The episode one ending introduced us to some potential new characters...a group of inmates holed up in the prison cafeteria. Surprisingly, they turn out to be a "less-than-desirable" group. I was actually surprised that Rick tolerated them as long as he did. When things go sour--one particular inmate makes an obvious attempt on Rick in the chaos--Rick doesn't delegate to Daryl, and instead, gets the nomination for the "Tom Savini Machete Kill of the Year". If that moment was not a direct nod to the original Dawn of the Dead, then it is the best unintentional homage ever!
One of the most entertaining lines of the show has to fall into a similar category. There is no secret that Lori is possibly the most hated woman on television. She has been a regular "bad Mother" poster on an almost episodic basis. I believe that fans of the show got a "We love you" note from the writers and producers when Lori, during a scene with Rick, says, "Look, I know that I'm a shitty wife...and I'm not winning any Mother-of-the-Year awards..." Truer words were never spoken...
Concerns over Hershel continue, and one of the best "Made ya jump" moments involves him and Lori. It is nice that Kirkman and company took a little veer off of the normal zombie track and allow for the possibility of survival of the area can be amputated (a fact that will be the doom for one of the inmates). Romero fans all recall the arm amputation scene from Day of the Dead.
The honorary Boy Scout award goes to Carol. It is almost like taking a look back in time to when medicine was in its infancy. Before people were allowed to donate their bodies to science and grave-robbers were making a lucrative business delivering cadavers to would-be healers, the human body was a real mystery.
In closing, with Rick's new attitude, how many people think that maybe he and Shane were really two peas in a pod. There is a harsh side to the aspect of survival that Shane understood from day one. His only downfall was his obsession with Lori.
Overall, episode two hits the ground running and offers a few new "questions"...like who was watching Carol from the bushes...and where are Andrea and Michonne?