Does The Walking Dead want to be a drama or a thriller? And—perhaps more importantly—can it be both?
Last week’s action-packed, character-light episode of The Walking Dead threatened to tip the show too far onto the action side at the expense of its overarching story. Fortunately, this week’s episode slows things down a bit. Though the show sacrifices a little action to develop its characters at a more leisurely pace, it’s a wise decision; the complexity and depth of the plot development gives this week’s episode of The Walking Dead the dramatic heft that last week’s episode was lacking.
The crux of this week’s episode is the love triangle between Rick, Lori, and Shane. Up to this point, Rick’s motivation has been finding his wife and son. Other than the missing clothing and photo albums, he’s had no indication that they’re alive, and when he arrives at the camp, he has no idea that he’s going to find them there. Seeing Rick’s shock and joy when he unexpectedly reunites with Lori and Carl at the camp is extremely moving.