Well, it finally happened on last night's episode. If you haven't watched it yet, you may want to skip this post, and the comment section as well, if you don't want your anticipation spoiled, because some shit went down last night that I'd like to get your thoughts on – especially those who are die-hard fans of not only the series, but the source material as well.
In short, one black man has essentially been replaced by another; T-Dog's gone; and Oscar (who committed a "black on black crime" as I joked on Facebook and Twitter last night), appears to now to be taking over the single, vacated "Black Man slot" on the show.
This came as a surprise to me given what the show's producers suggested would happen with T-Dog this season, before the season began – that he'll come into his own; that he'd be far more useful and effective, and become his own man, etc.
I guess sacrificing himself to save others, can be viewed in that light.
By the way, Oscar is played by actor Vincent Ward.
T-Dog and now Oscar – both pretty much effete; you've already heard all the gripes about T-Dog's lack of a presence in the show; and, in last night's episode, in one single action, Oscar pretty much tells us that he's going to follow, instead of lead in any way. If you saw the episode, I think you know what I mean; Not shooting brothaman in defence of Rick, but what he does immediately after that.
Just don't tell any of this to the show's producer and creator.
Here's an excerpt from an interview with THR last night/this morning about the episode:
What made it the time for T-Dog to go — especially considering you've already got the emotional wallop of Lori's death?
Mazzara: We felt he needed to be a hero. Sometimes when we break these stories, if the death feels real and escaping the death feels like a TV cheat we have to go with the death. It wasn't an easy decision and it was our most heroic death. Up until this moment we haven't had heroic deaths. I don't think Dale or Shane died heroically; we haven't had that and here we have two heroic deaths — T-Dog and Lori, who sacrifices herself for redemption. That's important to show how much we love these characters, it's a particularly heartbreaking episode because those deaths are heroic.
Kirkman: It was important for us to us to show that there was quite a bit of chaos going on. Losing two characters and possibly three because we really don't know what's going on with Carol — was pretty important to us. T-Dog really stepped it up this season and had become core member of Rick's strike team. We wanted to show in his loss just how important this character had become and how heroic he was so that he would be missed that much more. T-Dog knowing that he was about to die and take it upon himself to do everything he could to save Carol's really showed how much of a loss this guy is going to be.
Do you agree – especially with Kirkman's statement that T-Dog "really stepped it up this season," and how much of a loss he'll be now that he's gone? I'm not so sure anybody (cast or audience) will miss him. Will you?
And what's Oscar's role going to be from here on? We'll just have to wait and find out; but, like I said, he's demonstrated that he's likely just going to take over the same slot that T-Dog previously occupied.
Can't have more than 2 or 3 black people on the same mainstream show at the same time. So we now have Oscar and Michonne.
And speaking of Michonne, I'm still waiting for her to really shine, especially given the months of hype around her character, and how much of a presence she's really going to be on the show.
I don't understand why she continues to cling to Andrea, when it doesn't appear to me that she needs her; Michonne clearly wants to leave, but Andrea continues to come up with reasons not to. So, why doesn't Michonne just leave? Unless I'm just missing something.
Obviously we're only 3 episodes in, so there's still a lot of zombie slaying to come, and new characters to develop. So a lot could change very quickly.
I think that the producers believe that if a black character leads, they'd have to focus on race; or his/her race would have to be addressed as the stories unfold, and they just don't want to have to deal with that. It's easier to put a black character in the periphery, so that they don't have to really dig into the mind, the thinking, the life and experiences of said black man or woman, as they would have to if they were leading like Rick.
We'll see how this goes from here…
Thoughts from you folks…???