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Love is the real danger in ‘The Walking Dead’s’ zombie hellscape

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In a world filled with zombies — and scumbags taking advantage of the people trying to survive the zombies — “The Walking Dead” painted an interesting picture with “Say Yes” (Mar. 5): Could love itself really be the true villain on the AMC series?

Throughout seven seasons of “The Walking Dead,” practically every main character on the show has lost someone they truly love — and in some cases, it’s driven them to very scary and self-destructive places. That came to pass once again in “Say Yes,” when stoic warrior Michonne (Danai Gurira) thought Rick (Andrew Lincoln), the love of her post-apocalyptic life, was devoured by zombies.

Facing an oncoming hoard of walkers, Michonne simply drops her signature sword in anguish, practically handing herself over to be eaten by the undead. She recovers once she realizes Rick is alive, but the moment shed light on a very sad realization about the show: There won’t come a time when emotion doesn’t come into play.

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There are some characters, like Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), who can separate themselves from feeling anything — but then there are our heroes, who are practically unwilling to go on in the face of losing someone they love. We’ve seen it before with Rick himself, who practically gave up on life after his wife Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies) died in Season 3. It leaves them at a distinct disadvantage compared to those they come up against in their adventures.

It’s also what makes them the good guys.

We love Rick, Michonne, Daryl (Norman Reedus), Maggie (Lauren Cohan) and the rest of the crew because of their ability to place love above all else. Ultimately though, it’s likely that will be their eventual undoing.

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It’s easy to see the world isn’t going to become a normal place. Living a quiet life simply isn’t possibly for any of these people ever again. Chances are they will all die horrific deaths, well before their lives would have naturally ended in any other situation.

Michonne made it clear in this episode, the family she’s built — specifically Rick, likely Carl (Chandler Riggs) and baby Judith — are all that matters to her in this world. Without them, what point is there in going on? Seeing that from Michonne, of all people, is scary.

She’s proved herself time and again to be a fierce force on “The Walking Dead.” Loving Rick is a weakness to that persona, the same way losing her family at the beginning of the fall was. However, it’s going to be the thing that powers her in the upcoming war with Negan, as well.

If Michonne’s not willing to live without her family, that means she’s willing to die to preserve them.

“The Walking Dead” airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on AMC. Four episodes remain in Season 7.

Category: TelevisionTV Shows: The Walking DeadTV Network: AMC

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