THE WALKING DEAD “Self Help” Review

What will Abraham and company find on the road to Washington? Read on to find out.

The official description from AMC:

A new set of issues confront our group while on a mission. Will they be able to push through and survive these challenges? Or better yet, each other?

The Walking Dead Season 5 may have gotten off to a phenomenal start, with the short lived Terminus development giving us three of the most exciting episodes in the shows history, but if last weeks episode is a hint at the direction the series is heading in, I’m not sure I’m entirely happy. Despite being an enticing entry, “Slabtown” was overall a disappointment, with the retraction from the established developments taking away from the pace.


Having departed from the rest of the group at the end of “Four Walls and a Door”, Abraham (Michael Cudlitz), Eugene (Josh McDermitt), Rosita (Christian Serratos), Glenn (Steven Yeun), Maggie (Lauren Cohan) and Tara (Alanna Masterson) march on to Washington, where Eugene claims there is a cure. Giving some wonderful character development throughout, “Self Help” certainly is an improvement over last weeks episode, as though not by much, the general atmosphere is much more engaging. Despite this there is one aspect that still bugs me, and that’s the choice to split the group up. Though this choice allows for more avenues to explore, it also affects the overall flow of proceedings, extinguishing certain tension that prior episodes build. It does however prove worth it in the end, with there being one revelation that will leave fans of The Walking Dead comics very happy.


Unlike last weeks episode, “Self Help” has plenty of established cast members to work with, with the actors in turn working brilliantly off one another. It is however Michael Cudlitz that stands out in this episode, as having stepped up in “Four Walls and a Door” it’s nice to see the actor continue to show his worth. Giving a stern, emotional performance throughout, we get a vivid look into Abraham’s past, and the events that lead him and Eugene meeting. Josh McDermitt also gave a wonderful performance, as though the deliberate way he delivers his lines borders on the awkward, the emotion behind his performance allows Eugene’s revelation to be all the more enticing. I did however feel that Steven Yeun and Lauren Cohan were a little underutilised in this episode, as though both actors gave brilliant performances, they seemed like an afterthought, with Alanna Masterson even having a more in depth involvement.

The Walking Dead continues to be THE must watch show on television, as though the events of both this episode and the last prove a little underwhelming, there’s plenty of elements that remind us why this is such a compelling tale. Recommended.

  • + Eugene's revelation is a big one!
  • + Abraham's had his share of loss.
  • - Glenn and Maggie are underutilised.
  • - Events flow in an inconsistent manner.