You knew it was coming, right? After weeks of focusing on one sub-group at a time, you knew that eventually the stories would all start coming back together. After all, next up we’ve got the mid-season finale, so we needed to start tying things up. Leaving the group fractured AFTER the events of the mid-season episode? Sure, that’s possible. Leaving them broken apart BEFORE that moment? That’s a tougher sale, unless there’s a big concept to make the mid-season all revolve around reconnecting. Therefore, it only made sense to start getting the multiple disparate storylines combined into one cohesive whole.
But was it really cohesive? Not quite, because we’re still waiting on Abraham, Glenn and the rest. And, of course, Rick’s group has been split, because there’s just no logical reason to bring Lil Ass Kicker on the hospital raid mission. At least Beth is being brought back into the fold of the rest of the group’s stories, instead of being the afterthought that she seemed to be for the first part of the season. With all of those moving pieces falling into place, it seems like the groundwork has definitely been laid for another big series-altering mid-season finale, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see that not all of our favorites make it to the second half.
But we’re getting a little ahead of ourselves, aren’t we? Before the mid-season, we have to see what happened in the lead-up episode. Who ended up “Crossed”?
Really, Tara just finds herself here because, well, she was just a little too quick to start cracking wise after the recent events. True, the mood was awfully dark even before she made her jokes, but, seriously, Tara? Read your audience a little bit. Even in the zombie apocalypse, there’s such a thing as too soon. That said, her levity was actually somewhat needed as an overall tension breaker from the previous episodes, and somehow her playing with a yo-yo in this wasteland served almost as a palate cleanser to set us up for next weekend.
Besides, picking on Abraham for being a large, red-headed lump crouched on the road is just going for too easy of a target.
Dawn continues to seem to play towards the “greater good” angle, and, when her officer tells her that Carol is in bad shape and a waste of resources, she initially agrees. Beth naturally gets upset about this, and tries to point out that his DVD player is just as much of a waste, but all that proceeds to do is convince Dawn that the biggest energy drain is caused by machines keeping someone who might end up being an incredibly valuable resource alive. Oh, and why is Carol in such bad shape? Maybe because Dawn’s own minions hit her with a freaking car… seems like at some point she’d be a little less likely to keep giving them leniency. But don’t worry, but Dawn not only wants the cops to know that she totally agrees with their estimation about who will live, she wants Beth to know that she believes Carol might have a shot at pulling through. All it takes is Beth displaying her own strength. Dawn is clearly someone who is trying to ally herself with both sides of the conflicts. She firmly believes that she’s doing right; the problem is that she can’t possibly be right on BOTH sides where there are only two real options.
Sasha has been through a bit of a roller coaster ride as of late. It all started with finding the positives in Bob. A quick romance followed by a heartbreaking loss, complete with being angry at herself for being unable to actually end things for him. Through all of that, though, Sasha has still wanted to try to find the best in others. This lead to her moment at the end of this episode, as she honestly found herself believing that the cop she was charged with watching was truly remorseful. Turns out, he’s got some of Eugene’s talent, and Sasha blindly wanting to trust and help someone who had no reason to work with her could mess up everything for Rick’s group.
2. The Hospitaliers
Maybe it’s a completely valid point of view to have, and it was prevalent through all of the police, but just blindly assuming that Noah would mess up somehow seems unwise. Especially when you think about the fact that Noah not only got away from them once, but was able to evade their sweeps after making his break-out thanks to Beth’s assistance. Now, it’s entirely possible that, if it hadn’t been for the aid he was given in both cases, Noah wouldn’t have made it very far, but he’s out, so he’s clearly not as much of a screw-up as those in the hospital seem to want to believe. Truthfully, when in any sort of survival situation, your plan should never hinge around someone else being unable to succeed.
1. Father Gabriel
Father Gabriel is clearly conflicted about his role in the world now that much of humanity has become undead. He’s certainly having a crisis of faith, trying to figure out how to make his peaceful nature work with the brutal reality surrounding him. It almost seems as though Carl is able to get through to him, as Father Gabriel takes a machete. True, he then retreats to his private rooms, but it could easily be to steel himself for what he would have to do in the future. Unfortunately for everyone involved, Father Gabriel steeling himself was really more of him prying up floorboards to create an escape for himself from the boarded up church. Aside from once again throwing himself out alone, at the mercy of whoever might come by to save him, he’s also conveniently given the Walkers a nice little access to get to Carl, Michonne, and Lil Ass Kicker.