The town -- including Andrea and Merle -- is gathered in the arena, although it's quite a different mood from before. The Governor walks into the middle of the circle with his eye bandaged and launches into a speech. "What can I say? Hasn't been a night like this since the walls were completed. I thought we were past it... I failed you. I promised to keep you safe. Now look at me. I should tell you that we'll be okay. That we're safe. That tomorrow we'll bury our dead and endure, but I won't. Because I can't. Because I'm afraid... I'm afraid of terrorists who want what we have! Want to destroy us! And worse, because one of those terrorists is one of our own. Merle!"
The Governor points an accusatory finger at his pointy-armed henchman, and the men immediately surrounding Merle aim their weapons at him. "A man I counted on, a man I trusted. He led them here. He let them in." Merle is relieved of his bayonet attachment as the Governor accuses, "It was you. You lied. You betrayed us all." Merle doesn't seem to have much to say for himself. A prisoner is frog-marched into the arena with his hands tied behind his back, not that there's any question who it is, and Merle is pushed into the circle as the captive is led right up to the Governor, who rips the bag off his head. "This is one of the terrorists," the Governor says, revealing Daryl. "Merle's own brother!" The Dixons look upon each other for the first time since the series began, while Andrea watches shocked from the bleachers.
"What should we do with them, huh?" the Governor asks of the crowd, which starts chanting to kill them. The Governor goes up to Merle and quietly says, "You wanted your brother. Now you got him." And this half of the season ends in close profile of the Governor's good side, as we commence the wait until February to find out what happens next. I was hoping more of it would happen tonight, but after the best half-season of this show yet, I probably shouldn't complain.
M. Giant is a Minneapolis-based writer with a wife, a son, and a number of cats that seems to have settled at around two. Learn waaaay too much about him at Velcrometer, or just e-mail him at m.giant[at]gmail.com.