Governor and his new family have seemingly outrun walkers they encounter at the end of episode six, subsequently stumbling across the Governor’s ex-crony and a new camp leader, Martinez. Along with Martinez, we meet a few more camp survivors named Mitch and Pete, who travel with Martinez and the Governor on a supply run to an abandoned cabin, where a beer and food is gathered after a brief zombie fight.

Adamant about his leadership role at the new camp, when Martinez allows the Governor and his family to join the new camp, he tell’s him it’s on the condition that he’ll accepts two things: “I’m in charge. No dead weight.”

The ultimatum carries little weight for the Governor, who dispatches of a drunk Martinez with a blow to the head from a golf club and a push into a pit of walkers. Their conversation before the attack takes a dark turn when Martinez effectively says it’s crazy for the Governor to get attached to a new family again, and that he won’t be able to protect them.

Post-Woodbury Governor has not changed. He sees having control of the entire camp as the only sure-fire way of protecting his new family. He is unambiguous about killing humans and zombies, because that’s what it takes to survive. Mitch is willing to kill a group of humans (out in the woods, camping on their own) to steal supplies. They ultimately don’t kill the group, but it’s the idea that counts. The Governor spares him.

Pete, on his own moral grounds, is the original proponent of leaving the campers alone. Pete’s humility is not seen as a strength by the Governor, but as a weakness — reasoning that is far from what is expected of any human being, but there’s nothing normal about a post-apocalyptic world. It’s a dog-eat-dog world for the Governor. If there is no safety for himself and his family outside the camp, then the safest option is to rule the camp from within.

Lingering questions: What was up with the dead bodies around the big cabin in the woods, where beer and supplies are secured? There were decapitated bodies, labeled “murderer,” “rapist” and more. This isn’t fully resolved.

Another unresolved moment comes at the final scene, with the Governor raising his gun to an unaware Michonne. The Governor is back at the prison, a circle-back to the end of episode six. It’s obvious he wants the prison for himself, but how will he get it?

Finally, why is Pete shackled to weights and left to live his zombie existence at the bottom of a lake? There must be some motive for the Governor to do that.

Romance report: The Governor and Lily share some nice moments. I wonder what she’d think of his tactics for protecting her.

Margaret Ely is a producer and reporter for Local Living and Weekend. Previously, she was an intern for the Post’s Metro section.
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