[Previously!] Okay, the show hinted that someone we care about will die in this finale, which I hate knowing, because then I’m too stressed to just take the episode in. No, I imagine every interaction as the last. (Which yeah, I know that’s what they want.) You know what I want?
MORGAN!!! AND I GOT IT!
He’s sleeping in an abandoned car in the woods. Well, they had to give him to us at some point or we’d riot, right? There’s a rabbits foot hanging on the mirror and he smiles. He makes a small fire for some breakfast–
PROTIP ON EASY CAMPING BREAKFASTS: Lucky enough to have an orange and an egg? Cut the orange in half, scoop out the pulp and eat it, then crack your egg into the half-bowl of rind. Set this on the edge of your morning fire to cook without needing dishes. On the run? Fill a ziplock baggie with granola, cereal, oats, whatever’s available, and add 1 TBSP of powdered milk. Add some water for portable cereal. If you don’t have water, you’ll still benefit from the protein and Vitamin D in the powdered milk.
–when someone shows up with a gun.
“Looks good. Hi.” This guy looks very unhinged.
“What’s with the W on your head?” Morgan asks and I am ON EDGE, YOU GUYS.
This grimy dude explains how the first white men in the area offered bounties on wolves, eventually wiping them out. But now they’re back. Morgan nods. “Everything returns.”
W1: … ? Wow! I like actually talking and meeting new people! Usually I’m all about killing and setting traps, but this is nice. Talking before I have to kill you and take everything you have.
Morgan: …oh, son. Everything returns. Including me being a bad ass, but also being sane.
W2: [bursts out of the woods]
Morgan: BEHOLD MY QUARTERSTAFF OF DOOM! [ups his Melee and hand to hand, knocking them both out.]
That gun? Totally empty. But Morgan doesn’t need it, he just needs to bundle their conked out bodies in the car we just met him in, honk the horn to draw Walkers, and then take the rabbits foot from the mirror.
This character gets it, and I love everything happening here.
FINALLY: The show gives me what I want, Part Two. Daryl on his motorcycle, hopefully heading back to Alexandria to be caught up on those shenanigans.
Wait, no, we’re cutting to a cleaned up Rick waking up in confinement with Michonne watching over him.
Michonne: WTH, bro? Why didn’t you tell me anything? Why the gun?
Rick: Um… reasons?
Carol: Wow, that was dumb to take the gun from the armory by bribing a small child with cookies, I mean, by slipping in and taking it.
Carol: I say you tell them what they want to hear so we can move past this.
Carol: Because these people are children and children like stories.
Me: OH MY GOOOOOOOOOOOOD CAROL OH MY GOD. Oh my GOD, Carol. Ahahaha CAROL!!
Rick is all, so anyway, we’ll threaten to slit their throats if they don’t back down. Time for nappies, nighty night!
Maggie listens to Reg and Deanna lay out how town hall meetings go, but that’s not enough to calm Maggie. Reg is all, “Cavemen were nomads and they died! We settled—erm, after slaughtering indigenous people, but I promise I have white guilt—and we survived! That’s what I want.” Hmm. I don’t trust you, NPR Chairperson Reg.
In the biggest WTF ever scene, Sasha lays down with a bunch of dead bodies in a makeshift mass grave she’s dug. Um.
Daryl asks Ay-ay-ron about the people they sent away. Two men, one woman (Devil’s Threesome, aww yeah!), their leader was smart as hell and strong. They didn’t work out. (Raise your hand if you think the Wolves’ leader is this Davidson character who was kicked out?)
Carol talks with Rick, hands over another handgun for him to hide, but he’s tired of lying.
“You said you don’t want to take this place? And you don’t want to lie? Oh, sunshine,” she smirks. “You don’t get both.” DAMN, CAROL, WHAT THE HELL? [Guys, this makes me think she’s going to die tonight. I don’t like this feeling.]
Daryl and Ay-ay-ron watch their little red riding hood, Daryl marveling at the guy’s survival skills, centered around rubbing wild leeks over his face to deter mosquitoes.
PROTIP: Other plants that deter mosquitoes include yarrow, lavender, peppermint and catnip. Plus? That last one will bring you kitty friends. If you can find an Army Navy store, look for powdered sulfur. Pat that on your nethers, pits, fill your socks and waistband with the powder. Repels chiggers and ticks, but you will smell like a eggy fart. Fair warning.
Shitty BFF Nick—who has a hidden handgun and a present menace on his face—watches Glenn on the porch of his house until Maggie shows up. He slinks away. Maggie wants to know what Glenn’s thinking. Oh, just that he loves her. AWWW. WAIT. Oh my god, do not kill Glenn, show. DO NOT. After Maggie leaves, Glenn spies Nick climbing up the wall for why?! And then Father “Judas Iscariot” Gabriel also takes a walk outside the wall with no weapon except for Jesus.
Yeah, that’ll work.
Rick and Carl have a frighteningly honest discussion about how Rick might have to threaten or kill someone at this meeting. Carl is pretty sure that if Rick just uses his inside voice and reason, he can get through to them all. Aww, it’s nice how much he trusts and loves his daddy. DEAR LORD THAT BETTER NOT MEAN CARL IS GOING TO DIE?! Not when he’s finally become amazing and actually stayed inside the house without argument!?
Daryl and Ay-Ay-ron lose sight of Little Red, but stumble across a canned food warehouse teeming with Walkers. Do they give up looking for the guy and grab the food? YES. Daryl rings the dinner bell, stabbing them through the fence so they can get inside. They leave the gate open, a big mistake. Now randos can wander in. IF DARYL– [bites fist] I’m not even going to SAY IT.
There are empty tin cans tied up—cheap security system? YOU HAVE TO BE EVER AWARE OF POTENTIAL RAIDERS AND SLAVERS, GUYS. Ay-ay-ron gets himself an Alaska license plate while Daryl attempts to jimmy a lock on one of the many trailers. Aaaaaand springs a trap, opening them all up and releasing Walkers, all with Ws on their heads. RAIDERS! [/say like “Newman!” from Seinfeld.] Make a break for it, fellas! Shit, they’re everywhere, pouring out of the front AND back of the trailers. Daryl impressively uses a chain to kill three in one blow, they narrowly make it into a vehicle in one piece, Walkers on meat hooks gawping, Walkers still coming out of the warehouse and trailers after them, and man, this is so Raider-infested Vault/hideouts from Fallout I’m screaming with glee.
While trying to come up with a plan in the car, Ay-ay-ron finds a hastily written note: TRAP. BAD PEOPLE COMING. DON’T STAY. Well, then.
Carol goes to see Porch Dick, bringing a Sympathy Tuna Noodle. She wants him to check on Tara, but he wants her to leave. Oh? Because she could kill you. She will! And then who would believe she did it because she didn’t like him? She has a knife to his neck and knows they’d believe he tried to hurt her. So come on. Go for it, big guy! No? No. Buddy, you have a chance, so you’d better straighten up and fly right. “You’re a small, weak nothing. And with the world how it is, you’re even weaker. Play your cards right, maybe you don’t have to die.”
Oh, that had to be so cathartic for her to say to an abuser. Porch Dick flies into an ineffectual rage as soon as she leaves, though, pissing and moaning about “This isn’t my house!” No one cares, Porch Dick. He also throws the casserole to the ground. WHO’S GONNA CLEAN THAT UP, PORCH DICK??
Glenn has followed Nick over the wall, tracking him to a Walker in the leaves when suddenly a shot rings out, clipping Glenn NOOOOOOOOOO and Nick runs out of the trees full of menace and SOON MY FOOT IN YOUR ASS, NICK, GLENN IS A PRECIOUS ANGEL AND YOU BETTER NOT BE TAKING HIM FROM US! Glenn has taken off, though. OH MY GOD. MY HEART IS RACING.
Rick checks on Jessie, but she doesn’t really want them to be seen talking to one another. I mean, she’s right, but this whole situation is FUBAR. Porch Dick is watching from his Not House, by the way. Rick? I get that it’s been… awhile, but this woman is just a lady. I mean, I don’t get what’s so special about her? Unless that’s what you’re attracted to: safe women who have inner steel when it comes to their kids but not much else? MICHONNE IS RIGHT THERE, OKAY? ALSO: DARYL. [What? Who said that?]
Meanwhile, back at Danger Warehouse, Daryl feels recharged by the challenge. Feels more like himself. Ay-ay-r on admits that Daryl bringing everyone back to his Cry Cabin is what made him decide to bring those folks back to Alexandria. Awww!Daryl lights a smoke, says he’s going to make a break for it, essentially sacrificing himself, and let Ay-ay-ron run out of the clearing. But nope, his new buddy wants to go together. AWWWW. Daryl totally respects that and appreciates the solidarity. Oh man. I love these two. Before they can get out, though, MORGAN SHOWS UP with his quarterstaff of doom, they all three get out and they lock the Walkers in.
Ay-ay-ron thanks him right away, and they make the introductions. Daryl wants to know why he rescued them. “Because all life is precious, Daryl.”
Ay-ay-ron starts in with his “We bring you Good News” Watchtower schpiel, but Morgan just wants them to point out on the map where he is. THE MAP THAT RICK’S NAME IS WRITTEN ON FROM BACK IN FATHER GABRIEL’S CHAPEL, OHO.
Speaking of, Gabriel comes across a Walker feasting on a body, and starts whistling, saying, “COME AT ME BRO!” The Walker, with a noose around his neck, comes at him. Gabriel manages to grab the noose and rip the Walker’s head off, then smashes the brain box, taking out its victim as well. Good job, Gabriel! You gonna stop being a leaky nip nop now? Probably not, as he starts crying, curling into a ball on the road. Jesus.
Me: No, ha ha, not actual you, I’m just cussing.
Jesus: That whole “take my name in vain” thing? No?
Me: …I’m an atheist?
Jesus: Oh! Right. Carry on, then.
Abraham shows up with flowers for Tara, awww! Eugene is also there, who formally bids him a good afternoon, hahaha. Dr. Mullet is so stilted, I can’t get over it. He also apologizes and thanks Abe in an over enunciated and calculated (read: hilarious) but honest manner. Abe actually accepts it and offers his own apology.
Gabriel comes back and the gate keeper hints that he’d like to have a confession to take the load off. Gabriel is left to shut the gate, which he obviously doesn’t do. GOD DAMMIT, GABRIEL. Also, why is there no blood on your white shirt? DID IT ABSORB YOUR SINS? THEIR SINS? Pfft.
Nick stalks Glenn, but comes onto a Walker first, and because he’s useless, pulls his gun instead of his knife to finish it off, giving Glenn a chance to come out of nowhere and fight him. Glenn is a bad ass, but Nick fights dirty, digging his thumb in Glenn’s GSW to the shoulder. But as Nick beats on Glenn’s face, making me want to fly through the monitor of my TV and bite his chin off, another Walker approaches. Nick backs away, leaving the Walker to fall on Glenn, three more appearing behind her and I just yelled out ARE YOU FRAKKING KIDDING ME!? I. WILL. RIOT.
Before I find out if I need to drive to Georgia and slap the showrunner across the face, Rick admits to Michonne about his pact with Carol and Daryl and that he didn’t bring her into it because he wasn’t sure how she’d react. She will always stand up for him, she says, but she does think they can make this work. But no matter what, she’s Rick’s. AND LET ME SING MY RICHONNE SONG OF TRUTH THERE ARE ALSO HAND PUPPETS AND INTERPRETIVE DANCE.
“Something’s going to happen. Just don’t make something happen.” She’s not wrong. He tries to hand her the gun Carol gave him, but she won’t take it.
Rick takes some time to think it through, remember a convo with Footless Bob, how he believed this wasn’t the real world anymore, so keep in mind how it used to be. He sees something out of the window that makes him run outside: the gate is open, and there’s blood on the lock. He pulls it shut, locks it and follows the blood drops on the ground. Please be Glenn. Please be Glenn.
He spies something and takes off running. [Good thing there are dogs barking a warning! PUPPIES ARE SO IMPORTANT.]
Gabriel goes into his makeshift church where he finds Sasha. “I came here because I don’t know what to do, I’m losing my head. Can you help me?” No, he replies. She wants to die. Gabriel thinks that’s a great idea because he thinks she’s awful. WOW, I AM GLAD I WAS ALWAYS RIGHT ABOUT GABRIEL, BUT DAMN, SON. Uh, Sasha can see through that projection, okay? And she is furious, shoving at him.
The town meeting gathers even though Glenn and Rick aren’t there. Deanna wants to talk about Rick, how he had a pistol that was stolen and his angry, frightening words. But Rick isn’t there.[Nick scurries through the woods in the dark, trying to find his way back.] Rick pulls his knife and runs through the dark, too, looking for something. And it seems to be a Walker. While everyone else is talking the merits of him being there, he’s fighting to save them.
Rick finds another Walker, and another, fighting them all while Sasha fights with Gabriel, while Glenn– HELL YEAH! –comes out of nowhere with a busted face and knocks Nick out. Carol, speaking to the crowd, sings Rick’s praises, how he saved her life, how he’ll save all of their lives if they just give him the chance.
SPEAKING OF, Rick, trapped by a Walker, pulls his gun but does not pull the trigger. No, he pushes the gun UP THROUGH THE WALKER’S NECK OH MY GOSH and into its brain pan, using said brain pan as a sort of silencer for the bullet that rockets through. DAMN. And we cut to Former Pizza Delivery Guy Glenn standing over a dazed Nick, delivering one more punch to his face meat.
Abraham, continuing to be as succinct as only a military man can be, tells the crowd, “There is a world of shit out there that you don’t know about. Rick Grimes knows every fine grain of said shit. And then some” Ahahaha.
Our Little Red is led to the gate that Daryl, Morgan and Ay-ay-ron have left, being told it’s going to take a while to reset. Guess his distraction method not working merits punishment? Yeesh. We see the two dudes Morgan put in a car are delivering him to a swift death via neck slice.
Maggie takes her turn to speak of Rick’s merits. They’re real, they’re honest, and they can’t be denied. Rick has saved them time and again, and they need to know how important his knowledge it. Deanna decides it’s her time to speak, and tells them about Father Gabriel’s words, that he said they can’t be trusted. And not one day later, Rick did everything Gabriel said he’d do. But Gabriel isn’t there, is he? Good job, Jessie, pointing that out. Okay, maybe I’ll develop feelings for you of some sort.
Glenn has Nick pinned, yells at him for trying to kill him. Sasha has her gun trained on Gabriel, too. At the warehouse, music and lights start to flash, attracting the Walkers back into their trap. Damn, that’s smart.
As Tobin, the worst armory guard ever, starts to say how maybe they don’t need to keep this new group, Rick shows up with a body slung over his shoulder. A Walker. He throws it down to show them, telling them where it came from.
Glenn has a gun trained to Nick’s head as Nick cries about not belonging out here. Glenn can’t pull the trigger because that’s not who he is. Gabriel, however, is hoping Sasha will pull the trigger, and it’s still suicide, Father, if you goad someone into killing you on purpose. But Maggie intervenes before Sasha can. He really wishes Maggie hadn’t interrupted. At least he admits he’s been projecting, finally. Maggie takes his hand and offers him understanding. I don’t think he deserves it, personally.
Rick tells them about the gate, that it wasn’t closed, and the kid who’d been managing the gate admits he’d left it to Gabriel. Rick explains that they have something good in here, and people—dead and living—are gonna want to horn in on that. They’ll try to use them, try to kill them. *cough* Sort of like I do. I MEAN WHAT WHO SAID THAT.
Montage: Tara wakes up. Glenn carries Nick back. The lights at the warehouse stop flashing and the two Wolves dudes look at the surveillance photos they’ve taken of Rick and the others in Alexandria. We’re all in agreement that this is the guy kicked out earlier, right?
Rick, though, wants them to realize they need to change. They need to toughen up. He’s not sorry for being hard, he’s sorry for not saying it sooner. They’re not ready, but they have to be because luck runs out. Aaaaaaand, Porch Dick shows up with Michonne’s katana, yelling about Rick not being one of them. And he slits NPR Chairperson Reg’s throat, horrifying everyone. Abraham barrels into him, putting him in a lock on the ground as he yells, “This is him!”
Damn. Carol’s “you know what we have to do” mindset was 100% right, and I love that I love her and have agreed with her. YEP. Once an abuser, always an abuser, always someone who resorts to physicality to deal with their feelings. Also: poor Deanna, losing her son and her husband as she cries, “No, my love, no!”
Jesus. She turns to Rick and says, “Do it.” Rick shoots him at point blank range just as Daryl, Ay-ay-ron and Morgan show up. Morgan sees Rick’s face covered in blood and horror. So much for his “the world needs Rick Grimes in it” idea of utopia Morgan’s been carrying around all this time.
MORGAN IS THE NEW RICK. We all see that, right?
Michonne walks back into her house wiping down her blade, goes to hang it back up over the fireplace. But Michonne can’t do it. She puts it back in her sheath behind her back because that’s the real world. The one where you dress up in uniforms but you have to be truly prepared with more than imagery. You have to have knowledge, skills, the wherewithal to act on it.
[Anyone else see that wheel thing on the wall? It was a ferris wheel, so this is a never ending circle ever repeating itself, right?]
Little Red, now a Walker, shambles in the warehouse yard, passing a sign: WOLVES NOT FAR.
So. That’s the Big Bad of Season 6 sorted, huh? What are your thoughts, guys? Overwhelmed? Underwhelmed? Upset you have to wait until September?