In a way, the game, too, is a shell of what it once was. Season one was a slow build and a horrible pull. There was a lot of humanity to it, focusing on its characters above anything else. The sequel has a lot of that pull, but none of that subtlety or ease. So far, it's just a list of tragic events. This is, of course, just the first episode. As we've learned from the first game, it only gets worse from here. Maybe it'll also get better.
A House Divided is more of a standalone Walking Dead episode than the first one was, drawing inspirations from the first game without being too reliant and mimicking, while also looking ahead to what's really in store for Clementine. It harkens back to what made the first game so special: the way seemingly small things have huge reverberations. While the first episode served as a loose prelude, the second episode serves as the real introduction. It's full, fleshed-out, and ultimately everything you would want in a Walking Dead episode.
It's easy to forget that, as with Clementine, there is still more to come. Episode 5 is on the horizon. We just had to sit through something else to get there.
In this series we look at Clementine, see a child, and then experience where she ends up, getting to feel the disconnect between what it means to be a kid and how to be an adult. You can make the argument that being an adult requires making the hard decisions, and that's what The Walking Dead series comes down to.
The latest from Dejobaan therefore seems like a stepping stone, a strong premise and peaceful beginning with little longevity and little to do outside the foundation of the game. You have to wonder if there will be more to write in the future.