This season, thanks to the gang being split up and sent in all sorts of different directions, has enforced a storytelling style where we see little pieces of story happening concurrently with other little pieces of story. The timeline is being moved forward, ever so slightly it seems, but we can’t precisely tell what’s happening when, because we’re getting a Daryl episode, followed by a Eugene episode, followed by a Rick episode, and all of these things are theoretically happening at the same time. This week specifically asked us to follow along with the voyage of Rick and Michonne while they were scavenging to find the Junkrats some guns, while also giving us glimpses of Rosita and Tara. The biggest problem with this particular episode? We’re being expected to accept that all of the action contained within takes the same amount of time, and it seems highly unlikely that the scenes in Alexandria would have taken anywhere near as long as the scavenging mission, especially given that we KNOW the scavenging took days.
All told, though, that’s kind of a minor gripe. The episode did some good character building for the main four featured within it, even if not all of their choices made good sense. Plus, we got to see what happens when a Walker dies while it was still carrying it’s military-issued firearm. Zombies with guns? Why, I do believe that I will Say Yes.
Tara is clearly having an internal crisis right now, trying to decide whether or not she should tell Rick about the Oceanside survivors. She unloads her thoughts on Judith, the Lil’ Ass Kicker, while watching her for the day. Over the course of her word dump, Tara lets some inappropriate-for-kids language fly, which is understandable in the situation, but now it means that Judith is going to end up running around Alexandria just saying “ass” over and over again. Unless she ends up being that one kid ever who doesn’t repeat the bad words they hear.
Standing on top of the supply-loaded school, Michonne and Rick see a carnival set up. At this point, they don’t know that the school has more goods than they can possibly carry at this point, but they do know that they have slowly been scavenging guns and ammo, so taking a moment to fire at some bottles, which could attract walkers and is definitely a waste of bullets, seems like a poor choice. That said, she was able to knock the bottles down, so maybe she can get Rick a nice stuffed elephant or something.
It seems like Rosita has been broken down to one defining character trait, and everything else is being thrown out the window. Rosita wants revenge against Negan for what he did to Glenn and Abraham. There is nothing else, and anyone who suggests that maybe Rosita slow down, take a breath, and formulate a plan, is an enemy. This raises it’s head twice, once with Tara, and once with Gabriel. Again, we’ve seen indications that Rosita clearly has some sort of military experience and training, so the sheer insistence on not planning a proper mission makes it seem like either she wasn’t that useful of a soldier, or that there’s something much bigger at play that the writers haven’t clued us in to yet.
Staying out longer than Michonne suggested. Chasing after the deer by climbing the Ferris wheel. Tossing Michonne’s unsheathed sword to her. Hunkering down in the car and allowing it to get surrounded, instead of bailing out when numbers were on his side, and it was clear things had gone wrong. Rick is seemingly being driven on pure instinct, in much the same way that a small child can be largely instinct. There’s a shiny thing, and I want to see it. I’m doing this, and I refuse to accept that there are barriers. Here, catch. And this is the guy Michonne thinks should become some sort of uniter for the disparate survivor communities?
It could always be worse than Rick, though. It could be Sasha. Admittedly, Sasha has been largely fighting against a self-destructive urge ever since Tyreese and Bob were removed from the equation, and Abraham’s death clearly hit her hard, but that doesn’t explain why she’s so completely willing to go along with Rosita’s suicide mission. Sasha has to know that, if she’s gone, Maggie’s position at Hilltop is weakened, and that both her and Rosita are far more valuable as part of a larger group, not a duo trying to strike out and take down one domino. And yet she’s just flatly going to go along with Rosita’s plan. Even odder, she’s demanding that she be the one to take the shot, which has the side effect of weakening the potential of the mission, and increasing the likelihood that something goes wrong and it gets worse for all of their friends. If only one of these women would talk to literally ANYONE with a cooler head. Like, oh, Maggie. Or even Enid.
That does it for this week. Are Sasha and Rosita going to enact their plan next week? Are the Oceansiders being brought back into the story, and potentially the fold? Will Rick relent and allow himself to become the benevolent Ricktator that Michonne seemingly wants him to be? And who’s going to get sexy time next week? We’ll just have to wait for those answers to come to light. See you then.