Spoiler Alert: Read further only if you’ve seen episode 8 x 10 of The Walking Dead, ‘The Damned’.
Last week, we were waiting with bated breath to see how one of the biggest deaths in the show’s history would go down. It turns out that although it was devastating and left us drowning in our tears, the episode turned out beautifully.
It holds several moments that take us back to the original episodes that gave The Walking Dead its edge. If you were wishing to hold onto that feeling a little longer, you’re in luck! This episode keeps its slow burn rhythm up.
Carl went out of the world as gracefully as he could. He got a just death, and he got to say the words he needed to say to his father, and to Michonne. Turning onto the world without him, it’s now about whether or not his father honors those words.
This episode makes it clear that it’s going to be harder for some than for others.
Rick seems to struggle through most of the episode, and finally he comes to the realization of what happened, and it could just be the anger stage of grief, but he’s mad. Michonne treading gently shows that she was worried about this very thing happening. She is trying to remind Rick of what Carl wanted, for this to end-but Rick seems to be overriden by emotion when he pages Negan on the walkie and tells him he’s going to kill him.
Let’s talk Negan’s reaction to Carl’s death. It seems like hearing the news of Carl’s death truly affects him, which is very strange to see. The look on his face even proves that. At a certain point I felt some sort of competition. It felt like the two of them were almost clashing because they both had complicated relationships with Carl-and there was a chance that Carl and Negan connected on a level he never had with Rick. I hate even typing that!
Simon and Negan’s relationship is evermore bumpy. He is seemingly worse and worse than Negan. Negan instructs him to scare them by killing one of their people to take their guns, because they can ustilize their assistance. He means business. What I learned this episode? Simon holds a mean grudge and probably doesn’t care too much about his own fate. His men wipe out the Garbage people with one foul swoop, defying Negan’s orders. He then lies straight to Negan’s face when he returns with their guns. Jadis makes it out alive, and I do not see a bright future for Simon once Negan finds out about what he did.
Rick and Michonne’s interaction with Jadis brings us the first time Jadis speaks in normal human rhythm. Rick is completely over it now and doesn’t seem to care that she’s been left for dead. As much as she is frustrating, I feel for her, because she’s now completely alone. She also has one of the grossest scenes this season, when she leads her now walker people into a meat grinder, essentially liquefying each one of them. That was extra cringe-worthy, similarly to when Morgan ripped out a man’s entrails last week. EEK!
Another of the main storylines follows Enid and Aaron, who arrive at Oceanside after a big loss, to try and convince the women to fight Negan with them. They are not happy with Enid for accidentally killing their beloved mother and Grandmother, Natania. Enid isn’t battling her decision, and seems okay with what she did. She successfully gets them out of being killed-barely. As they go to head back, Aaron insists on staying, even though they demanded the two not to return. I think he will be successful in getting them to fight, because deep down they seem to know they eventually have to.
This was another awesome episode, and it was written by Angela Kang who is the new show runner, so this is the best possible case scenario for the show. These past two episodes have re-lit the fire and I’m hoping we only go up from here! She’s doing a great job so far. What I really liked about this episode is the slow pace it took. It was burning, at times hard to watch, and emotionally moving as it switched back and forth from character to character. We really got a feel as to where each character is sitting right now.
I am nervous to see the meeting between Rick and Negan. I want to believe that Rick will finally do it, but part of me also knows that may not be realistic. It’s also not a great sign that Rick is completely defying Carl’s dying wishes.
What do you guys think? Will Rick do it this time?
Shannon Toohey is Editor-In-Chief of FanFest.com. She graduated from Hofstra University in 2015 with a B.A. in Journalism from the Lawrence Herbert School of Communications. Shannon has been a proud member of the Fan Fest team since 2013. Tweet her in your prettiest bird voice: @shannontoo