The Walking Dead – Season 11 Part 2 Review

What is it with slightly delayed reviews of final season’s second of three parts this week? Yes, Walking Dead as a TV series is coming to an end (well, the main series is, plenty of spin-offs in the works…) but we’re only two thirds of the way through its finale. So does this all lead into an unmissable final part? Meh, not really. Let’s take a look!

In the previous review I said “though all the scenes dealing with the Commonwealth took the wind out of the show’s sails sadly, which is rather damning for the next two thirds of the final season…” and you know what? I wasn’t wrong! The Commonwealth is an interesting idea for a location in a post apocalypse world but the fact it’s a dystopia ran by a corrupt regime of stuck-up pricks takes the series away from its routes and into the generic, and sadly doesn’t manage to do anything particularly interesting to elevate it.

Two survivors of the original few seasons together with some relatively new arrivals.

We see the likes of Daryl (Norman Reedus), Carol (Melissa McBride), Aaron (Ross Marquand) and Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) begin to integrate into the new Commonwealth, meeting up with Eugene (Josh McDermitt), Ezekiel (Khary Payton) and co. in the process, with Daryl taking up the role of really wanting to beat the crap out of the arrogant stuck-up son of the settlement’s leader but instead playing along with his games for the sake of his makeshift family. I’m only halfway through the comics (Yes, I’m staggering reviews of those out quite a bit!) but I assume Rick is probably in that role there, which is just another reminder of the hole Andrew Lincoln still leaves in the show because at least if he were in those scenes they might have been good thanks to him actually having charisma…

What was good was the scenes outside of the Commonwealth (again!) specifically picking up from the previous episode’s cliffhanger with Maggie and her allies helping out Daryl in clearing the Reaper settlement, which saw the former kill several Reapers even after they were disarmed, which Daryl didn’t approve. Then later she denies Lance Hornby (Josh Hamilton), the would-be leader of the Commonwealth and clear antagonist, a chance to take over Hilltop and other nearby settlements, setting up a confrontation down the line that’s teased in a flashforward at the end of the first episode of this part of the season, which saw Daryl in Commonwealth armour waiting outside Hilltop ready to assault it. Maggie and her scenes, including a big one detailed in the spoilers down below, were the definite, and pretty much only highlights of this chunk of episodes.

Lance flips a coin to decide which of his two personalities will take over… Wait, no, that’s something else. Never mind.

Being vague here, but stories focusing on Eugene’s love life or Ezekiel being cured of his cancer and setting up an underground hospital to help those were are too poor to get treatment didn’t do much for me; Connie (Lauren Ridloff) and Kelly (Angel Theory) becoming reporters trying to get to the bottom of the Commonwealth’s corrupt core was also not very interesting and again just felt really out of place in The Walking Dead, and aforementioned scenes with Sebastian (Teo Rapp-Olsson) the spoiled git getting away with crazy, life-ending crimes because his social status did make me want to see his comeuppance as they were written to do, but more in a “can he just get taken down a few pegs already and move on to something else?” way rather than getting me invested. I did enjoy head guard Michael Mercer’s role of stone-cold soldier slowly showing a more human side, I’ll put that in the “good” along with an extended scene detailed in the spoilers, but that’s about it…

Overall Thoughts:

Mercer: One of the few actually interesting new characters… hell, one of the few actually interesting characters left in the show!

Last time I was worried that we’d spend more time in the Commonwealth, a.k.a. more time in a boring aristocratic dystopia rather than the settlements we’ve seen get built over multiple seasons of TV, and sure enough that’s exactly what happened. Most of the stories set there did nothing for me, it was only a few parts outside the Commonwealth walls that got me at all interested. Not looking good for an exciting finale…

There was a good series of scenes that started with Aaron and Gabriel getting sent to an apartment complex that became a rather deadly cult-like settlement and told to make peace alongside one of Lance’s most trusted men. Turned out they were actually there to help take out the leader and find a supply caravan that had been hit in the nearby area, which didn’t sit right with them so together with Maggie’s soon-invading group and Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), who happened to have ended up living in the apartment block and now has a pregnant wife (Damn, he moves on quick!) they take out the Commonwealth group and Aaron and Gabe try to pass it off as an attack they managed to survive, but Lance doesn’t buy it. There were some great scenes, especially between Negan and Hershel (Kien Michael Spiller), Maggie’s child that Negan made sure he’d never see his own father all those episodes ago.

Negan and the new missus. I wonder if she’ll also get a baseball bat named after her?

The series ends with Lance forcibly taking over Alexandria, Hilltop and Oceanside, setting up a final confrontation in the last few episodes…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s