Today I finished watching season 1 of The Walking Dead on FX (UK). This has been an incredible series and I have high hopes that Frank Darabont and Gale Ann Hurd will pull out all the stops for Season 2. Seeing as this was the last episode of the series I thought that I would give my review of the episode. Now this review does contain spoiler warnings so if you don't want to hear how Season 1 ends do not click the jump but in short that was an incredible finale to the Season.
First of all last weeks cliffhanger with the doors of the CDC opening was one of the best cliffhangers in modern TV history. This episode has fully lived up to that cliffhanger. Once the doors open we find Edwin Jenner, the last scientist working at the CDC on the as-yet unknown TS-19 to try and cure the zombie virus. Right from the bat we see that Jenner is a tortured character, distraught by horrific memories. This leads on to Jenner letting the survivors stay in the CDC and that gives us a great flashback to the first episode with the survivors relishing in the joys of a hot shower, the same way as Rick and the father and son in episode one. Speaking of flashbacks we finally see why Shane thought Rick died in the outset of the zombie apocalypse and it makes sense from what we see of Shane and the actions of the military. Later in the episode Shane almost tries to rape Lori while drunk and Lori pushes Shane away, this makes sense with Shane's character throughout the series and we can see that if Shane wasn't drunk then he would never have tried it. But the ending is where the episode shines with constant plot events happening. Firstly we find out that TS-19 was Jenner's wife who got bitten by a zombie and begged Jenner to find a cure, secondly we hear that a research facility in France got the closest to finding a cure for the virus and thirdly the CDC is set to explode the second that all the power runs out. Jenner locks the survivors in and only with the persuasion of Rick does Jenner let them out to survive but not before telling Rick something. That was the key point in the episode and will be the recurring plot device in Season 2, finding out what Jenner said to Rick, my guess is that Rick did get bitten in the hospital and is infected with the virus but is immune, but don't hold me to that. When the survivors are let out Jaqui and Andrea decide to stay. Jaqui cannot be convinced to leave but Dale manages to convince Andrea to survive. Rick and the other survivors escape the CDC before it blows up and the scene where Jenner and Jaqui embrace before they die was one of the most touching moments of the series. The series ends with the survivors driving off into the unknown. Now although the episode was incredible there was still one major problem, Merle Dixon. Merle is not mentioned at all throughout the episode, not even by Daryl and I feel that if it was revealed where Merle is then the ending would have been better, then again I think the whereabouts of Merle will be revealed next season. Even considering that the season finale of The Walking Dead was still incredible. I give it 4.5 stars out of 5.