That The Walking Dead is the current biggest show on cable TV is undisputed and for good reason. Not many other shows can compete with it in terms of brutality, tension and shock factor as this zombie drama. Only a handful other shows throw as twists and turns at the viewers. The show has a devilish tendency to let good people meet bad fate. These curve balls hit hard with tragedy and violence, only made even more realistic by the insanely good make-up and special effects.
Having given the show all its due credit, it is only fair that one must also point the shortcomings. The show is not devoid of its problems. My pieces (if per chance you happen to have read them) in the past have pointed them out. This article will focus on Season 6 of the zombie drama. I really love The Walking Dead, I do, but for all of it I know it could be a better TV show.
Today, I shall walk you through five of the biggest problems with Season 6 of the show. For the record, allow me to state that this has been a season that is as uneven as any I can recall. After the initial few episodes I was ready to announce it the best season till date but later the same old problems kept rearing their ugly heads. It suffers from inconsistency. One moment you think that what you are witnessing is see some of the most brilliant and intense action and violence you have seen in the entire run of the show, then what follows next utterly disappoints you. You expected better and what you are getting is simply underwhelming.
Let’s have a look at 5 issues the show is suffering from. Scroll down and read on.
1. Messed up Glenn’s (Fake) Death
The way they dealt with the entire fake-out for Glenn’s death was ridiculous at best. We all know that Glenn Rhee has an impressive track record of near death experiences but that doesn’t mean another such experience can be taken for granted. He is not supernatural after all. For those who are late arrival to the scene,Glenn fake-died in the third episode. It was only in the seventh episode that they revealed it was just a fake-out. It took them 3 bloody episode to reach to that revelation! What the heck was that??
The three episodes in-between consisted of one (interesting) backstory dealing with Morgan’s transformation and two filler episodes. However,all of these came across as hugely pointless and gimmicky. It may be even more insulting if the show follows the comic books.
That’s not all about it. To make matters worse, his death isn’t even really discussed much during this time period. Therefore, us, the audience were left to wonder just what the freaking hell was going on in the head’s of our merry band of survivors.
This problem was so jarring in the first half of Season 6, the less said here, the better. No other incident this season has left such a sour taste.The whole thing is a huge shame because, again I reemphasize, Season 6 started out with such huge potential. Glenn’s fake death was a black spot on the season, and could become an even bigger blotch depending on how the season ends. Despite all these irking blunders it continues to be a pretty strong season even now.
2. Out-of-Character Behaviors to Further the Plot
If there is something I hate about TV series in general, it is the fact that after a period of time, they (most of them) are stretched too long. To do that characterization is sacrificed or compromised and tossed out of the window. To meet this end, characters are stretched, in the process, they act weird to further the plot. This issue is also there in The Walking Dead and it is not peculiar to this season but rather it is a recurring one as it has been there in the entire run of The Walking Dead. It seems like the show runners are in no mood to rectify this.
Characters constantly do things that don’t make sense, things they wouldn’t do if they were independent individuals with agency and not authored characters.After a period of time, it begins to feel like the writers are shoehorning their characters into unreasonable actions simply to further the plot. They are not allowed to act and behave organically and naturally and letting the plot flow after. This is a characteristic of a bad drama whereas good dramas do the latter – allowing a story to follow its characters rather than the other way around.
By way of explanation, on the one hand a show like Breaking Bad tells the tale of Walter White’s character flaws—his ambition, pride, and disregard for others. Those flaws, also called hamartia, shape the tragic course of events. On the other, The Walking Dead seems intent on shaping characters in order to keep them enslaved to the narrative. Utter non-sense.
I will cite instances from the season to illustrate my point. For instance, there was no reason for Carol to go kill the captured Wolf when the zombies had broken through Alexandria’s defenses. She is too smart for that, regardless of whether or not she disagrees with Morgan. She knows that she could have easily waited until the danger had passed and then go on to Rick. Then they could have handled the problem together. Instead, her actions put everyone in danger. Again granted that she has done questionable things in the past, but almost always there was a rational reason behind it – to protect others. This was not at all rational.
Then we have Rick. What reason had he to take a bunch of kids on his mission when the zombies overran Alexandria?I mean, what the heck was he thinking, if he’d been thinking at all(he does at times, I assume)?He should have taken the kids to a safe place first. Doing so probably avoiding the terrible fate that awaited them. His plan to herd the zombies out of the quarry also seemed really far-fetched and not terribly bright. The list goes on and on. His solo attempt to take on the zombie horde after Carl is shot is another foolhardy mission; his plan to take down Negan without doing any re-con or finding out anything about the enemy, so on and so forth.
Maggie continues to act recklessly as ever as though she is not pregnant at all, which is mindboggling. Up to an extent it made sense that she’d try to go find Glenn but the idea of her accompanying the raiding party made much less sense. Oh well,at least the show acknowledged as much although it has not done much to confront it.
There’s more – Glenn backing himself into a corner to save Maggie. From the appearance of it all it seemed a pretty safe situation. From there how it escalated to him almost getting swarmed by zombies is beyond me. If your post-apocalypse community had only one doctor to tend to your wounds and treat your diseases, would you make him a priority member with protection for the general good? One would think so. But the Hilltop community sends out its only doctor scavenging; beats me why. Rick choosing Maggie to negotiate with Gregory rather than doing it himself. Rick and Daryl not taking the truck of supplies back to Alexandria, and not driving two cars. Arrgh! I want to pull off my hair.
It makes me wonder if the writers care less about what their characters actually believe, and more about how they can get from Point A to Point B.Lots of these little actions go against the grain of characters.