Read our previous The Walking Dead: World Beyond reviews here.
Any watcher of The Walking Dead universe would be familiar with the single character-focused episodes they tend to have. With “The Tyger and the Lamb,” Silas’s backstory is slightly expanded upon as the crew prepares to go through their dangerous mission. Stature can be deceiving, and with the last episode, we see Silas freeze up in the face of danger. He’s timid, he slouches, and never directly looks at anyone. “The Tyger,” imbues more sympathy for him as he’s looked upon as an outcast and draws the stares of others in disgust.
As he walks while the good wishes of his grandmother and grandfather play in the background. The episode is trying to drive in points that the audience has already picked up through the exposition of the previous ones. From the first episode, we know that Silas is the black sheep of the bunch and as the story goes, he’s the gentle giant through his circumstances. The flashbacks hint at a violent outburst that has caused this trauma within him. With the confrontation that Silas has with Felix and Huck, he echoes the line that Hope tells him about mistakes not following someone around. Huck’s words to Silas afterward stung quite a bit- whether deemed fair or not. This trip to New York is Silas’s redemption arch to atone for what he’s done – further shown towards the end of the episode where he uses his anger to help the group get safe. The reading of William Blake’s ‘The Tyger and the Lamb,’ further drives home Silas’s dualistic nature, but again, it feels like it’s driving a point home that the audience is already familiar with.
Hope is also on a quest to prove a certain air of worthiness, given what happened to her mom when she was younger. She finally comes clean to Iris and tells her what happened which creates another bonding moment between the two. One has to think about how the group will be able to get out of these predicaments that they would meet certain death most of the time week after week. The zombie fight provided a touching moment where Iris has a callback to the first episode in which she saves Hope and kills a zombie. However, even with two adults joining them, the situations that happen are increasingly dangerous even for well-seasoned zombie slayers. Freezing up may cost you a life.
The best part of the episode ties in the themes shown within Silas’s backstory. A soldier expresses regret with the murderous decision of the CRM, and Elizabeth has to keep a straight face through it all. As the mystery of the CRM still hangs in the specter of The Walking Dead series in its entirely, Elizabeth is hinting at being a more complex character than the audience first believed. Hopefully, in subsequent episodes, we find out why she is beholden to uphold the shadowy actions of this group and how they found her in the first place.
“The Tyger and the Lamb” had some tense moments, instances of genuine emotion, and an exploration of a character’s backstory. With seven episodes left in the season, one has to wonder when the group’s luck will run out or if there will be more creative instances to find a breakthrough on their journey.