This is a review and analysis of this week’s episode of the Walking Dead Season 3, Episode 11 – “I Ain’t A Judas”.
If you have not seen the show or do not want spoilers, stop reading here.
This week’s episode of The Walking Dead starts off with young Carl confronting Rick about his ability to maintain and lead the group. As we’ve seen in episodes leading up to this one, Rick has just about come off his rocker hallucinating and imagining receiving phone calls. But it seems as though, for this week at least, that he has regained a piece of his sanity in order to create a plan for the group’s future. The Governor’s attack on the prison has awakened Rick to the real dangers that Woodbury poses on their survival and well being. And of course the return of Merle, who had been cooperating with the Governor up until this point, has everyone on their toes since they don’t really know whose side he is on. It’s a risk that the group has to take if they want to keep Daryl around and since he is such a strong player in their overall survival and defenses, they can’t afford to let Daryl go once again.
How the Governor survives to see another week, is beyond me. Last week, he was literally shooting the prison from out in the open and no one managed to shoot him even though they are able to clear out a whole prison and are pros at headshots. But, of course, the main villain can’t die too easily otherwise it wouldn’t be much of a story. For now, the Governor is still sort of a flat character. All we really know about him is that he tried to reform his zombie daughter, before Michonne plunged a Japanese samurai sword through her head, and that he likes to keep a fish tank full of zombie and human heads. Oh and that his real name is Phillip. For those of you who didn’t catch that the first time, Andrea refers to the Governor as Phillip, which in turn shows her true feelings for the man. Michonne was right when she said that Andrea suffered from a Messiah complex. It’s funny she mentions this because the title of the episode is, “I Ain’t A Judas” which can be taken to mean that Andrea will not “betray” the “Messiah” which would be the Governor.
Another biblical reference during this episode would be when Hershel goes to Merle with the Bible so that he may talk to him. The original passage is from Matthew 5:29-30 and says, “If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to go into hell”. Hershel starts with the passage but Merle is able to recite the last of it because he too knows the Bible. This may be the turning point for Merle but this passage can also be seen as a reference to the Governor himself. Hershel has lost his leg, but not to any real evil that he has caused. Merle has cut his own hand and thrown it away but the Governor has lost his eye but the difference is that he has not gouged it himself. Not being a religious man, this passage could possibly foretell the very downfall of the Governor himself. We’ll have to see as the season goes on, but it’s definitely something to think about.
On a different note, it’s funny too that Andrea copies what Michonne has done with the zombies to make them safe to use as a distraction. Andrea goes back to the prison but for what? It seems as though she just went to pity them and to try and recruit them to join Woodbury, where in reality she should know well enough that that isn’t possible. Everyone at the prison tries to reason with Andrea so that she knows what has really been going on with the Governor but by this point, she is too blinded by the lies and the charm to see the difference. These people that she has lived with, protected and gone through hell and back with now mean so little to her. They trust her enough to give her a car to take back and even tools to finish the job, but she is no Judas to her Messiah.
Who else is disgusted by Tyrese’s group ratting out Rick’s prison group? In the comic, Tyrese is part of Rick’s group and maybe it’ll turn out like that in the long run but it’s hard to see good people get mixed up with the Governor. The other man and his son have nothing but bad intentions and can do what they want but I’m hoping that Tyrese will come join the group again.
The episode ends with Beth, Maggie’s sister, singing Tom Wait’s “Hold On” which is important because the refrain in the song is, “Oh you got to / Hold on, hold on / You got to hold on / Take my hand, I’m standing right here, you got to /just hold on”. Rick’s group has to hold on if they want to survive.