You win some;, you lose some.
The Walking Dead: World Beyond Season 1 Episode 4 played with some interesting concepts, but as has become the norm with this third entry in the franchise, the execution hindered them.
The teens and what can only be described as their handlers at this stage being holed up in an abandoned school with unknown horrors lurking around every corner should have resulted in a rollercoaster from start to finish.
Instead, the needless tension between the characters took center stage, and it's difficult to care for a group of teenagers who are making some of the worst decisions.
Felix and Huck's continued plight to urge the teenagers to go back to the campus is wearing thin, mostly because they should have contacts back at the campus that they should be, you know, contacting every so often.
What would benefit the series is if everyone found out about the CRM leveling the campus because it would have eliminated the needless "we have to go back," arc and allowed our six characters to realize they were legitimately in a desperate battle for survival with a group that could wipe out what's left of the world.
It was way more interesting typing that last sentence than watching the series.
Felix, understandably, feels a duty of care to the teenagers because he knows what it feels like to be out in the apocalypse alone.
Leo has seemingly been like a father figure to him throughout their time at the campus, and I wouldn't mind some flashbacks of those times.
Learning more about Hope's complicated relationship with her father was important because it showed that she was a resourceful young woman who doesn't need assistance.
Does she make mistakes? Yes, and as far as the teenagers on the show go, she's still the best-written youngster on there.
Maybe it's just me, but it feels like Hope was jealous of her father's connection with Felix in the past, and this could come down to Hope being misunderstood.
While Iris is transparent about things, Hope tends to keep a lid on things, bottle them up, and struggle with carrying all of that anguish around.
The visuals at the school successfully built the tension, but it was choked out of the narrative by the corny dialogue from the teenagers. Saying things like "I have never been in a high school before," and "I've never had soda from a can" seemed very forced.
Some of the dialogue from the teens is overwritten, and it is painful to watch. Less is more, and the writers should allow the actors to tell the story through their body language as opposed to this weird excuse for exposition.
The wolf being the villain was a nice touch, but there should have been a bigger scuffle. This wolf had been dragging the walkers around the school and could probably smell fresh meat the moment they entered the building.
It would have been a good time to kill, or at the very least, injure one of the characters. It would have helped to reiterate to the young 'uns that communication is key to survival.
My previous comments about the walkie-talkies still stand here. Why would the groups splinter off and not keep their way of communication turned on, especially when they're in a strange building?
The real saving grace of this episode, though, was the post-credit scene. The "A" and "B" debate has been a part of the franchise for years, and we're finally scratching the surface with it.
Revealing that an "A" is a test subject is a big deal, and one that I don't think TWD: World Beyond deserved to tell. You only have to take a look at the ratings and the tepid reaction to this series to understand that many fans of the original series will not find out about this development.
If you watch The Walking Dead online, you know Jadis got us close to learning the truth during her continued mission to trade people for supplies.
Remember that time she called Gabriel an "A" before changing her mind and calling him a "B" and she flip-flopped over at as her feelings changed for him?
She said she wanted him to be a "B," which would suggest he was worthy of a place in the CRM, and then there's the way she saved Rick and told the CRM that he should be a "B."
The only thing we can assume here is that a "B" is a soldier or a leader, and given that the CRM are worried about emerging communities, they didn't get one of their settlements to 200,000 strong without recruiting some of the best individuals.
Rick is very likely to be alive and could be in the community Elizabeth and Parker were arguing in about their actions on The Walking Dead: World Beyond Season 1 Episode 3.
Then again, Michonne found his belongings ahead of her exit from The Walking Dead, and the movies are supposed to be on the way.
What did you think of the trip to the school? Are you surprised the new kid on the block was tasked with dropping that franchise-changing bombshell?
Hit the comments below.
Remember you can watch The Walking Dead: World Beyond online right here via TV Fanatic.
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.