Previously on The Walking Dead: Gunfights, gunfights, more gunfights, and Morales (who is about as memorable as Mark Brendanawicz from Parks and Recreation) felt the need to lecture Rick on how both he and Negan are exactly the same, right before taking an arrow to the back of the head by Daryl.
THE STORY SO FAR: King Ezekiel is distraught over his people being gunned down by the Saviors with the incredibly large and powerful machine guns. He ends up being taken hostage by a Savior who looks like he’s been cosplaying as Jeffrey Dahmer during the entire Zombie Apocalypse and who refuses to shut up about what a fraud Ezekiel is and how he’s nothing but a con man taking advantage of the people pledging their loyalty to him. (Perhaps if he ironed people’s faces as if they were grilled cheese sandwiches, Ezekiel would have made a better impression on him). He’s about to finish Ezekiel off for good right before Jerry comes in for the save and gives me Interview With The Vampire flashbacks by slicing him in half with his axe. Carol ambushes some more Saviors like an absolute badass in her attempts to seize the ammo for the machine guns, while Rick and Daryl do their part to get the actual guns themselves. Ezekiel is finally left a broken man forced to accept that he is not actually a king when Shiva loses her life to a horde of Walkers while defending him, Carol, and Jerry.
WHAT’S GOOD ABOUT THIS EPISODE: Pretty much the only interesting action sequence I’ve seen so far this season, with Rick and Daryl in a car/motorcycle chase with the Saviors to get the guns.
The annoying Jeffrey Dahmer-looking Savior being told to shut the hell up in the most effective and gruesome way possible.
Khary Payton’s work as Ezekiel. As much as this episode still made me Jane Lane-shrug at it like so …
… his performance as a man struggling to accept the reality of who he is and what he’s been doing all this time and also being forced to accept the loss of one of his closest friends was an impressive one in this episode.
WHAT’S NOT SO GOOD ABOUT THIS EPISODE: Same issues I’ve had with every other episode this season.
IS NEGAN IN THIS EPISODE?: No, he’s not so once again, you may continue doing your celebratory Cabbage Patches.
DOES NEGAN KILL ANYONE ELSE? No, because again he’s not in tonight’s episode.
SO WAIT. NOT LIKE WE MISS HIM ALL THAT MUCH, BUT WE’VE REALLY GONE HOW MANY EPISODES WITHOUT DEALING WITH NEGAN OR HIM BEING SURROUNDED BY WALKERS WITH FATHER GABRIEL?: According to the previews for next week’s episode (or I should say, the twelve seconds of previews for next week’s episode that were cut off by my DVR), we finally get an episode focused on Negan and Gabriel and whether or not any shitting of pantaloons have taken place since we last saw them. Hopefully, you’ll find this episode focusing on characters other than your faves is an episode you’ll find a lot more pleasant than “The Lost Sister” episode of Stranger Things 2. Seriously, I was really surprised that so many people found that episode to be so damn bad and polarizing.
OK. IS MICHONNE IN THIS EPISODE AT LEAST?: No.
MAGGIE?: All signs point to ‘No’.
NEGAN?: You already asked me that, and he’s still not in this episode.
THE PUNISHER?: Wrong show. You won’t be seeing him/drooling over him/wondering why she has to share screentime with Deborah Ann Woll-as-Karen Page on your television screens until later this week.
OH. SO……………YOU GOING TO SEE JUSTICE LEAGUE THIS WEEKEND?: I have one word in response to your question:
IS DARYL STILL ALIVE? BECAUSE IF NOT, WE RIOT: Other than taking a stumble off his motorcycle in order to avoid machine-gun fire, but yes. He’s still alive and thinks that Rick looks like shit. Despite the fact that Daryl’s own appearance leads me to occasionally wonder if he’s the live-action version of Pigpen from Peanuts.
TO SUM IT ALL UP: There are only so many variations of this I can write every time I watch The Walking Dead this season, but…much like almost every other episode this season, very little happens to push the plot forward or make you care all that much about what the characters are dealing with or what the stakes are. That being said, I will give the showrunners credit for realizing that absolutely none of us wanted to see Shiva perish onscreen at the hands of Walkers, even if she is computer-generated. They’re more than comfortable with showing humans getting ripped apart by Walkers in extreme close-up and even showing us in extreme close-up the damage that a Browning machine gun can do to the human body (because, you know, simply seeing dead bodies all over the ground after being fired upon just isn’t enough), but seeing an animal die in a slow and painful manner that will make us wonder who the hell is cutting onions next to us? This is The Walking Dead, not The Neverending Story, and for that brief moment of consideration, I’m grateful.
May Shiva, the tiger who can sneak up on an entire group of Saviors in an open field without being seen or heard and ambush them without mercy, rest in peace.
This episode of The Walking Dead is brought to you by “Eye Of The Tiger” by Survivor.