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Recap / The Walking Dead S 01 E 02 Guts

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Season 1, Episode 02

Got guts?

Rick joins a group of survivors trapped in Atlanta in their efforts to escape the overrun city.

At the camp outside of Atlanta, Lori is talking to Amy about getting more food for that night's dinner. She walks out into the woods to search for plants and berries, and is surprised by the appearance of... Shane. It is revealed that the two planned to meet beforehand for a secret tryst. As they begin having sex on the ground, Lori takes off her wedding ring from her neck and places it on the ground in front of her...

In the tank, Rick is still trapped inside. The voice on the radio tells him that although he is surrounded, he can still escape because the walkers are feeding on the horse. Rick grabs his weapon and a grenade off a shelf in the tank before opening the top hatch and climbing out. He runs down the street, shooting walkers along the way and runs into a young man, who quickly tells him to follow. Together, the two men climb a service ladder before the horde catches up to them. On top of a building, the man tells Rick his name is Glenn, and that he's part of a larger group that came to Atlanta to scavenge supplies.


Rick and Glenn make their way through the streets until they come to the group's hideout. Several members wielding baseball bats and wearing riot helmets dispatch several walkers and bring Rick inside, where he is held at gunpoint by a woman named Andrea. She tells him that his antics have compromised the group's safety, but the situation is disregarded when another of the group members begins taking potshots at the walkers from the roof of the building.

On the roof, Merle Dixon is sniping walkers, making lots of noise and hurling racist remarks at an African-American man named T-Dog. In the rush to stop him, a man named Morales is beaten before Rick clocks Merle and handcuffs him to the roof. Rick assumes leadership over the group and tells them that they have to find a way to escape.

Glenn and another of the group members, Jacqui, discover a walker that has been feeding on rats in the building's sewer system, and kill him. Seeing that the walkers are trying to break through the building's glass doors, Rick improvises a plan where he and Glenn (covered in the blood and guts of the dead walker) will sneak to a construction site and steal a truck then drive it back to rescue the others.


The pair head out and begin walking through the horde, who ignore them befcause of the smell. They near the construction site, but a snap rainstorm begins washing off the blood and guts. The walkers notice this and begin moving towards them, forcing the pair to break into a run. Rick gets into the truck and drives it back towards the building, while Glenn hotwires a nearby sports car and uses it as a distraction to draw the attention of the horde.

Rick brings the truck into the building's garage and tells everyone they have to leave now. T-Dog is guarding Merle on the roof when Jacqui tells him to flee, but drops the key to the handcuffs into a vent in his haste. Unwilling to stay behind, T-Dog instead locks the door to the roof to prevent the walkers from attacking Merle. He, Andrea and Jacqui run to the truck while the horde smashes through the doors, and they barely manage to escape.

Just outside the city limits, Glenn speeds back in the sports car cheering with happiness while the truck follows behind...


  • Black Comedy: The group butchering the dead walker and covering Rick and Glenn in the innards is pretty funny in a disgusting sort of way.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The grenade found in the tank is later used in "TS-19."
  • Due to the Dead: Rick insists on giving this to the dead walker they use to disguise him and Glenn, going through the guy's wallet to make the point that it was once human and had a family just like the rest of them. Then Glenn points out that it was an organ donor, and they hack it to bits.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: The zombies are much faster and more agile than in the rest of the series, and exhibit behaviour that they are incapable of doing in later episodes (notably, several walkers climb over the fence to the construction site).
    • They also appear to be more intelligent and retain their memories of who they were. The little girl goes out of her way to pick up a stuffed toy. Jenny seems to be attracted to her former home, knows what a peephole is and that to open a door you need to turn the knob.
    • Also climbing up the ladder after Rick and Glenn.
  • Establishing Character Moment: A few, most notably:
    • Glenn risking his own life and jeopardizing the scavenger mission to save Rick, a total stranger, sets him up as the Nice Guy, while his quick thinking and ability to sneak through the streets of Atlanta unnoticed establishes his role as the resident Guile Hero.
    • Andrea brandishing a gun in Rick's face in a convincingly threatening manner only for it to be revealed that the safety was on and she doesn't really know how to use it establishes her role as the Faux Action Girl who just wants to be badass.
    • Merle shooting walkers from the rooftop while out of his mind on drugs before letting loose with racial slurs and attacking T-Dog sets him up pretty nicely as a violently racist Jerkass.
  • Faux Action Girl: Andrea manages to be convincingly threatening pointing her gun in Rick's face, but he later tells her that the safety was still on, revealing that she has never actually used the weapon which was a gift from her father.
  • I Work Alone: Glenn insists that he works better alone, as his previous solo scavenger missions have gone off without a hitch, yet the first time he brings others with him they run into trouble.
  • Male Gaze: There is a shot that follows Amy while she is walking to Lori with a bucket of mushrooms. You are able to see her butt while she is walking for about 20 seconds in this scene.
  • Not with the Safety on, You Won't: Said almost verbatim by Rick to Andrea.
  • Pretend We're Dead: Rick and Glenn do this in order to pass through the horde of walkers undetected, covering themselves in the blood and viscera of another walker to disguise their scents. It works surprisingly well, until it starts to rain and the disguise is washed off.
  • Relax-o-Vision: Rick's advice to Glenn to help him through the ordeal of being covered in gore. Unfortunately it doesn't quite work.
    Glenn: Oh, this is bad. This is really bad.
    Rick: Think of something nice. Puppies and kittens.
    T-Dog: Dead puppies and kittens.
  • Screw the Rules, It's the Apocalypse!: Discussed between Rick and Andrea
  • Second Episode Introduction: Glenn (though his voice was heard on the radio at the end of the previous episode), Andrea, T-Dog, Morales, Jacqui and Merle.
  • Spiteful Spit: Merle spits on T-Dog when he has him pinned to the ground at gunpoint.
  • Squick: The group's in-universe reaction to slathering Rick and Glenn in zombie guts.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: T-Dog advising Glenn to think of dead puppies and kittens while he's being painted in gore is what finally sends Glenn over the edge.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Lori and Shane have sex in the woods surrounding the camp at the beginning of the episode. Although the be fair, they both think Rick is dead.


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