just to continue on your request for why there are a contingent of people who did enjoy this season:
first off, i tuned in last season almost purely for the zombies and gore, the characters in my mind were pretty dry and boring. i admit this season was not as good as last season. that being said, i feel that for all the lack of strong progress in the season (spoilers: rick's wife is pregnant and sophie is dead being basically all that happened) i feel the payoff in the last episode allowed for this season to be good for the series as a whole.
the biggest reason being shanes transformation. we were given two different viewpoints to how to view this apocalpyse, one being those of the main group who viewed the "walkers" as dangerous zombies that needed to be killed immediately...versus the secluded and naive farmers who viewed the "sick" as loved ones who were sick but curable. shane represented the outlook that in this type of world it is hard to stay sane. and i feel his final 10 minutes of the last episode was one pivotal reason why this season was worthwhile. (the whole reason he went so crazy is because he realized they werent leaving for a long time. people were not giving up hope in the girl. it was a lost cause. this stagnant view represented the season. and i believe that even though the stagnantness was annoying to many viewers, it had its benefits with the final scene)
two, a smaller reason, there were still some badass deaths and scenes. daryl is by far the most interesting character and his scenes were the most reminiscent from what we expected in season one.
lastly, i feel this season was the medium to go from season one where the group was one into season 3 where i believe there will officially be the split.