The Walking Dead: Season 5, Episode 7–Crossed

“We all owe Carol.”



This week’s Walking Dead had a welcome return for Rick and the rest of the gang at the church, as the three narratives we’ve been following for the last four episodes finally came together, much as I’d expected, in readiness for the big mid-season finale. After three eps which focused very heavily on particular characters while gradually driving the plot forward, this week had a lot more action as Daryl and Noah led the increasingly hardass Rick on a rescue mission for the captive Beth and Carol.

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The Walking Dead: Season 5, Episode 6–Consumed

“You’re not who you were, and neither am I. I don’t know if I believe in God any more, or Heaven, but if I’m going to Hell, I’m making damn sure I hold it off as long as I can.”



This week’s The Walking Dead found us rejoining the plot thread involving the show’s two fan favourite characters with the rhyming names, Carol and Daryl; though the ep as a whole was properly devoted to her rather than him. And that’s a good thing. No disrespect to Beth or Abraham, who’ve been the focus of the last two eps, but Carol’s a fan favourite for a reason – her character arc has been probably the most powerful of the show, played with quiet dignity and intensity by Melissa McBride. Some extremely good writing this week from Matthew Negrete and Corey Reed gave her plenty of meat to chew on this week, and the result was another quietly devastating episode to rank with last season’s The Grove.

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The Walking Dead: Season 5, Episode 5–Self Help

“We don’t stop, we don’t go back. We’re at war, and if we stop, we lose.”



Another week, another group of survivors in The Walking Dead. Having sensibly split up the ever-growing gang of main characters, it looks like showrunner Scott Gimple’s approach for this year is to jump between numerous storylines involving each group. If nothing else, it presumably means that some of the gang will get a bit more time off; after all, we haven’t seen Andrew Lincoln for two episodes now.

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Doctor Who: Series 8, Episode 12–Death in Heaven

“Turns out the afterlife is real – and it’s emptying. Every graveyard on Earth is about to burst its banks.”



One of the frequent (and justified) criticisms of Steven Moffat’s tenure in charge of Doctor Who is that he tends to undercut the sense of jeopardy by presenting death as something that can always be revoked. He even made a running gag of it with the many deaths of Rory Williams. But now, in a story that was far darker and far bleaker, he’s confronted the reality of death – and its consequences – head on.

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The Walking Dead: Season 5, Episode 4–Slabtown

“Everything costs something, right?”



Having handily split the show’s growing ensemble of characters into several groups last week, this week The Walking Dead had another of those interesting out of format episodes which focus on one or two of the regulars isolated from the rest of the group. Ever-surprising though, it wasn’t the expected catchup with Daryl and Carol after their departure from the church, but a follow up on the only loose plot thread from last season, as we finally found out what happened to Beth Greene.

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Doctor Who: Series 8, Episode 11–Dark Water

“You asked me what we’re going to do. I told you. We’re going to hell.”



After a very divisive season of Doctor Who, we’re finally at the endgame, where all those seeded themes throughout the year may (or may not) pay off. It’s been a new approach for Steven Moffat; while there was an overall plot arc, it was kept very much in the background. Meanwhile, the real arc of the season has been its main characters, and how they’ve developed. The new Doctor, abrasive and hard to like, questioning whether he’s “a good man”; Clara, recast from part one as a “control freak” and more believably fallible as a result; new boy Danny Pink dragging her back to the real world in a kind of relationship many have interpreted as passive aggressive manipulation.

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