Zombies have overrun Alexandria leaving the residents separated and shivering in their homes as Rick, Carl, and the others make a desperate gut-drenched poncho escape.
Let’s just go through the spoilery steps here. If you haven’t seen the episode yet, you’d better bail now because we’re about to discuss every beautiful moment of it.
First off, the meeting with Negan’s men. The ringleader was charming, witty, and funny all while being dangerous. I honestly thought that Abraham was about to bite it before Daryl saved the day — a great scene that reminded me of why we all love Daryl in the first place. Negan’s crew was dispatched quickly and in spectacular manner, but the danger is still there. It’s a piece of meat being waved in front of our faces and it smells delicious.
I love children, but seeing Sam and his horrid family get devoured was cathartic to say the least. It’s not that they were terrible characters (with the exception of Sam who just took the Wesley Crusher prize for the worst child character on a television series), it’s just that they might as well have had buzzards on their shoulders as an indication of how doomed they were. Now that they’re gone, we’re done waiting and we’re done with the stalkery Rick “love” story that the show was farting out every week. It’s a good feeling… like popping a hangnail.
The status quo is shaken up, stuff gets dark, and yet… through it all, there is this undeniable hope that shines through as the residents of Alexandria, placid and weak, take up arms to fight off the hoard. I could almost hear Oprah Winfrey’s voice proclaiming, “YOU get a spine! YOU get a spine! EVERYBODY gets a spine!”
After the disappointing mid-season finale back in December, The Walking Dead didn’t just come back on television, it came roaring back with a vengeance, accompanied by the dark angels, Violence, Wickedness, and Awesomeness. It’s been a while since I’ve seen an episode of The Walking Dead be so viscerally entertaining, so shocking in its execution, and so satisfying on every single level possible. Everything from the first half of the season: Morgan’s pet Wolf, Glenn’s amazing not-death, and that stupid kid who can’t keep his mouth shut… everything was paid off here.
What’s more, as The Walking Dead closed some chapters with this episode, it opened brand new ones that will, quite frankly, keep me watching with anticipation.
I honestly believe this is probably one of the best, if not the best episode of The Walking Dead.
Like Carl, I’ll be keeping my eye out for more.