No longer have the energy to craft the missives I did after the early episodes - I just feel deflated after the past 2 episodes - agree with what you guys are saying, particularly Wholly and Tin, even though their satisfaction with the show varies.
The only things I liked about the how were:
- as Tin said, the scene in the office building and the strain among the guardsmen at least showed SOME explanation for how the military could fall apart through attrition and flagging morale. But it could just be done so much better, and the amount of time that's past is too telescoped - the 9 day jump that resulted in the complete collapse of LA already seemed too abbreviated, but this episode is literally the next day from the previous one and the soldiers that seemed capable and content yesterday are now completely frazzled and on the verge of insta-abandoning everything? You can't just say that things have deteriorated that badly and only show the audience 1 zombie during 48 hours, and nowhere near the safe area.
You can't just say "we've been up 50 hours" when you depicted the same guys a day ago playing golf, as if they'd rather stand around and watch some 200 yard drives from the CO instead of using the opportunity to nap for 6 hours. You can't just show soldiers cavorting and romantically trying to pick up locals if they're supposed to have been up 50 hours and panicked, on the verge of mass murder. You can't just show hospital staff and soldiers arranging for an "urgent" midnight extraction of the sick or mentally struggling civilians for the benefit of the community, and then waste hours trying to treat them, if they're already planning to abandon (and murder them!) shortly. Really poorly done.
"Cobalt" and having El Salvador suddenly abide by House Bolton's banner a couple of blocks from the other soldiers, who would clearly come to get him promptly and yet El Salvador didn't even seem to contemplate that possibility, as he casually disrobed and recited outtakes from his speech in The Counselor. Hola. Such awful, lazy, lazy writing.
the only other thing I liked was the Auschwitz "salesman" dude. He's a good cast addition. Despite my disdain for El Salvador's plan, his reveal of his history was a genuine surprise and he's a great actor. The father also continues to grow on me as a character, as well as his first wife. But nobody is truly likable on the show the remaining characters are being polarized in the opposite direction - the wife gets less likable every scene. The daughter is fine/good but pretty bland so far, and the fact that I prefer Johnny Heroin Depp better than the other son shows how poor the material they're getting to work with has been. Heroin kid was o.k. in this episode, and I have sort of liked him in the show even though his destructive nature is annoying, but he's not exactly a joy to watch.
Mok chose a good time - the exact second of the show's collapse was at the end of episode 3 when some random national guardsman fast-roped down a helicopter and fired a pinpoint headshot at the Japanese gardener from 50 feet away in the nick of time. That was a laughable moment and the show has continued to decline since then.
That all said - I still find it watchable and interesting, and certainly better than the Strain. I wish there were more good moments detailing the collapse of society, as I could forgive a lot for more scenes like the hospital drive-by and the on-ramp confrontation. I also still like how the zombies themselves are being depicted compared on on the parent show (more frightening and creepy), but it's absurd how little we've seen of them in the past 2 episodes. It's just becoming more Day of the Dead-quality when it started as Dawn of the Dead-quality.
o.k., I guess I had a missive left.