'The Walking Dead' Fall Finale Recap: New Neighbors, Epic Battles and an Intense Cliffhanger (VIDEO)

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On the fall finale of AMC's The Walking Dead, the two camps finally converged, resulting in a battle of epic proportions.

I knew there was no way we were going to get away from this episode without some sort of a cliffhanger, but I wasn't prepared for the fact that the entire episode would just be a roller coaster ride going from one intense scene to the next. Even the quieter moments on this one were so fraught with emotion that they had me on edge, too.

Note: Spoilers ahead if you haven't watched Sunday's fall finale, "Made to Suffer."

The new neighbors. The first thing that happened on the episode was one of many surprising moments for me. I don't know anything about the comics, so I had no idea that this new group of survivors was going to be heading into the prison. And I know some people are mourning the loss of Carl's (Chandler Riggs) childhood, but I have to say that he sure has turned into one great leader. I think he did exactly the right thing to save them by locking them up. It's precisely what Rick would've done in the same situation.

Creepy and heartbreaking. I've always thought that the Governor (David Morrissey) was just plain nutty for keeping his zombified daughter locked up in a closet. But, I still couldn't seem to help all the emotions I felt when he called out to her as if she was still his sweet little girl. The way he sang to her and then begged for her life (such as it was) from Andrea (Laurie Holden), I could almost forget that he was the same wackjob that had a room full of live zombie heads.

Epic battles. Speaking of zombie heads, I thought that the knock-down-drag-out fight that the Governor had with Michonne (Danai Gurira) was one of the coolest things ever. Though, the massive shootout between the prison group and all of the Woodbury thugs came in close second. I just loved watching Rick (Andrew Lincoln) during all of those scenes. Don't get me wrong, I do love me some "Broken Rick" with all of the angst that comes with him, but "Badass Rick" with an assault rifle is a whole lot of fun to watch.

The cliffhanger. We all knew it was going to happen and sure enough this episode left us with quite the cliffhanger. Considering where we were at the end of last week's episode, I had thought that maybe Glenn (Steven Yeun) and Maggie (Lauren Cohan) wouldn't get rescued so I was very relieved when that happened. What I didn't anticipate was Daryl (Norman Reedus) getting caught by the Governor's goons, and getting thrown to the blood-thirsty Wooburyans with Merle (Michael Rooker). I know those two wanted to see each other again, but somehow I don't think they pictured their reunion quite like that. I have no idea how they will get out of it. But if any two people can, it would be them.

Buzz Moments

OMG!: Michonne planting that shard of glass into the Governor's eye. Yikes.

Thank you, TV gods.: The rescue team arriving just in time to save Glenn and Maggie.

Awk-ward: Axel (Lew Temple) trying to come on to Carol (Melissa McBride). That was actually painful to watch.

Hotness: Rick with the assault rifle. Seriously, do I have to say more than that?

Fab-u-lous: Sad, strange and sick of me I'm sure; but I have to say I really liked Zombie Daughter's little outfit. If her skin hadn't been rotting off, she would've looked really cute.

Can. Not. Wait.: Watching Merle and Daryl escape the clutches of the Governor. I know they'll do it, I just have no idea how.

Celebuzz Meter (1-10): 10. I usually hate giving 10s because I feel like there's never anywhere to go after that, but this episode definitely earned that score.

Watch the special trailer for TWD's February 2013 return here.

So what did you think of the midseason finale, "Made to Suffer"? Do you think Merle and Daryl will get themselves out of the predicament they're in or will they get help from someone else?

-- Michelle Carlbert

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