We review the final episode until February.

That is, it’s the last episode of the show until February. Our review does not last until February, and can be easily read below:

Title: “Made to Suffer”

Cast and Crew

Directed by Bill Gierhart
Written by Robert Kirkman
Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes
Danai Gurira as Michonne
Laurie Holden as Andrea
David Morrissey as the Governor
Steven Yeun as Glenn Rhee
Lauren Cohan as Maggie Greene
Norman Reedus as Darryl Dixon
Michael Rooker as Merle Dixon
Scott Wilson as Herschel Greene
Melissa Suzanne McBride as Carol Peletier
Emily Kinney as Beth Greene
Chandler Riggs as Carl Grimes
Vincent Ward as Oscar
Lew Temple as Axel
Dallas Roberts as Milton
Chad Coleman as Tyreese
Sonequa Martin-Green as Sasha

Additional cast and crew information may be found here.

Premise

A new group of survivors finds their way into the prison, Andrea and Michonne discover the Governor’s daughter and his need for head room, and Rick’s team go D-Day on Woodbury. The Governor gets an eyeful—and a captive.

High Point

The episode featured interesting and suspenseful elements not typical of the series. They handled the Governor’s daughter well, even if Michonne seemed a little more trusting than usual. And we’ve not had a battle of this nature before. Some people might object to Woodbury’s seriously flawed security, but we have to keep in mind that these are not the Governor’s elite; they’re an ad hoc security force mainly experienced in killing zombies. They don’t expect an assault from a well-armed, sharply-honed team.

And that is one thrilling military assault.

Low Point

Some of the events occur because the writers want the story to unfold a certain way. Why does the Governor return to his place in the middle of a crisis? Why, when she has the drop on Merle, does Maggie not shoot immediately? How did Rick’s group miss the big honkin’ hole at the back of the prison? How does someone as paranoid as Michonne not suspect a zombie in the cage?

I’ll concede the second one, I suppose. She’s not an out-and-out killer. However, she knows she’s in a war zone, and she’s seen the danger posed by Merle.

The Scores

The story was, in places, a bit forced. Overall, however, the mid-season finale brought us an intense episode, which much to ponder.

Originality: 4/6

Effects: 6/6

Story: 4/6

Acting: 6/6 The episode featured strong performances, from key characters in the heat of battle to Axel in the depths of loserdom.
Emotional Response: 5/6

Production: 6/6

Overall: 5/6

In total, “Made to Suffer” receives 36/42

Final Comments

Is it necessary to kill off the current Black male character whenever a new Black male character shows up? Seriously, the fact that this is already a horror trope should be enough reason to subvert it.

Will we see the battle of the brothers? And will Daryl try to bring Merle back into the fold, or will someone just finally shoot him?

The Walking Dead returns on February 10, 2013.