Watching last night’s episode of The Walking Dead, I found myself drawn into a tense situation. The episode began in media res and did a great job of it. Then, they opened a door and found the Governor (The Big Bad) standing with his hands empty.
And they didn’t kill him.
This is a problem for me as an audience member. When a story has been set up in such a way where a character reaches a state where, to get what they want, they are willing to kill. The Walking Dead has reached this point. The protagonists are mostly of the opinion that the Governor must die.
Yet, here he stands, unarmed, not reacting to the fact that our heroes have weapons ready, and they do nothing.
The heroes want to kill the Governor, yet, when given the opportunity, they choose not to. Why? I don’t know.
I spent the first twenty minutes saying profanity-laden versions of this post’s title. I could not believe these people would be so stupid as to not kill their enemy when given the chance. Within ten minutes of the episode starting one of the secondary characters actually says, “We should kill the Governor.” I cheered; then this character was overruled.
Really? This is what these people want, so there has to be a reason why they aren’t pulling the trigger.
The Walking Dead, especially in Season Three, has been a show unafraid to pull the trigger, to kill when the plot and logic require it. Somehow this didn’t happen all the sudden.
Writers of all varieties, take note. When one character truly wants another character dead, if they’re alone and armed, somebody’s got to die. Or at least try to do some killing.