This week’s episode of The Walking Dead dealt with usually ‘book smart’ people using this peaceful period to try their hand at being field ready. Sadly for them, the Saviors had other plans. While some characters dealt with their monster side, the real monsters were beginning to form a counter attack – which may or may not have just gotten added fuel this episode.
There’s only two episodes left and we just saw the first – of possibly many – deviations from the comic books. After following the story so close for most of the season, is The Walking Dead about to rewrite history once more? Let’s find out in this week’s Closer Look.
“Twice As Far” – Distance From Stage 2, Peace & Each Other:
Having a title like ‘twice as far’ brings to mind many different aspects of this episode. The first of which is how this episode primarily follows the TWO Groups – Abraham’s and Darryl’s. Both groups are not only venturing far from home but also splitting up from each other; and we see how each group deals with someone trying to be ‘there’ – aka present and ready to fight in this new world – and seeing just how much they still need to travel. We’ll discuss that aspect more in the next section; but the final thing to note about this episode title is how it shows that they’re ‘twice as far’ from this whole battle with the Saviors being resolved. Unlike the past run-ins, this one led to a casualty as well as survivors being able to go back and regroup.
Two Tales Of Reaching Level Two – Dennise and Eugene:
As the episode sets off, we find two very out of place people taking part in this run. Sure, Eugene has assisted with a run before; but leaving him alone with Abraham seems like too much of a risk – that is until we see the other team which is comprised of Rosita, Darryl and the Alexandria doctor. If there was ever a person too valuable to risk their life on runs, it was Denise. Although that was the main focus of this episode, ‘people whose skills are in things other than fighting trying to prove they can fight’. Eugene and Denise smarts are much more valuable than their fighting merit; and yet they want to be treated as equals.
As the episode progresses, we see each in similar situations while one fails and the other succeeds. Both go to needless lengths to ‘prove something’, but whereas Eugene vs Metal Head Walker was interrupted by Abraham, Denise vs Cooler Walker showed Denise as a somewhat capable fighter. The problem is that both of these attempts were needless and lead to the final confrontation with the Saviors. Despite Denise’s passionate speech, she was wrong. Yes everyone takes risks now; but they’re never blind risks but calculated ones. Even with Rick’s attack on the Saviors, there was a plan and he knew everyone’s strengths and even that was almost failed.
Yes she trained for killing and made up helping, but she’s the only one at Alexandria that was somewhat a doctor. It’s harsh, but going after that cooler was a selfish act to prove something and it got her killed – not in the way she thought it would, but killed none the less. Because of that distraction and noise, the Saviors found them and got the jump on them. Had they just continued on, they’d have been fine. There’s seems to be a theme this season for bad things happening when people try to be something other than who they are. We’re seeing it now with Carol a bit, and this episode was all about that as well. Sadly, things might get so bad soon that people won’t get a chance to decide who they can be.
Quick Bites – Easter Eggs, Quotes & Other Notables:
- In the comics, it was Abraham who was supposed to be killed while out on this run and there was definitely foreshadowing for that to happen this episode; and yet it was all a false lead as Denise was actually the one to get it. Does this mean this season’s Finale death will also be a surprise change from the comics?
- Carol is still struggling with thinking she’s a monster and even shows sympathy for the fallen Saviors by saying “they didn’t do anything TO US”, meaning it was her that was the bad person. As the audience though – and rest of the group – we know the Saviors are monsters due to the photographs, past and present run ins (all things Carol wasn’t present for).
- Looks like Dwight got punished for running from Neegan for that short time (ie: the burned face); but you have to wonder what happened to the girl with him.
- That awkward moment when you realize Dwight came for Darryl because he remembered he had a camp; but thanks to Dennise now knows that Darryl’s group killed all those Saviors. . .
There’s only two episodes left and next week will see the group trying to find Carol while also realizing they underestimated the Saviors and what they’re capable of. Though with all the back on forth on ‘killing or not killing’, we know this will end with a huge death that will shock everyone into action. Although while it seems likely that it’ll follow the comics, there’s also arguments that Maggie could be in for it. Pregnant woman haven’t had happy endings on this show and her death (along with her unborn child’s) would certainly shock Carol out of it.
We’ll find out – and cry over the truth – very soon. So stay tuned!