The stay at the farm permits for more traditional character development. After last week’s swarm, the show cuts down to one zombie—but h’s one of the nastiest we’ve seen yet.

My opinions on this episode are (appropriately) split.

Title: “Cherokee Rose”

Cast and Crew

Directed by Bill Gierhart
Written by Evan Reilly, from the graphic series by Robert Kirkman

Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes
Sarah Wayne Callies as Lori Grimes
Jon Bernthal as Shane
Laurie Holden as Andrea
Jeffrey DeMunn as Dale
Steven Yeun as Glenn
Norman Reedus as Darryl
Scott Wilson as Herschel Greene
Lauren Cohan as Maggie Greene
IronE Singleton as T-Dog
Melissa Suzanne McBride as Carol Peletier
Emily Kinney as Beth Green
Hane McNeill as Patricia
Chandler Riggs as Carl Grimes

Additional cast and crew information may be found here.

Premise

Darryl searches for Sophie and finds some leading evidence, Glenn and Maggie seek supplies in town and get lucky, Herschel and Rick discuss God and arrive at a compromise, and the survivors encounter, well, a bit of a problem.

High Point

Nothing like a waterlogged corpse sloshing around a well.

The zombie scene felt forced and unnecessary– but it may be the best forced and unnecessary scene on television this week.

Low Points

We learn they have a generator and five four wells, but other things don’t really make sense here. Why has the Herschel clan not cleaned out the pharmacy already? Why don’t any of them head out with Darryl? Why did they risk Glenn’s life in the well? And why is Herchel so resistant to outsiders, given that so few real people remain> Okay—readers of the comic have possible answers to that last question (though not necessarily good ones), but really, most of these things happen to facilitate the plot. The pharmacy provides the opportunity to send Glen and Maggie off on a mission. Glen has a great and creepy moment in the well. And Darryl’s discoveries have to be made alone—it’s more interesting that way, and it leaves the decision about what to report to him alone. Still, the plotting seems forced this week.

The Scores:

Originality: 3/6

Effects: 6/6 The show’s sole walker this week may be its most repulsive to date.

Story: 4/6 The episode felt both forced and aimless, but it did allow for character developments.

Acting: 5/6 Steven Yeun gives the episode’s best performance, while Jon Bernthal demonstrates restraint in the handling of Shane’s emotional difficulties. Other actors give less inspired performances.

Emotional Response: 4/6 The episode has some good interactions, typically between pairs of characters.

Production: 5/6.

Overall: 5/6 The episode develops from last week’s while providing a change of pace. It concludes with a surprise development that will surprise few viewers, but which will create some problems for the characters.

In total, “Cherokee Rose” receives 32/42