We start with Ezekiel, Morgan, Richard and some others meeting with the Saviors for their regular hand-off. Richard can't keep him mouth shut and starts to get manhandled; Morgan steps in to defend him and ends up getting smacked upside the head. Ezekiel manages to calm things down but the Saviors confiscate Richard's gun and Morgan's staff, along with the regular tribute. (I'm guessing Morgan will end up fighting the Saviors with Rick and getting his staff back at that point.) When they return to the Kingdom, Daryl approaches Morgan and is all, WTF, you're bleeding, the Saviors did that to you, why won't you fight? If Carol was here and knew what happened to Glen and Abraham, she'd fight. Yes, says Morgan, she would - and that's why she left. Daryl still thinks Morgan is being a pussy. He stalks off and finds Richard who is practicing with a bow (since he is now gunless). Richard hands him a crossbow, noting that he and Daryl seem to have a lot in common.
A little later, Richard brings Daryl into his big plan. They collect guns and Molotov cocktails from Richard's hidden stash, then walk out to a road where they will ambush Saviors who pass by. They'll kill and burn them, and then when more Saviors come to investigate, they'll find the trail to Richard's weapons stash, which then will lead them to a cabin "where some loner Ezekiel cares for" lives alone. The Saviors will kill her and that, Richard thinks, will be just the impetus Ezekiel needs to fight. Daryl is all, TELL ME HER DAMN NAME. And finally, Richard does and Daryl is NO I'M OUT AND IF CAROL EVEN GETS A HANGNAIL I WILL KILL YOUR ASS. They have fisticuffs - as the Saviors drive past unimpeded - and Daryl's like, I'm serious - you leave her alone. Richard: "I would die for the Kingdom." Daryl: "Why don't you?"
On the Rick side of this episode, things are about to get weird. Rick, Michonne, Rosita, Aaron and Tara have been captured by this insane and ridiculous group/cult, who all dress in grey and black leather and robes, have very strange names (their leader is "Jadis") and speak like bad fantasy fan-fic. Rick is nearly gleeful about it all, though, seeing in their numbers allies against the Saviors. They bring out Gabriel and after some rough stuff where Rick's group gets slapped around a bit, between Rick and Gabriel they manage to talk fast enough to get Jadis at least interested in what they have to say. Gabriel is all, tell us what you need and we'll get it for you, right now.
Editorial note: I didn't pick up on what this new group calls itself but they are ridiculous. They live in a damn junkyard. And how long has it been since the zombie apocalypse came to pass? Two years at most? And all these people are so weird now? Would people really change (change their names) like that? I get that a zombie apocalypse might make you a little crazy but these folks are right the fuck off the deep end.
Jadis considers Gabriel's words and then she and a couple others "show Rick up-up-up," taking him up to the top of a junk heap. She wants to see how capable he is: she pushes him off and he falls down into a small clearing, surrounded by junk and currently occupied by a very awesome, be-spiked zombie. After some struggle during which he manages to impale his hand on one of the spikes, Rick offs the zombie. Seriously: that is a very clever way to rig a walker to inflict maximum damage. Jadis is enough impressed to bring him back out of that pit. She tells him that if he gets her guns - lots of guns, right now - she and her people will join the fight. There's a bit more haggling after that, but that's the deal. She lets Rick and his group go, warning them that the guns better come quick because her offer has an expiration date. (The camera lingers on Tara a bit and I'm guessing she'll be hard-pressed to keep her silence about that all-women community on the coast, you remember - the one with all the guns.) Also, Rick and Gabriel have a heart-to-heart: Gabriel was kidnapped by one of Jadis's people, who forced him to clear out the pantry; Rick's all, thanks to you, the clues you left behind, we now have these new allies.
Back outside of the Kingdom, Ezekiel and some of his men drop by to see Carol (against her wishes) - they've brought her some fruit cobbler. She shoos them away. A little later, there's a knock on her door. Annoyed, she opens it ... and it's Daryl. The look on her face when she sees him, on his face when he sees her - these two are the best part of this stupid show. He looks so fragile. She is in tears and speechless. "Why'd you go?" he asks, voice cracking. She explains it to him - how she couldn't stand to lose anyone else, how if she kept killing people she would lose herself. She asks him if the Saviors came after she left. Terrified, she forces herself to ask: "Did anyone get hurt? Is everyone okay? Did the Saviors [chokes back a sob] - is everybody back home okay?" He looks at her a long time, really seeing her here, safe and whole, and then replies: "We got them all. And made a deal, like Ezekiel. Everyone's all right." Later, he asks her if Ezekiel is an okay guy. Yes, Carol replies, I think he is. Daryl doesn't overstay his welcome but heads back to the Kingdom after giving his friend a huge hug. Carol watches him go.
Daryl heads straight for Shiva's cage when he gets back to the Kingdom. Morgan finds him there and marvels, "You're good with her. Ezekiel will be impressed." Daryl shrugs, saying that he figures any guy who's got a pet tiger can't be that bad. He tells Morgan that he found Carol and that he gets it, why she's there. But they need the Kingdom and he wants Morgan to handle it. Morgan demurs, saying it can't be him. Daryl scoffs, saying wake the hell up. But Morgan is all, I know you get it - you're the same as me because you didn't tell Carol about Glen and Abraham (because if you did, she'd be here right now, gearing up for war), you kept her safe from it. Shiva takes this moment to purr and lick Daryl's hand through the bars of her cage BECAUSE SHE'S A GIRL AND HE'S DARYL AND OF COURSE SHE LIKES HIM. ROWR. Daryl looks down at her almost fondly, then picks up his new crossbow. He tells Morgan: I'm going back to Hilltop to get ready for war. And in the morning, the gates of the Kingdom open to let him do just that.
Previously on The Walking Dead / next time on The Walking Dead
15 minutes ago