Return of the "Dead"

"We'll win. But we need to wait for the right moment." — Father Gabriel, "The Walking Dead."

The NFL season is over. Typically the first Sunday after the season is what I like to call "depression Sunday" since it's the beginning of a long six month football drought. But fear not, "The Walking Dead" is, as in years past, beginning the second half of its season tomorrow.

Season seven has been uneven, to say the least. Those who are regular readers here know I have been critical of this season for its level of violence and disturbing storytelling. Yet, the final episode before hiatus offered the promise of a potential shift. Something long missing returned — hope. And the second half seems aimed at getting back to the spirit that first drew us to these characters.

So as the second half of the season begins, I am hopeful for a turn around. Here's some things I'd like to see the next eight weeks.

* More time in The Kingdom with King Ezekiel. We saw him in only two episodes, yet he was the most interesting thing about the first half of the season.

* More of our heroes coming together. Much of the first half of the season saw our heroes scattered and/or beaten down. That only added to the sense of dread. But when they came together to close episode 7.08, it was a beautiful moment.

* Less Negan. I get it, he's evil and awful. Thanks for spending eight grueling episodes reinforcing that. Now it's time to see that story make some king of helpful turn.

* Hope. Hope was present for about five minutes of the first half of the season. If it doesn't make a stronger presence in the second half, season seven could be my last with the series.


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