The Walking Dead recap: Under My Skin

All hell breaks loose as viruses of all sorts run amok in the prison
Ep. 02 | Aired Oct 20, 2013

RUN MACHETE BOY RUN Glenn (Steve Yeun) runs to the aid of those threatened by Walkers in D Block.

Gene Page/AMC

Night falls on the Prison. A lone flashlight shines in the darkness. A Walker chews on a rat's head through the chain-link fence. Someone is sabotaging the community's defenses.

Welcome to episode 2 of the fourth season where everything is terrible and the points don't matter! The Walkers scare me to no end, but this mysterious traitor is even more sinister. For now, he or she is faceless and unseen. (S)he acts like a dark, malevolent force as opposed to the all-consuming yet understandable drive compelling the undead. This antagonist is unknowable and surprising, making him or her all the more dangerous.

Who could the Walker Feeder be? We see a glimpse of an arm and hand. To me, the person looked to be a white adult male, but I could be wrong. Even if I am right, the show could have used a PA’s arm for the shot and will later reveal the culprit to be someone totally different.

As Walker Patrick grows into his yearnings for human flesh and brainz, Tyreese and Karen share an intimate moment in the library. Still shaken about Zach's abrupt death, Tyreese muses over the new reality of friendships and acquaintances. Regardless of your relationships with others, each individual you know now "might as well be the only people in the world." He then serenades her with "I've Got You Under My Skin," expressing his affection for her with the unfortunately titled ballad.

As they leave, Tyreese suggests that Karen “come crash” at his “place,” or hers if she prefers. Karen declines, establishing boundaries in their still growing relationship. It may be the Zombiepocalypse, but it doesn’t mean people have to shack up right at the start of a romance. (Or does it? Discuss!) They part ways heading back to their respective places a.k.a. converted prison cells.

We follow Karen, armed with an eerily similar flashlight. (This confirms that the Walker Feeder is someone with access to a flashlight in the Prison, which could be anyone thus confirming nothing. Excellent.) She stops to admire a child's drawing. The drawing shows a child and his or her family, the prison, and the Walkers including “Nick.” (Could the dark, malevolent force that is the Walker Feeder be one of the bratty kids introduced in the premiere?!) Karen moves on to the bathroom and washes her face with a pitcher full of cesspool water. (In my paranoid mind, the Prison’s entire water supply is forever tainted by the coughs and spits of pre-zombie Patrick.)

Speaking of our favorite zombified Harry Potter lookalike, Walker Patrick arises at the sound of Karen in the bathroom. Unbeknownst to her, Walker Patrick follows her footsteps into D Block. Just as he is about to lumber into her cell, he is distracted by a loud, choking snore. He is drawn to the sound and finds the mustached man from whence the noise originated. Walker Patrick kneels down and takes a bite out of Mustached Man’s throat. Without a throat, he cannot scream, and Walker Patrick digs into an all-night feast. If a zombie literally ripping out a throat isn’t a deterrent against snoring, then I don’t know what is. (Breathe Right, I think you have your next commercial.)

A few thoughts — did Karen really fall asleep so quickly that she didn’t hear the pitter patter of Walker Patrick’s wet footsteps or the heavy breathing from his undead mouth? Would you not be able to thrash and make a noisy fuss over something like, I don’t know, a zombie eating you? Is the smell of blood and organs not distinct enough to wake nearby D Block residents?

NEXT: Glenn and Maggie make my heart hurt. Rick and Carl have issues with a capital T for teen angst.

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