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Tell It to the Frogs

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Tell It to the Frogs
Season 1, Episode 3
AMC TWD Tell It to the Frogs
Air Date November 14, 2010
AMC (United States)
November 19, 2010
Fox (United Kingdom)
Written By Frank Darabont
Charles H. Eglee
Jack LoGiudice
Directed By Gwyneth Horder-Payton
U.S. Viewers 5.07 million
Episode Guide
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"Guts"
next →
"Vatos"
Cast Guide
Starring
Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes
Jon Bernthal as Shane Walsh
Sarah Wayne Callies as Lori Grimes
Laurie Holden as Andrea
Jeffrey DeMunn as Dale Horvath
Steven Yeun as Glenn Rhee
Chandler Riggs as Carl Grimes
Also Starring
Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon
Michael Rooker as Merle Dixon
Emma Bell as Amy
Juan Pareja as Morales
Andrew Rothenberg as Jim
Picture Gallery

"Tell It to the Frogs" is the third episode of Season 1 of AMC's The Walking Dead. It originally aired on November 14, 2010 at 10/9c on AMC.

Plot SynopsisEdit

A handcuffed and delirious Merle Dixon mumbles to himself on the roof of the department store, as though he's talking to someone sitting right in front of him. Hot sun beats down on his burnt scalp. When walkers clamor at the stairwell door, he comes out of his daze and pleads to God for help, crying weakly for perhaps the first time in his life. But he spots the hacksaw from the overturned tool box and his resolve strengthens. He shouts at God, "I ain't never begged you! I ain't gonna start beggin' you now!" Taking off his belt, he uses it to try to reel in the hacksaw, lying just out of reach.

With the sun setting on the road driving back to the camp, Morales advises Rick not to dwell on Merle's abandonment. "Nobody's gonna be sad he didn't come back...except, maybe Daryl," Morales says. Merle's brother.

Lori gives Carl a haircut while Shane regales the boy with promises of catching frogs at the quarry to eat "Cajun-style Kermit legs." Lori expresses her preference for pork by sputtering, "I would rather eat Miss Piggy." Shane smiles, telling Carl, "We'll be heroes, son. Shane and Carl, spoken of in song and legend." The quiet is interrupted by the approach of Glenn's Challenger. The car's alarm still blaring as he drives into camp. Amy rushes Glenn, demanding to know if her sister, Andrea, is okay. Dale tells Glenn to turn off the car alarm but Glenn responds, "I don't know how!"

Jim, a solemn man and former mechanic, disconnects the alarm while Amy continues to ask questions about Andrea. "Is she okay? Why isn't she with you?"

"She's okay!" Glenn shouts over her. "Everybody is. Well, Merle not so much." Shane doesn't care about Merle, and instead he chastises Glenn for drawing attention to their location.

The cube van arrives, and Morales tells Rick to come meet everybody, though he looks tired, and far more interested in continuing on to find his wife and son. He follows anyway. Andrea and Amy tearfully reunite, as does Morales with his wife, son and daughter. This reunion causes Carl to cry because it makes him miss his Dad, so Lori pulls him away from the crowd to comfort him.

Glenn explains to the group that they made it out of Atlanta thanks to the "new guy," and Morales adds that he's a police officer like Shane.

Rick emerges from the van. The first person he recognizes is Shane, and the pair trade stunned glances as Carl tearfully lifts his head and Lori's eyes follow. He spots Rick, shouting "DAD!" as he runs into Rick's open arms. Lori races after him and embraces her husband and son. The rest of the group, and Shane, watch on, dumbfounded. Lori meets Shane's gaze and stares at him, wide-eyed, as she tearfully reunites with her husband.

Later, around a campfire, Rick describes the disorientation he felt waking up alone in the hospital. "I felt like I'd been ripped out of my life, put somewhere else." Lori explains she was told Rick would be med-evaced to Atlanta, but it never happened. "Mom said you died," Carl comments. "She had every reason to believe that," Rick replies, expressing immense gratitude to Shane for saving his family.

Nearby, Ed Peletier — a hulking, blue-collar type — stokes his family's fire with a fresh log. Shane intervenes, instructing Ed to pull the log so they can't be seen from a distance. Ed tells him to mind his own business, "for once," but concedes under Shane's forceful command - instructing his meek wife Carol to pull the log from the fire. Ed glares as Shane bids Carol and their daughter Sophia good evening, asking if they're doing okay. "Just fine," Carol says, hiding from her husband's stony glare.

Shane returns to his group's fire, and Dale asks what they should tell Daryl about his brother. Andrea reasons that Merle was out of control, and the only person to blame for getting left behind was Merle — but Dale reasons that they can't tell that to Daryl. "Word to the wise: we're gonna have our hands full when he gets back from his hunt," Dale warns. Rick volunteers to deliver the news, as does T-Dog, still wracked with guilt for dropping the key. He tells the group that he stopped to chain the stairwell door before he ran for the van. "Dixon's alive, and he's still up there," T-Dog says. "That's on us."

Later on in their tent, Rick tucks Carl in and then crawls into bed with Lori. He tells her he knew she and Carl were alive because their photo albums were gone when he returned to their house. Lori smiles and pulls one open. "I told you so," says Rick, and Lori jokingly accuses him of getting cocky as he grabs for the family photo in his jacket pocket. "Belongs in here," he says, placing the photo inside the book. They reflect on past mistakes and the second chance they've been given. "Not many people get that," Rick says. Lori returns Rick's wedding ring, which had been removed when he was in the hospital, and the two discretely have sex. Carl is sound asleep on the other side of the tent and Shane, keeping watch on top of the RV, stares melancholic at Rick and Lori's tent as a thunderstorm builds in the night sky.

The next morning, Rick wakes to find a fresh pair of clothes laid out for him inside the tent. He can hear children playing outside. He gets up, bidding the other survivors good morning as he steps outside. He finds Carol ironing his freshly laundered uniform, though she laments how much harder it is without her old Maytag; Rick thanks her for her kindness.

Nearby, Glenn mourns as Morales, Dale, and Jim strip the Challenger down for parts, taking gas for the camp's generators. "Maybe we'll get to steal another one someday," Rick consoles him, patting him on the back as he sees his wife hanging laundry with Andrea and Amy.

She asks if he slept okay; he tells her, "Better than in a long time," and she grins, saying she didn't want to wake him before she catches a look in his eye. "God, what?" she asks, and he admits he keeps thinking about leaving Merle behind. Shane arrives back at camp with more water, and Rick tells Lori he plans to return to Atlanta. Lori is shocked, but their discussion is interrupted by screams. Carl, Sophia, and Jacqui, who had been out walking, run into camp deeply shaken. Sophia calls out for her mother and the men grab various weapons from the campsite.

Finding Carl, Sophia, and Jacqui unscathed, Rick, Shane, Jim, Morales, and Glenn run past him to a clearing where a walker is devouring a deer with crossbow bolts sticking out of it. Amy and Andrea follow. The five men beat on the walker until Dale arrives and decapitates it. "This is the first one we've had up here. They never come this far up the mountain," he remarks.

"They're running out of food in the city, that's what," Jim offers.

The group hears the bushes rustling and Shane raises his gun protectively. A man in a sleeveless t-shirt, Daryl Dixon, emerges from the woods carrying a crossbow and hauling over a dozen dead squirrels. He's upset that the walker ate the deer he'd been tracking for miles, and the food's been wasted. He cusses out the walker, kicking at its corpse, while Dale tries to tell him he's not solving anything by lashing out — which causes him to lash out at Dale. The walker's decapitated head starts grinding it's teeth, growling, and Amy and Andrea take off, disgusted. Daryl fires his crossbow into its skull. "Come on people, what the hell? It's gotta be the brain — don't y'all known nothin'?" he rebukes, before heading into camp looking for Merle.

But Shane follows, and tells Daryl that Merle didn't make it back — Rick chimes in, confessing he left Merle handcuffed to the roof as the group surrounds them. He introduces himself to Daryl, who doesn't want to hear it, as T-Dog emerges from the forest carrying firewood. Enraged, Daryl throws the dead squirrels at Rick, who ducks as Shane throws Daryl backwards. T-Dog sees Daryl pull a knife and warns Rick and Shane, dropping the logs and joining the scuffle. Rick is able to disarm Daryl, and Shane locks him in a sleeper hold. "Choke holdin's illegal!" Daryl argues breathlessly, to which Shane responds with a shrug, "Yeah, well, you can file a complaint."

Rick tells Daryl he wants to have a calm discussion about Merle, explaining that what he did wasn't on a whim as Shane releases his hold. "Your brother does not work and play well with others," Rick tells him, which Daryl seems to understand already. T-Dog cuts in, saying it was his fault, explaining that he accidentally dropped the key in a drain. He adds that he chained the door to the roof shut so the "geeks" couldn't get at him. "Just tell me where he is, so I can go get him," Daryl orders. Lori cuts in from the door of the RV, "He'll show you." Staring her husband down, she challenges him, "Isn't that right?"

He nods. "I'm going back," Rick pledges.

Back in his uniform, Rick prepares to leave with Daryl. Shane questions his decision to risk his life for "a douchebag" like Merle Dixon, who wouldn't give you a glass of water if you were dying of thirst, he scoffs. "We left him like an animal caught in a trap," Rick says, who can't live with what he's done no matter what kind of man Merle is. "That's no way for anything to die, let alone a human being."

When Lori wonders if his big plan is him and Daryl alone in Atlanta, Rick admits he wants Glenn to come along because of his experience getting in and out of the city. "That's just great. Now you're gonna risk three men, huh?" Shane scoffs. "Four," T-Dog cuts in. He can't live with what he did, either, and has to go back. Reluctantly, Glenn agrees to go, too.

"You're putting every single one of us at risk," Shane tells Rick, arguing they need everybody to protect the camp in case more walkers show up. But what they really need, Rick contends, are more guns, which he'd be able to retrieve from the bag he dropped outside the tank. Shane softens, knowing the value of more guns and what Rick estimates are 700 rounds of ammunition. But Lori still isn't convinced, and Carl tells Rick he doesn't want him to leave. When Lori continues to plead with Rick not to risk his life for a man like Merle, he explains to her that he also needs to collect his walkie-talkie from the bag so he can warn Morgan Jones away from the city. "I owe a debt to a man I met, and his little boy," he tells her. "If they hadn't taken me in, I'd have died. It's because of them that I made it back to you at all."

Shane also recognizes that the walkie-talkie would be better than their CB, which has outdated software and won't communicate with other signals as well as the walkies do. Lori gives up arguing, and Carl tells Rick he's okay with his reasons for going back to Atlanta.

Rick and T-Dog cut a deal with Dale for a set of bolt-cutters to cut the chains on the door. Not only does Dale want back his tools, which T-Dog dropped as he fled the roof, but he wants his pick of the guns Rick intends to collect, and Jim wants to be able to strip the cube van for parts for the old RV when they get back. And though he's still not happy with the idea of Rick, Daryl, Glenn, and T-Dog leaving camp, Shane gives Rick the last of his bullets for Rick's Python revolver. "Four men, four rounds," Shane says. "Let's just hope that four's your lucky number."

Rick loads his gun in the passenger seat while Daryl drives out of camp and the group looks on. In their tent, Lori frets about Rick. "I'm not worried," Carl assures her, taking his mother's hand. "Think about it, Mom. Everything that's happened to him so far; nothing's killed him yet."

The men drive the van into Atlanta, parking along a fenced in, abandoned railway. Daryl threatens T-Dog if Merle's not okay, but T-Dog insists that the "geeks" can't get through the chains on the door. As they travel on foot below a highway overpass, Glenn decides the group should go for Merle first, because going for the guns would mean doubling back.

Later on back at camp, Lori's carrying kindling and looking for Carl. When she asks Dale, situated on top of his RV, where he is, Dale tells her he should be down at the quarry catching frogs.

Shane and Carl try to catch frogs with a bucket and net. Shane falls in the water trying to drive them to Carl, but the hunt appears to be fruitless. Andrea, Amy, Carol and Jacqui do laundry nearby, discussing the division of labor. "How did we get stuck doing all the Hattie McDaniel work?" Jacqui mumbles, and Amy replies, "The world ended. Didn't you get the memo?" The discussion turns to talk of the modern luxuries they miss, like Carol's washing machine, Jacqui's coffee maker, and Amy's cell phone. "I miss my vibrator," Andrea admits. "Me too," Carol whispers. The women break into laughter.

Carol's husband, Ed, has been standing watch nearby, smoking a cigarette, and their laughter draws his attention. He looms over them, and Andrea scoffs, "Problem, Ed?" He shakes his head and tells his wife to focus on her work. Carol rubs clothes against the washboard subserviently.

Lori arrives at the quarry, ordering Carl to return to camp. After he leaves, Shane tells her not to take it out on him, and Lori warns him to stay away from her family. "I think we should talk," Shane says, but Lori snaps, "You can tell that to the frogs." Shane asks Lori if she thinks he's not happy about Rick's return. "Why would you be?" Lori responds. "You are the one that told me that he died." She storms off.

Ed continues to loom over the women doing laundry. Andrea finally confronts him. "Don't think I won't knock you on your ass," Ed warns her, demanding that Carol come with him. "So she can show up with fresh bruises later, Ed?" Jacqui asks. Carol tearfully attempts to calm him while the others try to intervene. Ed slaps Carol across the face.

Shane, still fuming from his own confrontation moments ago with Lori, grabs Ed off Carol, throws him to the ground and pummels his face. "You put your hands on your wife, your little girl, or anybody else in this camp one more time, I will not stop next time. I'll beat you to death, Ed," Shane warns. He kicks Ed in the side before storming away while the women look on, stunned.

In Atlanta, Rick, Daryl, Glenn, and T-Dog return to the department store, and Daryl kills a walker with his crossbow. They cut through the chain on the stairwell door and emerge onto the roof. On the ground, a hacksaw sits beside a severed hand. Bloodied handcuffs hang from the pipe above. Daryl screams as the others look on helplessly.

Other CastEdit

Co-StarsEdit

UncreditedEdit

DeathsEdit

  • None

ReceptionEdit

RatingsEdit

Upon its initial broadcast on November 14, 2010, "Tell It to the Frogs" was watched by 5.07 million viewers, slightly increasing in viewers from the previous episode.[1]

Critical ResponseEdit

Leonard Pierce of The A.V. Club graded "Tell It to the Frogs" A- on a scale of F to A, calling it a "key episode in setting the tone for the first season". He praised the episode, saying it "did just about everything it needed to do. It deepened characters, strengthened relationships, laid out future conflicts, and gave its cast more to do. Best of all, it returned to the slower, more thoughtful pace of the pilot."[2] Eric Goldman of IGN also gave it a highly positive review, rating the episode 8.5 out of 10. Goldman called the episode a "big rebound from the somewhat lackluster second installment, offering a much more intense and engaging story."[3]

A.V Club IGN
A- 8.5

TriviaEdit

  • First appearance of Daryl Dixon.
  • First appearance of Ed Peletier.
  • First appearance of Carol Peletier.
  • First appearance of Sophia Peletier.
  • First appearance of Miranda Morales.
  • First appearance of Eliza Morales.
  • First appearance of Louis Morales.
  • This is the only episode of the series in which the entire group of Atlanta appears.
  • Ugo.com makes 13 comparisons between the Comic Series and this episode.[4]
  • Bellwood Quarry is the location of the lake that Shane and Carl caught frogs on and where the women did their laundry. Taken from this thread: "Following the completion of mining, the Bellwood Quarry was acquired by the City of Atlanta for a mixed-use recreational/park facility and water reservoir."
  • The name of the episode, "Tell It to the Frogs," refers to the fact that as Lori and Shane are fighting about the return of Rick, just before Lori leaves she tells Shane to "tell it to the frogs." The saying is also a metaphor for words going unheard or unaccepted, which recurs throughout the episode. First, Merle is talking to a possible hallucination on the roof at the beginning of the episode; when Ed first tells Shane to mind his own business over the log on the fire; when Rick tries to explain to Shane and Lori why he needs to go back to Atlanta; when T-Dog explains to Daryl why he has to go back to Atlanta; when Lori uses the term with Shane at the quarry to blow him off; and when the women are arguing with Ed because they were fed up with his behavior.
  • According to the commentary track of the next episode, halfway through this episode, Dale's hat changes color from blue to white, because Robert Kirkman stole the blue one.

Goofs/ErrorsEdit

  • In the scene where Shane gives Rick four rounds, Rick says "thank you" but his lips do not move.
  • When Rick reunites with his family, just as they embrace, the camera pans to a shot with the Challenger. To the very left of the Challenger, a crew member is clearly seen.

ReferencesEdit

  1. 103's ratings from TV by numbers
  2. AV Club's review
  3. [Eric Goldman of IGN also gave it a highly positive review, rating the episode 8.5 out of 10. Goldman called the episode a "big rebound from the somewhat lackluster second installment, offering a much more intense and engaging story." IGN's Review]
  4. Fitzpatrick, Kevin. The Walking Dead Comics-to-TV Comparison: "Tell It to the Frogs", Ugo (November 14, 2010).
Episodes of The Walking Dead
Season 1 "Days Gone Bye" • "Guts" • "Tell It to the Frogs" • "Vatos" • "Wildfire" • "TS-19"
Season 2 "What Lies Ahead" • "Bloodletting" • "Save the Last One" • "Cherokee Rose" • "Chupacabra" • "Secrets" • "Pretty Much Dead Already" • "Nebraska" • "Triggerfinger" • "18 Miles Out" • "Judge, Jury, Executioner" • "Better Angels" • "Beside the Dying Fire"
Season 3 "Seed" • "Sick" • "Walk With Me" • "Killer Within" • "Say the Word" • "Hounded" • "When the Dead Come Knocking" • "Made to Suffer" • "The Suicide King" • "Home" • "I Ain't a Judas" • "Clear" • "Arrow on the Doorpost" • "Prey" • "This Sorrowful Life" • "Welcome to the Tombs"
Season 4 "30 Days Without An Accident" • "Infected" • "Isolation" • "Indifference" • "Internment" • "Live Bait" • "Dead Weight" • "Too Far Gone" • "After" • "Inmates" • "Claimed" • "Still" • "Alone" • "The Grove" • "Us" • "A"
Season 5 To Be Announced

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