Archive for March, 2015

Sleeping in a crashed car in the woods, Morgan awakens peacefully with a smile on his face, staring at a lucky rabbit’s foot. While making breakfast, he is surprised by a man with a gun and a “w” on his head. The man describes the purpose behind the w’s and his ventures around the area. The man threatens Morgan as he describes his clan identifying as wolves. Morgan attempts to lobby for his life. Morgan jumps as another man appears out of the bushes, grabbing a staff and taking down both of the men, and eventually a walker as well. He loads the two unconscious men up in the car and honks the horn, leaving with his rabbit’s foot and the rest of his belongings.

Daryl rides his chopper down the road with Aaron traveling close behind. They venture out into the woods.

18c09b25b7fbe7f862cb08d6e5b6730b2b51ec86_preview_zpskrej3fpnBack in Alexandria, Rick awakens covered in bandages and stuck in a room with Michonne. Rick recounts his time with the train car back at Terminus. Michonne challenges him regarding his crazy actions while updating him about Pete. She tries to convince him that they had to stop being out on the run all the time. Glenn, Carol, and Abraham show up and question him about where he got the gun. They let him know that there is a meeting about Rick’s fate. Rick tries to devise a plan if everything goes south. Glenn questions Rick’s intentions, while Michonne is skeptical of the planned violence. The group leaves him to rest.

Maggie spots Gabriel from a distance and then goes out to talk to Deanna. Maggie explains that Deanna needs to reconsider the meeting. Deanna appears to be very frazzled about the events of the previous day, which frustrates Maggie and causes her to storm off. Reg catches her and tries to talk about civilization and how he will approach the meeting later that evening.

Outside the walls, Sasha cleans up her mess of slain walkers, taking them out to a burial pit. Standing over the bodies, she takes a moment to observe her mess, then taking a moment to lay on top of the pile.

Daryl and Aaron continue to track for other survivors. Aaron talks about Davidson and the others that Alexandria sent away early in their civilization.

Carol returns to Rick and wakes him from his nap. She admits that the previous events were actually helpful to their cause, but she is concerned over Michonne’s and Glenn’s commitment. To help Rick wise up, she challenges him on his desire for both honesty and control.

Aaron and Daryl spot a man rubbing dirt on his face. They slowly start in pursuit.

Rick exits the house and sees some of the Alexandrians. Walking by Deanna’s he stares her down. In another part of the town, Maggie meets up with Glenn with Nicholas watching in the shadows. Maggie tries to explain that she wants to take care of it diplomatically. Though worried, Glenn just tells her that he loves her. As she leaves, he spots Nicholas climbing over the wall.

Gabriel goes to the gate and leaves without a weapon.

Rick goes home and meets with Carl. He explains that Carl cannot come to the meeting, to which Carl tries to highlight that they need Rick. While Carl tries to convince him that violence is not needed, Rick still cannot see another way.

924f9fd8-fef7-4245-0542-1211b0ae5924twd516gp11120209jpg-a9617d_624wAaron and Daryl lose their mark. While Aaron wants to head home, Daryl is ready to continue working. Daryl agrees to go searching for food if it allows them to keep searching for good people. They enter the grounds of¬†Del Arno Foods. Aaron finds an Alaska license plate and takes a moment to unscrew it. While attempting to get some canned goods, they spring a trap and cause floods of walkers to pour out. While they are able to fight them off for a little bit, they take refuge in a car and find themselves trapped in the middle of the hoard. In the car, Aaron finds a note that says “don’t stay.”

Later in the afternoon, Carol stops by Pete’s house to bring over food. She threatens him with a knife and explains how she could get away with it. She eggs him on for a moment, but he chooses to stay put. She explains that the outcome still allows him to survive. She leaves and he drops the casserole, then walking into the other room breaking stuff.

Glenn follows Nicholas further into the woods, finding a dead walker just before getting shot in the shoulder. Nicholas comes running out of the woods but cannot find him.

Rick stops by Jessie’s place to check on her. She admits that he was right to try to help her, but they are unaware that Pete is watching them from his house in the distance.

With the walkers still surrounding them, Daryl admits that he still feels wrong for Alexandria. Aaron admits that he saw something different in Daryl, in the way that he cared for his people at the barn. Daryl agrees to let the walkers chase after him and let Aaron get to safety. Aaron refuses to let him go alone to his death, but instead that they have to fight together. Just before jumping out to certain death, Morgan appears and saves them. Morgan admits to being lost and hands over the map with the message from Abraham to Rick, catching Daryl’s attention.

Gabriel wanders out toward the road, finding a walker on the other side and getting its attention. He walks toward it, seemingly sacrificing himself. Just before he let the walker finish him, he notices the noose and slices the walker’s head off with it. He then walks over to the other body and smashes its head, slowly breaking out into a whimper.

Abraham returns to the house to find Eugene resting by Tara’s bed. Rosita invites him in before he decides to walk off. She purposely creates noise to wake up Eugene, forcing the two to finally confront each other. Eugene tries to rationalize the situation and compel to Abraham’s good nature, which seems to work.

Gabriel returns to Alexandria with a deadened look in his eye. The gatekeeper walks off, leaving Gabriel to close the gate. He shoves it closed but lets it stay cracked open.

In the woods, Nicholas finds a walker and shoots it, letting Glenn get a drop on him. After wrestling for a moment and taking advantage of the shoulder wound, Nicholas lets a set of walkers pile on top of him and leave him to his death.

Michonne goes to check on Rick to see if he is ready. He admits that they had multiple guns from the armory and tries to hand it back. She admits that she hit him for him, not the people of Alexandria. She tries to convince him that they can find a way to correct their situation if they just let something happen to let his group rise to the occasion. Rick goes to prepare for his meeting, wrestling with the potential actions he must take for his survival. Looking out the window, he notices the gate open. Running out to check on it, he sees blood and a trail leading from the outside in. He shuts the gate and rushes to check on the town.

Morgan-620x333Gabriel enters the house of worship and finds Sasha sitting by candlelight. She asks him for help, but he refuses. She admits that she might want to die, to which he blames her for her own suffering. She blames Bob’s mutilation on her failure to be good.

The town gathers for the meeting, but Deanna decides to start without Glenn and Rick around. She frames the conversation away from the fight but toward the issues she has with Rick. Carol and Michonne try to get her to wait for Rick to arrive. Elsewhere, Rick runs through the town searching for danger. Around one of the corners, he finds a walker and begins to wrestle with it. Back at the meeting, Michonne jumps to his defense. Rick continues to fight walker after walker, while Sasha and Gabriel battle over her gun. Outside the wall, Glenn catches up to Nicholas, knocks him down, and begins to working his fists on his face. Carol continues the defense of Rick, claiming that they need him. Abraham offers his opinion as well.

The Wolves capture the man that Daryl was tracking, taking him to the trap of walkers. Welcoming him home, they slit his throat and let him drop to the ground.

Maggie continues Rick’s defense, appealing to his fatherly tendencies of safety and love. She highlights the importance of family for his group. Deanna finally speaks up for the sake of transparency about Father Gabriel. She highlights the fact that Rick proved Gabriel’s words just one day later.

Glenn pins Nicholas down on the ground and place a gun at his forehead, while Sasha has Gabriel trapped at gunpoint as well.

Back at the food company, music coming from the trailers corrals the

Rick reappears at the meeting and brings a walker with him, dropping it on the ground.

Nicholas begins to cry on the ground, causing Glenn to hesitate and take the gun away from his forehead.

Gabriel begs Sasha to shoot him, but Maggie walks in and gets her to drop the gun. Gabriel begins to break into tears, admitting that his congregation died because of him.

Rick tries to finally state his case. He tries to appeal for the community’s desire for safety and the evil that exists beyond the walls. He offers to show the people how to survive, admitting that he first thought that he would have to kill them to save them. He appeals for a chance to make them stronger. Pete suddenly shows up and threatens Rick with Michonne’s katana. Walking toward the group, Reg tries to stop him and gets slashed in the throat. Deanna runs to Reg’s aid and tells him to kill Pete. After pulling the trigger, Morgan shows up and catches Rick’s attention.

Michonne goes to return his sword to the wall but chooses to place it back on the heath over her shoulder.

Reaction:¬†Wow…the 90-minute episode did not disappoint. Walker attacks were abundant and the intensity seemed to get higher with each moment.

The episode represented the readiness for the harsh world between the Alexandrians, Rick’s group, and the newly introduced Wolves. While the Wolves seem to just be going around killing people, the other two groups are trying to survive by their own means. For the Alexandrians, they tend to be preferring the oblivious approach to survival. If they stay in the walls, they do not need to know about the dangers outside. It isn’t like they don’t know about the dangers of walkers, but they have failed to see the same dangers that Rick’s group has seen.

20776a36-b0df-27e0-3602-f4b3a4c25581twd516gp11130198jpg-3bd506_624wAaron may be the only one who gets it, which makes the meeting of Aaron, Daryl, and Morgan a great opportunity leading into next season. Morgan has been on his own looking for Rick, the only man he knows, but has also developed on significantly impressive survival skills. The way that he dispatched the two Wolves was stellar. Saving Daryl and Aaron was just icing on the cake. Each of them are searching for survivors and ways to continue to strength their numbers.

Glenn and Maggie appear to be trying to take control of things from different angles. While Maggie attempted to be diplomatic with Deanna and the rest of the town, Glenn has been focused on Nicholas, the death of Noah, and the dangerous way that Alexandria has dealt with the dangerous world outside. There was a lot playing against both of them. For Maggie, Deanna seemed to be taking Gabriel’s words to heart more than the actions of Rick’s group being stronger and more supportive than her own people. Glenn, on the other hand, went on a rampage on Nicholas and survived a serious walker attack without seemingly having weapons at his disposal and a gunshot wound to the shoulder. Letting Nicholas survive was just in Glenn’s nature, but it will be interesting to see how the town deals with this when the two of them return.

Gabriel is an idiot…enough said. For Sasha, though, she is clearly cracking up and almost got to a breaking point. One moment, she was ready to submit herself to the dead by laying in the walker grave. The next, she was ready to kill Gabriel. She will need to be dealt with because she is becoming a bigger and bigger danger. Considering that she went o Gabriel for help, she may be getting close to the end of her rope.

And then there was Rick… After exploding during the previous episode, Michonne saved him by knocking him out before he took it too far. His outburst did force the community to confront their issues with his style of justice compared to Deanna’s. the entire episode, he was ready to go postal at the meeting to take over the group, even with everyone else trying to appeal to his more politically savvy side. He has proven his ability to be diplomatic in the past (with Hershel and the attempt with the Governor). He was overly focused on violence being the answer that he almost missed the true beliefs of the rest of his group, even if they would have supported him otherwise. It was somewhat lucky that he had the walker body to use as a prop to prove his methods, but it appeared that he was planning to take a more peaceful approach anyway (even if the gun was behind his back).

Morgan is back and part of the group. Rick has proven his worth and gotten Deanna’s praise. Glenn was able to survive Nicholas. The Wolves are hovering in the background. Season six is going to be a blast!

In Memoriam: Reg, Pete, red poncho guy, plenty of walkers

*Announcement: I am planning to do some more discussion of The Walking Dead during the 5 to 6 season break and I will also be reformatting my method for blogging in the next season. I started with this synopsis-reaction-in memoriam set up, but the synopsis seems to take away from the actual blog entry. I also am both trying to watch the episode and blog at the same time, when I would like to enjoy each episode a little more directly.

In addition, Fear the Walking Dead will be starting this summer and have no canon to pull from, which means that I will actually be fully blogging without a comic to spoil some of the storyline. Exciting times are ahead.

While¬†sitting quietly inside the night after her son’s death, Deanna breaks the silence with a mix CD. Listening to the music proves to be too much for Reg, as he asks Deanna to turn it off. Carol is off in her own home preparing some pasta, while Sasha sits in the¬†watchtower on guard. A knock at Deanna’s door reveals the casserole Carol made with a consolation card. Taking only the card, Deanna immediately sets it on fire and watches it burn.

2015-03-22_1346Outside of the walls, Aaron and Daryl notice that there are more walkers than there used to be. In the distance, Daryl spots the faint glow of light and points Aaron toward potential survivors.

Nicholas and Glenn provide very different accounts over the events at the warehouse. Nicholas gets himself filmed by Deanna’s crew, while Glenn gives his story to Rick. Nicholas focuses on placing the blame on Glenn as much as possible, trying to convince her about needing to ban Rick’s group. Glenn and Rick struggle with how to reconcile these events with trying to make it work with these new people. Rick heads over to speak with Carol, who steers the conversation over toward her concern for Pete and about the special lock on Sam’s closet door. Rick struggles with Carol’s focus on Jessie’s safety. Rick steps out into the yard and draws his gun out of the holster. Pete walks up to say hello to Rick, who is seemingly stricken with anger. Rick asks Pete to just walk away, while still holding the gun to his side.

The next morning, Michonne peacefully wakes up to find a basket of laundry and a personal conflict. Seeing the officer clothing, she appears challenged by putting them on. Rosita shows up and lets her known that Sasha spent the entire night in the tower. They go outside the wall to search for her. Rosita challenges Michonne for appearing screwed up after finding civilization, particularly the lack of carrying her trademark sword. They find a few walkers with wounds in the back of their heads, realizing that Sasha must be hunting walkers.

At the grave site, Rick finds Deanna standing alone. While checking on her, he brings up the concern with Pete. She admits that she knew about the domestic violence but lets it slide because of his medical skills. Rick offers an option to physically separate the two. She refuses and challenges his idea that Pete may need to be killed. At most, she agrees that they may exile people who don’t fit in.

Out in the woods, Carl is discovered by Enid, who knew that he was following her. He tries to convince her to return to the community, but she refuses to go. She runs off and he chases after. They stop when she notices a walker. Winding up a timer, she chucks it like a grenade, attracting the walker to the noise. They run off in another direction once it is distraction. After getting away, Enid admits that she likes it outside of the walls. They bond over their mutual love of the outside. Carl tries to understand her better, but they get interrupted by multiple walkers. Finding a nearby tree to hide in, they listen and watch as the herd passes by. One of the walkers has a “w” scratched into its head.

deadisdead-128241Glenn goes to confront Nicholas, highlighting his failures during the recent and previous trips outside of the walls. Nicholas pushes back, but Glenn stands his ground, stating, “I’m saving you.” Later on, Nicholas goes to recover his handgun buried next to a tree.

Sasha emerges in the woods, taking out walkers with her sniper rifle. Michonne and Rosita appear and ask her what she is doing. Sasha, choosing to be headstrong, refuses to leave and tries to take out all of the walkers herself. Michonne takes a moment to gather herself and then joins the fight with Rosita following immediately behind her. After taking out nearly all of them, Sasha is surprised and tackled by one, causing Michonne to step in and save her. Sasha blows up at them, believing that she is inconsolable and feeling responsible for Noah’s death. After taking a moment, she walks off, leaving Michonne and Rosita to choose to follow her again.

While on their search for more survivors, Daryl and Aaron come across more random body parts without torsos. The scene looks fresh, so they continue to search with their guards up. They find a body tied to a tree with its guts ripped out. Lifting the girl’s head, Daryl notices the “w” carved on the forehead.

Rick shows up at Jessie’s place and confronts her about the domestic violence. She tries to promise that it will stop and that he can get help. Rick is unyielding¬†in his support for her, so she challenges his obsession with helping. Assuming that he has other intentions, she denies his help and walks away. Rick struggles with her refusal and starts to lose himself while standing out in the street. He rushes back over to Jessie’s house and tells her about Sam’s desire for a gun and tries to explain his reason for caring. He tries again to convince her that he can keep her and the boys safe. She challenges whether he would do this for others, to which he admits that he wouldn’t. She accepts his help just as Pete shows up and questions his presence. Jessie decides to stand firm and ask Pete to leave, causing him to start a fight with Rick. Rick sends Pete through the front window and is nearly choked out before Jessie intervenes. Carl tries to pull Rick off as well, but he maintains his grip until Deanna shows up. She tries to stop it, but he gets up and starts to challenge Deanna’s leadership. As Rick attempts to make a big speech, Michonne blindsides him with a blow to the back of the head.

Review:¬†Another season is coming to a close and the tension could never be higher. While things seem to be relatively safe for the group, Rick’s group is cracking and the people of Alexandria has no idea what is coming in their future.

Sasha is cracking under the pressure of having time to let the events of Georgia and the road finally sink in. She lost Bob, Tyreese, and now Noah. She trained to become the great sniper of the group and Alexandria does not seem to have an effective use of her skills. She showed a bit of this uneasiness as soon as she got to Alexandria. Now she is in a constant state of craziness and aggression. Her tense behavior could either prove to be vital in a dangerous situation, or, more likely, will get her killed sometime soon.

960Glenn’s confrontation with Nicholas and Deanna’s concerns with Rick help to show that there will be a mini war between the two factions. It may not result in actual violence, but the build up could put the entire community on edge, if they aren’t already by Rick’s and Pete’s fist fight in the street. The lying by Nicholas aside, their reaction to the situation is an example of fantasy versus reality. Glenn, Rick, and their family has experienced life outside of the wall, and it was brutal. They lost people, even when they were focused survival. Deanna’s community has lost people, but they are also fearful of the real threat outside of the walls.

Then there is the fight…Rick went psycho…but so did Pete. This was ready to boil over, but Jessie somewhat agreed to how it happened. Pete’s behavior was so volatile that he was going to truly harm Jessie if Rick did not eventually step in. More important than the fight itself was the realization that Deanna knew about the domestic violence and would only exile someone instead of killing them. This policy¬†suggests that Alexandria is too sheltered for its own good. Rick might be using too heavy of a hand with his way of dealing with trouble inside the walls, but he still appears closer to a true steward of safety than the people of Alexandria (even in the crazed state). Rick will likely spend a portion of the next episode in timeout because of his actions, but Deanna will likely also want to exile him.

The only thing that might be more important for the season finale is the rise of walkers around the wall. Similar to the challenges of the prison, the walker buildup outside of Alexandria could threaten the integrity of the walls. There was a moment when Rick’s group first got there that they kind of challenged Reg on the development of their protective barrier. It would be interesting to see what happens when a mega-herd shows up and knocks on the side door to the community.

The cast is feeling a little big at the moment, with Noah being the most notable death in the past several episodes. Sasha has put herself in danger and there are a few characters that have been in the background enough to bring their storylines in jeopardy. An attack on Alexandria would probably result in deaths to both groups, but who knows until they actually premiere the episode? And where is Morgan??

In Memoriam:¬†some walkers…and several with the mysterious “w” on their heads

4ac4747a-813a-abdf-17cd-40262dd8c4d7twd514gp10240004jpg-57ab06_624wFather Gabriel enters into the empty house of worship and slowly makes his way up to the podium. Struggling to be back in the church since having barricaded himself back in Georgia, he stares at the bible and a note from Rosemary thanking him for his arrival sitting next to a batch of strawberries. He slowly starts tearing out the pages and slams the book shut, staring upward as if to check to see if God will strike him down.

Noah decides to meet with Mr. Monroe early one morning. Not sure why they are meeting, Noah unveils that he wishes to learn the construction trade. Though a little hesitant at first, Monroe jots down some notes and hands the notebook over to Noah, asking him to start recording what he experiences as well as what he learns from Monroe. He meets up with Eugene to learn about what they need to find on their mission outside of the walls. Aiden Monroe gets the group together and checks in with his parents, just as Glenn kisses Maggie goodbye. As the van pulls away, Gabriel peaks out on the scene.

Rick stops by to see Jessie fumbling around with her broken owl statue. He jokes a little with her as he volunteers to find the person responsible.

Arriving at a warehouse, Glenn requests that they take a perimeter check. Tara and Eugene take their route while Eugene claims that he has done his share of the work to get them to DC. Glenn compliments Noah on his aim as they turn the corner and find a horde outside of the front of the building. As the group meets up and goes in the back door, Glenn knocks on the wall to draw out the walkers. When nothing presents itself, they slowly wander inside. Glenn takes point and leads them around slowly. Turning the corner, they find a pack of walkers behind a fence. Eugene continues with the group and starts to find the items they need to take back. Aiden wanders ahead and attracts the attention of a walker covered in military gear. Just before Glenn can get him to stop, Aiden hits a grenade, causing an explosion. As the group gathers themselves, they find that Aiden is impaled on the wall¬†and Tara is badly injured. Eugene fails to shoot to save himself, but Glenn and Noah help him survive. Stuck in an office, walkers have surrounded them. They see Aiden still moving against the wall and break out to save her. Eugene stays with Tara for a moment before sneaking out of the office with her on his shoulder. He starts to shoot his way out. Glenn gets over to Aiden and attempts to pull him off of the wall. Noah stands guard and takes out walkers until he is out of bullets. Aiden gives up and pushes Glenn to run for safety. Getting caught in a revolving door, they have walkers on both sides. Just when they think they are done, Eugene drives up in the van with music blasting. He gets the walkers outside to follow him, but they are still trapped on the one side. Trying to breaking the glass first, they position the door to get Nicholas out. With too much of a gap on the other side, Noah is dragged back into the building and is overcome by all of the walkers. Glenn can only just sit there and watch him get torn apart. Nicholas meets up with Eugene and tries to get him to drive away. As they fight for a moment, Glenn steps in and knocks him out. Back in the van on the way back to the community, they find Noah’s notebook with on just a single line, “this is the beginning.”

18b3b32c-8170-ce75-70e5-ed8a77971422twd514gp10230061jpg-52a8c8_624wCarol is surprised when Sam sneaks into her house and demands cookies. She refuses and starts to push him out. He continues to beg, so she gives in and tells him that he has to steal the chocolate. He returns later and shows her the chocolate. He continues to push her to open up, but he actually reveals that he broke the owl statue he worked on with his mother. He asks about the guns, and Carol replies about needing to protect herself. Sam asks for one of the guns, but says that it is for someone else. Later on, she walks over to Sam’s house and talks to Pete to check on Sam and Jessie. Carol goes to see Rick and report that she is concerned about Pete.

Abraham finds himself outside the wall working to expand the wall. One of the workers runs off for a few moments and leaves him at the work truck. The pressure starts to get to him after so much time in survival mode. Suddenly, walkers appear out of the woods. The group struggles to shoot them down. Abraham runs up and saves Francine but finds himself surrounded on all sides. He slides under the tractor to get away. As Francine helps him shoot, Abraham starts walking away with a hammer, killing walker after walker. Abraham finishes the fight and argues with the crew for leaving her behind. He takes charge and commands the group to continue working on the wall. Tobin goes to see Deanna to ask her to make him the crew chief for the construction. Maggie sits in on the conversation and vouches for Abraham’s credentials. Deanna is concerned for all of Rick’s group getting positions of power, but Maggie convinces her to stick with the decision.

Rick invites Pete over to talk¬†about the broken owl statue, letting him know that he was not able to find anything. Pete mentions that he knows about Rick’s wife and starts to talk about having lost some things himself. He offers checkups for his kids, asking for them to be friends. As Pete leaves, Rick stares out the window and plays with his ring for a moment.

Gabriel goes to speak with Deanna privately. He goes on to put doubt in her head with Maggie listening in the shadows. He claims that Rick and his people are dangerous. He believes that Rick’s group will destroy everything. Deanna thanks him and says that she has much to think about. Just after he leaves, she hears shouting.

As Carol talks to Rick about Pete, she believes that he will have to kill him.

Review:¬†After a few calmer episodes to start the group’s time in Alexandria, the intensity level has risen significantly. Including a grenade explosion, multiple walker attacks, and the first human death in several episodes, there must be something big coming at the end of the season.

1bbd59f1-1ccf-f7aa-e737-24c45aa61f53twd514gp10230307jpg-52a8c7_624wDoubt is starting to build for Deanna. Power is shifting in the community in just a short time of Rick and his group being there. With Glenn surviving instead of her son on the supply run, Abraham taking over at the wall construction, and Maggie playing her influence directly with Deanna, Gabriel’s words at the end of the episode set up the opportunity for Deanna to turn on her newest community members. It is clear that Rick’s group is built for survival while Deanna’s is trying to live comfortably. Alexandria is a soft community and has the potential for a real tragedy coming soon. Aiden and Nicholas were not prepared to defend themselves, and neither were the crew members working on the wall. Whether that will be because of Rick or in spite of his arrival will be interesting to see.

Eugene, Abraham, and Noah had true step up moments. While Abraham has shown power and initiative before, he almost single-handedly saves Francine and the crew, even going with more physical combat. This was enough to convince Tobin to lobby for his leadership with the construction moving forward. When Glenn and the group got to the warehouse, Noah immediately showed off his marksmanship, taking out one walker with a headshot and several inside the building as the chaos went down. Eugene showed both sides in the warehouse. He was initially stricken by fear, but with the safety of Tara in the balance, he stepped up, fought his way out with her on his shoulder, and lured the walkers away from the door when Glenn, Noah, and Nicholas were trapped. He did not even want to go in the first place, but it was a good thing that he did…even if he could not save Aiden and Noah.

The loss of Noah meant something important to the show. He was only with the group for a short time, but his interactions seemed to be followed by moments of death. Beth died in the exchange that would have sent him back to the hospital and Tyreese died when he tried to go back home on the travels toward DC. He tried to make sure that he would be a contributing and useful member of the group and this new society, which is why he took an interest in becoming an architect. His death was probably the most gruesome of the main character deaths so far in the show, literally getting torn apart while Glenn had to sit there and watch. And considering that Glenn had never been responsible for the death of a group member, this one will probably stay with him for some time.

walking-dead-season-5-episode-14The episode ended with two big revelations and one significant question. Rick’s future encounter with Pete is coming. Carol’s awareness for something wrong with Sam and Jessie will certainly hit Rick pretty hard, especially with his potential romantic interest in Jessie. Gabriel has also betrayed the group. His scene at the start of the episode served as a moment where he was testing God. He tore pages out of the bible, expecting to be struck down. When that did not happen, he felt that God may have abandoned him and that Rick could be the reason why. Maggie was listening in, so there may be another confrontation within Rick’s group before everything explodes with Deanna. This betrayal by Gabriel and all of the action of the episode will put Deanna in an interesting dilemma. Will she see through the chaos and understand that actions and decisions were rational attempts to stay alive or will she get caught up in the death of her son and shifting in the balance of power? Will she see Rick as a threat or continue to see him as a benefit to the community? Will she blame Glenn and Eugene for Aiden’s death and will Nicholas betray the people that saved him?

In Memoriam: Noah, Aiden

After sitting awake throughout the night, Sasha grabs her gun the next morning and takes several of the pictures from her house outside the fences. Taking aim, she practices distance shooting and destroys each one. Heavy of breath, she frantically looks in all directions before leaning against a tree stump and uttering, “come and get me.”

the-walking-dead-episode-513-sasha-martin-green-main-590Taking a secret meeting in the woods by the broken down cabin, Rick, Carol, and Daryl discuss their plans to test the people of Alexandria and to potentially take back some of their weapons. A walker walks up and Carol empties her clip on it. As they are about to walk away, they notice that one of the dead walkers has a “W” carved in its forehead. Rick returns to Michonne in the station and discusses his apprehensions about handing over so much power to him and the rest.

Deanna calls some of the group together and lays out her plan for the future. She states that Rick and Michonne are her hope for security and Maggie can be her hope for their future government. Sasha volunteers herself to serve in the tower, but Deanna initially refuses to staff it. Sasha attempts to persuade Deanna, but she chooses to send Spencer instead. She demands that the group come to her house for a get-together. Carol catches up with Rick while on patrol and they put together their plans for the night.

Back in the woods, Daryl is startled by a rustling in the woods. Aaron admits that he was following but is impressed with Daryl’s ability to distinguish between friend and foe. Daryl allows him to continue to follow on his hunt. They come across a wild horse and Daryl slowly walks up to it. Just when they got up close, they are interrupted by walkers, causing the horse to run off. Aaron tries to talk to Daryl about feeling like an outsider. He says that fear is what separates them from the rest. Catching up again to the horse, they are ambushed again, with Aaron having a close call with a walker hiding in the tall grass. After defending themselves, they find the horse has been captured and lost the fight. Daryl and Aaron take out all of the walkers around the horse, leaving Aaron to put it down.

Carol and Olivia chat for a bit about cooking, but two of the guys walk in and talk about needing to go check the perimeter. Carol is able to unlatch the window while no one is looking. She heads off to the party with Rick and Carl. Greeted by Deanna, she guides them into the crowd. Abraham and Rosita enter and feel uneasy about their surroundings. Rick meets Reggie, who praises Rick for his efforts beyond the wall. Maggie and Glenn catch up with Noah, who appears out of place. He wants to bail, but they convince him to stick around. Rick gets a chance to meet Jessie’s husband, who introduces himself as a doctor. Jessie then comments on how they are getting to experience life somewhat like before the fall. Rick spots Carl hanging out with other boys and smiles.

1cd92f02-0c8e-e6ab-94c9-b01c668cba8atwd513gp10130347jpg-52a644_624wDaryl watches from outside the house and starts to walk back to his house. Aaron catches him and asks him to join him and Eric for dinner. Daryl slurps up his pasta as Eric blathers on about getting a pasta maker. Aaron’s secret was finally revealed to Daryl when they go into the garage and discover his collection of bike parts. Aaron asks¬†Daryl to become Alexandria’s other recruiter, acknowledging his ability ti distinguish between a good and bad person. Daryl accepts the offer and offers to get Aaron some rabbits.

Sasha shows up to the party late and meets Spencer. She walks off quickly. Abraham finds Michonne outside and catches up about this new lifestyle. Jessie rejoins Rick while holding Judith. Rick kisses her on the cheek and takes back Judith. Sasha listens around to all of the talking and starts to have a nervous breakdown. She is approached by one of the women about cooking her a meal and she explodes about what the woman spends her time worrying about.

Carol sneaks into the pantry to steal some guns, but she is followed by Sam. He admits that he was hoping for her to make him more cookies. She tells him that she will, but he has to keep it a secret. He admits that he cannot keep it from his mom, so Carol scares him into it.

The next morning, Deanna finds Sasha out by the gate. Sasha still doubts the realness of the community and walks out of the gate. Out in the woods, Rick, Carol, and Daryl meet about the guns she took. Daryl admits that he does not need one, but Rick takes one. Back at there house, Michonne puts her sword up on the wall. The trio reenters the community, and Rick sees Jessie and her husband walking by. Attracted to the wall, he goes over and senses the walker on the other side.

dd296cd7-85e6-7e1f-cc03-e4ce52326211twd513gp10130324jpg-74e708_624wReaction:¬†This was a slower moving episode, with fewer major reveals and just more tension building over the potential finale blockbuster event. Don’t be mistaken though…there were some developments.

Daryl has been a wild animal for so long and has felt like an outcast for so long that Aaron has become a possible connection back into the somewhat more civilized world. He can at least be an outlet for more friends than the family created with Rick and the others. After inviting him to dinner and unveiling the motorcycle build, Daryl has bought into the idea of Alexandria.

Sasha is not doing so well, in comparison. She has been dealing with PTSD or something like it. She freaked out when she was shooting the pictures at the start of the episode and exploded at the woman at the dinner party for worrying about something Sasha felt was meaningless. She looks to be in some real trouble with making good judgment calls, but she has also become the sharpshooter of the group and is filling a void that Andrea would have been had the show followed the comics.

Carol’s moment of fear-mongering was intense and awesome. While she has been playing a role since arriving at Alexandria, the scene with Sam allowed her to break back into her fierce persona and save her commitment to survival.

Rick has been struggling through this transition. He does not trust the people of Alexandria and now seems to have more questions brewing with each move. He has Jessie starting to pull at his attention. Carl seems to be integrating for the moment, but he was just concerned about getting soft in the previous episode. Deanna has put a lot of trust in him, but Rick can sense that the community is not perfect. He is feeling like he is still a fish out of water and that his group is starting to separate. The question remains whether Rick will push the boundaries and go savage again…I believe it is coming.

It has been revealed that there is going to be an epic conclusion to the season, and I, for one, cannot wait to see what it is. Either the community is going to succumb to a major walker attack, a new threat is going to unveil itself, one of Rick’s group is going to make a major mistake, or a major cast member is going to be killed.

In Memoriam: lots of walkers; Buttons the horse

Slowing passing through the gate, Carl sees someone in the window of one of the houses. A noise startles them, but Daryl finds that he only snagged an opossum. The gate closes behind them, and they are asked to hand over their weapons. Aaron suggests that they talk to Deanna. Rick spots a walker just beyond the gate on the outside and has Sasha take it out.

93dba0b13e4f17ae5db18fd6affb1cb7Deanna introduces herself to Rick and asks if she can film their talk. She explains that they are about transparency in their community. As Deanna starts to ask questions, she introduces herself as a former congresswoman from Ohio. The community was a sustainability project, full of features to take advantage of their resources. Rick is skeptical about the community and Deanna’s intentions, while she appears to believe that Rick and his group are good people. She continues to try to recruit them to join because of his ability to survive and help her community survive. She challenges him to make a decision. He admits that he used to be a sheriff and cracks a small smirk at Deanna.

Turning in all of their weapons, Rick’s group learns that they are allowed to get their guns at any time they leave the community. Aaron takes Rick and Carl over to choose a house and leaves them to explore the houses and the rest of the community. Inside, Rick and Carl discover that the house has running water. After taking a shower, Rick decides to shave off the beard. A knocking interrupts his clean up. Jessie brings over some supplies and offers to give Rick a haircut. She starts to talk about her sons, Ron¬†and Sam, and offers to introduce them to Rick and Carl. Rick admits that he is overwhelmed by all of the amenities.

Daryl takes his turn at the interrogation with Deanna. He admits that Rick and Carl deserve a roof over their heads. Carl and Carol take a walk through another house and then meet up with Rick and Daryl. They agree that they should all stay in the same house for the night. Carl, still in the house, hears a noise upstairs and goes to investigate. He finds nothing but comic books and other random items. That night, everyone sets up in the living room. Michonne is excited about the long cleanup and admits that he should trust their opportunity. Deanna stops by and is glad to see the group staying together. She admits that she is figuring out everyone’s jobs. While the group lays down to rest, Rick is restless and goes to the kitchen, grabbing a knife out of the drawer.

Michonne takes her turn in front of the camera and admits that she and the others are ready for this opportunity. Rick decides to take Carl and Judith¬†out to explore, but Daryl stays back. Rick realizes that they rest of the group has already gone ahead, and it makes him nervous. He runs into Jessie and she shows him where to find Carl and Judith. Carl gets a chance to meet Ron, Michael, and Enid. While offering to play video games and pool, he is take aback by the offers. Later on, Carl has a chance to meet with Deanna as well. He talks about the incident with his mom during childhood. Back with Rick, Carl is still questioning the community, but he is concerned about the people being weak. Later that night, Michonne catches Rick awake watching out the window. They talk about committing to this opportunity, but they both admit they are concerned about something. Out on a walk, Rick runs into Jessie’s husband, who appears to be a little standoffish.

Carol gets her chance to interview and talks about her life before the fall. She feels like she became something like a den mother. Unsure of where she might fit in, she leaves the conversation a little open. With Daryl, she yells at him to take a shower and try to open up. Glenn’s interview expresses concern for wanting to make it work.

Outside of the gate, Rick walks the perimeter. He finds a single walker stumbling out of a barn, but does not see a second one in the distance. Walking away, he goes to the place where he hid the gun and finds that it is gone. Back inside the community, Carl catches Enid sneaking around the fence and creating her own ladder to climb over. Carl goes to follow her and finds her running out into the woods. Carl meets up with Rick and they fight off the small herd with their knives and scrap metal.

Glenn, Tara, and Noah meet a couple of the guys and agree to go on a supply run. They learn about the community’s efforts to gather supplies, but they are also surprised to find that they have a walker strung up as a reminder to the people they had lost previously. The walker escapes and nearly kills Tara before Glenn kills it. This erupts into an argument back at the gate, with Glenn decking out Aiden (Deanna’s son)¬†and Daryl tackling Nicholas. After tensions flare, Deanna commands attention and officially welcomes Rick’s group into the family. She also officially offers Rick and Michonne the constable positions. While Daryl is still uneasy and walks off, he, Carol, and Rick talk later that night and confirm that their guards are still up.

Reaction: Rick finally got a taste of his own medicine with that interrogation. As the group is now in a place that seemingly is absent of terror or trouble, trust has emerged once again as the theme of the hour.

The Walking Dead Remember 1_zpsnemshnclThroughout this episode, everything set itself up to both concern the group with the power they were giving up and encourage them for the opportunity for comfort. Both Carl and Carol express concerns about the group getting weak if they settle in. At the same time, they took full advantage of taking showers, cleaning themselves up, and sleeping in a comfortable, safe environment…that is, all except for Daryl. Since the fall, they have lived without most amenities except when they had their community at the prison. There is an interest to finally find safety.

It is somewhat crazy to see the comics unfolding on-screen now. The entry into Alexandria was eerily similar to the graphic novel. One of the most significant differences though was the placement of Deanna as the leader of the community rather than Douglas. Their personalities seem relatively close for the time being, but that could quickly change. In comparison, Jessie and her husband were introduced in just the same way as the comics and the group sleeping in one house also played out the same.

With Daryl still as a major wildcard, it will be interesting to see how Alexandria continues to unfold. Will¬†certain group members still be in trouble in the near future? Will the peace shatter with the contrast of the community and Rick’s group? Will they find other survivors outside of the walls?

In Memoriam: more walkers