The Walking Dead Review: "Vatos"

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On “Vatos,” The Walking Dead continued its great pacing, picking up where it left off last week and making the season feel like one giant movie.

I originally couldn’t understand why Merle had chosen to saw off his hand. However, Daryl’s casual comment about the saw being too dull to get through the handcuffs cleared this up. It also didn’t come across as a forced explanation, but rather his out-loud attempt to comprehend what had happened.

Rick Grimes Pic

As the group followed the clues of blood, the second part of their mission came into play. Glenn strategically mapped out a way to retrieve the bag of guns, but, of course, nothing ever goes according to plan. At least Glenn was able to snag Rick’s hat.

This second group of survivors was great extra tension for Rick and his crew. People are just as big of a problem, if not more, than the roaming zombies. They appeared like a rough and dangerous gang and I was ready for Rick to to fight them if they refused to give back Glenn.

It was when the two groups faced off, that Rick was able to shine as a leader. He not only was continuing to follow his word on finding Merle, but he was also repaying a debt to Glenn. Even staring down multiple cocked guns couldn’t sway his focus or determination to help those in need.

I was pleasantly surprised by the truth behind the second group. Guillermo was simply playing the role of protective leader. He needed to defend his people and standing up to Rick was an understandable choice.

Sure, everyone has a past. However, what is truly important is the way people choose to deal with the present.

The conversation between Rick and Guillermo illustrated this significance and showed the importance of a person’s character. Guillermo had never asked to be looked upon as a leader, but he chose to take it on anyway. He might have only been a custodian, but now he is a leader of a group of people hoping to survive. Rick respected and understood exactly how Guillermo felt.

Vatos Scene

Characters like Glenn, who used to be a pizza boy, have adapted to the apocalyptic situation. He now utilizes his smarts and skills for his survival and fending off the zombies.

However, someone like Jim couldn’t handle the memory of his family being eaten by zombies. He had a breakdown because he couldn’t deal with the current situation. Luckily, the group was there and helped him understand the importance of working together and focusing on the now.

Unfortunately, the zombies don’t care about your past or role in the present.

The final minutes were a fantastic conclusion to the episode. The multitudes of zombies that invaded the camp were not only a surprise, but also a scary and claustrophobic moment for the survivors. They seemed to be everywhere at once.

I had thought that Amy was certainly a character that would be around for some time, especially as a contrast to her sister. Nope. The “Walkers” eagerly jumped upon her and began feasting. No one is safe from death on this show.

The Walking Dead is proving its worth on television and I’m eager to see what happens next for the survivors, now that their camp has been overrun with zombies. Also, Merle is certain to appear at an inopportune moment to extract his revenge. Only two more first season episodes to find out what goes down!


Editor Rating: 4.7 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (45 Votes)

Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.


You just know Merle brought a van full of zombies back to the camp. Was an a-hole


The worst episode of the lot.The whole interaction with the 'Vatos' was like bad filler.They should have given us more of the group members story.Everything feels so rushed since they're only allowed 6 1hr episodes so it suffers. @ Nima- Leaving the keys in the car in a world run amok with zombies is a GOOD IDEA actually.If you lose a group member to the horde you have to pray it's not person with the keys. F that, leave'em in car because chances of a stranger taking your vehicle is small.
The cutting off the hand seemed to soon but then again the zombies looked like they were going to fall through the huge gap in the door. Sounds like I dislike the show but I don't, just hate how far they fell off the original story line.Sure they were going to add some things & take others away but damn.Maybe they should've used 100% different characters but same universe because it pains me to see them do things I know they didn't do.Was looking forward to the prison & how they would handle 2 child killings and their reanimation.If I never read the comics it would be 5/5 but since I did series gets 3.5/5 lol.


It was really great and it always seems like a complete movies and now we are waiting for its sequel... thanks God it comes every week:p


This was a fantastic episode, the ending scene was great


You don't need to follow the comic to enjoy a great show. I watch Smallville without ever reading a Superman comic book. Talk about unpredictable! I don't think anyone would've expected the zombie attack at the end, or the younger blonde getting killed. It really brings an element of random to the show that hadn't been seen as much so far.


sorry yall..just feel like pointing this how does meryl steal the truck??? did they really leave the key in the car for some random stranger to come jack that shizzznit?? cmon; please dont insult my intelligence still though the greatest tv show ive seen in in canada..i pay for each episode on xbox....hollaaaaaaaaaaaa but really...u go to zombie land and leave urkeys in the car for meryl to come that yo


I already knew Amy was gong to die from the comic (I was a fan before the show and have read the whole comic up to date), and I agree with piecar that it was difficult to track who was dying at the end. Who were those people? Should I care? It reminds me of Lost of all the other unnamed passengers from the plane who only existed on the show to inevitably die.


Amanda, you must be unfamiliar with the comic. The original material surely proves that even characters who seem central can be taken at the drop of a hat. Kirkman once stated, I believe, that the only guy who you are sure will make it is Rick Grimes himself. And Amy was doomed to die. People talk about this show being a character study, but it seems to me, once you get sufficient background info on a character, it just means their nunber's up. The episode proves that the show will be an action show with decent character development, not a musing character study with horror elements. They are WAAAAAYYYYY off book now with the Vatos and the people who survived this episode. Also, in a podcast interview I learned that the actor who plays Shane is still worried about whether his number will come up or not...>This is well after the six eps are shot, so he survives at least until the second season. A small slip, but a telling one in relation to the source material. I thought the episode was stellar. I cannot agree that Daryl's throwaway line about the handcuff link being too tough for the dull hacksaw. It is still much easier to cut through a little piece of threaded rod than your hand. It's stupid...but they want him with his hand off, I guess, so I have to eat it. I wonder if this is to satisfy the "character with one missing hand" requirement from the comic. Maybe this means that Rick gets to keep his. The final scene was terrific. Good action. Still, I found it hard to follow exactly who was being killed though. People were dying that I had never seen on screen before. One female zombie was eating a black guy. A slim dark haired woman gets eaten. A Mexican guy...who were these people? Have we seen them before? Just random folks running out of the woods? It was satisying seeing the wifebeater buy it, but I thought it might have been too easy. If the show truly was going to be a character study, it would have been more interesting to see the character evolve one way or the other. Out of the four so far, this is Third best. Last weeks still picks up the rear.


I love this show and hated the way that it ended last night!! Atleast they got the wife beater. I was completely shocked.

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The Walking Dead Season 1 Episode 4 Quotes

Daryl: I aint so worried about some dumb dead bastard.
Rick: What about a thousand dumb dead bastards. Different story?

No crying in the boat. It scares the fish.