The Walking Dead – Episode 2: Guts
In this episode of The Walking Dead, we see the introduction of the rag tag group of survivors whom Rick Grimes will eventually lead in their search of a safe place to live after the zombie apocalypse. We also see some deviation from the original graphic novel upon which the series is based – namely the introduction of the dislikable Merle Dixon, and the earlier-than-in-the-comics introduction of some of the survivors, including Andrea, Lori, Carl and Dale. Episode two “Guts” is also heavily influenced by George Romero’s classic Dawn of the Dead, with the group of survivors holed up in a department store.
Immediately taking off from the end of the episode one, Guts sees Rick being helped out of his tank situation by the series’ comedy relief Glenn. But it is a case of out of the frying pan and into the fire, as Rick must struggle with zombies on the attack from the outside and the bigoted, racist Merle Dixon on the attack from the inside! Of the newly-introduced cast it’s Steven Yuen as Glenn and Michael Rooker as Dixon who really stand out, each character at opposite ends of humanities spectrum – Dixon is the type of character who revels in it, seeking to use every situation for his advantage whilst Glenn is the friendly guy who uses humour to stave off the god-awful situation he’s in. Merle Dixon’s addition to the Walking Dead universe adds a very human villain the events. Unlike zombies, Dixon is very unpredictable. He can be considered a “monster” that adds an air of danger for the group of survivors.
This episode carries the heart of The Walking Dead on its sleeve with a title as straightforward as Guts, and it does not let viewers down, there are plenty of guts throughout this episode, especially in the scene in which Rick and Glenn had to disguise themselves as zombies to pass through the horde of zombies to get their hands on a van to rescue the rest of the survivors – its gross, funny and utterly, utterly superb!
Does episode two of The Walking Dead live up to the hype after the explosive first episode? Dumb question – of course it does! Guts is another great episode in what seems to be THE premiere horror series on television.