Hey guys. Man, I hope that we weren’t expecting to maybe hear about the fate of some of our favorite characters, right? I mean, sure, we got the resolution for Rick, but we all knew it was too early for them to remove that particular chess piece from the board, so clearly we’d get a lot more information about everyone else, and one someone else in particular. Right? And what a great episode put together to give us all of the information our eyeballs (and hearts) craved, so that we could sleep easy finally getting answers.
Silly. There’s no way that The Walking Dead was going to let us off of the hook that easily. And, based off of the preview for next week’s episode, it certainly seems that we might be finding ourselves once again wanting information. This isn’t really all that surprising, when you think about it. The show is able to ride a big wave of anticipation from the fans, and they can keep filtering other stories in to the gap, so that we’re left questioning. As I mentioned last week, placing Morgan’s episode where they did made perfect sense from a storytelling aspect, and the follow-up with Alexandria this week just continues the pattern that they’ve created thus far into the season. Besides, don’t you all want a feel-good story leading in the mid-season finale (or, potentially, a terribly depressing reason to tune in for the fallout)? Of course, that’s all looking at the past, and into the future. We really need to focus on the Now.
As mentioned above, this episode returned us to the presumably safe confines of Alexandria. Of course, we know that safety in the world of The Walking Dead is an illusion, and the presence of the Wolves drove that point home the last time that we were here. Given the state of the world, it isn’t really surprising that, just a short time after the town was dealing with weapon-carrying lunatics, there’s a new threat right at the gates, as the portion of the herd who converged on Rick’s RV followed him all the way back to town. Clearly Rick took his cardio lessons to heart, because he was able to keep himself just ahead of the walkers, and didn’t seem too terribly gassed for having done so. Maybe the next spin-off will revolve around marathon runners in the world of the reanimated dead… but I’m getting ahead of myself here. Since we were back inside Alexandria, we would have no shortage of stupidity, right? Right. Let’s look at this week’s list.
It’s somewhat admirable that Aaron wanted to come clean to the rest of the Alexandrians about his missing pack. It was a brave and honest moment from a man who, due to his sexual orientation, has probably experienced more than a few, even before the apocalypse. However, coming so quickly on the heels of the initial attack by the Wolves, and with walkers trying to pound down the walls of the community, maybe being quite so honest to a group of very scared citizens wasn’t the best plan. Sure, it unburdened your soul of the guilt you must be feeling, but does that information really help anyone right now? Although, having said what he did, it certainly explains his willingness to try to help Maggie.
Deanna reaches a big turning point in this episode, even calling back to the comics with her words to Rick. This all comes after she has to physically defend herself against a walker, one of the Wolves who was felled, but not taken care of properly. So is Deanna getting dinged for the manner in which she defended herself? Of course not. She was a politician, and she has made it pretty abundantly clear that she, along with most of the citizens of Alexandria, never actually had to handle any of the walkers face-to-face. So why do we find Deanna on the list? Because, at the end of the episode, we see her clearly banging away at the fence for the gate. Since we know that walkers are attracted to noise, she may have just given a reason for a bunch of them to want to group around what is probably one of the weaker parts of the walls defenses.
Sure, we could yell at Rick for deciding to teach Ron how to shoot. We could certainly scold him for making moves on Jessie so soon after he killed her husband. But no, we’re going to focus in on a different moment. An earlier moment. A moment where Rick was saying one thing, but doing something completely different. Shortly after returning from his mid-afternoon jog (for many miles, with a herd of inspiration on his tail), Rick addresses the people of Alexandria. He tells them that they need to keep noise to a minimum. He stresses turning lights off, and almost approaching ghost town levels of activity. He also does all of this while standing within throwing distance of the wall, currently ringed with walkers, and shouting all of his instructions. Rick, if you want people to be quiet, maybe move them away from the wall and talk in a level tone.
Carl has almost been responsible the last couple of seasons. Okay, maybe not, but it seemed like he was growing up at least a little. Of course, being a teenager, things are going to get a little confusing when he meets a girl who seems to like him, at least a little. She even seems to have similar survival skills, and we all have stories about that first crush who we got stuck mere inches away from while hiding inside a tree, to protect ourselves from the reanimated dead. So it isn’t really any surprise that Carl has grand schemes about going over the wall to find Enid. Where Carl runs straight into stupid territory is when he decides that he wants to get Ron’s help in this endeavor. Dude, you looked like you were trying to steal his girlfriend, AND you proved that you were more than capable of defending those who need it. Ron isn’t the type of person who is even going to give you the time of day. Although, now that he’s getting trained in how to shoot, maybe things will be different between you two. Right? Right?
Maggie dropped a huge bomb on the audience with her admission that at least a part of Glenn lives on, inside of their baby. That would seemingly be the final nail in the “Glenn is alive” theory, except the show is going to great lengths to maintain the mystery of his survival (or lack thereof), and there’s no way that they aren’t going to keep playing with our expectations until we actually get the answer. Given that Maggie’s pregnant, and that she’s lost every member of her family except for Glenn (or maybe including, we don’t know), the whole idea of going over the wall to find him is fraught with problems. It gets even worse when she goes through the sewers with Aaron, gets ambushed by some very messy walkers, and, after getting saved at the last minute, insists that she can do the rest on her own. Thankfully for Maggie, and fans of the show, she came to her senses before going right into the mouth of the herd, but she spent a lot more time being emotion-driven than we’re used to, and it felt a little disconnected.
We’ll be back next week with even more. Only three episodes left until the mid-season break, so clearly we’re going to find out about Glenn soon. After all, while his story is sort of mimicking Sophia’s right now, they aren’t going to make it the entire driving obsession of the season, are they? I mean, that would certainly put the writers on this list, proving that they haven’t learned from past mistakes.