Why don't I like Walking Dead? (Spoilers up to 3x06 at least)

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by AntonyF, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. AntonyF

    AntonyF Official Tahmoh Taster Administrator

    Nov 9, 2000
    London, UK
    Okay a question that only maybe I can answer. :) But this show bothers me...

    I loved season 1. Wanted to watch it again, buy it all that sort of thing. Season 2 I was enjoying for quite some time - about 2/3 of it. Then all of a sudden - not even sure what particular episode it was - I started to lose interest rapidly.

    I started to feel bored. The "one person has a melodramatic conversation with another person" repetitive format started to appear very transparent to me. Some of the plot points felt like they were icebergs in the season's storyline, with the narrative almost dictating what would happen soon after and like the story was on rails.

    And season 3 has not got me back. Normally I love shows that kill people off... but when they do it now I just yawn. They some how seem to have made death predictable.

    Rick's "I'm angry I'll kill people get covered in blood, have a moment smile then be okay" is just cliché 101 on characters being 'troubled'. It's right up there with "if someone is drinking a lot or do dangerous things they must be depressed viewers" plot point, which the likes of BSG enjoyed.

    Okay, maybe I have answered my own question above... but does anyone else feel like this?

    Normally I give up on shows that don't interest me anymore, but I'm holding on. Also I see it's astronomical ratings and it's clearly doing well. But can I get my interest back? I hate this sort of position... where you want to like it again, but just can't seem to do so.
  2. Vendikarr

    Vendikarr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    May 17, 2001
    I would say hold on. 3.08 has a scene that Rick isn't quite alright. I don't think things are over as quick as you think.
  3. Sindatur

    Sindatur The Grey Owl Wizard Premium Member

    Jan 2, 2011
    Sacramento, CA
    That is a different reaction that I am familiar with. Most who lost interest, lost it during the first half of S2 (The Search for Sophia). Once the Mid-Season finale aired and Sophia was found in the barn, things moved quicker in the second half of Season 2, and won back many of those that complained about the search stretching out so long, and Season 3 is obviously at it's most popular (Premiered to some of it's strongest ratings at about 9 Million, even with one big provider not carrying AMC, and grew that by about 66% for the mid-season finale with over 15 Million)
  4. Caliburn24

    Caliburn24 Commodore Commodore

    Apr 23, 2005
    Gig Harbor, Washington
    Season 1 was good but uneven(and ridiculously short). Season two was boring, repetitive and slow. Season 3(so far) is the best sustained group of episodes the show has ever done.

    But yeah, I don't love the show as much as some, and it has major problems. It handles some characters and relationships extremely oddly. Andrea/Michonne's relationship is so sketchy and little developed that it is almost meaningless. And Michonne isn't a character yet, just a glare. Many other characters have been shortchanged as well.

    And for heaven's sake, if you have Bear McCreary scoring your show, let him out to play, don't keep him locked up and unable to add almost anything to the show.
  5. degra

    degra Fleet Captain Newbie

    Aug 11, 2006
    it bored me as well. I am personally tired of all these post apocalyptic series that see how depraved humans can be in dire situations. For me it is a tedious pretentious exercise in how miserable and unlikeable they can make a character. I'm also not a fan of in your face bloody gore,,,it strikes me as doing it just for the sake of it and leaves me cold. Then there is the glacial pacing and killing off characters which shows like lost and bsg made fashionable. It has becomes predictable and lame ptrope which has gutted any emotional impact and feels like an obligatory spectacle. And most of these deaths happen to plot devices that no one has much investment in.
  6. DarthTom

    DarthTom Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Apr 19, 2005
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Here's where I'll stop you. At least in the Walking Dead the death's have been far from predictable. I'm sensing you haven't watched the series becuase they've killed off more than the typical "red-shirts," as we like to call them from Star Trek.

    Several likeable characters have died. Sophia and Dale come to mind. While it was easy to see that Shane would lose it and be killed off the other two weren't as foreseeable.

    Also in this season they've made one of the most likeable characters on the series - Andrea - much less so as she's seemingly switched sides for safety's sake. I didn't see that coming either.
  7. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Apr 13, 2004
    So. Cal.
    I bailed on the show after season 1 and missed season 2 entirely. I just got back into it this season (3). To me, the show is something to watch until Breaking Bad and/or Mad Men returns. The acting and wrting of the two are light years ahead of "Dead".

    There is a certain sameness about zombie attacks that gets old rather quickly. The show would be better with maybe fewer actual attacks replaced by a better build up of suspense before the atttack. Also, similar to Lost, I don't care about the main characters. I just don't think the actors are good enough to make their characters interesting enough.

    Less blood and grime, more suspense.
  8. RJDemonicus

    RJDemonicus Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Jun 11, 2003
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    There are actually relatively few zombie attacks (although they seem to have stepped up a bit this year). The main thrust of the show is the interpersonal drama and the struggle to hold on to civilization after civilization has collapsed. None of the deaths have felt to me like the "shocking death of a major character" trope common to Dark & Gritty shows. As far as I'm concerned the writing is the best there is on TV now. And as for the "glacial pacing," I love it. I'm tired of movies and shows that are paced like a Johnny Test cartoon. This is a show that's written for adult sensibilities and paced for an adult attention span-- usually I have to watch DVDs of shows or movies from the 60s to get that.
  9. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Sep 24, 2009
    I'd love to watch that show. It doesn't honestly sound like the Walking Dead (which I do actually like) but I'd love to watch it.

    I mean, it's a zombie series, and as such has had some deliberately shocking character deaths. Given its genre it's also pretty dark and gritty. And... I wouldn't even call it the best writing on genre television right now (that would go to Game of Thrones) let alone TV generally (here I'd lean Mad Men, before Breaking Bad fans claw me limb from limb).

    As gblews rightly says, Walking Dead is neither Mad Men nor Breaking Bad. The problem with the glacial pacing of the second season - which only feels that dragged out because the budget was slashed - is that the writers really weren't that good at grounding the series in meaningful interpersonal relationships.

    A show like Mad Men can thrive off its large cast of excellent characters, everything from their witty reparte to their most private, revealing moments. It's a character driven program.

    Walking Dead - when it's doing itself right, as the third season largely has been - is a plot driven show. So long as it tightens the screws and maintains narrative momentum, it's tremendous fun to watch. The third season's been an excellent example of this simply by alternating between two different locations - it gives the episode arc a spine, a sense of inevitability - these two worlds are going to collide and it's just a matter of when and why.

    When the series slows down the plot entirely to do character stuff like it did in season two it can get really spotty. It's been able to characterise some characters pretty well - it had a very good handle on what made Shane tick, for example - but with other characters you can practically feel the writings fumbling around for whatever motivation they want this week (Lori suffered here, as did Carol) and as AntonyF said it dragged its wheels with a lot of fairly repetitive melodramatic arguing. In Dale's final episode I could no longer stand the guy and he was making an argument I agreed with.

    But again: It's a ridiculously fun show and when it's firing on all cylinders it's one of the most entertaining hours of TV. I will give Walking Dead that much and that's why I stick with it. But I do completely get why many aren't enamoured of it.
  10. Avon

    Avon Commodore Commodore

    May 7, 2010
    zombie apocalypse + overwrought melodrama + boring characters = ridiculous tedium
  11. Kestrel

    Kestrel Vice Admiral Admiral

    Apr 9, 2009
    Eden Prime
    The biggest thing that annoys me about TWD is the way it treats its female characters. I'm looking at you, Lori and Andrea.

    Take away Maggie and what've you got? Michonne - who while awesome is pretty much silent, Carol who's just doing the hanger-on thing, and Beth who's fun and cute but pretty much fluff and not integral to the plot (and may well be fodder for Making Carl Mad).
  12. Tulin

    Tulin Vice Admiral Admiral

    Jan 2, 2003
    With the most wonderful man in the world!
    + 1
  13. Festering Esper

    Festering Esper Admiral Admiral

    May 16, 2001
    ¯\_(°·O)_/¯ Under your bed ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
    I don't think it's just this season. Andrea's been pretty unlikeable to me starting around the time her sister died. If she got eaten by a zombie on the next episode I would not miss her.
  14. RJDemonicus

    RJDemonicus Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Jun 11, 2003
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    I didn't say there weren't shocking deaths or that it wasn't a dark show. Of course it is. I said it doesn't feel like the Dark & Gritty trope-- in other words, it's genuine and doesn't come across as something designed to make teenagers feel like tough guys (like, for example, nuBSG).

    What can I say? I completely disagree about both the pacing and the relationships. In my opinion, both the plotting and the characterization (for the most part) have been masterful and the pacing has been a breath of fresh air in a medium generally geared toward Generation ADD. This is a show I'd bring to a writing class as an example of the right way to write.
  15. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Commodore Commodore

    May 24, 2006
    Escaped from Delta Vega
    I think Dale and T-Dog's deaths were telegraphed. Both reached some sort of moment where their opinions/moral view was not accepted; Dale regarding the captive, and T-Dog's desire to give the inmates a chance. Predictable scripting usually has characters rejected because of their moral convictions rewarded with death so the characters' mortality was written all over the walls.

    Same with Lori: in modern zombie productions, the trens seem to be that preganant characters have one kind of complication or another: in the Dawn of the Dead remake, "Luda" was bitten, dies and gave birth to a zombie child. Once Lori found herself knocked up, you just knew it was not going anywhere good either for her or the child, so Lori's death (in a world with no medical support) was easy to see coming.

    Wait a second--she's one of the most likeable? She's been a major ass throughout the series. In season one, she's crappy to Dale. Season two she's running around trying to assert herself as a gunslinger, screws a psychopath (Shane), remains crappy to Dale, and worst of all, she plays some irresponsible game with a teenage girl (Beth) when the latter was considering suicide. Jump to season three, and with half of it in the can, she's still an ass with her lust for the Governor, ignoring Michonne's concerns, etc.
  16. lurok

    lurok Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Mar 15, 2011
    Lost in the EU expanse with a nice cup of tea
    I enjoyed season 1 but so far haven't been able to muster up the enthusiasm for 2 & 3. No-one I know has yet said: "it's must-see TV" so I figure I'll get round to it someday.
  17. Admiral2

    Admiral2 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Sep 14, 2004
    I can't help the OP. I just started watching it this season. I haven't seen enough to be bored yet.
  18. Agent Richard07

    Agent Richard07 Admiral Admiral

    Jun 20, 2001
    The Walking Dead certainly has its share of over-the-top melodrama, the kind that doesn't always feel genuine. What makes it more acceptable here than on BSG?
  19. RJDemonicus

    RJDemonicus Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Jun 11, 2003
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    Execution. nuBSG just had that feeling of juvenile posturing built into it. Plus, WD doesn't have the Beavis & Butthead stuff like people blowing cigarette smoke in the face of a pregnant woman. It feels sincere.
  20. Immolatus

    Immolatus Captain Captain

    Sep 25, 2005
    in all fairness what has Michonne given Andrea, "I don't like this place" grunt grunt.