Walking Dead 5.2 – Strangers

Dynamic Duo! Seriously, there's nothing these two can't do.

Dynamic Duo! Seriously, there’s nothing these two can’t do.

Previously! We are moving at a fast clip into the next Big Bad. Well, except for all the slo-mo Hero Walking we did in the beginning. Plus, there were loads of scriptures sprinkled throughout this episode, which was fitting seeing as we’ve done added ourselves a preacher man to the group. Last, Dr. Mullet allowed me to use my most favorite quote of all time. So it’s a pretty big day for me. Let’s Hero Walk.

So we’re not too long after Carol Lone Wanderer-ed Terminus, as evidenced by the giant plume of smoke in the background. Tara—remember her? Eh, she’s all right, I guess?—watches Glenn and Maggie being the cutest couple in the ZA, which, awk-ward, because her girlfriend died by their hands. She tries to “confess” her story to Rick, who frankly has more important things to worry about than this and reluctantly “bumps it” before Hero Walking again. (Side note: the music the past two seasons has been stellar, and this episode is no exception. Well done, Show.)


Sheriff doesn’t “bump it” with just anyone, TARA.

Tyrese and Carol scoop up some Giardia water at a murky river—

PROTIP: KEEP YOUR WATER PURE. Never mix collection containers with “cleaned water” containers. You’re probably not going to be able to boil your water while on the run, so it’s good to know some faster methods.

  1. 1/8 tsp—that’s the small one—of PLAIN bleach per gallon of water. This needs to sit for 30 minutes before consuming, by the way.
  2. Need a breather after finding a river? Dig a hole on the bank, let that fill up with ground water, scoop that. It’s not going to be 100%, but it’ll be much better than the brackish water there.
  3. Rip off a section of birch bark, roll it into a cone with a dime-sized opening at the bottom. Tie this with a shoe-string. Drop in a few pebbles, then layer the inside with sand, grass clippings, and charcoal, if you have it. Run your water through this handmade filter a few times.
  4. Got a 2-Lt bottle? Cut it in half, tie some panty-hose or natural cloth over the bottle opening and invert that into the other half. Fill the top half thusly: fine sand, coarse sand, pebbles. Pour your water over the pebbles, let it run through and filter into the bottom half.

—when Tyrese calmly says he just wants bygones to be bygones, and he’ll stare down anyone in the group that doesn’t accept her. She just shrugs. He’s not going to talk about the girls to anyone. Yeah, that’s a smart move, Ty. No one needs to talk about how freaking jacked-up that situation became.

More Hero Walking until a Walker staggers out; Michonne dispatches it, reminding us that she lost her Katana blade—I thought it was in the buried bag? No?—and Abraham sees his moment. I’m like Rosita, confused and going along with it. (I just don’t think that translated the way the show meant for it to. Abraham sees a way to push his agenda because of one Walker? Uh…)

They make camp, and Rick makes nice to Carol.

Rick: So… that was a dick move, me kicking you out of the group for burning those infected bodies and all.
Carol: Well, it helped me level up; that was pretty sweet, actually.
Rick: Whew! Um, can we stay with you?

GUYS I NEED TO TALK ABOUT THIS. I need to talk about Carol, who had been abused by her husband, who hadn’t been listened to by the group from Day One, who had been dismissed as anyone of importance, who has proven her worth time and again, I need to talk about this woman being asked by the Man In Charge if SHE will allow them to be with HER. I’M NOT CRYING YOU’RE CRYING.

Even later, Daryl has a conversation with her.

Daryl: [puppy eyes]
Carol: [jimmying a locked car trunk] That’s not going to work on me. I’m hard now, D.
Daryl: [adoring stare]

There’s something in the woods, but Daryl can’t find anything. He’s on High Alert, though.

New Intro We see Rick’s gun for Andrew Lincoln, the “on the move” bags and wheels for Norman/Daryl, a watch maybe representing his time running out for Stephen/Glenn (nooo!), a family photo burning for Lauren/Maggie (crying), AWAY WITH YOU for Carl, which makes me laugh and laugh because Carl, get in the house CORL. Is…t hat a hanging rope for Michonne? DO NOT LIKE. Standing her ground with a knife jammed into the earth is Melissa/Carol, and baby shoes on a cross is Michael Cudlitz/Abraham. Eeesh, is he going to be responsible for killing a new generation? Or is he trying to prevent that? Always pay attention to the opening montages of shows and movies, folks—they’ll tell you everything you need to know.

The next day, Daryl shows up with some tree rats on a string (squirrels) and mentions to Rick about the stalker the night before. He—their best tracker—couldn’t find any signs of them. (I find this hard to believe, personally.)

Medic Bob, ol’ Mr. Brightsides, is playing the Silver Lining game with Sasha, and apparently they’re in love now? NOPE. I hate this, I hate that so much, I went on record last season saying how much I don’t like it when a woman says no, made that C-L-E-A-R, but because the guy persists with a smile, he “gets the girl.” I don’t care if you disagree, okay? I don’t like this message one little bit.

They hear someone screaming for help, and Carl immediately wants to run there because he’s still a foolish kid. You looking to be made a catamite, son? Come on! Use your noodle!

Perched on a boulder is a preacher—Sugar Watkins from Starship Troopers, hey hey!—being attacked by a bunch of Walkers. Our group easily dispatches them. Bonus brotherhood moment: Daryl dead-eyes a hillbilly Walker with his crossbow, and Rick literally leans around the boulder in pleasant surprise, and gives a “Noice!” chin nod. I can’t lie, I cackled.

Fans of Teen Wolf know Dr. Deaton can't be trusted.

Fans of Teen Wolf know Dr. Deaton can’t be trusted.

Preacher comes down, is shaken, pukes, and I instantly don’t trust him. I mean, I don’t believe for one second that we’re supposed to.

Rick: You armed?
Preacher: [shaky smile] With God’s loving grace! [winky emoticon]
Daryl: [takes in dead Walkers]…so God’s out of ammo, huh?
Rick: Three questions of joining while I pat you down!
Preacher: Ack! I’m holy! I’m all good and never—
Rick: Yeah, I’m not buying.
Preacher: Okay, I sin. But hey, don’t we all?
Me: If you’re trying to say that being human and not Jesus is your sin, Imma punch you in your neck.

Hey, who wants some foreshadowing? As they all move off to his church, where he’s apparently sequestered himself since this all started 17 months ago, he makes jokes about not being who they think he is (or are they jokes?) and says, “People are as dangerous as the dead, don’t you think?”

Rick: No, they’re worse. (Thank goodness Sheriff Grimes is on the case, because he’s not falling for it.)

They get to the church, which is St. Sarah, a Romani patron saint who was known for giving alms/aid for those in need, and wow, Gabriel the Preacher had a can food drive going on when the ZA hit, leaving him fortunate enough to have food to eat. (And bro. Get those old cans out of the place. You looking to get run over by rats?) But nice nod, Show.

There are scriptures everywhere. In a big archway, it reads, “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life.” Totally different context in this world, huh? Fun stuff: there are scriptures listed on the wall.

Rom 6:4 – refers to being buried and raised up from the dead, walking in the newness of life.

Eze 37:7 – refers to the Lord making bones arise with life (being covered with sinew then flesh)

Ma 27:52 – “And the graves were opened and many bodies of the saints which slept arose”

Luk 24: 5 – “Why seek ye the living among the dead?”

There are some ominous pictures of a burning bush, of a fatted lamb—all cartoony—being placed on an altar for sacrifice, and Gabriel is for some reason transcribing the Bible in a Big Chief Tablet. Yeah, this guy ain’t to be trusted. The name “Gabriel” is for the archangel Gabriel, who watches over Paradise and serpents, (mm hmm) and also the Christian mythology of him using a horn to sound the coming of the Messiah.

So, what, he’s talking to God, who is having him collect pure beasts for sacrifice to… what, grant him protection? And he in turn uses a horn (some signaling method) to tell Raiders/Hunters that the sacrifices are ready? LOOK. I am prepared for any and all things to happen here, okay? (Side note: Mormons believe Gabriel was once Noah. Which is another interesting twist here, being isolated as man dies outside your safe ship of a church. Hmm.)

Carl, sweet summer child, thinks Gabriel is a good guy.

Rick: [rubs face] When do you grow out of your innocence again? Please don’t do anything stupid.
Carl: I’m not really listening, Dad, because I foolishly want to stick to my notions. Love ya, pops!

They roll out to scavenge with Gabriel leading them to the one place he couldn’t get into because it was overrun. Mr. Brightsides Medic Bob paints a picture of a beautiful future birthed by Abraham and Dr. Mullet, one with Ice Cream socials, Spaghetti Tuesdays, and Burn a Walker Saturdays. Bliss! Rick isn’t so sure just yet.

Bob: Pfft, I’m calling it. You’re going to agree, life will be great, this red shirt of mine, faded though it may be, isn’t really going to be a Red Shirt.

We have some importantish convos happening during this sequence. Daryl and Carol make sure they’re all cool, and Daryl points out that he believes in clean slates. Maggie, Tara, and Glenn—who evidently unlocked the Gold Digger Perk as he found three silencers in a mini-fridge; always check containers, survivors!— and Glenn says the ominous, “There’s nothing left in this world that isn’t hidden.” So everyone has secrets. Well, Tara does and Gabriel sure as hell does. Hm, I guess Carol does, too, since only Ty knows about the flowers.

They get into the food bank, and this is giving me serious Fallout “Super-Duper Mart” feels, which means raiders. Okay, no, just Walkers who fell through the floor into the basement, and are officially the coolest, grossest Walkers yet.


Like this one: AHHHHHHHHH!!!

PROTIP: Please tell me you noticed the toilet paper, people. Please. That, condoms, and tampons are the new currency in a ZA situation, never forget!

They trap themselves between shelves, giving themselves a chance to kill the Walkers at their leisure. Well, until Gabriel freaks out and runs off, falling into the water like a big, dumb baby, and the STUPID decision our team makes is to tump over a shelf loaded down with precious canned nacho cheese (among other things) so they can save his ass. Rick does, Bob gets pulled down into the water by a skeleton barely held together by sinew and flesh (Eze 37: 7!!), and I swear, I thought he was bitten.

I'm litsurprirsed the glasses didn't fall off yet.

I’m surprised the glasses didn’t fall off yet. BTW, she’s Gabriel’s old Church Lady friend. [Isn’t that special?]

They get all the goods they can out of there, loaded down on some flat rolling carts, and feel pretty great about life. There’s TP, a roof over their head, some Cram and Mentats… What’s not to love? Not even losing her katana blade can bring Michonne down. (Did Terminus get her blade, then? I thought it was in Rick’s bag. Huh.)

Carl is surveying the outside of the church when they get back; he has something to show his dad. Knife gouges on the windows, like people were trying to get in. Oho! A little further down, carved into the clapboard is “You’ll burn for this.” OHO 2: THE OHO-ENING!

They have a big ol’ Sunday feast there at the church, everyone happy and satisfied with making it through another day, so Abraham uses this time to give a campaign speech. Because how about doing more than just making it through the day? Dr. Mullet has a plan, see?

Dr. Mullet: [burps] In DC there are infrastructures designed to withstand complete FUBAR situations, I am crapping you negative.
Abraham: Sounds pretty Gee Dee nice, don’t it?
Rick: Sure. I mean, shit. Anything’s better than Terminus.

MEANWHILE… Gabriel sits quietly as footsteps approach. It’s Rick. They drink some communion wine and Rick drops that he knows Gabriel is hiding something, probably something big. (Like being recruitment for Raiders. I’m not letting it go, guys.) But if Gabriel hurts Rick’s people, Rick will flat out kill him. Capice?

Gabriel: [GULP]
Rick: [smiles] Good talk! [pushes off on knee, sashays away]

He has this little toot to care for, after all. :)

He has this little toot to care for, after all. :)

Carol has slipped away to rev up a car near the church for emergency, because that woman is a thinker. (Don’t forget that we talked about how to check for dry cells last season!)

Daryl shows up, because of course he does, when a car blazes down the street, the same one with the white cross on the back window (STARES AT YOU GUYS BECAUSE FREAKING RAIDERS) that took off with Beth! They hop in the car she’s gotten up and running, and they make chase.

Bob shambles outside, dead man walking, because I swear to you guys, I believe he was bitten by that skeleton, and he’s slowly dying, and he KNOWS this, so he is getting some space to grieve the life he won’t have with Sasha. He’s knocked out by some guy in a hoodie. There’s a mark like this: on the tree where he was. Hmm. He comes to at a camp fire, and we can see DTB (douchey Terminus Ballcap) from the previous episode alive and well, Tyrese, with a few other people. Aaaaand Gareth.

But we knew we weren’t seeing the last of him. (Fun side fact: the name Gareth originate in the King Arthur tales; he was a lowly kitchen boy who rose to power as a knight, was known for sparing people’s lives to make them his servants, and King Arthur itself is an allegory for Christianity, which turns us back to the theme of this whole episode.)

Gareth, in his douchey motorcycle jacket, is all, “Aww, shucks, buddy! We didn’t want to hurt you! We just… have to. You get it.”

Um, no, Bob doesn’t.

Gareth: Lemme drop some knowledge on you, then. Y’all took our home. So we’re going to hunt your people. De-evolution, it’s a thing! Remember me saying we can’t go back? I meant humanity. Not letting you stay, letting you stay thinking you’re a human being who matters is what I meant. But hey, nothing personal. I’d do this to anyone, really. Equal opportunity sort of guy, that’s me!
Bob: I have these pins and needle feels in my leg?
Gareth: [talking with food in his mouth, so rude] Oh? That’s weird. Because we’re eating your leg?
Bob: [looks at missing limb] Scream!!

UH, BOB, HOW ABOUT SOME MR. BRIGHTSIDES? Because at least they cauterized and treated the stump so you won’t bleed out! Silver lining game!

I have to say, Bob had a meaty-ass thigh and calf, because there were, what, six people there? Is it wrong if I say I bet that was tender because Bob had been marinating it in booze for years? I am a terrible person, but you knew this.

Hahaha, NOW you know I'm terrible

Hahaha, NOW you know I’m terrible.

Guys, what did you think? I thought it was a stellar episode, it’s setting up the season nicely, we had rebonding of our team, AMAZING Walkers in the Super-Duper Mart, and the promise of Carol and Daryl being the badass duo that they are rescuing Beth. (Unless that burned family picture with Maggie/Lauren’s name means there’s nothing to save, that Beth has been burned away… Eesh.) Not to mention Carol being given the honorific of deciding if the group can stay with her, under her protection. [knuckles away tears]

I remain excited for this season. Episode 3: Four Walls and a Roof is here!

Note for any new folks: I am SPOILER-FREE. There is NO discussion of the comics here, okay? The fun for people In The Know is watching me flail blindly. Respect the no spoiler rule!

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  • tsinivari

    I have so much to say about this episode but wanted to comment since you brought it up twice – Michonne had her sword in Terminus, the douche that was threatening baby Judith when he was talking on the radio they were discussing “the chick with the sword” and the “kid with the hat”. And I think Gareth called her Samurai or something of that nature when he nicknamed them all to herd them into the railcar. So yeah, unfortunately it looks like the sword didn’t make it out of Terminus.

    Also, yeah – when Rick asked Carol’s permission to stay with her, I got the feels hardcore…

    • AH, RIGHT. I assumed they knew about the sword from reconnaissance, since they knew Rick had a bag. But I guess off camera she had her sword and they took it? BOO.

      RICK ASKING CAROL. Oh man, what a wonderful arc between those two, to have it come to this place. <3

      • Amy J.

        From your episode description of last year’s finale: Gareth directs them to drop their weapons, line up in order of Ring Leader (Rick), Archer (Daryl), Samurai (Michonne) and finally, the Kid, making sure everyone knows who’s boss: Gareth. They’re forced into the train car and realize they’re not alone.
        So I assume that was the last time Michonne had her sword. Makes me sad to think of her without it. :-(

        • BAH. And lol, I should have gone back to read my own damn recap! :D

          • Amy J.

            Eh, I had to go back and re-read your recap (or I would have had to go re-watch on Netflix, which would take longer.) I remembered them having to go into the train car in order, but I didn’t specifically recall when they’d had to put down their weapons.

  • Amy J.

    I know, right? Thank you so much for writing these because after many years of fannish-ness, this is now the only show I have excited feelings about, and it’s so great to have somewhere to come to talk about them. Like how amazing it was when Rick said, “I sent you away to this and now we’re joining you. Will you have us?… Thank you.” OMG OMG YES PLEASE. Carol is the freaking bee’s knees.
    Poor Bob. I totally knew he’d been bitten, too, and I wasn’t even slightly surprised when he left the church to have a good cry. I *was* a little surprised when he got whacked, and then at first I thought it was by Morgan. Then as soon as he woke up I realized what was happening and I was careful not to be looking at the TV when they showed his leg or lack thereof because ew.


      Rick seeing how he made a mistake, being a good enough person to own up to it (and I still see both POV in that instance), and then make it even more wonderful by passing a leadership torch to Carol, too? *heart swells*

      So we both agree he was bitten, then? AWESOME. I need to watch that scene without a notebook in my hand and double check, but it makes since! I TOTALLY THOUGHT IT WAS MORGAN, TOO!! I'm very glad that it wasn't. I will say that he looks very Hershel-esque with his pant leg cut and tied and a nice thick bandage covering the wound, but YEAH. STILL. It's intense.

      • Amy J.

        I just re-watched the sewer pit Bob scene and if he did get bitten, I don’t think the viewer saw it. He doesn’t seem to be bitten before the walker pulls him underwater, and when he comes back up he seems to be holding it far enough away from him that he’s safe. There’s a moment before Sasha bashes the walker’s face when maybe teeth could have grazed Bob’s wrist, I guess, but you’d think that would have been hard to hide afterwards. So if he was bitten (and I still think he was, despite the visuals) it was probably when he was underwater and we couldn’t see it.

        • I think that’s the case, too. Otherwise, as MP said in her comment, it doesn’t make much sense for his melancholy “One more” for a kiss and the outdoor sob-fest.

          • tsinivari

            Forgot to mention the melancholy in my other post replying to this:

            I think that melancholy, if we’re going with the bait and switch theory, could also be explained…it is impossible to be as upbeat as Bob is, for like always, without eventually coming down a bit. Now that they were having a kumbaya moment and all coming together and deciding on the plan to move forward with going to Washington, it could be hitting him; or he could be feeling sentimental. Or maybe the community of it got to him.

            Consider the fact he’s outlived TWO other groups prior to this one; and we’ve never seen him get overly emotional about it, he’s been very nihilistic or zen about it, depending on when we were speaking to him. That had to be severely traumatic (I still want the low down on that)…and everyone eventually has to face those feelings.

            • Anthony Stark of Winterfell

              This was my impression as well. He was hiding his negative feelings from his new girlfriend who just LOVES his positive attitude.

        • tsinivari

          I’d also like to add here that Bob is the only one of our merry gang that actually was submerged, not only submerged but done so without warning, which means he likely took in a mouthful of Walker Soup…

          If the thing that kills you is the infection that results from basically all the nasty things that a Walker would carry and sorta supercharges the bug that’s already found in everyone, what would a mouth full of Walker Soup do to you if you happened to swallow some? Or get it in your eyes, nose, etc?

          The more I think on it, the more I think they wanted us to think he was bitten, or superinfected (it can’t just be infected as they all already are), when it was really just a bait and switch to make what happened with the Termites that much more shocking. Think about how long it had been between when this went down (well before nightfall) and when they were in the food bank. Wouldn’t have have started at least having a fever at that point? I know it can take a few days to actually turn once bitten, but the feeling and looking poorly sets in much sooner (especially if one could argue that they aren’t exactly in possession of the strongest immune systems any longer, given their likely diet)

          • Amy J.

            I thought he looked a little feverish/poorly in the scene before, in the church. He seemed to have a bit of a glow on his face and forehead, like sweat, though it could totally have just been the candlelight/lighting. On the other hand, if he was bitten or superinfected, and he was trying not to be found out, maybe kissing someone wasn’t the best idea, what with feverish people feeling hot and all. Hrm.

            • tsinivari

              I must not have noticed that or just assumed that being in the south and it not being winter, being cooped up in a closed building would leave everyone looking a little …ah… moist? (NC girl here so I know how it goes lol). Because I do remember thinking “he’s totally infected” and on the heels of it going “But he doesn’t LOOK infected” and I think we can all agree any sweating/green around the gills going on in the Termite camp …was …er…justified.

              • Amy J.

                No, that’s fair, because in other scenes I noticed the top of Maggie’s shirt soaked with sweat, and Carl’s hair being all wet and sweaty, so you’re probably right. If the show director etc had wanted to clue us in to Bob being ill, it would have been more obvious.

                • tsinivari

                  It would not shock me at all for it to be a bait and switch to get assumptions going in one direction only to have the 180 into something completely different (and way more horrifying lol).

                  Also, I like to think…even Bob would have the decency to let them KNOW not just be chilling out in the midst of them while he’s on his way to Walkerville. But I could be wrong.

                  But still…Walker Soup…down the gullet, you know it happened. Even if it didn’t send him on the way to turning, it should have detrimental health effects lol

  • Katy

    Hubby and I were pretty sure Bob got bitten/scratched. If so, then the ex-Terminus people are in some serious shit. Or does the zombie virus die if the meat is properly cooked? Hmmmmm.

    I’m pretty sure Beth isn’t dead cause Emily Kinney’s name is in the opening credits. I just don’t think she’s in a great place right now. Hope Daryl and Carol find her. (And Carol is still my queen.)

    • I’m high fiving you both for the “Bob TOTALLY got bitten/scratched” vibe. I think the idea is that the virus dies when it’s cooked, because when you set a Walker on fire and it burns out, doesn’t it kill them? WAIT. NOT ALWAYS. But ooooh, if you can get it from eating…

      HOLY SHIT. WAIT. “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life.” I bet you CAN get it if a person’s been infected. They’ve only eaten healthy people up to this point, right? Ooooh. Let’s put a pin in that!

      And no, I don’t think Beth is dead at all, I just meant her spirit, her joy, her humanity would be burned out because of whatever is happening to her, perhaps. (Poor Beth!!)

      • Amy J.

        Maybe the Walker virus is like prions. Then it wouldn’t matter if it was cooked flesh or not, right? Um. Ew.

  • MP

    I thought Bob was bitten too, both because it looked like an “Oh, fuck!” situation in the zombiewater, and because I can’t think of an alternate explanation for his stumbling outside to be heartsick (or the sad ‘one more kiss’ with Sasha). OTOH, it’d be somewhat ironic if he was bitten on the leg that they cut off and thus the Terminators (TM) accidentally Hershelsaved him.

    I loveloveloved Michonne’s callback when she said she missed Andrea and Hershel, btw. (But not her katana because as good as she got with it, it was still a souvenir of the Before Time when she was just surviving, not living.)

    • LOL at “Terminators.” And hey! They came back! <-- say with shitty Austrian accent. Michonne being a full human once again is one of the best story arcs of the whole series. Her letting go of her past last season and being able to feel, love, care and do what needs to be done without it destroying her is a thing of BEAUTY.

    • Anthony Stark of Winterfell

      I can’t imagine anyone in the Zombie Universe would NOT NOTICE a bloody chunk missing out of their carefully prepared dinner…

  • tsinivari

    Re: Sasha and Bob – I could not agree more in regards to their “relationship”… actually I was shocked when they were doing the kissy kissy thing. I mean I know he got a kiss out of her last season, but suddenly it’s morphed into an actual…relationship, I guess?

    Bob has always been creepy to me…and it disappoints me that they let someone written as Sasha has been fall for that. I mean, I get it, in the apocalypse unusual pairings can happen, but the whole just harass her til she gives in thing is a little …unnerving. There were so many better ways they could have done that if they wanted the end game to be that they are together. I mean just off the top of my head it could have been as simple as she started to find his “always look on the bright side!” endearing and it warmed her to him; but instead he’s kinda creepy and stalkerish…

    I also totally got the he was bitten vibe when he went outside to have a good cry. I haven’t watched Talking Dead yet (I will do so after work – bad me, posting from work!) so I don’t know if they touch on whether or not he was bitten (considering that could be QUITE a surprise for the Termites)….but it could have just as easily been a fake out. You’re mind is happily (well maybe not happily, but I won’t lie, I’ve been waiting, kinda wanting, Bob to bite it for a while now) tripping along the “he’s totally bitten it and is hiding it” trail and then WHACK he’s in the surviving Termites’ camp sans one leg. (mmm tastes like chicken?)

    So…as a non comic reader (I honestly couldn’t get past the second issue, it just didn’t speak to me with it’s writing OR art, and it was too pricey for me so I remain unspoiled, though I’ve seriously thought about googling “Father Gabriel” just to see if he’s from the comics lol)…I really don’t know where they are going with the whole Bob and Termites/Hunters thing…other than it’s horrifying! (But oh so good)

    I loved everything about Carol in this episode, I was displeased with the turn they had taken with Carol at first (the whole killing of people etc etc) but I’m absolutely loving the outcome of it and just how completely awesome she has become.

    Also, Re: Carl and Rick’s convo prior to the scavenge. I do actually think that Carl heard what Rick was saying, but I also think what he said was equally important; making the point that they still /should/ help people (it’s a sentiment that’s been reoccurring) because who are they if they become so cold and hard that they can’t possible see the good in anyone. I think Carl’s actions following their return speak to that – Carl is still trying to hold onto the concept of helping others, but he’s not a stupid kid (he really isn’t any longer)…he looked around, he found those scratches and those words. Trust but verify would be a good way to put it.

    So, for once, I think he was actually listening. I think Carl has reached the point where he does listen to Rick and does respect those opinions, but he also has his own opinions, which is good and he seems to be taking both into account. Carl, to me, is starting to represent that balance between the too moral (Dale, Hershel) and the ones that tend to take that whole Us and Them attitude (such as Rick, Shane) too far. (Which is not to criticize Rick, I don’t think anyone can fault him at this point for seeing every new face as potentially someone he’ll have to kill because of what they get up to, they haven’t had a lot of that…I was honestly a little shocked there wasn’t more side eying of Abraham and his crew, perhaps because of the situation in which they met).

    • I totally REARED BACK and shook my head, saying, “Whaaaaaaaat? NO NO NO NO.” I have been on record since he first showed up as being anti-Bob. I am really disappointed in that part of the show, no means no, and Sasha was CLEAR about that last season. Then they went the old school “wear a lady out until she gives in” road, and I haaaaaate that.

      IF. If he wasn’t bitten, then maybe his whole cheery “bright side” demeanor falls off when he’s alone, and that’s how he can play Mr. Positivity when he’s with everyone else? Hmm. I like him being bitten. (LOL)

      Re: Carl. I have a 13 year old. They listen to some, and then do what they want to do. (Ahahaha) Mostly I like being funny over here since the show is so dark. And yes, of course it’s important that our group remains decent, doing what’s actually best for all, and not what’s best for some/convenient, like the Governor.

      And I do agree that Carl is in between the Dale/Hershel vs. Shane/Gov. scale, and leaning more towards Dale/Hershel. I think Rick is Neutral, Daryl wobbles on the Neutral point, and Carol is willing to do what it takes, but is ultimately Neutral on that scale.

      I’m also shocked at the ease in which Rick accepted Abraham & Co, but it must be because they’ve been vetted by Glenn.

      • tsinivari

        I was at first suspicious of Bob, and then the whole thing with the bottle in the store and then the vet college run, at that point I became Anti-Bob as well because…I just knew, at some point, he was going to end up costing someone their life. (Aside from that poor kid in the store). So yeah, I was not thrilled with the thing that happened with Sasha, though specifically the fact that she did “give in” after he wore her down and now they are all lovey dovey.

        No, nope, no.

        The whole brightside demeanor falling away sort of ties into what I said above about what the reasoning behind his breakdown could be (but I, also, am rooting for infected – if for no other reason than, like him or not, the alternative is HORRIFYING. At least if he’s infected he’d die soon and turn! Instead of being eaten piece by piece…*shudders*)

        LOL Yah I love some of the humour you toss into her, that’s why I love reading all of your various recaps (though I rarely comment, I always read)…but I did just want to give my two cents on that. And that is so true about 13 year olds, the reason I’m giving Carl more credit is because I think we can all agree that he’s not a normal teenager at this point. Yes, he has some of the petulant teenage behaviour but in a lot of ways he handles himself better than some of the adults (well, he used to lol we’ve weeded out most of the ones that can’t handle themselves, huh?)

        And yeah I don’t see Rick as evil – I’m not sure neutral is the word I’d use though. Someone who is laser focused on protecting his family at all costs can’t really BE neutral, you know? But yes, Shane/Gov is perhaps better than Shane/Rick (though it can be argued that Rick is now more like Shane than anything…except he has more of a moral compass in general guiding him than Shane ever did)

        • I’m using Neutral in the D&D sense, because I’m a giant nerd. :D But protecting your family isn’t straying from a neutral moral code, it’s actually perfectly balanced. Say the Gov. has a gun on Carl. Rick has a way to kill the Gov and spare Carl. One evil (murder) balanced with one good (saving a life). I mean, Rick isn’t going to eat PEOPLE.

          Carl is totally representative of the new era of human in the world, and fortunately Carl has grown out of his cold, hardened EFF YOU stage, as all kids eventually do. I think he’s being a little naive this ep, given how he’s behaved in the past, if that makes sense. Immediately running at the shout of “help?” WIth all the bad people they’ve encountered? I would expect a, “What do you think, Dad?”

          • tsinivari

            Okay – yeah – from a DND sense I can totally fall on that, though if we’re using that as our stick, I think Rick might actually still be falling in the good camp…eh, who am I kidding, he’d have lost his good status already if he was a character in a campaign run by my DM lol

            I do think the running to the cry of “help!” might have been a bit naive on his part after everything he’s seen (because for reals I fall in the Rick camp here…you don’t just risk the family for strangers without thinking about it) but I also find it heartening that the hard wiring MOST humans have when they hear a cry for help is to actually attempt to go render aid. It’s an urge that has to be …if not curbed, approached with caution post-ZA but it’s still something we want to see our family in possession of.

            • “I also find it heartening that the hard wiring MOST humans have when they hear a cry for help is to actually attempt to go render aid”

              ME TOO. <3

      • Karen

        If it helps, there was a deleted scene showing Bob and Sasha growing closer from last season. But yeah, if you’re going to delete a scene that shows relationships forming, then you leave most of your audience in the dark about such relationships having been formed. It’s bad writing/editing.

        Poor Carol. I hope her Pookie can reach out and get her to realize that she’s still part of their family.

        And for what it’s worth, I’m totally on board with “Bob got scratched by the soggy walker and was saying good-bye to Sasha with one last kiss before he wanders off to die alone” ship. I can only hope that eating infected meat gives those Termites a terminal case of the runs.

        • Oh, I’m canon only–what airs is what I watch and take into consideration. So yeah, didn’t see that, and I agree with you re: poor editing. I can infer many things from text, but I don’t need to make up whole relationships out of whole cloth, you know?

          OMG, the noise I just made at them getting the runs from a bad Bob Burger… <3

  • cindergal

    Ack! So much to say about this episode!

    First, opening credits – if you look through the spokes of the wheel, there’s Daryl’s vest with the angel wings. And the watch I believe is Hershel’s watch that he gave to Glenn, so hopefully more a nod to that and not something more ominous, but you never know with this show.

    I took Abraham’s comment when Michonne killed the walker a little differently – I thought he meant, this is why we need these people to go to DC with us – they are so effective and skilled and can help us protect Eugene. But it was written kind of oddly.

    Loved the scenes with Rick and Carol and Ty and Carol and Daryl and Carol! But I think our Carol was thinking of taking off in that car, and a good thing Daryl was checking up on her. You could tell by the way she set herself apart while the others were celebrating that she still doesn’t feel like part of the group, despite Rick, Ty and Daryl all trying to convince her otherwise. And of course now they are off to save Beth, which I’m sure has Tumblr fandom in a tizzy because, love triangle! LOL!

    And Bob was totally bit. ::nods:: I mean, why else would he be out there crying? And I wonder – was he bit in the leg that the Termites cut off? Could that have saved his life ala Hershel (seems too much time has passed, but we don’t really know how much time you get)? And/or, what will happen to Gareth and friends now if they’ve eaten infected flesh. Except… we’re all infected anyway, right? But being bit obviously flips some switch and you get the fever and then turn, so it seems that would be different than eating someone who hasn’t been bit. So many questions!

    As for Father Gabriel, I think his crime is that he locked his flock out of the relative safety of the church (hence the scratches on the shutters and the ominous message scratched near the door), and kept all the food to himself. He’s only come out now a year and a half later because he’s run out of food. And who was that woman who was in the photograph, who was also the walker he almost let kill him? Something more than just a friend, I wonder? MORE QUESTIONS.

    Very excited for this season. It’s so much better when the gangs all together. (Although there are so many of them now that I worry they’re going to have to thin the herd, pardon the expression. *g*)


    • tsinivari

      The Abraham comment, I had forgotten to mention it in mine. I must have heard it wrong because I thought he said something along the lines of that is why we’re waiting to have the conversation – as in, these people are capable and hard core and you have to approach it at the right time. But your view makes sense too…if you need to rustle up a new posse to help you get to DC, our family is the one you want helping you get there.

      • cindergal

        Yeah, he said (with what I thought was admiration in his voice), “that there is why we’re waiting for our moment.” Which I took to mean, we need to pick the right moment to talk to them so that they say yes, because we really want them with us. But your interpretation makes a lot of sense, too. It wasn’t written very clearly.

    • Ooh, I didn’t catch Daryl’s angel wings vest!!

      I can see how your interpretation of the Abraham “now’s the time” moment working–if I have to do this much back bending, though, that’s a sign the writing (or editing) wasn’t as clear as it could be.

      I TOTALLY think Carol was thinking of running. And Daryl knew it, which is why he followed her. He JUST got her back!

      Ooh, I think Father Gabriel has done something FAR worse than just locking his parishioners out. I think that church is a giant spider web. Time will tell!

      OMG I THOUGHT WE WERE GOING TO GET MORGAN THIS EP! I’m champing at the bit for him to come back!

      There’s some great commentary in comments about Bob’s leg. BOB’S BURGER, I TOTALLY MISSED THE CHANCE FOR A JOKE, oh, boo, me.

      • cindergal

        Don’t forget the Bob-B-Q. ;-)

        • I was so sad when they used that on the Talking Dead, because I couldn’t. *sad music*

          • Eddie H

            They also snagged shish kaBob

  • Beth

    I STILL STAND FIRM WITH MY COMMENT FROM LAST EPISODE: TERMINUS AND CHURCH AND CROSS LIMO ARE IN CAHOOTS. The mark on the tree has to be a landmark for the cannibals to stand/stalk at a safe distance without being seen by people in the church. Perhaps members of the church that survived (for a time) were the ones responsible for destroying Terminus (and the rape stuff?) hence “you will burn for this” on the church might be some retaliation from Gareth and his cronies, some pact they had with Gabriel done borked and now it’s all gone to shit and Gabriel got muscled into giving them shelter? Part of me feels like he’s the Smithers to a yet unknown Mr. Burns in this story. There are too many angles for this to be square.

    I didn’t care for whomever directed this episode. The editing was all over the place in the first half, I don’t get the slow-mo marching in the beginning, it didn’t feel cohesive to me at all. Storyline and dialog never disappoints, same for the characters themselves, but from a technical standpoint, I was really disappointed and eyebrow-wrinkly.

    • Yep, Beth, I’m totally with you re: those three being in cahoots. TOTALLY. I mean, they’re setting it up that way, aren’t they? Oooh, I like the idea of the mark being a distance indicator to spy/watch prey. Oooooooh so creepy! Yes yes, I want to print out your idea and put it on a t-shirt and wear it to bed.

      Don’t make this weird.

      I agree re: the editing. Last week was stellar because it was Greg Nicotero, and he’s the best of the best. (OMG, I just went to look for who directed and saw that Bear McCreary did the music for this ep. UH, NO WONDER I LIKED IT SO MUCH.) David Boyd was the director, and he did three other lackluster eps from the early seasons. Eh. He makes pretty pictures, but the story wasn’t as tight as it could have been, that’s for sure.

  • Kiki

    Okay though when Rick was like ‘Judith knows what I’m gonna say’ I died. I full out died because. We don’t see that side of Rick very much any more, he’s hardcore survivalist, and while I love him, it’s just nice to see him be who he was. Also Carl is too tall and it’s freaking me out.

    In regards to Bob, I’m am 99% sure he was bit. I spent the episode just yelling at my screen ‘ARE YOU BIT OR NOT’ but I feel like he had to be, because those final pre-kidnapping moments were just too…sad. Something went down.

    I read the comics and I AM SO PUMPED ABOUT FATHER GABRIEL. I honestly don’t remember anything about his story (I read it in like 2011) so it’s like experiencing it anew. I just remember liking his character.

    ALSO when Daryl threw the water bottle at Carol accidentally was killer. I think that was actually Norman Reedus messing up because Melissa McBride’s face was so amused that IT HAD TO BE A BEAUTIFUL MISTAKE.

    also also I hate saying this but Gareth is…kinda hot? he’s a deplorable human being but the actor has a damn nice face. don’t look at me.

    • cindergal

      Ah, the water bottle, yes! Awkward Daryl is one of my favorite Daryl’s, LOL! Trying to be chivalrous and failing spectacularly. So cute.

  • Eddie H

    Wow. I definitely didn’t catch the whole “Bob is possibly fucked” vibe. I thought he was just being an idiot from a horror movie. It makes a little more sense now. So what if the twist ends up being that he is totally infected and eating him is what does in Gareth and friends?

    • Eddie, that’s what I’m here for–to pick apart those moments until we’re all questioning our very existence. :D

      That’s definitely something we’re debating in comments!! (We usually have a lively back and forth over here, so feel free to either join in or just read along!)

  • Alison

    Agree with all of the above!!!!!!!

    I’m betting $100 that Garreth and the reappearance of some of the Termites means one of them has Michonne’s sword, and she gets that bitch BACK!!!!!

  • Colleen

    Sorry I am late with my comment, real life and junk. Laura, I love that you dislike smarmyou Bob just as much as I do! I don’t think he is cute and charming like intended, but I do like that Gareth finds him delicious. Spares the characters we really do like! Btw, the leg day meme was hilarious!!
    CAROL!! I just can’t with how much I love her. I do hope Daryll gets something better to do this season than just stare at her in awe, but I cannot blame him if he does!

    I have to say the character I was disappointed in this week was Corl! He’s losing the grizzle. I was halfway convinced the only person in the universe he could grow up and marry was Arya Stark, but now he’s getting the feels back and Arya will have none of that.


    • Oh my gosh, there is no time limit on commenting! *hugs* And THANK YOU for laughing at the leg day joke.

      CORL is totally losing his grizzle! It’s very sad making. I mean, I don’t want hard core dead-eyes CORL back, but a happy medium would be good. I thought it made him seem younger than he was, honestly.

      OMG about Arya. UM, SHE BELONGS WITH GENDRY. In about ten years. ;D