The Walking Dead - Season 4, Episode 6: "Live Bait" TV Episode Review
Written by Steve Pattee and TGM
Directed by Michael Uppendahl
Written by Nichole Beattie
2013, Rated TV-14
Episode premiered on November 17th, 2013
David Morrissey as The Governor
Audrey Marie Anderson as Melody
Alanna Masterson as Tara
Meyrick Murphy as the little girl
Danny Vinson as Don
Warning! This review contains spoilers!
When we last saw The Governor, he suffered a crushing defeat by Rick and company and was sent scurrying away with his tail between his legs. This episode of The Walking Dead, “Live Bait”, sees the return of that once-great man, and focuses on what he’s been doing with his time since he’s been on the lam.
Steve: Wow. What a ginormous piece of feces this episode is. When I realized this one was going to be The Governor-centric, I got a bit excited. I wanted to see what this man had been up to. But as it played out, my hopes dissolved and I resorted to two things: texting my sister complaining about and making fun of this episode, and reminding myself to refer to The Governor as Brian from here on in. The weak-ass man I saw last night was most certainly not The Governor, and he will be Brian – the name he’s going by on the show currently – until he’s not back to his greatness on the show, but instead when he lives up to the man he was in the comics.
That said, “Live Bait” has nothing going for it. Maybe the writers are trying to get you to relate to Brian? Or they are setting up something mean and nasty? Perhaps Brian is going to come back to the prison and make peace? Whatever the case, this is by far the worst episode I’ve seen to date, and that includes anything from season two.
Steve: Did you find anything enjoyable about this episode? I mean aside from the sequins on Brian’s eyepatch. Seriously, what was that all about? My sister claims he let the little girl Bedazzle it up.
TGM: Well, you knew I’ve been dreading the return of The Governor, but never in my wildest dreams did I think they were going to go THIS route with the guy. The ONLY thing I liked about this episode was peeking into the life of another set of survivors. It was marginally interesting seeing how others eek out an existence in the world of the roaming undead. And except for seeing a zombie get its head bashed in with an oxygen tank, I couldn’t give a wet rat fart about the fate of Brian, his new girlfriend, and adopted daughter. I can’t be the only one who literally laughed out loud when The Governor showed up looking like some ragged cross between Snake Plissken and a Geico Caveman.
Steve: I will admit, at one point I too thought he looked like a poor man’s Snake Plissken.
TGM: The main problem I have with this episode has nothing to do with my ambivalent distaste for the The Governor, but rather the ultimate creative choice to humanize the character. Why do people feel compelled to show the “flip side” of the main protagonist? They’ve done it with Darth Vader and was an epic fail. They’ve attempted it with Freddy Krueger and it was an epic fail. And now this, what was already an epic fail turned into a colossally monumental clusterfuck.
Steve: You know, I had thought the same thing last night. And I had this whole diatribe worked up, but then I realized I just don’t care. As awesome as it was seeing Brian rip out the throats of zombies with his bare hands in order to protect the little girl (yawn), I found my finger still hovering on the fast forward button (where it was all night). The amount of meh contained in this episode is mind boggling.
Steve: Also, still no confrontation between Rick and Daryl? Really, AMC? It’s not bad enough that “Live Bait” sucked, it’s the fact that it held us up from seeing the things we care about. I don’t give a rat’s ass about Brian’s rise from the ashes. I just wanted him to show up with a plan of fiery vengeance. But no, not only do I get whatever the hell it was that I watched last night, I also have to wait even longer for the (please God) beatdown Daryl is going to give Rick..
TGM: Actually, what I’m hoping for is that we get five intense Brian-centric episodes, each highlighting his evolution from a ruthless sociopath to a loving and caring father figure. Then, at the beginning of the sixth episode, even before the title graphics appear, he accidentally crosses paths with Michonne who proceeds to slice his head in half with her samurai sword before he can even utter a single word.
The only way I could forgive the writers of The Walking Dead for unleashing this episode onto the general public is if news comes out today that the entire main cast came down with explosive diarrhea and couldn’t make it to the set without shitting their pants, thus facilitating the need for a very special episode of Kung Fu, starring… Brian.
Steve: That sounds good enough to me. I have to be honest here, TGM, I’m done for this week. “Live Bait” was poorly written, had questionable acting and is a complete waste of 41 minutes (or whatever the running time is sans commercials). They should have stuck with the “I” theme with the titles and called this one “Insipid”. It’s a one-off, forgettable episode.
TGM: Agreed. I don’t understand the motivation of trying to humanize the guy, I don’t understand the choice of the timing of this episode given that is completely retards the wonderful momentum established from the previous week’s episode, and I don’t like the fact that the previews for next week’s episode seem to be Brian-centric as well.
Video, Audio and Special Features:
Video, audio and special features will not be graded as this was a TV episode.
Click on a cover to read more episode reviews of The Walking Dead: Season 4.