‘The Walking Dead,’ Season 7, Episode 10: “New Best Friends”

So we have a new group in The Walking Dead. Because that is totally what we need…

CF:  I just finished watching this: my head hurts.

Here’s what went down in Episode 10 (entitled “New Best Friends”) of Season 7 of AMC’s The Walking Dead.

AMC's 'The Walking Dead,' Season 7, Episode 10, New Best Friends, King Ezekiel

[Image via Gene Page/AMC]

The Kingdom Vs. Team Caryl

Episode 10 of The Walking Dead opens with the Saviors are collecting from the Kingdom. The Governor lookalike, Richard (Karl Makinen), is a bit cocky when it comes to handing over his weapon. Even after King Ezekiel (Khary Payton) tells Richard to stop being a dick, a fight breaks out. Threats are made, mostly about Lucille but no one gets the bat just yet. Morgan (Lennie James) totally gets his staff confiscated though. Even when he nicely asks for it back, the Saviors won’t hand it over. This completely feels like foreshadowing. Given half a chance, I think Morgan will bludgeon to death the guy who took his staff.

Shit is smoothed over. For now.

CF:  Seriously, why do they take their guns with them when they know The Saviors are looking for an excuse to steal their shit?  Leave all that crap at home so there are no excuses.  There was a lot of idiot balling going on in this episode.

RT: I completely agree. They gloat about being able to shelter Daryl in Episode 9 because the Saviors never enter their compound. Now, in Episode 10 they are just bringing out all the goods they might need and, basically, handing them over to the group they know are trouble.

Richard, however, has a plan. He wants Daryl (Norman Reedus) to help him fuck shit up to create a rift between Ezekiel and Negan. Except, once Daryl finds out the aforementioned shit involves using Carol (Melissa McBride) as a pawn, he says no. He says no a whole heap of times before Richard gets what he’s saying.

CF:  Daryl was starting to get his Heisenberg on when he kept going, “Say her name. Say her name.”  I just wonder how long it is before Daryl kills Richard, because nobody messes with his Pookie.

AMC's 'The Walking Dead,' Seaosn 7, Episode 10, New Best Friends, Daryl and Carol, Team Caryl, Pookie

[Image via Gene Page/AMC]

This means it’s time for Daryl to have a little catch up with Carol, something that hasn’t happened since Episode 14 of Season 6 of The Walking Dead. For Team Caryl shippers, now is the time to get excited! And, it’s nice seeing this couple catch up in a completely non-sexual way that is starting to get annoying .

They have a meal, Daryl lies to her about what happened between Alexandria and the Saviors, which means Glenn (Steven Yeun) and Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) get to live on in Carol’s Walking Dead universe. Then Daryl leaves and tells her to watch her back. So, maybe she knows already that shit is not as rosy as Daryl is making out.

When Daryl gets back to the Kingdom, he decides he has had enough of their shit and tells Morgan he is heading back to Hilltop. A look is exchanged between Morgan and Richard that makes me nervous.

CF:  For someone who is being held prisoner for the longest time, Daryl seems pretty calm about everything.  I did like it when he told Morgan to get his shit together, but that just didn’t seem to be at the same intensity Daryl’s always had in the past behind such a comment.  And let’s just say this right now: Daryl is the worst fucking liar in the history of fucking liars.  When he was blowing all that bullshit at Carol it seemed to me that he was really doing a poor job of hiding what had actually happened.  And I still think Carol’s putting on an act, which means she saw right through it.

RT: Carol isn’t as great an actor as she thinks either, so maybe she might fall for his steaming pile of shit? That’s about the only angle I can get to make this part fit together.

CF:  The whole scene with Carol and Daryl by candlelight felt off, like we were listening to two people who didn’t want to be in the same room together.  I went back and watched it again and there’s something undefinable about how it played.

RT: I think AMC need to get these two to shag or break up. What they are doing now is no longer working.

AMC's 'The Walking Dead,' Seaosn 7, Episode 10, New Best Friends, Rick and the new group

[Image via AMC]


So, that group from the end of Episode 9 makes another appearance. I know lots of people have been calling them the Garbage Pail Kids, but, seriously, has no one watched Mad Max?!

CF:  Please tell me there is an outtake with Danai Gurira wearing a big Tina Turner wig yelling at Rick through that pipe, “Welcome to another exciting evening of Thunderdome!”  Please tell me that exist and will make all this bullshit seem worthwhile.

RT: I searched and I searched, AMC has not released this image yet 🙁 But, surely it’s out there?

Rick (Andrew Lincoln) is as cocky as shit and jumps right in with trying to get them to join his fight. As you would expect, this doesn’t go well. It goes so badly, in fact, that Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) has to be brought out to sell the all out war on Rick’s behalf.

AMC's 'The Walking Dead,' Seaosn 7, Episode 10, New Best Friends, Father Gabriel threatens a member of the new group

[Image via Gene Page/AMC]

Yeah, it turns out Gabriel is all warrior priest now and not sneaking out to find a safer place to hide at all. At least his sell is better than Rick’s.

CF:  Something bothered me a lot with Gabriel’s explanation of how he got there.  He said he heard a commotion from the pantry while on the wall, but the pantry is a hell of a long ways from the entrance.  And when he drove off he was driving while it appeared there was someone in the passenger seat.  I’m calling bullshit on his full explanation. Something tells me he’s working with these people.

RT: Thanks for bringing this up Cassidy, I totally forgot to mention it initially. This is some steaming pile of horseshit that is the “official” story being fed to us in this episode. None of it makes much sense. Yes, we only saw Gabriel looking concerned on the wall, so, I guess, at a stretch, you could imagine something resembling this could have happened. Except for everything you just said about the pantry…

That still doesn’t mean Rick gets away with being a cocky shit. Oh, no, the Junk-pile group take Rick to see the “Up-Up.”

Say what?

CF:  Maybe they meant the Up-Up Side-Side Down?  Or maybe the Upside Down-Down?  Or maybe the writers at The Walking Dead have finally run out of fucking ideas.  Oh, and I’d like to point out the really shitty rear projection screen shots that were used when they were showing the extent of this gigantic junk yard behind the Rick.  I mean, TWD has thrown in a couple of bad CGI shots from time to time, but this one looked pixelated on my TV, like they had rushed the shot at the last moment and thought that no one would give a fuck.  Maybe they figured no one would give a shit because they were too busy pounding their heads over the Up-Up.

RT: I was laughing when Rick was up the top of the Up-Up. Really? A junk yard of that size and NO ONE FUCKING SAW IT?! That whole time Rick and Aaron where paddling across to the boat and no one thought to check out the ginormous motherfucking junkyard directly next door? Right-o then AMC…

CF:  I did find the main dump in the Alexandria area:  it’s run by ESI Waste near Colchester, MD, but it’s your average “Mount Trashmore” as we call them here, and not an old-style dump as shown.  And really:  Heath has been all over this area and no one mentioned the huge fucking dump right back over by der?  What bullshit.

RT: Exactly! It just felt like a huge McGuffin. Not in the history of The Walking Dead has anyone in the area mentioned a junkyard, yet, there it is. It would have made more sense if they headed out on a day trip because Tara and Heath had mentioned it.

CF:  When you make up complete shit you have to pretend no one has been all over the area before.  🙂  And one other thing:  The Thunderdomers said the just watch and don’t act.  So they wait until Rick takes the guns then follow him back to Alexandria and then break in and steal all the shit?  Well, isn’t that acting?  I don’t get their motivation at all.  Other than to be pain-in-the-ass Gimple foils.

AMC's 'The Walking Dead,' Seaosn 7, Episode 10, New Best Friends, The Up-Up

[Image via Gene Page/AMC]

Seriously, I hate this group so much already. They have stupid names for themselves and whatever the fuck the “Up-Up” is and, and don’t even get me started on their bad haircuts and ridiculous clothing choices for the Georgian heat…

But, anyway, back to the “Up-Up.”

Turns out it is just the very top of the junk pile they live in.

But wait, the leader pushes Rick down into the Thunderdome and he has to single-handledly fight a walker that has been decked out in battle gear and spikes.


I’ll let that sink in for a while.

CF:  I want to know who spent all the goddamn time putting all those spikes in Blaster–I’m sorry, I mean Winslow.  Seriously, come the fuck on!  I like how these assholes stack the deck by making it impossible for you to drive anything through the zombie’s brain.  What was this, a case of one man goes in, two zombies remain?  If I had watched this last night, I would’ve been throwing shit at my TV.

RT: The only thing that kept me from throwing shit at my TV was the fact I was clutching my sides and laughing so hard 😉

CF:  You didn’t feel Rick’s pain when he drove the spike through his hand?  😀  That was some more bullshit.

AMC's 'The Walking Dead,' Seaosn 7, Episode 10, New Best Friends, Rick and the spiky walker

[Image via Gene Page/AMC]

Yes, the Mad Max crew totally took the time to dress up a walker and put him in the Thunderdome so they can throw humans in to prove their “worth.”

Which Rick totally does. Of course.

A deal is struck after that and the new group agree to help Rick’s group out only if they are supplied with guns. Like, shitloads of guns. Rick totally bluffs his way into the deal. “Guns, yeah. We can gets guns. We can get SO many guns.” While, in the background, Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Tara (Alanna Masterson) are wondering how the fuck they are going to fight the Saviors AND the Thunderdome crew when they have no guns at all.

CF:  And speaking of lying liars, Tara looked like she was going to shit herself when Rick told her that she can show them where not to go.  First she’s already to start swinging at Rosita, then a second later it’s like, “Oh, sure Rick.  I’ll make certain to show you where I know there are no guns!  Absolutely!  All the places where there are no guns at all!”  Which means it’s only a matter of time before she shows him where Oceanside is located.  Because of course.

What did you think of Episode 10 of AMC’s The Walking Dead Season 7 mid-season premiere? Let us know by commenting below!

CF:  I read this recap before going out to my doctors appointment so I had plenty of time to think about this whole new group of people they discovered.  And, as you can imagine, my thoughts were not that good…

At what point does a writer with any self-respect listen to the pitch for this episode and think, “Of the four Man Max movies we could rip off, let’s totally redo the one that most people didn’t like.  Yeah, that totally works!”  Did Scott Gimple watch American Horror Story: Roanoke and think it was a challenge?  “Ryan Murphy just put out ten weeks of excruciating, boring, idiotic bullshit: I KNOW I can do better!”  Because while last week’s episode was okay in the sense it didn’t totally suck, this toppled right off the Up-Up and ended up down the pit with Blaster the Zombie.

Oh, Sweet Fucking Christ.

RT: I really hope Gimple did accept AHS: Roanoke as a challenge. That, at least, makes some sort of sense.

CF:  Otherwise we have to assume Gimple no longer gives a shit about anything but putting out product so AMC is making money.  Keep the fans happy?  Fuck ’em.

And io9 were so-so about this episode.  They didn’t think it was great but loved the surprise.  This was their best line about the Scavengers:  “They’re like a community theatre group made up exclusively of Nine Inch Nails fans that decided to start a cult.”

RT: I completely agree with io9. Although, I do think there was a little Resident Evil homage attempted as well…

CF:  Yeah, there was a bit of that “Alice” feel with the head bitch.  And Winslow the Spike Zombie.  If they start doing backflips and shit when they fire their weapons we’ll know they’ve seen the series a dozen times.

This was like watching zombie fan fiction written by ten-year-olds.  Though I suspect the kids on Stranger Things could write better shit than this, and they ARE kids!  This was actually written by professional writers.  People who received money for their work.  People who had time to think about this and plot this shit out and go, “Yeah, I think were going in the right direction.”  And people who were not ashamed to put their name in the credits.

This episode was actually written by Channing Powell, who wrote Say the Word, the episode that first introduced us to Crazy Rick.  She also wrote Inmates–the episode that showed us how the survivors from Rick’s group were coping after the destruction of the Prison and episode that introduced us to Abraham, Rosita, and Eugene–as well as Heads Up.  But she also wrote Slabtown, which was the start of the “Beth is in the fucking hospital” storyline which went nowhere.  As last week’s episode was also written by a woman, I’m starting to wonder if there’s some master plan here to give the women the opening episodes that are supposed to show some character building, but are instead just coming off as plain shitty.  Or at least this one was.  I guess we’ll have to wait until next week to see just how much Negan smirking we can handle.

But as far as this episode went, I goddamn near went blind from all the eye rolling.

Oh, and Rachel: I’m about to drive you nuts.  Because what if these people, the Thunderdome Crew, are the nucleus for what will become… The Whispers?  Because if I know Gimple, that clever arsehole knows how to double down on bullshit, and this is just the sort of bullshit he loves.

RT: Oh shit, I have tried not to think about this new group too much. I figured Rick would just dress them up in red shirts and that would be the end of that. But, now you’ve made me have to consider this option. Although, to be fair, AMC are saying this new group isn’t from the comics. Although, it’s not the first time they have lied to the audience. They’re not the Whisperers … yet.

CF:  Of course they aren’t in the comic, but since The Whisperers don’t have a background story–see where I’m going?  Yes, the Scavengers aren’t from the comic–but that doesn’t mean they couldn’t end up there, yeah?  Remember, you told me about clever arseholes being clever, and Scotty is oh, so clever

RT: Goddammit! I think you’re right on this.

Episode 11, (entitled “Hostiles and Calamities”) of Season 7 of AMC’s The Walking Dead returns on Sunday, February 26 at 9 PM ET. The official synopsis for Episode 11 is below.

“An outsider experiences The Sanctuary.”

[Featured image via Gene Page/AMC]

0 thoughts on “‘The Walking Dead,’ Season 7, Episode 10: “New Best Friends”

  1. Pingback: ‘The Walking Dead,’ Season 7, Episode 10: “New Best Friends” | Rachel Tsoumbakos

  2. Clearly Mr Simple’s mission in life is ‘how to introduce more annoying characters’. Not to mention how to humiliate Rick at every possible turn.
    Besides, why was the gang all smiles after Rick announced ‘the deal’? Seemed like a hollow victory to me; not only had he been made to look a fool (again), he had his hand impaled on a spike (which the lovely Michonne didn’t even notice), he had to crawl on his hands and knees back up the tip to Sister in Chief, which she symbolically engineered anyway and he gave the impression that he believed he had won. At any cost?
    Oh dear, this episode has maybe brought out some of my anti authoritarian issues…thank you Mr Simple.
    Anyone with half a brain could have shot back up that rubbish pile. I know I would have done, like a ferret up a drainpipe and I sometimes wonder if Andrew Lincoln has any input into how his character is being demeaned.
    Carol and Daryl? Yet again, we’re forced to watch innuendo and people interacting with each other in a way most people never would. I know it´s TWD, but come on. Can’t they just be real once in a while?
    There´s a special place in a corner of my black heart reserved for cults, their leaders and their MO. It’s fair to say that Sister just secured her place there from the moment she appeared. All those Masonic hand signals, robotic gestures and silly names had me reaching for a Molotov. And that tall, old bloke at the end? The one who said something menacing, but not very well? Had about as much impact as a B movie.
    While I remember, when Gabriel held the knife to that woman´s throat, he had the knife the wrong way round, with the blunt end to her throat. Some warrior! But perhaps it was intentional, who knows in Simple´s world?

    I think what’s irritating me more than anything since The Saviours arrived on scene is the sense of hopelessness the story inflicts upon the gang. The odds are constantly stacked against them and when there´s a crack in the sky and there’s´a chance they might get the upper hand, it’s cruelly ripped away from them, like in Morgan’s case for example. There was just the right head count of Saviours to make a counter attack infeasible. Tantalising even, yet irritating. Again.
    I´m prattling on now, but I’d sure like to see the gang get the upper hand over the next few weeks and let’s quit with the in fighting.
    Lies down in darkened room…

    • Awesome input Marc! I am loving your version of Gimple’s name — so completely appropriate. I agree with everything you have said here. But, mostly, it is tgat feeling of hopelessness that I think has derailed the whole show. I can’t work out why, but Negan’s group just hasn’t translated well onto the TV and I wonder just how bad it can all get before people turn off for good. You are absolutely right by saying the characters do stupid things and I really hope the actors haven’t influenced this.

  3. Pingback: ‘The Walking Dead,’ Season 7, Episode 11: “Hostiles And Calamities” | The Snarking Dead TV Recaps

  4. Pingback: ‘The Walking Dead,’ Season 7, Episode 11: “Hostiles And Calamities” | Rachel Tsoumbakos

  5. Pingback: ‘The Walking Dead,’ Season 7, Episode 13: “Bury Me Here” | The Snarking Dead TV Recaps

Leave a Reply