Every fan of The Walking Dead knows there is always a new threat around the corner. The survivors aren’t ready for the new threat that is coming. Only Rosita (Christian Serratos) and Eugene (Josh McDermitt) have encountered them, but both of them are more frightened than before.
Aaron (Ross Marquand), Jesus (Tom Payne), and Daryl (Norman Reedus) find a herd of walkers who aren’t really walking anywhere. In fact they seem to be waiting for something. The trio decide it’s nothing to be concerned with and leave. But as they leave, one of the walkers turns to watch them go.
Michonne (Danai Gurira) and her group arrive at the Hilltop gates. Diane (Kerry Cahill) asks for their business and makes them drop their weapons before letting them in. Tara (Alanna Masterson), Enid (Katelyn Nacon), and Alden (Callan McAuliffe) wait for them on the other side. Tara informs Michonne that Jesus, Daryl and Aaron left to find Eugene. She allows everyone to stay the night.
As for the newcomers, Magna (Nadia Hilker), Luke (Dan Fogler), Connie (Lauren Ridloff), Kelly (Angel Theory), and Yamiko (Eleanor Matsuura), they can stay temporary until Jesus returns. If he allows them to stay, they have to earn their keep. As everyone gets settled in, Michonne sees Carol (Melissa McBride) and smiles.
Siddiq apologizes to Michonne for not telling her that others were dealing with Hilltop. He promises that he is on her side. The newcomers meet Carol. They are very grateful for a place to stay. Siddiq shows them where they will be staying, giving Michonne and Carol a chance to talk. They awkwardly ask about each other’s families.
Carol pleads with Michonne to let Alexandria participate in the fair. Michonne says that they’ve had troubles too. She didn’t want to turn down Carol. Carol understands what Michonne has been through. Michonne says there’s too much broken world in between the communities. They have to take care of their own now.
Jesus and Aaron talk about Daryl’s isolation. He was visiting Hilltop, but his visits became scarce. Aaron encourages Jesus to give being a leader a chance. Jesus is reluctant. He misses being out in the world, saying they used to be explorers. Daryl tells them to be quite. He can hear voices in the wind. The herd they saw earlier has turned and is following them. He winds an alarm clock and throws it to divert the herd. They leave to watch from the woods. Jesus watches their pattern closely. The alarm goes off and they turn toward it, but there’s something off about the herd. Daryl and Aaron get ready to leave to continue their search.
Carol prepares to leave the Hilltop and Diane asks to go with her. Henry and Alden load up screws and nails as an advance for payment from Earl. Alden promises to take good care of Henry. Henry promises he will make Carol proud of him. She says he already does.
Henry gets right to work with Earl (John Finn) and Alden in the smith shop. Enid stops by to say hi to Henry and grabs Alden to talk to him for a minute. Earl invites Henry to his place after dinner, but Henry has plans to talk to Enid. He looks in her direction and see her kissing Alden. Embarrassed, Henry decides he’s tired.
Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) are meditating. Negan interrupts their zen to tease Gabriel about his hot and heavy relationship with Rosita, which Gabriel doesn’t want to talk about. He even taunts Gabriel saying he overheard a conversation through his cell window. Rosita was talking about someone other than Gabriel. Gabriel doesn’t let Negan get to him, but he’s clearly annoyed and ends their session. As he walks out, one of the residents tells him about the message from Hilltop. Rosita is hurt, but alive.
Later, Gabriel handcuffs Negan to the cell bars, so he can empty his bedpan. Negan taunts him again and Gabriel can’t handle it this time. He tells Negan to shut up. He says he keeps scratching at Negan hoping to find a person beneath. Negan asks what’s really going on, so Gabriel tells him about Rosita. He says he can’t go help her because he has to stay and watch Negan. Gabriel uncuffs Negan and leaves the cell.
While Henry eats dinner alone, a group of teens see him and ask him to hang with them. Gage (Jackson Pace), Addy (Kelley Mack), and Rodney (Joe Ando-Hirsh) remember Henry from the war six years ago as the kid with the stick. They invite him out after dinner for some fun.
Siddiq and Michonne sit with Rosita as she sleeps. Siddiq is trying to convince Michonne that it’s good that she’s at the Hilltop. Michonne admits that it’s not easy for her to be there. She knew people would be angry with her, but she won’t apologize for the choices she made. Those choices weren’t easy, but at least Hilltop is alive so they can be mad at her.
Rosita wakes up and tries to get out of bed. She says she needs to get to Eugene. Siddiq tries to calm her down. They tell her that Daryl, Aaron, and Jesus went looking for Eugene. Rosita is even more agitated, saying they don’t know what they are up against. She gets out of bed and rushes off.
Aaron, Jesus and Daryl find an abandoned barn and look around. Dog finds a hidden door and they ask if Eugene is in there. He confirms his presence and they dig him out. He tells them that the herd is looking for him. They think he’s crazy, but Eugene tells them about hearing them whisper to each other. Daryl informs them that the herd has arrived at the barn.
Eugene tries to tell them that the walkers are evolving. The human brain is capable of changing. Jesus doesn’t buy it, but they can’t debate it right now. The herd is here. Jesus tries to come up with a plan, involving leaving Eugene behind. Eugene has a dislocated knee and can’t run. Daryl says he will stay behind and distract the herd, while Aaron and Jesus carry Eugene to safety.
Henry and his new friends are in a shed drinking moonshine. He drinks it but doesn’t really like it. He says he’s scared to find out what they do when they are really bored. The boys take him to a pit that they dug outside the wall. There is a walker in the pit, with arrows and darts in it. The boys start playing game of ring toss on the walker. Addy doesn’t really enjoy playing with the walker and leaves. Rodney starts peeing on the walker and Henry stops him. Henry jumps into the pit and kills the walker. The other boys get mad and leave.
Later, Tara takes Earl to the Hilltop jail cells. Henry went back to the Hilltop gates, yelling for someone to let him in. They put him in jail for drunk and disorderly behavior. Earl asks what happened, but Henry won’t tell him. He is disappointed in Henry. Henry apologizes, saying the people at the Kingdom are counting on him. Earl asks what got into him. Henry says he didn’t realize how the move would affect him or his Mom. He didn’t want to think about it for a while. Earl says he’s been where Henry is. When Jesus returns, he will try to get Henry out.
At Alexandria, Negan is throwing a ball at the wall. The ball rolls out of the cell. Negan looks at the door and realizes it’s not locked. Gabriel forgot to lock the cell door. Negan opens the door and picks up his ball. He smile, tosses the ball and walks out of the building.
Daryl sets up some fireworks to distract the herd and Dog starts barking when they go off. Some of the herd are distracted, but a good amount of them continue on the same path. Daryl realizes this herd is different.
Aaron and Jesus carry Eugene through a graveyard. They get trapped at a locked gate. They see walkers approaching so Aaron and Jesus get ready to fight. Together they strike down a good number of walkers. Michonne shows up on the other side of the gate. She pulls at the gate while Eugene pushes so they can get it open enough for him to crawl through. Magna and Yamiko show up and start helping, saying they are earning their keep. Eugene gets to the other side as Aaron and Jesus finish their fight.
Jesus tells Aaron to go while he finishes off the remaining walkers. He kills all but one who ducks when Jesus strikes at him and turns around to stab Jesus in the back. More walkers show up and so does Daryl. The entire group kill the walkers remaining in the graveyard.
Aaron cries over Jesus’ body, as Michonne realizes there is fresh blood on her katana. Daryl calls her over to one of the dead walkers and sees stitching in the back of his head. He tears the stitching and the face comes off, revealing it was a mask. There was a live person under that mask. They hear more whispers and prepare for another attack.
I’m kind of sad that Jesus died, but afterward, it was revealed that Tom Payne wasn’t happy with how his character was being underutilized in the show. I had hoped this season he would get a big push and we’d actually learn more about him. Jesus’ death fits in the storyline and in Payne’s life. Thanks Tom Payne! Jesus was fun to watch. RIP Paul Rovia
The real question that I want answered is…what happened between Michonne and the Hilltop that caused so much tension? All we know is that…whatever Michonne did or didn’t do, saved the lives of the residents at Hilltop. So shouldn’t they be grateful? Do the scars that Michonne and Daryl bare have anything to do with it?
Now we have Whisperers and Negan escaped. I wonder how much this new threat will distract from the questions we have about those 6 years that passed. I also have to wonder how many more people we will lose before the season is over. Three months is a long time to wait. The Walking Dead returns February 10, 2019.
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