We now find ourselves as the end of the second season of TellTale Game’s The Walking Dead, with episode 5, titled No Going Back, rounding out what was a wonderfully season worth of content. We left off, of course, with a lot of gunfire and a black screen at the end of episode 4, Amid the Ruins, and we pick up with that gunfire still in full effect. This opening scene does something I don’t believe a situation up until this point has done, it allows Clementine to give an order. Granted , it’s given only when asked for, but it nonetheless gives credence to the ongoing them of young Clem coming into her own, and realized that, much like Carl in the The Walking Dead comics, she must learn to make the tough decisions to survive this harsh (not so) new world.
There are several other really incredible and major plot points that occur in season two’s finale, but I want to focus on three in articular. First is the death of Luke. This is a death you may feel differently about depending on how you’ve played the game (obviously, I suppose), but it marks a point in this episodes story in which the outcome of Luke is unavoidable, but the consequences on your relationship with the group, and Bonnie in particular, are greatly affected. Not to mention, the bit I was able to play with Clem under the ice was incredible suspenseful. Second, was the unfortunately quick turn of Mike, Bonnie, and Arlo. This really fought me off guard, and while I had grown to like Mike, it was hard to stomach, and I quickly turned to Kenny for help here. I have to say, the drastic turn that these characters take against Kenny, even though their reasoning was sound, was a bit off-putting to me, and certainly felt rushed.
The third, and most important scene in No Going Back, was of course the final moments involving Clem, AJ, Kenny , and Jane. It was pretty clear to me, almost immediately, that Jan was setting up Kenny, but alas, Kenny took the bait without hesitation. and so when forced to make the decision, for myself, it was quite easy. Kenny was unstable, dangerous, and unable to keep his wits about him, and I just couldn’t trust him anymore. I admit, in my game, I did end up forgiving Jane, but only because of how attached to her I’d become. This final big scene is Telltale going what they do best, dramatic storytelling that involves you making the tough choices. And they do it damn well.
Overall, No Going Back is an incredible piece of story telling that, while not quite capturing the emotions of the finale moments between Lee and Clem in season one, certainly ends in epic fashion, and makes Clementine make yet another huge choice between life and death concerning a friend and confidant. And with seven possible ending to this episode, I cannot wait to see where Telltale’s brilliant storytellers take us next.