But what the world is out there isn’t what you saw on TV. It is much, much worse and it changes you. Either into one of them, or something a lot less than the person you were. Please do not… do not send us out there again.-Rick Grimes, season 2
At the end of Season 3 of Walking Dead, things seemed to be looking up for Rick and co. Despite several loses-his wife Lori, T-Dog, Oscar, Axl and Andrea-the war with Woodbury comes to a close when they’re able to successfully cause the governor and his small army to flee, causing the Governor to go nuts on most of his own people-and Rick brings in the remaing Woodbury residents, as well as the Williams siblings (Tyreese and Sasha), who were kind of caught in the middle of the conflict.. As things stabilize within the walls, Rick starts to build a small farm, with the advice and aid of ex-farmer Hershel. He also is willing to let new people in, provided they answer three questions.
However, that peace is not long-lived-but not from an enemy from out there, but an enemies within, both human and not. Their first enemy is viral-perhaps caused by the pig farming-a nasty virus which kills in a matter of days if not treated properly-and once a person is killed, unless it’s a blow to the head? Instead zombie. The walls and fences may keep the zombies and potential trouble starters out, buy they’re not quite as well defended from within. Plus there’s another problem-one of the kids at the prison-Lizzie Samuels-is pretty much psychotic, and thinks the Walkers are still good-natured people-she feeds them rats and compromises the security of the fence. We also have Bob Stokey, who although good natured-is haunted by his inner demons of alcoholism-something which jeopardizes the supply runs quite a few times-including a literal domino effect of shelves which winds up with the death of Beth Greene’s boyfriend Zach.
Perhaps the most unexpected enemy within is Carol-the kind former wife and mother, who started out somewhat meek but has been hardened through tragedy (as well as hanging out with Daryl). She unfortunately kills two members of the community, hoping to keep the virus from spreading. One happens to be Tyreese’s girlfriend and Woodbury survivor Karen, and Tyreese is none-too-happy about it.
It’s this moment in which Rick’s attempts to become more peaceful start to generally unravel, and prompts a change that will show Rick sort of have another break-becoming more violent in his attempts to survive. After Tyreese attacks Rick, Rick falls into his own violent rage, badly beating Tyreese before restrained by Daryl.
He also unfortunately has to abandon his attempt at farming when the zombies manage to weaken the fences due to Lizzie’s bait. He also is forced to exile Carol once she admits to killing the two (Rick works this out by doing some very basic CSI work, showing that some of his police training still exists).
Hershel-who has had his own attempt at sanctuary somewhat shattered in season 2-at least is able to do what he can to help the infected before they die and turn into Walkers. He seems to have taken Rick as a sort of protege. Like Dale before him, Hershel’s sort of the kind older gentleman of the group, keeping them from going over the edge.
But now an old enemy-one once with a sanctuary of his own but one built more on lies and destroyed through his own demons-is coming back, for revenge on the prison group….