Zombie Round Up: No Way Out
I’m sure all of you have been having similar feelings of excitement and angst over what was to be the mid-season premier for The Walking Dead. It’s still so hard for me to imagine that the majority of the first half of season 6 was only about 24 hours of time passing for our survivors. And we left our crew trying to join with a bunch of naïve and unexposed civilians as the walls came down and at least a thousand walkers made it in to their safe haven. Well rest assured folks, this season premier was all we could have asked for and more, and naturally I want to tell you about it, as well as discuss some possible theories of what might be to come. Be forewarned, spoilers lie ahead.
In the last few minutes of the mid-season finale we saw Sasha, Daryl, and Abraham in their newly stolen tanker get ambushed by rebels on motorcycles, claiming all their property and they themselves now belong to Negan. Of course it left us all wondering, was this guy doing all the talking for the gang Negan? Cause he was one scary dude. Seriously, listening to him tell Abraham to chew and swallow shit sent chills down my spine.
I think my heart stopped for a few brief seconds as I was COMPLETELY convinced that Sasha, Abraham or both were about to get shot by the psycho, when KABOOM!!! They explode! Well, not only is Daryl handy with a cross bow, but it seems he has mastered the art of a rocket launcher as well. Holy crap was that bad ass, last minute, and unexpected but oh so welcome. Ok, I can breathe again, at least temporarily.
Yet it won’t be long before I start holding my breath again, since this episode is SUPER action packed. All those questions we were left with after the first half of the season? Don’t you worry my friends, they will be answered. Before I delve in to this further I must say that was the most satisfying part of this episode- many of them leave you with cliff hangers or wondering if someone is still alive (ahem Glenn) but not this episode- it’s all going to be nice and tidied up just how we want by the end. So how do our friends get there in one piece? Well not everyone does…
Let’s see- Morgan and Carol- I thought for sure one of them would have serious repercussions from their fighting and knock out session. Now I can’t say for sure whether or not Carol has a slow subarachnoid hemorrhage forming, but it looks like these two made out ok, and only have to deal with the emotional damage to their pride. I’m sure these two will have many more words as their future unfolds, but for now I am happy they are both alive, and still slightly on Morgan’s side even though that might just be my inner death wish to trust people or think the best of them.
And Glenn. Oh Glenn. I still get shivers down my spine realizing you are back, really really back. And not hesitating to kick some walker ass to save his wife. This was the other scene, where I just about almost stopped breathing, thinking that the producers gave him back to me just to take him away again when CRACK CRACK CRACK!!! Abraham to the deus ex machine rescue! Everyone’s coming back for this fight to the finish to save Alexandria.
Who else you ask? Well, I’ve been hoping they would kill off the preacher for longer than I wanted Lourdes to kick the bucket in Falling Skies, but this was the first time he truly stood up to the plate. He jumped to the rescue and joined Rick and the others, fearless and randomly full of faith as he accepted that he had to save himself. Weird, but ok I guess, at least I don’t want him to suffer now.
Next we have Denise, the anxiety-riddled science buff made to be doctor of this town. Not only does she hold her own trying to help and turn the wolf back to light side of the force, she’s suddenly ready to save some injured ass as she rocks the combat medic role.
Who else rocked it this episode? Well none other than Eugene the man. I have a soft spot in my heart for this blabbering softie, but he said it best when he said no one gets to clock out. I’m thinking he and Gabriel must have been drinking from the same Kool Aid as they suddenly seemed to have it in them to fight. I still would rather see Eugene start to apply his smarts to trying to beat the apocalypse in the future, but at least he didn’t drop his machete this time.
Now with over a thousand walkers to kill even the most epic reunion of The Walking Dead history couldn’t save everyone. Someone had to die, and how can the producers pull that off without anyone having to struggle emotionally with their loss? Why not kill off a whole family at once of course! Yup, Jessie, Sam, and Ron all get DESTROYED in this episode, and even though I was personally not attached to them in any way (in fact I might have been glad to see them go) I have to admit they did it in a way that even I found sad. How so? Well, Sam starts to have a nervous breakdown in the midst of walkers as he wears their guts to try to camouflage him with the others (thanks to Carol’s words from before) when right in front of the whole group the zombies just decide to take a chomp out of his head. And the best part is NO ONE CAN DO ANYTHING ABOUT IT! I get pissed with other shows when someone is killed and another character goes all ape shit screaming “No, come back, no!!” I mean, what good is that waste of energy doing other than alerting all the other monsters out there where you are? And even though I might be able to be heartless and move on from a death without a blink of an eye, I wouldn’t judge others for shedding a tear or even a sob or two over someone they loved. But in this instance, as your loved one is literally getting eaten alive a couple feet from you, you are forced to remain calm and not react otherwise the monsters bumping in to your shoulder might take a bite out of your neck. Wow, that’s harsh.
And just to prove the point, Jessie loses it as she watches her son devoured only to then get devoured herself. Yup, serves you right, no time for remorse here lady. Then we have Ron, the evil oldest son of the family- no he does not succumb to the same death as his family members, but takes the opportunity to pick up a discarded hand gun to shoot at Rick and Carl. His attempt at revenge against those he blames for his family’s death results in a katana through the chest- Thanks Michonne! Phew! That was close. So glad there will no longer be any more Andersons around to hold a grudge or f-things up for Alexandria.
But in those last few seconds of his life, Ron did get some revenge. His stray bullet caught Carl in the side of the head and blew his right eyeball out. Wow. Now I knew this scene was likely coming because of spoilers from the comics, but what a nice touch. And thinking his son might be dead, nothing can hold Rick back. He decides to try to take down the entire herd on his lonesome, but luckily he rides with the most kick-ass crew in town and it is in those last moments of the episode where everyone is at their strongest and united. I might have shed a tear or two from the overwhelming sense of pride I felt for this crew.
Speaking of reunions, I loved the seen of all our friends slashing down walkers with their various weapons as they took back Alexandria one by one. These are our people! Rejoice, they are reunited and they will survive! Yes, this was all around an action packed and feel good episode. Now it can’t always be like this, so we can be sure there will be more heartbreak and loss to come later in the season. I think we all suspect that will be when we meet the infamous Negan. But in the meantime I just want to sit back and relish in this moment of triumph and camaraderie. I think the only thing I have to complain about is we did not get to witness the epic kiss that Glenn and Maggie so deserved. Yes, people are the real villains in this walker-filled world, but a feel good walker slaughter fest is needed to lift the spirits sometimes.
Until next week friends, I’ll be practicing my shooting skills.
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