Tuesday, December 1, 2015

The Walking Dead S6E8 "Start to Finish" 11/29/15

Is it possible that an episode dealing with the demolition of the protective wall around Alexandria and the subsequent influx of hundreds of zombies is boring?  Yes, it is very possible.

The episode opens in scaredy Sam's room as he draws disturbing pictures of walkers and listens to "Tiptoe through the Tulips" (not the Tiny Tim version) over and over again.  Sam is damaged goods, we get it.  Doesn't make me care about him at all.

So the clock tower comes down, crashing into the wall, and just moments later the herd of zombies that was clustered outside is inside, filling the streets.  Every human denizen panics, shouting and screaming and firing off head shots and running for safety.  Deanna even acquits herself very well, standing at Rick's side and shooting zombies fairly efficiently.  She gets knocked onto some metal, however, and cuts her leg badly.  Morgan and Carol momentarily forget their quarrel and run for it; Carol falls, hitting her head hard, and Morgan helps her into a house.  For a moment, it looks like Maggie is going to be the big character kill of the half season: the walkers chase her up a ladder and she ends up pulling herself up, by sheer upper body strength, to safety atop a lookup platform on the wall.  Eugene almost gets himself bit when he finds a walkie-talkie on the ground (Daryl's voice is coming through it and Eugene, terrified, says "Help," thus answering the question as to who said "Help" a couple of episodes ago) but Tara and Rosita save him, dragging him into a garage and slamming the door on the approaching zombies.  Rick, Deanna, Gabriel, Jessie, Carl, Ron and Michonne take refuge in Jessie's house (where Judith and Sam already are).  So that's everyone, pretty much, separated and hunkered down, and wondering WTF do they do next.

Outside the wall, Glenn and Enid stare in horror at the damaged wall and the swarming zombies.  Enid is all for cutting and running, believing that there's no hope.  Glenn is all, our friends are in there, my pregnant wife is in there, I'm not giving up.  He heads off, leaving Enid with a sad face, trying to figure out what to do.

At Jessie's house, Sam is on the verge of a freakout at all the hubbub around him: Judith wailing, Deanna bleeding everywhere, people shouting and running around, zombies pounding on the walls.  Rick checks on Deanna.  Michonne has stopped the bleeding from her leg wound but they also find a bite on her side.  Deanna: "Well, shit."

The Morgan and Carol show.  She's in rough shape, woozy and bleary-eyed.  Morgan thinks she may have a concussion but when he tries to take a look at her head, she pushes him away.  He notes that she doesn't trust anybody.  Carol:  "Some more than others.  But you're dead last."  They both kind of chuckle at that.  When she tries to stand up, she staggers and he helps her sit down again.  "Carol, whatever we have to settle, it can wait.  It has too."

In what may be one of the worst ideas EVER on this show:  Doctor Denise IS ALONE IN THE ROOM WITH MORGAN'S CAPTIVE WOLF.  WTF is she doing there?  I realize he's wounded and his hands are tied but still.  He's a psychotic killer and even with his hands tied, I'm pretty sure he could hurt her.  I get that she's hiding out from the walkers but she could wait out in the hallway and not in the SAME ROOM.  Also, she decides she might as well see what she can do about his wound while they're waiting.  So.  Much.  Stupid.

Here's my issue with Rick.  The show has decided that he's the hero and so they keep writing him so that the other characters keep putting him in charge.  But he's not any good at it.  He's unstable and his plans/ideas get a lot of people killed, over and over again.  And yet the survivors keep making him their leader.  Alexandria was doing pretty well until Rick and his gang showed up.  Now at least two-thirds of the original Alexandrians are dead and the wall is down.  Part of it is just bad luck, and zombies.  But part of it is that he is not a good leader.

Carl sees Ron heading into the garage.  He follows Ron in there to see if he's okay and no, Ron is not all that okay.  He gets in Carl's face about how Rick gets people killed.  Carl tries to smooth things over but Ron is feeling desperate.  He locks the door to the house, putting the key in his pocket, and then pulls his gun on Carl.  He fires a couple of shots, breaking windows and alerting zombie passersby to the human presence.  Rick and Jessie, hearing the ruckus, try to get into the garage but can't with the locked door.  Rick busts the door down and they find the boys in there, Carl desperately trying to blockade the broken windows, Ron doing not much of anything to help.  It's no use and zombies start pouring in.  The humans retreat to inside the house, trying to barricade the now-broken door with a sofa.  As they try to hold back the flood of walkers, Rick asks Carl WTF was going on in there.  For some reason, Carl covers for Ron, saying that they were just fighting against the walkers.  Ron, meanwhile, has picked up his gun and scampered into another room so Carl follows him.  Carl pulls his own gun and takes Ron's away without any further fuss.  Carl:  "Look, man, I get it.  My dad killed your dad.  But you need to know something: your dad was an asshole."

There's a lot of talking in this last "fall finale" episode, a lot of talking for what should be an action episode.  Deanna and Michonne talk a lot about Alexandria's future and what each woman wants, for the community and for herself.  Deanna and Rick talk a lot too, about how he's the new leader now (ahem).  Deanna says that he needs to be the leader of everyone in the community, not just his people.  Because like it or not, the Alexandrians are "his people" now too.  Also talking: Tara, Rosita and Eugene.  Until they decide to get out of the garage they're stuck in.  Luckily, lock-picking is within Eugene's skill set.

Eventually, the group at Jessie's house can no longer keep the zombies out of the house.  They retreat upstairs, blocking the stairwell with a sofa.  It is holding for the time being.  But it won't hold for long and Rick decides that they'll have to make their escape to the armory using the old "wearing zombie guts" camoflage.  Father Gabriel and the Alexandrians are like OMIGOD ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME but Michonne and Carl are like, yeah, we've done this before - you just gotta keep quiet and they think you're one of them.  Little Sam comes out of his room and is all, I CANNOT DO THIS.  Jessie pleads with him, asking him to pretend that he's brave because they just cannot stay here any longer.  Michonne checks on Deanna, telling her that they're leaving.  Deanna says that she's got a gun and she plans on using it on herself soon, before she turns.  Blah blah blah.

Carol takes advantage of Morgan's back being turned to make a break for it.  She runs back to the Wolf's cell, where Denise has gotten him hooked up to IV antibiotics.  Morgan is hot on her heels though, and they immediately have a stand-off.  Morgan is all, no killing/every life is precious (which, I love you, Morgan, and I get it, but no, in this world, every life is NOT precious).  Carol is all, I will kill you and then I will kill him so that no one else has to die.  Heh.  They fight and, because Morgan has a big stick, he knocks Carol out.  But then the Wolf lunges to his feet and knocks Morgan out.  He grabs Carol's knife and menaces Denise, who pleads for all their lives and then, kind of awesomely, shouts at him, "You are so full of shit!"  Then Tara, Rosita and Eugene burst in and the Wolf grabs Denise, holding the knife to her throat.  He makes them give him their guns and then he walks out, still holding Denise.  There's nothing they can do to stop him.

Once everyone is coated in zombie guts (Judith is tucked underneath the bespattered bed sheet that Carl is wearing), they go downstairs.  Rick has instructed everyone to be silent and they slowly move through the herd milling about on the first floor.   On the porch, they clasp hands so as not to get separated.  It's working, they're making slow progress, they're moving through the zombies unscathed.  And then poor, stupid, traumatized, useless Sam:  "Mom.  Mom.  MOM!"

Previously on The Walking Dead / next time on The Walking Dead

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