After last week’s Governor-centric episode, this week we’re given plenty more of the same. Yes, again, the whole of this episode is based around David Morrissey’s Governor. Whereas last time out we took a look back into what happened to the character after the climax of Season 3, here we see him trying to integrate into a new group of survivors. Complete with his newly adopted ‘family,’ we slowly start to see a glimpse into the familiar, crazed and maniacal Governor that we know and love, as he looks to do whatever he can to survive and to protect his adopted brethren.
When we saw The Governor come face-to-face with Caesar Martinez (Jose Pablo Cantillo) for the first time since the shit went down in the last season, we were left anticipating how the reunion would go. As it happens, Martinez is an alright guy, allowing The Governor, or Brian, or simply ‘one eye Bri,’ to join his camp of survivors. All seems well. Throughout the episode’s duration, however, The Governor stresses at various stages that he will do whatever is needed to survive. And with that, let the sinister acts begin…
Yes, in case you thought he’d gone soft, we’re slowly reintroduced to the lunatic-infused side of the familiar Governor as Dead Weight plays out. Before you know it, it’s not only the walkers that are taken out, as The Guv truly makes his mark on this new group. With a whole bunch of weapons, some seemingly well-trained hands at his disposal, not to mention a freakin’ tank… things could go one of a plethora of ways for The Governor. Still, regardless of what he does throughout this episode, it’s always apparently for the greater good. That is until the episode’s climax, when he casts his eye on the cause of such torment in his heart: Michonne (Danai Gurira).
Another good episode of The Walking Dead, it seems as if all of that groundwork laid last week for The Governor was worthwhile. While it could be claimed that this episode maybe progresses things a little too quickly at times, it’s a sign of the world that the survivors find themselves in at this point. There’s no time for indecision, there’s no time for dilly-dallying, there’s no time to rely on chance. This is an era in which precise, calculated, effective action is needed in order to just make it from one day to the next.
It’s also worth pointing out that this episode furnishes some truly stunning visuals, angles and camera work throughout. One particularly poignant and memorable shot is of a relatively large batch of walkers stuck and stranded in what appears to be a muddy marsh. Waist-deep in shit, the mindless beasts still find themselves gravitating towards anything with the remotest of pulses, much to no avail. Similarly, the shots of The Governor work fantastically well in capturing his menace and the fluctuation of his moods.
Dead Weight is the perfect follow-up to last week’s Live Bait, and it's rich with promise of things to come, especially given that the next episode is the season’s mid-season finale, which is always a sure sign that some big shit is about to go down. For certain, we’re going to get one mighty big tear-up as The Governor and his new band of merry men (and women) embark upon a crusade on the prison that houses Rick and his group. Consider the shit well and truly on.