February 27, 2017 – Eugene is Negan, an Oscar Story & a Medicine Quickie

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What I Watched Today

(rambling, random thoughts & annoyingly detailed recaps from real time TV watching)

 

The Walking Dead

A group of Saviors gathers around Fat Joey’s body. Dwight goes running inside, and finds that Daryl is gone. Didn’t take them too long to make that discovery. Only about six months.

Eugene is brought into the camp. You’d think by now he’d stop blubbering about everything. He’s led to a relatively nice room that has a microwave and refrigerator. Savior Laura tells him, welcome home. Could be worse. A lot worse. He starts looking at the books, and she tells him that there’s a library, and informs him about Daryl’s escape. He says the room is satisfactory, and she asks if he wants something to eat. After finding out one of the few things they don’t have is lobster, he asks for canned pasta – orangey – and chips. They have homemade chips. I’m in.

Eugene locks the door and looks in the fridge, where there’s beer, eggs and produce. He puts the radio on, and it’s that freaking Easy Street song. I start laughing. There’s no escape from it. Given a choice between hearing it over and over again, and being beaten to a pulp by Lucille, I’m not sure which I’d choose.

Dwight finds the note telling Daryl to go now. A bunch of guys bust into the room and beat the crap out of him, while Negan stands there with Lucille, watching.

Negan bangs on the door where Dwight is in solitary. He says they looked around and he realized he was short a wife – Sherry. He asks Dwight if he knows anything. Negan thinks It’s some coincidence that she’s gone just after Daryl is. He says someone must have opened the door, and Dwight says it wasn’t her. Negan asks if it was him. He says Dwight has legitimate gripes, and asks if he’s started to see things differently. He asks Dwight who he is, and Dwight says he’s Negan.

Negan opens the door. Negan says Daryl isn’t like Dwight; he’s emotional. Either Daryl is on his way home or on his way back to kill them. Either way, they’ll find him. He asks if Dwight thinks he knows where Sherry went. He does, and Negan tells him to fix what he can fix.

Dwight talks to Dr. Carson. The doctor thinks Sherri was soft and let Daryl go. He says Dwight was beaten unfairly, yet he stays. The kind of selfless soul that Sherry is, is the kind of person who isn’t expected to stay around anymore.

Dwight goes back to get his coat, and takes a pack of cigarettes out of a mounted fish’s mouth. He gets on his motorcycle and jets.

Laura shows Eugene around. She says they use a point system, depending on what people bring in. She suggests that he get a haircut, hands him a jar of pickles, and takes him out to Negan. Negan asks Eugene’s name, and then asks everyone else who they are. They all say Negan. He tells Eugene he might have to get real close to Lucille, and under normal circumstances, he might have let Eugene get close over and over again. He asks Eugene if he’s a smartypants, and Eugene says he is. He explains about how he taught himself to cast bullets. He says he reads a lot, and if knowledge is dropped, he picks it up. Negan says he’s some a-hole, but Eugene says he is not. He has PhD’s in several fields, is technically a doctor, and was part of the Human Genome Project before the zombie apocalypse.

Oops! Half of an impaled zombie falls off.

Negan says the problem with his system of keeping people out, is that the guard zombies fall apart. He asks Eugene how they can keep them on their feet. Eugene says they already have the means to fix the issue, an operational smelter. He explains how to pour liquid metal over both the fence and the zombies. Negan thinks it’s the coolest thing he’s ever heard – it’s practical and badass. He calls Eugene Dr. Smartypants. He asks if Eugene was doing valuable stuff like this for Rick, and says Rick’s loss, their gain. He wants to give Eugene a bonus, and Eugene says he was gifted some pickles. Negan says he’ll send some of his wives over, but no sex. He can have drinks, dinner, and laughs only. Eugene and his pickles get led away. Looks like Eugene is smiling a little.

Commercial break. Better Call Saul returns Monday, April 10, at 10 pm. This show was better than I expected it to be, and quite funny, although I lost track of it sometime during the second season. You can’t watch them all.

Eugene plays video games while he chats with wives Amber, Tanya and Frankie, although Amber is doing more drinking than talking. Frankie asks if he wants a massage, since she was a licensed therapist before the apocalypse. Eugene says he’s aware that none of them are there of their own volition, but Tanya says that doesn’t mean they don’t want to be with him, and some intelligent conversation would be good. She suggests talking about the Human Genome Project. Eugene tells her that he’s not at liberty to discuss it, and they might not understand. It’s not a dis, he’s just stating a fact. They decide to do a science experiment.

Eugene carts a bunch of stuff outside. Frankie tells him to relax; he’s one of them. Like something you’d see your eighth-grade science teacher do if he wanted to get the class’s attention, Eugene mixes some ingredients, and a fat stream of foam comes shooting out. When this experiment is recreated later, on Talking Dead, I find out that this foam is called “elephant’s toothpaste,” which is a perfect description. And if you decide to try this at home, don’t touch it.

Dwight goes to his old house and calls out for Sherry. Everything is a wreck, and he picks up a pre-apocalypse photo of them from the floor. He takes the Daryl note out of his picket and compares it to something she had written, and the writing looks the same. We hear her reading the note that she’s left him with her wedding rings on top. She reminds him that he’s told her if they got separated, they should meet there, and he’d bring pretzels and beer. She says he’s lucky he doesn’t remember things. He didn’t want to live in Negan’s world, but she made him. Now he’s become everything he didn’t want to be, and it’s her fault. She says she let Daryl go because he reminded Dwight of who he used to be, and she wanted Dwight to forget. Being there isn’t better than being dead; it’s worse. She hopes he gets away, and remembers the good days, but she doesn’t think he’ll ever even read this. She wants to meet him, but can’t. She doesn’t know if he’d run away with her, take her back to Negan, or kill her. She’s sorry she made him into who he is; she loved who he was.

Dwight takes out a cigarette butt with her lipstick on it, and shakes his wedding ring out of the pack, putting it with hers. He leaves a six-pack of beer and some pretzels. Wow. That was kind of sad.

Frankie and Tanya knock on Eugene’s door. They need his help. Frankie says Amber just drinks and cries. They signed up for this, but she didn’t. Her mother needed medicine, and she thought she could live with it, but she can’t. She’s asked them to help her end it. He suggests they find a doctor. Frankie says that Amber wants to go to sleep and not wake up. Eugene says that’s wildly irresponsible, since she’ll turn when everyone is asleep. They tell him that they’ll take care of that end. He’s a good man, and they know he can make things. They’ll handle the rest. He says he’s not good, but he can jerry-rig a lethal toxin. Frankie says that he is good, and Amber will do it with or without them. He asks how much she weighs. If they can get her exact weight, he can cook something up.

A bunch of people are in line to get supplies. Eugene goes to the front and asks for cold capsules. The woman at the desk tells him to get in line. Eugene asks her number, and tells her that he’s now chief engineer who reports directly to Negan, which means she reports to him. He wants the capsules now. She gives them to him. Good for you growin’ a pair, Eugene! He takes a bedpan, a flyswatter, a sort-of sock monkey that he calls Grimblygunk, and the rest of the medication. Double good for you, Doctor Smartypants!

Dr. Carson asks if Dwight found Sherry, and Dwight says that he killed her. The doctor says that before they got there and understood, they were cowards. They don’t get to have big hearts, and Dwight needs to remember that.

Eugene is brought to a gathering of people. Dwight stokes the fire, and Negan paces around with Lucille. It’s face-burning time. Negan tells Eugene to pay close attention, and whacks Dr. Carson. Negan shows him a note that says good-by honey, and says he found it in the doctor’s desk. It’s from the bottom of the note that Sherry left for Dwight. Negan says the doctor left the door open, and let Daryl out so he could be the hero. Dr. Carson says that she’s the one who ran. Negan says she ran because she knew he’d blame her. Dwight told him that after she ran, she got eaten by zombies, and now a super-hot girl was killed because of him. Dr. Carson says that Dwight is lying, but Negan says why would he do that, and if he is, he’ll find Sherry and kill Dwight. He says all Dwight needed was a night in the hole to get his head on straight. Here comes the iron. The doctor begs not to be burned. Negan says he hates this sh*t and just say he’s sorry. Dr. Carson says he did it and he’s sorry. Negan says that’s all he had to say, and drops the iron. Then he throws the doctor into the fire. Amber is distraught, but I thought that was pretty good. Quick too. Negan says good thing they have a spare doctor, and he never should have doubted Dwight. He says he’s sorry, and Dwight say he’s not. Negan says, ice cold, he loves it.

Frankie and the Tanya come back to Eugene’s room. He says he made the pills, but they can’t have them. Frankie says Amber is counting on them. He says don’t insult his intelligence – the pills are for Negan. I’m guessing that he knew by the weight. They would have had to tell him the truth with that, because it would be deadly for them to under-estimate Frankie asks if Negan didn’t kill his friends, and Eugene says they killed his too. Frankie says they’ll tell Negan it was his idea. He says she’s replaceable; he isn’t. She calls him a coward, and he says that’s a correct assessment.

Eugene enjoys a pickle, and as soon as this show is over, I’m eating one. Negan knocks on his door.  He looks pissed. They stare at each other. Negan walks in. He asks how Eugene likes it, and if they’re doing right by him. He says he knows how hard it is to accept change but needs Eugene to understand that he doesn’t make this invitation to everyone, and doesn’t make it lightly. He tells Eugene that he doesn’t need to be scared. He just has to answer a question, a big one. He starts to ask who Eugene is, but before he can finish the sentence, Eugene says, he’s completely, stone cold Negan. He just needed to meet him properly, but he’s Negan.

The next morning, Eugene is outside, giving instructions on the molten metal and enjoying another pickle. Omg, I’m eating a whole jar after this. He and Dwight stand there, watching metal get poured over the zombies. Eugene says, “I’m Eugene, you’re Dwight, and we’re Negan.”

Okay. They might be reeling me back in here. The big question is, is Eugene really on board with the Saviors, figuring this is the safest route, at least for now; or is he a bigger smartypants than we thought?

Next time, Michonne and Rick take a road trip, Rosita can’t wait, and neither can I, because we’re getting zombies at an amusement park. The kind of thing I live for. 🎡

🎟 No new Housewives of Atlanta this week. I guess Bravo didn’t want to compete with the Oscars. I lost interest in the Academy Awards years ago. And no, it wasn’t after the Rob Lowe/Snow White fiasco. In 1986, I knew two of the nominees, one quite well, and the other just in passing. The late William Hickey, who’d been nominated for Best Supporting Actor in Prizzi’s Honor, had been my acting teacher for many years. I remembered him saying that if he was ever up for an Oscar, that he wouldn’t go unless he could bring his dog. I thought this was admirable. However, Bill did go, and I didn’t see his dog there. I’ve always wondered if he was wearing socks though.

The other was William Hurt (the two Bills!), who was up for Best Actor in Kiss of the Spider Woman. I’d done some work putting together charity events for off-Broadway’s Circle Repertory Theatre, and also volunteered to take tickets. During my time there, our paths crossed, as he was doing a fantastic play called Childe Byron in which he was playing Lord Byron. I watched it several times, and although he was already becoming well-known by then, he was very approachable and always kind. I was thrilled when he got the award (Bill Hickey lost to Cocoon’s Don Ameche), but I knew after that, there was nowhere for the Academy Awards to go for me, but downhill. There’s not much chance of me knowing another nominee, and even less of me being nominated, which is the only thing that could top that.

This year, sadly, it spares me from kudos to an industry that has become less about the work, and more about opinion, political and otherwise.

🏥 Married to Medicine‘s Heavenly summed up part two of the reunion perfectly when she called Mariah “dirty, dingy, and dusty.”

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