I'm glad we got some time with Hershel.. But it was when everything went crazy again and the walkers seemed destined to take over the prison that the hour picked up for a pretty nonstop ride until the end.
The demise of the prison has long been foreshadowed and now seems to be on the threshold, but it's the subtle exchanges between Rick and Carl that spell a more unsettling reality that's beginning to take shape.
Maybe shifting the setting back and forth from the prison to the veterinary college, and focusing on a more diverse group of characters in a more evenhanded fashion has helped some to overlook some of the tonal issues that have sprung up.
It's a simple episode, leaning more heavily than the show ever has before on Scott Wilson's warm, stoic performance as Hershel, and effectively continued the season 4 mix of despair and complicated action.