First off, can we just have a little chat about Rick Grims and his happy family? We all know that Andrew Lincoln is flying the coop this season, there’s no need to be doing the happy family shenanigans prior to his departure. You’re laying it on a bit thick already AMC. Especially since it had nothing to do whatsoever with this episode.
CF: Particularly since AMC made a point of saying just how many episode Rick has left. You can count them on… well, fewer than five fingers. So, yeah: made this shit a whole lot more heavy handed than it needed.
So, here’s the important stuff.
We find off, right at the beginning, that Justin (Zach McGowan) is dead. I totally wasn’t expecting that, I thought we would see the Saviors slowly escaping from the other communities or that it would herald in the introduction of the Whisperers. But, nope. It’s someone else instead. Which means we are up for a whodunit episode of The Walking Dead.After Justin’s undead body is discovered, Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) tries to enforce his Utopian vision of the communities and the world moving forward. He wants to find out what happened to Justin and immediately fingers are pointed.
For starters, it looks like an arrow took Justin out. So, that puts Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) front and centre and the Saviors figure it has to be him on account of the run-in he had with him in last week’s episode of The Walking Dead. In addition, Anne (Pollyanna McIntosh) is also thrown under the bus because they figure she is getting her revenge for Simon (Steven Ogg) killing her people.
CF: It was right at this point, just before Rick shows up, that I was going, “Damn, enough with this fighting, okay?” A lot of the crap we’re seeing now was completely ignored in this part of the story line of the comic and it’s getting old fast. Wanna know why the rating are going down like the Titanic? Because of this shit.
Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) jumps in to defend Anne and flat-out lies about being with Anne all night while they were on watch. He then confronts her later. Twice. The first time he asks her if she saw anything, not really implying she had something to do with it, but testing the waters, so to speak.
Later, when Anne sneaks out in the middle of the night. Gabriel follows.
It turns out Anne is radioing whoever the fuck is flying those helicopters. Negotiations are underway when Gabriel turns up so we are still no steps further to working out who Anne really is. Although, we do learn that she must produce an A or a B as part of the negotiations. Whatever that means.Then, Gabriel turns up and they have a little chat where Anne asks if he would like to come with her after she reveals that she was trading people and Father G says no. Which puts him into the ‘A’ category, apparently, and I am wondering if A and B stand for Alphas and Betas since Rick was once held by Anne in a container marked ‘A.’ Now, it seems like she has an A for her negotiations and I guess we’ll just have to wait even longer still to find out what sort of bullshitery Anne is mixed up in.
CF: I think the A and B designation is just what you say: Alpha leaders and Beta followers. And I’m liking that Anne’s true colors are starting to come out, but goddamn, let’s speed this up just a bit. I want to see where this is going and not just spend the rest of the season waiting for shit to get real.
RT: Considering Rick’s days are numbered, I’m getting real scared that this won’t be resolved until the second half of the season.
Meanwhile, Rick’s groups have split up to search for any clues that will help them identify what happened to Justin and whether or not they can legit point a finger at someone. They are also on the hunt for the missing Arat (Elizabeth Ludlow), who was taken when she and one of the Oceanside girls were out looking for clues.
Lots happens here, but the gist of it all is that Carol (Melissa McBride) seems to be toeing the line as far as Rick’s ideals are concerned and Maggie (Lauren Cohan) is, but not really.
After a lot of traipsing around the countryside, Daryl and Maggie eventually wind up finding Arat. She is being held captive by members of Oceanside. So, the reason it was only Saviors going missing is that they are secretly still holding a grudge against this group for killing all their menfolk. Maggie and Daryl try to clear things up. But, when it is revealed that Arat was a part of the killing of boys from Oceanside, Maggie is like, “Fuck that shit, let them sort it all out among themselves.”
She and Daryl walk off and decide it is finally time to pay Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) a visit.
CF: To me Maggie has had the most honest reaction of any of the characters on the show so far, because her head isn’t up her ass right now. Rick acts like he’s living a dream world while Maggie is trying to clean the world up to make it better for people like Daryl and her. And I did love their reaction towards the Oceanside people. Rick would have tried talking them out and then, at the end, drawn his gun and started making threats. Maggie and Daryl are like, “Fuck it: she had it coming,” and walk away ’cause they know it’ll get done and the body will vanish and that’s all there is. I really would like the scene from the comic where Maggie beats the shit out of Rick for basically being a shitty leader, but I have a feeling it’ll never happen. When Rick’s gone we’re gonna get a lot of “Oh, he was a great man” and bullshit like that, and no one’s gonna bring up the Zombie Fun Run or how he handed Woodbury or any shit like that. And it’s really what we need.
RT: I totally agree with the way Maggie and Daryl handled it. It wasn’t ever going to be resolved so you may as well deal with it the way that will likely lead to the least amount of conflict.
CF: One little moment I also loved was near the beginning when Rick was questioning Daryl and Daryl goes, “Is this what you used to do?” meaning back when Rick was a cop in the Real World. The way he said it and the way he looked at Rick not only told me he didn’t like the “official questioning”, but it wasn’t the first time he had a cop asking him shit.
RT: Considering Justin and Rick had a similar conversation last week, I thought it was great that it was pointed out that Daryl and Justin are just the same kind of people, merely at different ends of Rick’s buddy scale.What did you think of Episode 3 of Season 9 of AMC’s The Walking Dead? Let us know by commenting below!
Season 9 of The Walking Dead returns to AMC with Episode 4 (titled “The Obliged”) on Sunday, October 28. The synopsis is below.
“Rick’s vision of a civilized future is threatened by a sudden reckoning with past sins that remain unavenged and unforgiven.”
[Featured image via Gene Page/AMC]