UPDATE 2: Here's a full recap of Episode 8!
UPDATE 1: Check out another new sneak peek video below, showing an extended talk at the prison fence between Rick and The Governor. At that point, you see Michonne and Hershel on the ground as The Gov.'s hostages. The Gov. gives the prison till sundown to get out. Rick says there are children there, and some of them are sick and won't make it. Tara gives a look to "Brian," like ... are we really going to hurt the kids? The Gov. says he has a tank and he's letting them leave, so what else is there to talk about. Don't expect both Hershel and Michonne to live through this...
There’s never anything better or worse than The Walking Dead’s mid-season finale.
On Season 2, it was "Pretty Much Dead Already," which revealed Sophia in the barn in late November, then left us hanging on the aftermath until February. On Season 3 it was "Made to Suffer," which left the Dixon brothers in the Woodbury fight club pit in early December, then left us hanging on the aftermath again until February.
On Season 4, it's “Too Far Gone,” which will torture us in a new way on December 1, then leave waiting with bated breath until February 2014.
Season 4, Episode 8 has this synopsis: “After things begin to calm at the prison, Rick and the group face imminent danger.” By “imminent danger” we’re thinking they mean The Governor (David Morrissey) and company, just as the prison is recovering from the deadly flu.
In late July, TWD Enthusiasts reported a tank being spotted on set at the prison, with locals hearing a “loud BOOM.” That sounded like a possible reference to the comic book storyline of The Governor’s big return attack on the prison. In the books, he breaks down the fences with a tank, leading to a massacre with a huge loss of life on both sides. In Episode 7, it's shown that The Gov. does have a tank. Maybe we’ll see some version of that comic book scene in the mid-season finale.
We've also been wondering if someone will be "Tyreesed," as a reference to Tyreese's fate in the comic books. The Gov. captures Tyreese and uses him to try and force the prison to allow him and his Woodbury group access. Rick and company say no, so The Gov. beheads Tyreese using Michonne's katana. We know Hershel and Michonne are now out there in The Gov.'s midst in the TV version of things, so maybe Hershel will be the one "Tyreesed"? Just a sad theory. We're not expecting Hershel to be with us forever. (And where the heck is Carol?)
A Spoil the Dead fan shared a blurb from Entertainment Weekly teasing the December 1 mid-season finale; Steven Yeun (Glenn) told the magazine, "The finale is huge. It's the story we've wanted to tell for the longest time. Everybody is going to be watching with their jaws dropped." He also added, "You should never regard anyone as safe from any danger on this show."
After Episode 7, The Hollywood Reporter asked showrunner Scott Gimple to describe the mid-season finale. "I believe that it fulfills the story of the first seven episodes," Scott said. "It is very much an ending of sorts for a lot of these characters' stories. I can't wait for people to see it." And ending ... for a lot of stories? Lauren Cohan, who plays Maggie Greene, will join Robert Kirkman next week on Talking Dead, along with another mystery guest. What if it's Scott Wilson talking about Hershel, if he's one of the deaths? Who else might die?
Andrew Lincoln (Rick Grimes) shared this Episode 8 tease with Yahoo: "The mid-season finale is the biggest thing we've attempted, I think, so far in our show. I think the crew, and Ernest Dickerson, who directed it, everybody busted their guts to do that episode. Darrell Pritchett, who does the special effects — he's the man with the dynamite, was the busiest man I've ever seen. It was thrilling. Just thrilling. It just felt like an incredibly exciting episode. And then in the [final eight of the season], it's like we're spinning out into orbit, and it's a completely new show. It's really, really exciting."
Dynamite? Could that go with the boom and a prison attack?
Andy also told TVLine the mid-season is one of the best TWD episodes ever, packed with plenty of emotion. He was asked if he’d shot any scenes which rival Rick’s breakdown after Lori’s death. He answered, “There’s been one scene that was pretty painful to do — it’s always the midseason finale! … It was all going so well for me this year, I was farming and just kicking back — I thought it was going to be a really relaxed season for me — and then they just go, ‘Bam!’”
Back in mid-August, Norman Reedus (Daryl Dixon) gave a good Episode 8 tease to fans at the Wizard World Comic Con in Chicago: “I will say that we just wrapped the mid-season finale last night of The Walking Dead, mind-blowing. Minds are going to blow up, it’s so crazy, it’s so good. We thought last season was real good. This season’s crazy good. It’s nuts, you’ll love it.”
At this point, we’re still speculating that The Gov. launches an attack on the prison in the mid-season finale, and we deal with the aftermath in Episode 9. Andy told TVLine that Episode 9 is a good one for Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs). We’re wondering if it may lead to our group hitting the road for new territories — maybe meeting up with Morgan Jones, or just meeting these three new people to maybe go here.
Whatever else happens, it should be “exciting,” “thrilling,” “mind-blowing,” and “painful” — as usual! Watch the promo and sneak peek videos below and share your theories/hopes/fears for Episode 8.