Written by John Edward Betancourt
THIS IS THE EMERGENCY SPOILER ALERT SYSTEM...YOU ARE ADVISED TO READ AT YOUR OWN RISK...
If there is one underlying theme that I consistently find every single time that I watch The Walking Dead it has to be the importance of humanity. Not just in the metaphorical sense of who we are and what defines us as a culture, because we have seen those things slowly thrown out of the window as the show progresses season after season.
No instead what the importance of humanity means when it comes to this show, is the sheer fact that it is damn important to keep the people around you in your life. Granted, we know this to be an important piece in our day to day lives as is, but it matters more for the people in this awful and disgusting world. There isn't much of mankind left and for the few of them still kicking, any person they can find and can trust is worth the effort to keep them around.
Now this theme has never truly been front and center, and while I have personally written on it when I have seen it, I have only spotted it in the metaphorical sense. But these last two episodes of season four, are no longer metaphorical, everything is front and center and now we see that there is nothing more important to these folks...than humanity.
The storylines that were prevalent in "Inmates" oozed this theme. From Beth managing to convince Daryl to resume the hunt for other survivors, to Tyreese's desperate attempt to save lives and Glenn and Maggie's hunt for one another, this need to keep the important people in their lives near speaks to something bigger that has been cooking this entire season.
This is the season that we are saying goodbye to the traditions of the world now gone, for everyone. Woodbury and the Prison all represented the old world and even Rick acknowledged this last week that things would never get back to the way they were.
Instead we see the new focus, on getting the people that they call friends and family as close to them as possible and surviving with them for as long as they possibly can. They all know there is a terrible fate that awaits them with the virus that has infected the entire population so they might as well get to enjoying whatever time they have left. This is a new and bold and hopeful move for a show about the end of the world and something that is refreshing to see on television. I can't wait to see where this new theme takes us, but I'm definitely a fan about a show that has gone from simply being about survival and putting the pieces back together to reminding us that the ties that bind us are the people that find us.