What I Watched Today
(rambling, random thoughts & annoyingly detailed recaps from real time TV watching)
The Walking Dead
Negan sits in his cell in Alexandria. The cell door opens, and he says, as he lives and breathes. It’s Carol, and he says he thought Gabriel was coming down to give him last rights. She asks if he wants forgiveness, but he says he’s done what he’s done, and he’s not getting on his knees. She asks what he wants, and he says, TiVo, a beer, and some rocky road ice cream. What does it matter to her? She says, what if he didn’t have to die? and he says he didn’t know she had a say on the kangaroo council. She says she’s not there for the council, and he says he’s getting that. What he doesn’t get is, why she’s dealing with him instead of lining up the skin queen in her crosshairs? She asks what he thinks this is, and he smiles. He says, damn. Word has it, she’s certainly a badass, but she missed her shot. What happens if he muffs it? It will make things worse for everyone, and despite what people think, he’s not down with that. Carol says they need this done; it will help everyone there. He asks what he gets out of it, and she says he’s been eating whatever sh*t they throw his way, hoping they forget. They won’t. Not unless he does something to make them forget. Bring her Alpha’s head, and that’s what people will remember him for. She’ll make sure of it. He has her word, but do it fast.
Carol puts Alpha’s head on a pike, and steps back to admire her work. Negan says, it’s what she wanted. Alpha’s mouth continues to move, making zombie gurgles, and Negan suggests they get moving. It was their deal; start spreading the news. She asks, what took him so long? and he says, doing her dirty work? He guesses he wanted get out with his head attached. Sh*t like that takes time. He’s held up his end, and he’s asking her to hold up hers. He wants to open a new chapter in the Book of Negan. She says they’re not going back; not yet. He says he can’t go back alone without a noose immediately being tied around his neck, and she says, then wait. She starts to walk, and he asks how long she’s taking. She says he’s free. Now he can do whatever he wants. Wait or don’t; it’s up to him. She says she needs to be alone. Sh*t like that takes time.
Dianne tells Ezekiel that he did good, but he says he got lucky. It doesn’t absolve his failings. Jerry tells him to take it easy on himself, but Ezekiel says, these days mistakes stick easier than trials. He and Jerry hug Magna, and Ezekiel says he’s so sorry. She says she’s okay.
Rosita checks out her wound, and Eugene asks how she feels. She says, all right, and he says they can bring her to see Alex when they find him. She says they don’t have to. He has to go; tell them already. Eugene stands up, and gets everyone’s attention. He says he has something he needs to confess. He’s been communicado on the radio with someone outside of their orbit; a new person. They’ve set up a time to meet. Yumiko asks who it is, and he says, her name is Stephanie. She’s from another community. Jerry asks what it is, and Dianne says, he’s meeting her? Magna says, she could be a spy, and Yumiko asks how long Eugene has been talking to her. Ezekiel says he has some of the same questions, but if Eugene’s instincts are that Stephanie is a new ally, they should hear him out before they jump to conclusions. They’re all on the same side. Eugene says some of them are aware that he relocated to Hilltop to make a metaphorically fresh start. He struggled, burying himself in work and community duties, and the voice in the void became a friend. Some might think he’s foolish, but spare him their derision. After what just happened, he’s willing to be a fool, and believes new good people are worth the risk.
Magna sits outside, and Yumiko joins her. Yumiko says, Magna can and should take her horse and go with them. She’s never wanted to be cooped up. She can go back out on road, and have an adventure. Look forward, not back. Magna says she likes it there. Some routine might be good for her. Someone else can have an adventure and meet new people. It’s okay. Yumiko says she’d be leaving at the worst time, but Magna says, there’s nothing to fix. Go. Yumiko leaves.
Ezekiel gets his horse ready, and Jerry asks if he’s really going. Ezekiel says he is, but Jerry doesn’t think it’s a good idea. Ezekiel says, because he’s sick? Jerry says, because he’ll miss Ezekiel. He can’t stop a man willing to be foolish. Ezekiel says, or a fool willing to believe in future friends. It’s enough for now. He tells Jerry, the Kingdom needs him. Make sure the legacy lives on. Jerry says he’s got it, and they hug.
Alpha’s head moves its mouth as Beta approaches with two Whisperers. One says, he’s the Alpha now, and Beta tells him that Alpha can hear him. Take off his mask (that’s never good), and hear her. He tells the guy to move forward, and asks if he’s listening. What is she saying to him? Beta he pushes him closer, and says, just listen. He pushes the guy’s head near Alpha’s mouth, and she bites his ear, pulling it off. The other guy takes off, as we all would. Beta says, just listen, and I wonder how he’s going to do that with no ear. Beta shoves him aside, and takes down Alpha’s head, cradling it in his arms.
Negan goes to the cabin where Lydia was being held. He sees she’s gone, and says, sh*t. Daryl puts a crossbow in Negan’s face, and asks where Alpha is. Negan says, she’s dead; he killed her. Daryl calls him a liar, but he says he’s not lying. He has something in his pocket; it’s not a weapon. He’s going to do a slow reach. He pulls Alpha’s mask out of his pocket, and shows Daryl. He says the whole reason he threw in with them was to get close enough to slit Alpha’s throat, and silence Alpha. Why else does Daryl think his girlfriend let him out of his cell?
Carol walks through the woods, and hears her name being whispered. She hears it more clearly, and turns to see Alpha. Alpha says she’s always watching.
Beta strolls along with the Whisperer bitten by Alpha, who starts coughing. A zombie comes by, and the guy moves to kill it, but Beta shoves him down. The zombie descends on the guy, and finishes him off. Beta listens to Alpha’s head, that he’s now carrying in a bag. He hears a noise, and moves toward it.
Beta goes inside a hotel, and shoves things aside, even though he doesn’t need to. He puts Alpha’s head down, and picks up a note. He reads, these 2 eyes see 1 truth. He sees a gun on the floor, and looks up at a poster for the band Half Moon. He rips it down, and smashes a nearby guitar.
Alpha tells Carol, she’s lost. So was her boy. She sent him away, and he never came back. He died out there, alone and afraid, just like Sophia. She respects what Carol did. Negan drew the blade, but Carol ended her, like a true Alpha. Carol says, stop it, and Alpha asks if she regrets it. Carol says she doesn’t, and Alpha says people were hurt in the name of vengeance, and now she can’t go back. They don’t accept what she’s done, but maybe they would if she says she’s sorry. Sorry you’re mad; please don’t be mad at me. She tried being on her own before, but they always pull her back. She’s always wanting more; love, motherhood, death. They don’t know what she truly wants. Admit it. What does she want? Say it. A zombie pops out of a tree, and Carol spears it through the throat and into the head. She says she wants to be alone, but Alpha says, that’s not it.
Eugene, Ezekiel, and Yumiko head out on horses. Ezekiel wonders if the new community will be handy, and Yumiko asks what Eugene thinks about that. He says his mother was a pistol, but he remembered something kind she’d done. She used to get him chocolate bunnies at Easter. Biting their heads off made him upset, but he associates it with family. Yumiko says, please don’t tell her that they’re on this journey for chocolate bunnies. Eugene says he’s on the journey for the future hope of mankind, but candy would be nice. He asks if Ezekiel is okay, and Ezekiel says he’s not the best audience at the moment. They ride past a cage with two zombies in it, and Yumiko wonders if it’s a trap. Eugene doesn’t think that’s the modus operandi, but Ezekiel says, they’re not alone. Who would do this? Yumiko suggests they take the time to investigate in case it’s a warning.
Off by himself, Ezekiel gets off his horse. He sees some wandering zombies, and kills them. He coughs and stumbles, as another one comes closer, but he manages to stab it. He sits on a fallen tree. Yumiko says, all clear, and calls to him. He says he’s coming. All clear here.
Negan, his hands bound behind his back, walks in front of Daryl. He says, this follow-the-leader routine is like déjà vu. It’s the same way it went down with Alpha. He tells Daryl to get pissed at his gal pal for not letting him in on the plan. He’s pissed too. The lone wolf isn’t thinking of the pack. Daryl says the children at Hilltop almost died because of Negan. Although I’m not sure how Daryl came to that conclusion.
Beta looks at a record album, Half Moon Live in Concert. He puts on a turntable, and I try not to think about why the turntable works when there’s no electricity, and any batteries in it would have leaked or gone dead by now. The music draws zombies to the hotel.
Carol goes to the cabin, and Alpha says, this is her plan? and calls Carol brainless. She had no peace on the ocean, thinking about Alpha, and wondering where they’re going to land, and looking for sign. Give it up. If Alpha knows the truth, so does she. Hear her. Carol gets up on a stepladder, and fiddles with something on the ceiling, but the whole thing caves in, and she falls, the ceiling and everything surrounding her falling on top of her. Alpha says, she’s stupid too.
Negan leads Daryl to where Alpha’s head was, and tells Daryl, it was right here, on this spike. They can wait there for Carol. Daryl says take him to Lydia, but Negan asks what he’s talking about. Why would he stash her out there unless it was to keep her safe? He used her as bait to get Alpha alone. What’s wrong? He didn’t do it fast enough? It took a minute; he had to get her trust. He wasn’t going off half-cocked on a suicide mission. Daryl says, it was because Negan liked it. They hear the sound of a gun cocking, and some Whisperers step out of the woods, one of them holding a shotgun. Daryl drops his crossbow, and one of them says, Alpha is dead because of Negan. Kneel to the new Alpha. They kneel, and Negan laughs.
The music plays, while zombies gather. Beta stands above them, on the balcony, his arms outstretched. He smiles, something we’ve never seen, and pulls half of his mask off.
Negan tells Daryl, sorry. He’s savoring the moment. Daryl’s wrists are now tied, while Negan is free, and Negan says he’s taking his sweet-ass time. All right, fellas, down to business. Wait one damn minute. He’s the Alpha, right? He’s a bit confused. If he’s the Alpha, why is someone who’s not the Alpha holding the badass shotgun? The Whisperer holding the gun gives it to Negan, who says, that’s what he’s talking about. It feels good. He’s never had a kid of his own, but if he did, he imagines this is what it’s like holding your baby for the first time. But it turns out his baby can kill people by spitting bullets at them. He wants Daryl to kneel to the Alpha, and the Whisperers try to push Daryl down, but he shrugs them off and kneels. Negan says, it’s starting to get real now, ain’t it? Daryl was right when he said Negan liked it. In fact – he points the gun at Daryl – he likes it a lot. Daryl says Negan should probably shoot him, and Negan says, don’t threaten him with a good time. Negan shoots two Whisperers, and stabs the other in the head. When they’re down, Daryl tells Negan, untie me, a-hole, and Negan laughs.
Ezekiel, Eugen, and Yumiko sit by a fire, when Ezekiel’s horse suddenly whinnies and keels over. I had to look away here – that’s right, I can watch a million people get their heads stomped, but I cannot bear for an animal to be hurt. Ezekiel tells his horse, it’s not going to hurt anymore, and puts the horse out of its misery. Yumiko tells him that she’s sorry, and he says he shouldn’t have come. She asks, why? and he says, if he falls, they have to promise to leave him behind. His horse wasn’t strong enough to make the journey. Maybe he’s not either. He’s okay with that, but not with putting them at risk. Yumiko asks if he wants to turn back because of what might happen, and he says, it’s for the best. She says they don’t know what lies ahead; no one does. She had all these plans for her life, and for what? She’s here to find out what’s possible. None of them can predict or imagine what’s ahead, but she knows who they need with them. A man who built a kingdom.
Carol lies under the rubble, as a zombie pulls itself out of the creek nearby. Alpha says, her mom used to say, everything works out the way it’s supposed to, and Carol tells her, shut up already. The zombie crawls toward what’s left of the cabin, and Alpha says, this way, friend. Is Carol ready for them, and to see how this ends? No one is coming to save her. Not Ezekiel, and certainly not Daryl. Not after what she did to Connie. The zombie, who’s pretty well deteriorated, starts pushing through the slats in the wall. Alpha says, no matter what Carol does, she loses people. If she goes back, Daryl could be next. Carol says she won’t let that happen. She knows what she has to do. Alpha says, it could have been anyone, but they chose her. She gets the job done. Carol struggles, and Alpha tells her, look at the flowers like she’s supposed to. One…two… The zombie pushes through, but Carol pulls herself out, takes out her knife, and stabs it in the head. She collapses, and Alpha is gone.
Ezekiel now rides behind Yumiko. They ride down a highway, seeing a city in the distance.
Negan drinks from a canteen, and passes it to Daryl. They sit side by side, each facing a different way. Negan says, not to be a spinning record, but he doesn’t think Carol is coming back. He’s not bullsh*tting Daryl. Daryl says he knows, and Negan tells him, when he said he liked it, that wasn’t part of the act. Daryl says he knows. Negan says, when Daryl’s people locked him up, he lost everything. He spent seven years staring out that little window. It sucked so bad, even his memories have bars painted on them. When Alpha took him in, he admits he liked it. It was nice, feeling like he mattered again, and being respected, but she took it too far. You don’t kill people who don’t deserve it, and you never kill kids. Daryl asks if that’s supposed to make him like Negan, and Negan says, no. Daryl says, good, and Negan asks, what about his winning personality? Daryl gets up, and starts to walk. Negan asks, what about Carol? and follows.
Carol walks to the gate, and Daryl opens it. She walks in, and neither one of them says anything. Daryl closes the gate.
Eugene, Yumiko, and Ezekiel ride into the city. They go past a store, where a zombie in costume is tied to a rocker. The look into a café, where two zombies sit with martinis. Another sits on a delivery cart. It’s like a weird Disney ride, with zombies in various tableaus. They look around, and find one in a car, handcuffed to the steering wheel, while a police zombie is about to give them a ticket. Ezekiel starts to laugh and point. He laughs so hard, he has to wipe tears from his eyes. They see a pile of bones on the ground, wearing a boa, and a voice says, oh my God! Hi! A woman, also wearing a boa, and dressed sort of like Madonna, circa the late 80s, stands in front of them, holding an automatic weapon. (For those who are familiar with the comics, it’s Princess.)
Beta takes out the note, and says, someday we’ll rise. He takes Alpha’s head out of the bag, and says, thank you. He sees now, like she does. He puts a knife through Alpha’s head, and sits nose to nose with her for a moment. Zombies clamor at the hotel door.
Beta opens the hotel door, and walks out. He walks through the crowd of zombies, and they follow him as he walks down the street.
Next time – the last episode before the finale – Alpha says we walk, Judith and Daryl run from zombies, and Aaron and Alden hide to watch Beta.
🐭 On Talking Dead: Home Edition, comedian Ron Funches thought the zombie tableaus were like the ones at Chuck E. Cheese, but not as frightening. I couldn’t agree more.
⚰️ Postponing Dead…
News about the finale.
👍🏼 They’re Fine…
While I’m by no means downplaying the seriousness of the current world situation, there is good news that most of those who aren’t in a high risk group only experience mild to moderate symptoms.
✂️ Celebrities; They’re Just Like Us…
I’ve never given myself a haircut while drunk, but when I had my first apartment, I did let my next door neighbor cut my hair when we’d been drinking. It wasn’t awful. And it grew out.
🗽 You Still Don’t Get Your Apple Back…
That Jill Zarin. Always full of surprises.
🦛 Something Fun…
While housebound, you can find loads of fun, free things on the internet. Museum and city tours, concerts, Doug the Pug’s workout on Instagram, and Fiona!
🎼 Helping Ryan Rock…
The Half Moon song Beta listened to tonight was written by Emily Kinney who played Beth many seasons ago.
Stay safe out there.