What I Watched Today
(rambling, random thoughts & annoyingly detailed recaps from real time TV watching)
The Walking Dead
Miles fights off a zombie in the woods, when Hilde pops out and finishes it off. She tells him, happy anniversary. He asks, where’s his present? and she says she found something she thinks he’ll like. She parts some trees, and shows him Hilltop.
Wooden coins are being made. An H is carved on them.
Hilde gives Miles one of the coins. She tells him, happy anniversary. It’s been five years. The H is for Hilltop; home. He says she should make more; people will love them. It’s a symbol of hope, and people always need more of that. They’re headed to the fair. They put some things in a wagon, and two guys get in back. Hilde tells Miles that she’s going to trade the coins for the perfect gift. He’ll see. She puts a carved chest, also carved with an H, on her lap.
A mess of belongings litters the woods. Hilde lies dead in the rubble. Alpha sings as she scalps Hilde. Wooden coins are scattered everywhere.
Ezekiel speaks to the crowd. He stands before them today at the start of a new tomorrow, made possible by the sacrifices of many over the years. A man with a mission to build a community, and strengthen the bonds between them. It took too long to create what Rick and Carl Grimes envisioned. Jesus brought them together, but they’ve always been bound to each other. They fought their way back to each other. The river crossing might be gone, but they rebuilt a bridge. The crowd applauds, and Ezekiel continues, they’ve reunited, not against a common enemy, but for their common good. He tells them, eat, drink, trade, and be merry. They have a lot of lost time to make up for. Jerry announces, the First Annual Inter-Community Reunification Fair begins. Ezekiel says, too many words. Let the Fair of New Beginnings begin. Fiddle music plays.
Carol tells Ezekiel that he sounded good. He feels it’s his duty to go with her; he’s Henry’s father. She says, he’s also the king. It’s bad enough she’s leaving. If they both go, the people will wonder why. He put a month’s work into the fair. The Kingdom needs him; his people need him.
Kelly tells Magna her sister is out there. Magna says, no, she’s not. The gate opens, and Daryl, Michonne, and the other come through. Carol hugs Henry, and tells him that he can’t ever run away like that again. He promises he won’t. Ezekiel joins them in a three-way hug. Carol hugs Daryl. Ezekiel sees Michonne, who says she was in the neighborhood. They shake hands. Carol asks if Judith remembers them. Judith says she’s been drawing pictures of them since she was little. Caroline of the Kingdom. She says Carol’s hair got long. Tara notices Lydia, and says, the plan was to bring Henry back; just Henry. Michonne tells Ezekiel, gather the leaders. They have a lot to talk about.
Michonne tells the leaders that she hasn’t always seen eye to eye with everyone there, but she never stopped caring about them. She was trying to protect her family, and do right by her people. Alexandria’s future is there; together with them. She lost sight of that, but she’s here now; they’re here now. Gabriel says the council took an informal vote, and the council members are willing to grant asylum to Lydia. She’s one of them, and he hopes they’ll join them in considering her the same. Lydia thanks him, and says she’ll do whatever she can to help. Tara says Lydia’s mother will come after Hilltop, not Alexandria. She has to do right by her people. She thought they were on the same page. Michonne says she wanted Lydia to run away, and when she didn’t, Michonne was angry. But she knows why that’s not okay. She knows why Rick didn’t trust her at the prison. She knows why he didn’t trust Tara when she was on the other side of the Governor’s fighting line. A representative from Oceanside (not Cyndie) says she was going to kill her Tara when she washed up. Tara says, fair. Michonne says, Lydia didn’t choose where she came from, but chose where she wanted to be; just like everybody in this room. Tara says Daryl is right about the skin jobs. They don’t have enough people. Daryl says he’ll get a group together to protect Hilltop, and Ezekiel says they need to gather any spare fighters. Carol says they should go today. Gabriel says it’s a short term solution, and Michonne says they have to present a united front. An attack against one of them, is an attack against all of them. Gabriel says they’ll make the Whisperers think twice about going against Hilltop. Everyone agrees, and Tara asks how they seal the deal; spit shake, blood oath? Ezekiel says he has just the thing, and brings out Michonne’s constitution. Michonne wonders how he got it, and Tara says she might have taken a few things when she left. She did what she thought was right. She’s sorry about the way it went down. Michonne thanks her, and says she was right. Tara says, her too. Ezekiel says he never doubted it for a moment, and signs. His signature is huge, and Gabriel says what I’m thinking – John Hancock. Ezekiel says, eat your heart out. Carol signs Queen Carol. The Oceanside rep (Rachel Ward?), Tara, and Michonne sign. Michonne gives the pen to Gabriel, saying he’s head of council. He signs, and there’s a mini Declaration of Independence tableau.
The fair continues. Lydia walks with Henry. Enid answers medical questions. Earl talks to people about his trade. Eugene harangues Judith from a dunk tank, and she hits the target, dunking him. Lydia asks Henry what they’re going to do with all the stuff; how will they have room. Henry says, they just do; it’s how people express themselves, and asks if she sees anything she likes. She doesn’t know how to answer that. Daryl walks his bike toward the gate. Lydia says she should go too. They’re in danger because of her. Henry says, because of him. Henry wishes he could go, but Ezekiel says he just got there. He expects to see them both at the movies, and Lydia gets excited, saying it’s unexpected. Carol says she’ll get used to it. She tells Henry to go; she won’t leave without saying goodbye. Ezekiel tells Carol, their son is taking a date to the movies tonight. Carol says, everything he said sounds completely possible.
Luke and Alden are arguing, and Luke tells Enid, technically, he lost a bet. He’s playing guitar, and instead of just Luke, he wants it to be Luke and friends. Enid says she wants to hear her crooner boyfriend croon. He is her boyfriend, Isn’t he? Alden says he is. Luke says, congrats, and suggests they get back to their task. Alden says Luke lost the bet, but Luke says Enid wants to hear him sing. Alden says he’ll think about it, as he walks away with Enid.
Connie signs to Kelly that she’s never seen Luke excited. She asks Kelly, what’s wrong? Kelly signs, you left without saying goodbye. Connie puts her hand on Kelly’s arm, but Kelly shakes it off. She signs, any goodbye could be the last. Her sister ran off. Connie didn’t think. They were going to let the baby die. It brought back a lot of feelings she’d thought she dealt with, but guesses not. She just pushes it down. Kelly says she gets it, and hugs Connie.
Michonne tells Siddiq she’s leaving. He says she just got there. He can take her place if she wants to rest, but she says, stick with the plan. She tells him to enjoy the fair, and keep an eye on Judith. Don’t let her be too hard on Jerry. They watch Jerry play horsie with the kids. Siddiq says Judith is more experienced than anyone. Michonne asks, how come? and he says he’ll tell her when he sees her at Hilltop.
Addy asks Henry if he’s got a second to come with her. She’s sorry for ratting him out, that he was in the clubhouse. She didn’t want to get him in trouble, and only caused more. Henry says, everything worked out the way it’s supposed to. Lydia watches from a picnic bench. Gage and Rodney approach her. They tell her they’re friends of Addy’s. Addy has a thing for Henry, and by the looks of it, he has a thing for her too. They’re a tight knit community, and hope she doesn’t plan on causing problems. Lydia gets up and walks away.
Tara says maybe they should go together, but Dianne says, if they go now, people would notice. Tara says she has some details to hammer out, but can join them tomorrow. She thanks them for volunteering, and says, be safe. Michonne hugs Judith. Magna and Yumiko tell Luke goodbye. Connie writes, be safe, to Daryl. He says, her too, and asks her to feed Dog. I might note that Dog goes off with her, tail wagging, not even looking back at Daryl. Man’s best friend.
Henry thanks Daryl for keeping them out of trouble. Ezekiel tells Daryl that Hilltop’s door is always open to him. They’d be honored if he’d consider calling the Kingdom his home. He says he’ll think about it. Carol hugs Henry. She knows Ezekiel has a lot on his mind, but tells him, enjoy the fair. He deserves it. He says he won’t enjoy anything until she’s back. They kiss.
Daryl leads on his motorcycle with the others on horses and in a horse drawn cart behind him.
The Highwaymen work hard, wiping out zombies. Ozzy tells them to double back. Daryl and company arrive, and Ozzy says they were clearing the roads, and spotted tracks. He shows them the mess from Hilde and Miles, and Magna says they’re from Hilltop, but Ozzy says Hilltop didn’t do this. Magna says, the skins? Do they know them? Ozzy says, strange times, strange ways to cope. That would be his guess. They put up a fight, and were drug this way. Daryl says they can’t rush in, but Dianne says they could be alive, but if they were followed, the whole community is in danger. Daryl suggests they split up. Carol says she and Michonne will go with Daryl; the rest go to Hilltop. Ozzy says she’ll owe them a couple of movies when they’re done. Magna asks Yumiko if she thinks they survived. Yumiko says, they came back. She tells Magna they have to go and make sure. They’re just splitting up for now. They kiss. Surprise relationship! For me anyway. I didn’t read the graphic novels.
Darkness has fallen. The group continues through the woods. Daryl finds a bloody stick. Carol says she doesn’t know if there’s a happy ending here. Daryl thinks they should head back. They hear zombie noises, and shoot a couple of them with arrows. More come at them, and Michonne chops with her sword, while Carol stabs them in the head with a knife. They turn to run, but another bunch of zombies block they’re path. They’re surrounded. Carol looks panicked. They slice, dice, stab, and chop. It looks like the zombies are all are down, but more come out of the forest. They put their backs to each other, forming a circle. There are zombies all around them, one with a gun. Beta tells them to drop their weapons. He won’t ask twice. He says they just had to give him the girl; no one else had to die. Now that deal is done.
We peddle back to Daryl and the group leaving Hilltop Jerry tells Nabila that he gives Michonne props. He can’t believe she came. A woman with long blonde hair looks around. It’s Alpha, cleaned up and disguised with Hilde’s hair.
Rosita goes to Eugene’s workshop, and asks where he’s been, and he says she must have missed him at the dunk tank. He’s been making ham radio parts. If he can get it up and running, it will allow them to talk to each other. Despite their distance and differences, it would be nice to communicate. Rosita tells Eugene that they can still talk. She knows a lot is changing, but that doesn’t mean things need to change between them. She knows what he did for Gabriel, for them, and thanks him. He says it was more like a have to versus want to situation. She starts messing with the radio parts. He says he thought she would be getting some much needed R & R, but she says, it’s more like a have to versus want to situation. They work on the radio together.
A girl tells Henry that he looks lost. He says he’s looking for someone. Enid tells Gabriel the communities can learn techniques from each other. Find out each other’s weaknesses, strengths, and talents; have each other’s backs. Gabriel thinks it’s a good idea. Enid leaves, and Gabriel asks if Tara is okay. She says she just wants to get on the road; they’re leaving at first light. Gabriel says there’s no reason for anyone else to go, but Tara wants people to know that she’s there for them when trouble comes, and they can count on her. He says they have no reason not to. She says when she comes back, they’ll talk about training facilities.
Luke argues with Alden about starting with a mid-tempo ballad. He says, the people need hope. They demand it; no, they deserve it. Alden can’t believe he let Luke talk him into this. Enid says she’ll only make fun of him the tiniest bit for the rest of their lives.
Henry finds Lydia, and asks if something happened. Alpha continues to look around. She sees drawing of Ezekiel and Carol. Tammy and Earl go by with the baby. Tammy says they should name him Adam after the first man. Alpha overhears them and gives them the side-eye.
Henry can’t believe Gage and Rodney. It’s not true; they were being jerks. He doesn’t know if Addy likes him, but he doesn’t like her. He likes Lydia. She likes him too. He kisses her. They hear a noise, and Henry tells her it’s just one of the pipes; it happens all the time, but he should check on it. He says he’ll sit next to her at the movies. He kisses her, and leaves.
Ezekiel asks Alpha is she’s finding her way all right. He introduces himself, and she says, she’s Debra from Alexandria, but everyone calls her Debbie. She can’t believe Michonne came. He says he wouldn’t have believed it if he hadn’t seen it. She says it’s a shame they’ve never met, and tells him the Kingdom is amazing. He thinks they clean up well. She heard the queen is taking care of official business, but looks forward to meeting her. She asks if Ezekiel can point her toward the clothing booths. It’s sweater weather soon, and she wants to be ready. She has a feeling it’s going to be a hard winter. He says he has just the thing, and takes her arm.
People get ready for the movie. A guy sells popcorn in the aisles. There’s a cartoon before the film, and everyone is all excited and clapping. Henry still isn’t there, and Lydia seems restless. She starts getting into the cartoon, laughing, when she feels a hand on her knee. She looks next to her, and it’s Alpha. Alpha puts her finger to her lips.
Daryl and Michonne are surrounded, but he tells Alpha that she’s not getting Lydia back. Alpha says this isn’t about her daughter. She ran into trouble on the road; it was unavoidable. Her people like to keep moving. Michonne says they granted Lydia asylum. If they try to take her by force, there will be retaliation. Alpha asks Michonne her name, and asks Daryl if Michonne speaks for him. He says they speak for each other. She says her daughter is not a concern. She was weak. Daryl says, was? What does that mean? She says their group is in no position to threaten her. It’s a habit that needs to be broke. She cocks her gun, and takes Daryl from the group.
A new day dawns as Alpha brings Daryl up a rocky hill. He looks down on a million zombies. She says her people are among them. The only reason they’re alive is because she let them live. He asks what she wants, and she says, nothing. They have nothing to offer her. She’s seen how they live. She’s walked their streets. It’s a joke; a shrine to a long dead world. Her people, the Whisperers, live as nature intended. He asks if that’s the bullsh*t she feeds her sheep so they follow her. She says they follow because she’s the Alpha, and if an Alpha doesn’t assert herself, it will be chaos. He asks what she’s done. She says his friends at camp are fine, but tell them next time they cross her line, her horde will cross theirs. South of the river is hers; he’ll see the border as he leaves. She tells him, go. His friends are waiting for him. He should push her off that cliff.
Backtracking to the fair, Alpha pushes Lydia up against a wall, calling her a coward. She tells Lydia, come with her, but Lydia says, no. She believes in these people Alpha says, that’s poison talk. Lydia says she’s staying there. They care about each other, and care about her. They keep her safe. They’d kill Alpha to protect her; she just has to scream. Walk away and leave them alone or she will scream. Alpha says she’s only doing the hard thing; the thing mothers have to do to protect their young. As she talks, Alpha pets Lydia’s hair, and caresses her face. Lydia shows Alpha the brand on her arm, and say she knows what Alpha has done. She lives with it every day, but she doesn’t want Alpha to get hurt. She just wants her to go. She says, please, mommy. She’s giving Alpha a choice, which is more than Alpha has ever given her. Alpha says she was just trying to make Lydia strong, but she’s not one of them. She never was. Alpha backs up, looks Lydia over, and leaves. Lydia cries.
Forward to being with Daryl, Alpha says she doesn’t think they can protect her daughter, but she hopes she’s wrong. Daryl says she is.
Carol meets Daryl. They hug. Sad music plays. The group heads back.
Beta says, Lydia, but Alpha wants to be alone. He leaves, and Alpha cries quietly. She sees a Whisperer watching, and gestures for him to come to her. She stabs him in the neck, wipes the blade on her pants, and looks to the sky.
Michonne finds Siddiq tied to a tree. She asks, what happened? He points, and they go up a hill. Michonne looks horrified. Daryl looks puzzled. I wonder, wtf is it? They continue to walk. Ohh, it’s heads on pikes. Everyone is stunned. Yumiko cries.
Eugene asks if Nabila has seen Frankie. Gage asks if anyone has seen Rodney; they were supposed to meet. Gabriel tells Eugene that he needs to speak with Tara when she gets back. While Luke and Alden sing, Alden looks around for Enid. Lydia grabs Ezekiel, telling him that her mom was there, and she can’t find Henry.
We see the heads. Ozzy, Alek (Ozzy’s sidekick), DJ, Tammy, Frankie, Rodney, Addy, Enid, and Tara. Their mouths move a little, which is pretty freaking creepy. Siddiq cries.
Daryl stops Carol before she gets there. We see Henry’s head last. Everyone is pulverized.
Siddiq stands on a stage. He says he was there. He was taken with the others, and he saw. He was supposed to die with them, and he was ready to. Then Alpha whispered to him, tell them. Something hit him, and everything went black. When he woke up, he was alone. What happened was evil. He thinks Alpha left him alive to tell that story. To scare them, and drive them apart again, but he wants to tell a different story. Before the end, Ozzy found them. We see them fighting. Siddiq says the Highwaymen gave them an opening and everyone fought back; fought like hell. What they did was more than brave. They defended each other; sacrificed themselves for each other. Some of them didn’t even know each other. We see more of the fight. Siddiq continues, at the very end – we see Alpha approach Henry – in the end, their time was cut short. Ours keeps going, so we have to keep going for them, and for all of us. They need to honor them, and remember these friends were family, and died as heroes. That’s the story he wants to tell. That he wants them all to remember.
Daryl and Lydia stand near the pikes where the heads were. Lydia takes her necklace off, and puts it where Henry was. She and Daryl walk off together. We see the necklace – a wooden pendant with an H carved in it. It starts to snow. Winter ain’t just coming on Game of Thrones.
I told you we can’t have anything nice around here.
Next time, the finale. Zombies rise from the snow, and Lydia disappears. Oddly enough, this episode was titled, The Calm Before. I can’t imagine the storm to come.
🐋 This weekend, I watched The Meg. It was predictable, but fun, and there was a tiny twist at the end that was a real first. As an added bonus, Mickey was played in Taiwanese over the ending credits. A giant shark and foreign pop? What more could I ask for?
🐕 A Belated…
Happy National Puppy Day!
🎶 It Won’t Negate Monday, But…
It won’t hurt either.