The Walking Dead episode 7 Dead Weight, opens with a pretty good microcosm of events to come.
We see The Governor and Megan playing chess outside of an RV. Along with scenes of Carlos Martinez, pulling Brian aka The Governor and Megan from out the biter pit.
Martinez is surprise to hear Lily refer to The Governor as Brian. Nevertheless, he invites him and his family into his camp.
He makes it clear that he is in charge and will not accept any Dead Weight.
While ‘Brian’ is hanging clothes and playing chess with Megan we learned a few things. Most notably (and probably not surprisingly) that The Governor had a rough childhood and an abusive father.
He tells Megan “He used to beat me in chess, too; heck, he used to beat me in everything.” But the chess game was the central metaphor: The Governor tells the child “You can’t think forever, sooner or later you’ve got to make a move.”
Watching Brian with Megan is so different from who he has been. You find yourself wanting him to do the right thing. Megan tells him that “we are all good.” You see him struggle with that notion.
On a supply run with Martinez, Pete and Mitch, Brian stays in the back and follows Martinez lead. They happen across a series of dead bodies without heads. Each body has a different sign hung around its necks (Liar, Rapist and Murderer.)
Once they reach a cabin, Martinez orders Brian to lead the way inside where they find two zombies, (a young girl, and the dead owner’s wife) and several still living severed heads. Brian’s quick reaction basically controls the entire situation.
Back at the camp, everybody is drinking beers and relaxing. A drunken Martinez takes Brian up on the roof of an RV to hit golf balls, something they used to do in Woodbury. Martinez starts rambling about not wanting to have another family due to his lack of confidence in keeping the camp safe.
He says, “now that you’re here, maybe we can share the crown a little.”
Brian instantly snaps into a blind rage and turns into The Governor. He takes a single swing to Martinez’s head with a golf club. Martinez is down and dazed. The Governor kicks him off the RV and drags him to the very walker pit he was rescued from. “I don’t want it,” he screams, madly, as he feeds Martinez to the Walkers. But it is obvious this is innate to him it is absolutely a part of him.
Brian is guilt ridden and convinced that the camp isn’t safe. He tells Lily they have to leave. “I can’t lose you again,” he says. He’s not talking about Lily. He is referring to his dead wife. Yikes!
The Governor is slowly slipping back into his consciousness. She tells him “We are home. I feel safe here”
After the discovery of Martinez death, Pete takes over temporarily as the leader. Once Brian goes on a supply run with Pete and Mitch, he is convinced his new family is not safe under their guidance. He decides to flee the camp that night with his little family (Lilly, Megan and Tara and Alicia, Tara’s new squeeze.)
They quietly slip out under cover of darkness, none of the women quite understand what’s going on, but trust him all the same. They don’t get far. The road is blocked by dozens of biters stuck waist-deep in muck. No escape. He watched the Walkers in the mud and devised his plan. Brian is officially gone now.
The Governor does what he does best. He kills Pete and throws him in the lake. In the mind of The Governor, killing Martinez and Pete wasn’t about anything more than insuring his and his new family’s survival.
The Governor explains the new reality to Mitch. “I promise you,” he tells Mitch in offering to make him a Lieutenant; “you’ll never have to worry about whether you’re doing the right thing or the wrong thing, because we will do the only thing.” Mitch agrees.
Quickly the Governor establishes the new regime, and has the camp working like a well-oiled machine. He’s good at this. People immediately feel safe with him in charge.
Tara and Megan are comfortable enough to play tag – with Megan almost inevitably running right into a Walker. The Governor, true to his promise to the child, saves Megan with one single shot to the Walker’s head.
The Governor drives off alone. He visits Pete in the lake and watches him struggle against the chain shackled on his foot. He is “Dead Weight” and you can’t deny the eerie reminder of last season with The Governor’s obsession with his aquarium tanks full of Walker heads. The Governor is officially back!
Of course he heads over to the former West Georgia Correctional Facility. We finally linked back to the end of “Internment”, with The Governor watching Rick and Carl from the shadows outside the prison. In the distance he sees, Michonne and Hershel standing by the jeep – this is clearly right after the flu outbreak and the two are burying the bodies.
The Governor raises the gun, his one good eye trained on Michonne, the woman who took his eye and his daughter. This isn’t about survival. This is about revenge.
The screen goes black. Next week is the mid-season finale.
Do you think Michonne will be shot?