PLOTLINE 2: Baby, Baby, Baby OooooOOHHHHH DEAR GOD
Meanwhile, as Hershel recovers and the group settles into their lovely cellblock, Lori continues to grapple with her ongoing pregnancy, pondering the usual questions all expecting mothers worry about, like "What if it's dead inside me and rips me apart?" (When Lori uttered this quote, I immediately looked to see if there were some way I could vote for this option, then just started texting DEADINSIDERIPS to random number combinations hoping one was an American Idol-style voting line).
Yes, Lori, there are many factors to consider here:
Just before Lori's big moment, however, a mysterious character (later revealed to be one of the still-alive convicts) unlocks a series of prison gates and leads a horde of walkers to Rick's section of the prison. While the groupmates attempt to re-secure the area, the walkers take a bite out of poor T-Dog:
Yes, the writing in Walking Dead improved immensely in Season 3, but they couldn't un-write that character's name from being T-Dog.
Then, just when you thought the episode had hit its tv-series "One Major Character Death Per Week" Max, Lori goes into labor while still separated from the majority of the group, and Maggie and Carl pull her aside for an emergency medication-free baby-delivery. Basically, it's your standard sitcom "Wacky 'Can't Get To The Hospital' Baby Delivery" scene, only horrifying:
Lori says goodbye to Carl, and Maggie just sorta rolls the dice and cuts open her stomach to pull the baby out, thus unceremoniously ending Lori's life. The baby initially isn't breathing but soon starts to cry, meaning it's alive and well and the delivery was a success and that ties up all the loose ends except for the fact that it's still obviously Shane's baby:
Then, for added insta-maturing, Carl takes it upon himself to shoot his mother's corpse through the brain so she doesn't turn. We've all had that rough "time to grow up" moment, Carl! One time my mom totally sold my mostly-complete Series 3 Marvel Cards at a yard sale (after diligently asking me if it was ok), so, you know, I totally feel what you're going through.
Needless to say, at this point, Carl is basically the most emotionally-hardened 12-year-old in the history of the world:
Maggie and Carl emerge with the newborn babe, though the occasion is slightly marred by Maggie's having just sliced Rick's wife in half without anesthesia, and Glenn does his best to comfort his 'out-of'his-league-in-not-the-zombie-apocalypse' beloved:
As expected, Rick learns of Lori's fate and has an instant emotional breakdown, and thoughtlessly charges back into the prison depths for his own bizarre emotional closure with a side of walker-slaughtering. While Rick does run the risk of getting himself needlessly bitten and leaving his child parentless, he does get a sweet-ass photo op out of it:
Ultimately, Rick collapses beside the walker who feasted on his wife's corpse (an easily-relatable marital problem that I think was a plotline in that dramatic final season of Home Improvement), and just lets his dementia slowly take over:
Rick then receives an odd phonecall on the prison landline from a mysterious source that interrogates Rick but won't identify itself, which then launches into a pseudo dream-sequence where Lori's voice tells Rick it's up to him to look after Carl and the group, and Rick's like "Women naggin' you even after they're dead and their body's been eaten! UP TOP!" and he raises his hand to Hershel who really halfheartedly indulges him then Rick lands seven CBS development deals.