WALKING DEAD: Carl and Enid Hiding in a Tree...
Tonight’s the season finale of The Walking Dead, so finally here’s last week’s recap: Rick tries to solve a problem by talking, and it goes about as well as you’d expect. So then he uses his fists and it goes even worse. At least Carl might get his first kiss.
In Deanna’s home, the family is gathered in the living room by candlelight. Aiden, the self-professed douchebag son, has been eaten by zombies, and apparently the family’s not as happy as the audience about that news. Deanna knows how to fix that. She pulls out a mix CD of her son’s music. Screeching from the speakers comes a noise like an electric banjo or an electrified cat or maybe a cat trying to play an electric banjo while being electrified. Everyone immediately stops missing him, at least for the moment.
Carol is at home baking a casserole and keeping an eye on a sleeping Judith on a baby monitor.
Sasha is up in the watchtower with a high-powered rifle and a crazy look in her weeping eyes.
Deanna’s family has had all of Aiden’s music they can stand and hit stop before they claw their own ears of their heads. The pain of his death immediately returns, right as there’s a knock on the door. Deanna opens the front door to find Carol’s casserole on the door step with a sympathy note. She burns the note and tosses the casserole in the trash.
Outside the walls, Daryl and Aaron are on one of their recruiting trips, looking to find a wide receiver who can run a 4.3. Aaron notes that there are more zombies now than ever. Daryl notices a cabin in the distance. There’s some sort of light shining through one of the windows. The recruiters decide to wait until daylight to approach.
Aidan’s buddy Nicolas is telling his version of events to Deanna, and it doesn’t resemble anything we saw last week. He says the military zombie only got blowed up because Glenn distracted Aiden. Then, he claims, Glenn and crew immediately fled, leaving only Nicolas to heroically try and save Aiden. The only thing Glenn says that’s probably true (at least from his terrified perspective) is that Glenn’s attempts to kick out the glass in the revolving door was only going to succeed in spinning Nicolas back into the zombie-filled warehouse. Maybe that explains why Nicolas is so vitriolic in his lies. “These people have to go!” he demands. “They’re not like us!”
Nicolas’s bullshit is interspersed with Glenn telling the truth. Who will Deanna believe? Any hope that Deanna will recognize what really happened is torn away from us when it’s revealed Glenn isn’t even talking to her. He’s been giving his testimony to Rick the whole time. Well, shit. That should speed up this inevitable showdown, and that’s probably a good thing since we’re only a week away from the season finale.
“They don’t know what they’re doing… They haven’t caught up yet,” says Rick, dismissing any thought that Deanna might know how to protect her people in the modern zombie-filled world. “They’re rules—we don’t answer to them,” Rick assures Glenn.
But that’s not what Glenn wants to hear right now. “We are them,” says Glenn, taking a deep gulp of the Kool-Aid. “We’ve got to make this work,” he insists. Why? Because Noah wanted it that way.
Later, Carol gives Rick more details on his love interest’s abusive hubby, Pete. It’s as bad as you can imagine. Carol really wants Pete dead, because Carol knows her own abusive hubby would have killed her a long time ago if zombies hadn’t killed him first.
Rick both wants and doesn’t want this type of encouragement. He’d really like to kill Pete, too, but he’s like to do it out of necessity, not anger. Still, by the time Carol’s done talking, Rick has his gun in his hand. He’s walking around in a daze. Hey, speak of the devil. Pete approaches Rick with a friendly hello. There’s a few seconds of silence with Pete’s life on the line. Rick finally growls, “Keep walking.” Pete doesn’t see the gun, but he gets the hint.
It’s 6:30 am, presumably the next morning, although Daryl and Aaron haven’t gone to investigate the cabin yet. Instead, we’re in bed with Michonne, so to speak, when Rosita comes in. Oh, yeah, Rosita exists! She’s had maybe two lines since we’ve come to Alexandria. Time to earn her paycheck! She tells Michonne that Sasha has vanished, so they head outside the walls to try and find her.
This is the first time either of them has left town since arriving. Rosita is happy that it already feels weird to be back out in the wild; Michonne isn’t. Rosita gets on Michonne for being a Debby Downer.
Deanna is standing over some freshly dug graves. For some reason, Rick thinks this is totally the right time to approach her with his own drama. “We have a problem with Pete,” he says.
Yeah, yeah, Deanna knows all about it. But she’s willing to turn a blind eye because Pete is the only doctor and surgeon they’ve got. Rick is not so willing because his primary concern is safety, and by safety I mean sticking his pee-pee in Pete’s wife’s hoo-ha.
Rick’s solution? Tell Pete to move out and stay away from love interest Jessie under penalty of death. Nah, says Deanna. She know Pete would eventually get drunk and show up on Jessie’s doorstep, and again the death penalty is off the table for their only doctor and surgeon.
Rick does not take this well. He is trying SO HARD to be reasonable, and this pampered whiny politician is protecting the bad guy. Giving someone one warning to change their behavior before killing them is as “civilized” as anyone in this world can afford to be, he tries to Ricksplain to her.
Deanna does not take this well. She is trying SO HARD to be reasonable, but she’s standing over the fresh grave of her own son and not giving an inch to this hothead absolutist. There is no death penalty here, only banishment. And she’s more than willing to banish Rick if he’s not willing to accept that.
Outside the walls, Carl is alone in the forest, looking and listening. A girl’s voice comes from nowhere in particular: “Carl, I know you’re following me.” It’s Enid, who just so happens to be Carl’s age and attractiveness level, and who also was recently taken in to Alexandria. She wants Carl to go away because he frightens her, she says. But when she sprints off again, she makes it easy for Carl to follow her trail this time.
Back in town, Glenn corners Nicolas. “People like you are supposed to be dead,” he says. The weaklings and cowards shouldn’t have survived this far past the zombie apocalypse, he explains, but the town walls have protected him thus far. He warns him never to leave the town walls again.
“Are you threatening me?” says Nicolas.
“No, I’m saving you,” says Glenn.
It’s a sentiment Enid is likely to agree with. Why is she constantly sneaking over the walls? “We’re supposed to be out here,” she tells Carl. “We’re supposed to feel like this. I don’t want to forget it.”
Carl tries to get her backstory, but she’s not ready for that yet. Instead, he gets zombies. Lots and lots of zombies. Enid shows him where to hide. There’s a dead tree, still standing, but hollow. They squeeze inside, chest to chest, face to face, no room for the Holy Spirit.
But he’s 15, and he’s finally found something more terrifying than zombies. He turns his face away. “You’re afraid of me, too,” says Enid.
Enid and Carl don’t see it, but the zombies that pass them by have a “W” carved into their foreheads.
Hey, look at that: Nicolas has himself a gun. That’s all there is to that scene.
The horde of zombies that passed Enid and Carl by are still wandering the forest aimlessly when they’re heads start popping like popcorn. It’s Sasha with her sniper’s rifle. Michonne and Rosita are quickly on the scene. “I’m sick of playing defense,” says Sasha. Fortunately, she has an endless amount of ammo.
Oh, wait, no she doesn’t. She’s out of bullets. Michonne and Rosita are fighting by her side, but the zombies overwhelm her. She’ stabbing away with her knife, but the zombies have her on the ground and are starting to swarm over her.
Michonne has plenty of bullets, and she destroys all the zombies. “I HAD IT! I DIDN’T NEED YOUR HELP!” Sasha yells, but it’s bullshit. Michonne and Rosita are smart enough not to answer. After several seconds of silence, Sasha says, “You can’t do anything. It all worked out for you. You can’t help me. Nobody can.”
Daryl and Aaron are finally ready to investigate the cabin. But what’s this? They don’t even make it to the cabin door before they start stumbling across fresh body parts. These look rather cleanly butchered, not zombie-eaten. And, hey, there’s a woman tied to a tree. Most of a woman, anyway. Her entrails are suspiciously absent. Again, it’s a little to clean to be the work of zombies.
Daryl raises the woman’s head to her face. The corpse snaps at his hand with its teeth, but that’s to be expected post-apocalypse. Guess what’s carved into her forehead?
Back in town, Rick visits his love interest Jessie in her home. He confronts her about her abusive husband, and she immediately starts making excuses. He’s gotten help before; he’s stopped hitting her before; he’ll stop again, eventually, so it’s all cool.
Rick ain’t buying that shit, so Jessie tries another tack. In this post-apocalyptic world, people have to take care of themselves, so he should take care of himself and leave her alone. At least she’s speaking Rick’s language now. She shoves him out of the house and shuts the door in his face.
Rick barges back in. “Sam asked for a gun to protect you,” he says. If Rick were a strategist, he might just provide a gun to little Sam and let things take their course. But he’s no Tyrion Lannister, and he’s determined to meet this crisis personally, head on.
“In here, it’s the same as out there… If you don’t fight, you die,” he Ricksplains to Jessie. “I can help you. I can keep you and your boys safe. All you have to do is say yes.”
Jessie finally asks the all-important question: DTF?
Rick assures her that he is.
“Yes,” says Jessie.
Right on cue, in walks Pete. He’s not thrilled to see Rick and his wife hanging out together, and he demands Rick leave.
“No, you need to leave,” Jessie says.
Pete starts throwing punches. At Rick. It goes surprisingly well for him. Even after Rick tosses him through the front window, Pete is back up and swinging immediately.
Everyone comes running to see what’s happening—Rick’s people and the locals. Both men are in the street trying to choke each other to death. Rick finally gets the upper hand, just when Deanna shows up. She orders Rick to stop.
Rick pulls out his gun. (Not a euphemism.) But he’s not going to shoot Pete just yet. He’s just demanding everyone’s attention for his big speech. “You still don’t get it,” he says to Deanna and all her people. “We know what needs to be done, and we do it. We’re the ones who live. You pretend like you know, but you don’t. Your way of doing things is gone. We need to control who lives here.”
“That’s never been more clear to me,” says Deanna.
“ME?!” says Rick. Perhaps if he could see himself covered in blood and waving a gun around in the middle of the street, he’d be a little less incredulous. But he’s not done Ricksplaining yet, or at least he thinks he’s not. “I’m not going to stand by and—”
A fist hammers Rick in the face, and he falls flat, unconscious.