“The Walking Dead” is bringing the first arc of Season 4 to a close with its midseason finale, “Too Far Gone.” The title doesn’t bode well for any of the characters on the show, especially considering the fact this season has been about whether people can truly change.
Plenty of the show’s characters have tried. From Rick to the Governor, they’ve both intentionally and unintentionally tried to become better people. For Rick, that meant putting down the gun and picking up the hoe. For the Governor, that meant taking on a new persona and choosing a new family to care for.
But both were inexorably drawn back to the darkness they tried to stray from. While Rick hasn’t become the troubled person he was in Season 3, he realized he couldn’t continue to stay clear of violence if he wanted to keep those close to him safe. The Governor simply couldn’t resist the draw of control, adopting his brutal tactics once again by murdering those in charge of Martinez’s camp until he had the crew firmly under his control.
For the Governor, this change seemed to start as a way to make a safe home for Lilly, Megan and Tara. But considering the fact last week’s episode “Dead Weight” ended with the Governor aiming his gun at Michonne, it seems like he’s back to his old evil ways. With the midseason finale titled “Too Far Gone,” it seems likely that he won’t be able to resist trying to exact revenge on the woman who took his eye and his (zombie) daughter. A promo for the episode promises that he will use violence to try to take the Prison from Rick’s group.
That brings us to the biggest question about “Too Far Gone”: Will Carol return? She hasn’t been seen since Rick sent her away at the end of episode 4 “Indifference,” and it seems unlikely that “The Walking Dead” showrunner Scott Gimple will keep her separate from the storyline as long as, say, Merle. With Rick and the Governor showing that change for the better can potentially be impossible in the show’s world, it doesn’t leave much hope for Carol’s chances.
Carol was sent away for killing Karen and David, and Rick said at the time that she had changed too completely from the woman she used to be to stay with their group. He considered her actions to be bad, but it’s debatable whether Carol was actually in the right in doing her best to stop the spread of the virus. Regardless, she was sent away with a car and some supplies and the recommendation of finding a new group and taking on a new identity — just like the Governor did.
But Carol’s ties are to this group, for better or worse. Like the Governor, it is only a matter of time before she returns to the Prison — or wherever Rick and the rest of the survivors end up. Who will she be when she does come back? Will she prove change is possible? Or will she completely harden herself and her own moral code and, in doing so, become unrecognizable?
Considering the audience hasn’t even seen Daryl’s response to learning Rick sent Carol away yet (that was left unresolved at the end of “Internment”), it might be too soon to bring Carol back. But hopefully the show will return back to her storyline soon, and — if all goes well — give viewers some hope that change for the better is possible in the post-zombie apocalypse world.
Would you like to see Carol return in “Too Far Gone”? Do you think that she’ll turn into a hero or a villain?