With surprise ending of season 3 keeping The Governor alive most people were hoping to see him pop up in season 4. At the end of last weeks episode we got the first glimpse of The Governor. The last shot of the previous episode was outside of the prison and we saw the Governor watching it. I felt this was a brilliant tease to bring the governor back in and I am glad to see him return. I know that lots of people love The Governor and that likely contributed to the writers deviating from the comic book story and keeping him on. The first part of the season showed a threat of death from illness and now that has been resolved we get to have a person as the antagonist again,
This weeks episode opens with where we last saw The Governor in season 3. After killing all of the Woodbury people, The Governor and his remaining men leave and set up camp. We then see that The Governor is just sitting by the camp fire and a walker is approaching him and he does nothing to stop it walking towards him. The walker even trips over the camp fire and is right next to him and he does nothing. Martinez then kills the walker and The Governor still does nothing. He does not even flinch. The Governor then wakes up the next morning to find Martinez and Shumpert have abandoned him.
The Governor then returns to Woodbury and burns it down. A few months passes and The Governor has grown a beard and longer hair and is wondering the roads. It is very strange to see this character so vulnerable. Eventually we get a voice over of The Governor telling a woman about Woodbury and how the leader lost is mind. The Governor then continues to wonder and sees a girl in a window. He goes up to investigate and finds a family. They have a gun on him and he throws down his weapon and his backpack. We then get the opening credits. This was a really powerful opening and I really enjoyed seeing how The Governor went from this leader to just one man walking.
The family let The Governor stay the night. He claims his name is Brian Harriet. The family is made up of an old man, two young women and a little girl. At first the Governor is struggling to be around them and they are suspicious of who he is. The younger woman claims she is a police officer. The Governor plans to stay the night with them and move on. The family gives him some food but he doesn’t eat it and chooses to throw it out of the window. He returns the plate to their room and they think he is a walker. They then invite him in. The older man who is the grandfather of the little girl and the father of the two women is playing backgammon with his granddaughter but feels tired and wants to go to bed. The Women ask for The Governor’s help to carry him to bed but he hesitates. Eventually he picks him up by himself and carries him into the bedroom.
After taking the old man to his room he asks the Governor if he could fetch a backgammon board from upstairs. The current resident is a walker but he owned a backgammon board and the old man things it would make his granddaughter happy as she does not smile or talk much anymore. The Governor goes upstairs and finds the board. He walks into the bathroom and finds out the man is disabled and has reanimated in the bath. He has been shot through the chest but is still alive as walkers need to be shot in the head. The Governor secretly takes the pistol he finds and hides it.
The family are grateful for him getting the board but they ask him another favor before the Governor leaves. The Governor is informed that the old man has cancer and they need more oxygen tanks to keep him alive for as long as possible. The Governor goes to an old folks home to look for the oxygen tanks and finds a trolley full. However he gets overrun by walkers and only manages to leave with two. After this the family almost accept him as one of them. We see that The Governor sees the resemblance of the little girl and his daughter Penny. There is a sweet scene where he explains that he has an eye patch because he is a pirate. That is very unlike the Governor but after seeing what he has been through we understand how he has become more human.
Eventually we see some time has passed and The Governor has cleaned himself up. He looks like he did in the first episode we saw him in. He is playing chess with the little girl and eventually we see that the grandfather has died. The Governor suggests they leave but the others want to stay with him for a bit. Suddenly he reanimates and nearly kills one of the his daughters. The Governor uses the oxygen tank to smash in the walker’s skull. We can see the family is upset by this but they eventually learn that it had to be done. After burying the body The Governor informs the others he is leaving. They ask to go with him and they start to travel in a van.
The Governor has grown close to the family accept the young girl is slightly upset with him for killing her grandfather. This is simple because she doesn’t understand what happened but the others assure her that it was the right thing to do. One night the four of them are asleep in the van and The Governor gets close with one of the women. They end up kissing. This is an interesting turn as the Governor essentially has a new family now. I know he did some strange things before but it was Michonne killing Penny that unhinged him. The next day the van breaks down and they decide to go on foot. Suddenly the Governor notices that there are lots of walkers and they need to get away from them.
As they are trying to away from the walkers The Governor picks up the the little girl and runs with her. They both fall into a ditch where some walkers are. The Governor does not have a weapon and takes them out with his bare hands. This was a very intense scene and this still showed us how brutal The Governor is. After The Governor promises he will never let anything happen to the girl and that he will protect her. Suddenly Martinez appears at the top of the hole and is surprised to see The Governor.
Overall this episode was a great re-introduction to the Governor and I felt that the episode had a great deal of character development. It was interesting to see him react when he was the one looking for help. In some ways I feel that The Governor has shown us some redeeming features and I am very interested to see how he will behave in next weeks episode. Next week will follow The Governor again.
What did you think of the episode? Are you happy to see The Governor back? Please comment and thanks for reading.
Here is the promo for next weeks episode ‘Dead Weight’