As Rick’s group attempts to funnel through the horde of walkers within Alexandria, Sam falls victim when he succumbs to fear resulting in his mother Jessie’s death along side him. Grief stricken, Ron aims to kill Rick and Carl but is impaled by Michonne. Ron’s stray bullet strikes Carl, chipping away his right eye. Rick grabs Carl and with Michonne run through the horde to safety. Meanwhile, Daryl, Tara and Abraham encounter a biker group who work for Negan. They take their weapons and are about to kill Tara and Abraham, but Daryl eliminates them all with a rocket launcher. Back in town, Denise and the Alpha Wolf establish a minor connection and he saves her from a walker as they try to escape. He later saves her again but is taken out by Carol. Denise returns to the infirmary just as Rick brings Carl. Rick then begins luring the horde away as everyone in town gathers with him to kill as many walkers as they can. Daryl and the others arrive and create a fire to attract the remaining horde. By sunrise, the town is completely purged as the survivors rest. Rick tends to Carl who is seen bandaged but alive.
That was an epic showdown of immense gruesome violence that shows The Walking Dead has no intention of slowing down its fearsome run. Brief moments of loss forced the main cast to survive as they always have, not withstanding the pure adrenaline that came from the group banding together and taking back their town. I expect a long reprieve but for now, I must say this was one of the most enjoyable episodes I have every seen.
This may sounds callous but destroying an entire family like they did was very gutsy to do. And the order was sheer frightening as we heard the echoes of Carol’s warning sink into Sam’s mind seconds before he’s literally taken by teeth and gore. Then his mother watch and fell too as he couldn’t let go of her son. We saw Rick’s memories of a happier time with her only to stare down at her last son’s crazed expression shortly before he’s skewered by Michonne who dared not hesitate. That all went down in a matter of moments and then the exclamation point was one of the comic’s most heart-wrenching moments finally adapted to this season; Carl’s eye wound. I knew someone wasn’t making it out of that walk of death alive, but I never thought all three of the Andersons would be completely decimated. Absolutely the most gripping scene in the entire episode and there were a lot to choose from.
It’s hard to articulate how awesome it was to watch the town band together like that even including Eugene who took a stand alongside his townfolk and took back Alexandria from the dead. The quick shots between kill-shots, Eugene and Daryl saving Glenn from certain death and the fire that quenched the remaining horde. It was masterfully shot and musically composed to show how tied they were to their home and how hard they were going to fight all starting with Rick tossing himself out into the den of hell even to help keep Carl safe even if it was alone. It’s moments like those that help really solidify their story as a group and an evolving one at that.
Very minor, but I have to say I’m a bit fed up with Carol’s no-nonsense attitude. She’s absolutely a bad-ass that can make the calculated decision in a heartbeat, but openly telling Morgan she should have killed him sets her back a little in my eyes. Out of the entire group, I now feel she’s the one most likely to do something rash and dangerous in the future all in the name of doing the right thing for the greater good. I just hope that kind of thinking doesn’t clash with Rick again or else dissention will once more flourish through the ranks.
The rocket launcher scene. The entire episode was gold from my perspective and expectations, but it was a sheer loony-toons moment when the entire biker gang was blown to bits by Daryl’s rocket. I wasn’t expecting it at all, and couldn’t believe it when I saw it. There’s no doubt in my mind Daryl will probably live forever, even if he does get bit.
Rick deserves the spot tonight. He held it together and threw himself alone into the horde with every intention to slaughter them all with only a hand-axe his companion. His speech to Carl at the end was also delivered with such an aura of hope hanging on the smallest thread for his son. Never doubt the lengths he’ll go through to save him and that includes chopping the hand off of his girlfriend who was busy getting devoured by a trio of walkers. Such a sight had to have taken such a toll on his mind, all he could see were the low-light images of a smiling woman who he had just seen grow so fiercely independent. Now, Rick fights on with new hope now that Carl is going to be okay, for the most part.
The louder Maggie’s screams got the more I knew Glenn was going to be fine. They really hammed that up, but if Glenn was taken, this episode would have been too much and I’d probably be writing in a very different tone. Abraham jumped in and had a clever line to boot.
As awesome as Denise is becoming, I hope they don’t give her some crazy omniscience with medical knowledge as not too long ego she was still flipping through Grey’s Anatomy trying to understand just the basics. Her confidence is amazing, just keep it grounded please.
The role of the Alpha Wolf was just beginning to take shape, and then they killed him. I wasn’t sure how I was supposed to feel because things wouldn’t have gone that great for Denise had they escaped, yet, even at the end Alpha made sure she was safe. It was so strange to watch. The relationship had so little time to flex that by the time he saved her, I just had to go with it.
Now that Enid is back and Ron is gone, this will give her and Carl more time to establish some new bond. I can’t imagine a relationship will blossom so quickly after his injury, but he might be more susceptible to understanding her plight a bit better or vice-versa depending on who’s writing it.
That town is going to smell bad for a long time. It’s going to take at least a week or more to get the bodies out which include the Anderson family, who will likely be buried alongside Deanna who by now is also dead.
10 out of 10. My eyes were glued every second of the way. If you can accomplish that, then I’m sold on a perfect episode. The rocket launcher was a great save, the Anderson family demise was heart-breaking, but really only for Jessie. Watching Carl’s injury was a heavy portent freshly adapted from the comics and the town gathering as a single unit to save Alexandria was a legendary moment that may not happen again for a while. All this and so many gruesome walker kills. We’re on our way and the countdown to Negan’s arrival has begun. We’re just 7 episodes away from the fated theory that has everyone guessing…will Lucille be brought in and used as the comics depict? It’s TWD’s version of the Red Wedding and I sure hope it doesn’t happen. Thanks for reading.
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