When we last left our hero, he had just had The Big Talk with Morgan. So from now on there should be no blind stumbling around and flailing right? RIGHT? Morgan lets us in on all kinds of Zombie secrets including how one becomes a zombie and how to kill 'em. Shortly after this, Morgan's wife comes calling and we find out about fevers and the ZTT for these suckers. It would seem to me that the Zombies in this world have some sort of residual memory. We see this with Morgan's wife hanging around the house where she died and also with a deputy hanging around the station a bit later in the show. It will be interesting to see if this theory pans out.
The next morning Rick goes straight out the front door and bludgeons a Zombie to death with a baseball bat. I have 2 comments on this:
1.) There's nothing more satisfying than having that morning coffee and then getting right to work am I right?
2.) Love, Love, LOVE the precautionary face shield Rick! Atta Boy - now we're talking! There is nothing more sketchy than having wet Zombie spackle land on your face right in the middle of a good bludgeoning. I have such high hopes for our hero in this moment. He really DOES show promise!
Rick decides that his wife and son are still alive and prepares to go off on a quest to find them. Morgan and his boy Duane tell Rick that there is a big survivor refugee camp in Atlanta at the CDC. Rick decides to head there but first he takes his 2 buddies to the station where they all have hot showers, and get a bunch of guns and ammo. While we're here, let's pause for a moment and discuss one of the most important choices you have to make in a Zombie Outbreak: where to hole up.
Remember that a Zombie populated world is not forever. Zombies are not living beings so you only have to hole up until the main wave literally rots to pieces and then stay vigilant for those infected later in the game and stragglers. In a humid tropical environment you may have to wait as little as a month! If you're in a high-desert region though, you'll have to stay vigilant for years. The dry air can mummify those suckers into sinewy toughness and if they get caught in a fall freeze they'll be up in the mountains all winter and then come striding out of the snowmelt like nothing's even happened. Who wants to be blindsided man? Head south.
If it's just you and a few close friends you are looking for a place with at least 2-3 exits (windows are exits) that can be defended against a large Zombie mob. You have to assume that if something goes wrong and the Zombies discover where you are (crying child, barking dog, hysterical woman, obsolete blackberry meeting alert that someone never bothered to disable) that they are going to descend on you in large masses. They're not that strong, but hundreds of them over time, will definitely get through boarded up windows and substandard doors. They can even get through exterior walls if it's just plank siding, insulation, and sheet rock. So a house in the suburbs is a bad bet. If you have to hole up in a house, find one with an attic with a pull down stairway and plenty of room. Keep all your necessities up there including lots of water and food. Zombies don't climb well and they are horrible at problem solving. Even if they know you're up there, they'll just wander endlessly below you and have no idea how to reach you in the attic.
Farmhouses are a better bet than a house in suburbia and will have a better selection of supplies, but try to choose one without a wrap around porch and a million first floor windows, and do look for that attic. There will tend to be fewer Zombies wandering aimlessly as you move away from population centers so if they do find you you'll have less to kill.
Never, Never, NEVER hole up in the root cellar or tornado hideout. If they bust through the door you're cornered like a tasty little gummy bear at the bottom of a Christmas stocking.
Someone in your party will want to hide out in a Church. Ugh. Creepy. Millions of ground floor windows. Close to population centers. Just say no.
A modern apartment building (think smooth exterior, not old school with a million fire escapes) is an excellent choice if the door to the apartment is really solid and you can be on the 3rd or 4th floor. You can keep tabs on all the zombies walking around below, take pot shots at them if you have plenty of ammo, and although they will be able to see you, the Zombies will have no idea how to get to you. Just make sure you have a rope ladder as an extra possible exit and watch out for infected ex-residents.
If you have have met up with other survivors and formed a large group I have 2 words for you: State Penitentiary. Zombies are totally thwarted by chain-link fences. Take your best assault team and sweep the grounds, make sure you have a good supply of food and water (there should be a nice store there already - bonus!) lock yourselves in, and spend your time in the exercise yard and library while you wait for the Zombies to decompose.
Let's now analyze the station where we last left our heroes. Hot water, strong doors, multiple safe zones and THEY'RE LEAVING!?! Rick needs become aware of the whole "wait for the Zombies to rot away" thing. I mean if the old ball and chain isn't already doing the undead shuffle she's probably somewhere safe. Better to wait a month or 2 and then try for a reunion. We ARE in Georgia remember, so these Zombies are not going to last all that long. But 3 dudes holed up and staying safe in a Sheriff's Station doesn't really make for must-see-TV so off Rick goes to find his wife. Before he leaves he sees a Zombie ex-coworker and he kindly puts him out of his misery. Morgan takes the hint that he might want to do the same for his wife. Morgan goes home, goes upstairs and starts using Zombies for target practice. Finally his wife comes along. He gets her in his scope, and, aaand, aaaaannnnd.... he can't do it. At this point my husband turned to me on the couch, took my hand in his, looked deep into my eyes and said:
"Sweetheart? I would have wasted you."
My teary response:
"I would expect nothing less."
See all the wonderful romantic moments this show provides?
Rick takes off in a cruiser (good choice) and starts broadcasting on his radio. We cut to a group of survivors who hear him but get cut off before they can talk back. Turns out his wife, son, and best friend/co-husband are in this group so yay! Wife and ex-partner are smooching and all yada, yada, the real drama here is where this group has decided to make their stand. HORROR! All of the sound options discussed above have been discarded and this group has decided to hole up .....wait for it.... IN A HASTILY THROWN TOGETHER HOBO CAMP.
I'm still in awe. They're living in tents. Ok, and an RV. Like that's any better. Zombies see an RV and think "oooh, tinned human!". They'll have that thing flipped over with a side peeled up before you can say "what's going on". And I mean do I even need to discuss the tents? Madness! I mean Come ON people, I want to at least try to root for Team Humanity but you're making me hope you get invaded just so I can see it. (and I'm thinking we'll see it....) I can't talk about it anymore right now.
Rick runs out of gas. It happens. He finds a farmhouse with a truck but can't find the keys. This would have been a lame choice. The truck gets bad gas mileage and the cruiser has a radio and all kinds of cool Law Enforcement perks that I don't even know about. Definitely stay with the cruiser if you have one right? Does he siphon the gas out of the truck so he can fuel his cruiser? No he does not. He takes a horse. Geez this guy has transportation issues. I should say "THE Horse" because the horse is in all the previews and is even featured in the show icon. So we knew the horse was coming and I don't know about you, but I kinda assumed that the horse was going to be with us for quite a while. Kind of expected a "Lone Ranger and Silver" relationship to develop over the course of at least a couple of episodes. So no one was more shocked than me when Rick got his horse EATEN OUT FROM UNDER HIM by the Zombie horde a mere 4 minutes and 35 seconds after it made it's debut. Nice job Ranger, I didn't even have time to get attached and sentimental about it. It was more like: "hmm, easy come easy go hey Rick?"
So now Rick is really screwed. He's in a mob and it's a big enough one that he doesn't have to worry about there being enough left of him to be infected. He crawls under a tank. Thankfully it's like the WWII type with the hatch in the floor. Of all the lucky vehicles to crawl under eh! He pulls himself in, shoots a Zombie inside, aaaalllllmost passes out before securing the top hatch due to the gun's firing (which would definitely have been a life-ending mistake), and pauses to catch his breath. Lets hope this thing is gassed up and the keys are in it. Or that his new best friend on the radio has a plan.....