In the latest episode of The Walking Dead, a new group emerges.
What is it about the Saviors? Why must they all be such royal assholes? It’s like being a jerk is a requirement for being part of Negan’s crew. Case in point: a few of them met up with King Ezekiel and some of his people, including Morgan. As soon as they get out of their vans, they started with the smart mouths, immediately raising my blood pressure. One of them, a long‑haired jerk, who still seems to have a problem with Richard, demands his gun. Richard, already pretty done with the Saviors, refuses and then guns are drawn. Gavin, the perceived boss of the moment asks Ezekiel where do they go from here, with Richard answering with the same question. Ezekiel tells Richard to give up his gun and I actually yelled at the television. Richard gives Long Hair his gun, but not without some words for him. I believe they were, “Suck on it, you little shit.” Long Hair tries to make a move but Morgan slaps that gun right out of his hand. WHAT??? Long Hair grabs Morgan’s stick and hits Richard in the gut with it. He smacks Morgan in the ear but young Benjamin puts Long Hair on his back with his stick! Shit goes sideways quickly and I’m here for it.
Gavin tells Ezekiel that he needs to control Richard because the consequences, well, we know what Negan can do so I won’t elaborate. Gavin tells him that things may have to get “visceral” because of this outburst. Before they get back in their vans, Morgan asks for his stick back and Long Hair tries to roll up on him again. Let me tell you, the way Morgan (and young Benjamin) stepped to him made me happy as hell. Is Morgan realizing that he may have to drop the serenity act and go full-on savage? Needless to say, Long Hair takes the stick and the Saviors leave.
Back at the Kingdom, Ezekiel warns young Benjamin that although his fighting skills are impressive, don’t be looking for a fight, especially with the Saviors. Then the King gives Richard the stink eye and says they’ll speak later before heading back to do whatever the King must do. Morgan talks to Ben for a moment before Daryl interrupts. The two men speak in private, with Daryl saying if Carol were still around she would be fighting. “And that’s why she left, man.” Welp, not much more you can say to that. So Daryl stalks off, meeting up with Richard. The poor man has been demoted to fighting with a bow and arrow, so lots of practice is in order. He and Daryl are of like minds and may join forces. Richard offers Daryl the crossbow on the table and seeing our man hold that thing is like seeing Rick wearing his gun: damn satisfying.
Later, Richard and Daryl make their way to Richard’s hidden RV, full of his lost family’s belongings and guns. Big guns. The two grab a couple and some supplies and start moving. They set up behind an abandoned rig and Richard lays out the plan. Unfortunately, the plan involves Carol possibly dying and Daryl says hell no to that. Richard wants to turn the tide against the Saviors at any cost and plans to go along with the plan. However, Daryl would rather beat his ass to a pulp and does just that until there’s a draw, with Richard pointing his gun at Daryl and his crossbow and vice versa. Daryl lets Richard know that if anything happens to Carol, he’s a dead man. Richard tells D he would die for the Kingdom, to which Daryl asks, “Why don’t ya?”
Elsewhere, in what looks like Thunderdome, the group we last saw surrounding a smiling Rick and the Gang comes through a door that sounds like it has a million locks on it. When the doors open, maybe 50 people come out, not including a still smiling Rick and his people. The new group walks around in circles until Rick and the rest are surrounded in what turned into a synchronized circle. Weird. A tall woman who turns out to be the leader walks to the center. Rick introduces himself (after being shoved) and the woman basically tells him give them something in return for their freedom. But she said it in some weird speech that sounded almost like how Tom Hanks and Halle Berry spoke in Cloud Atlas. Rick wants to see Gabriel first and they bring him out, looking nervous but unharmed. Rick then asks the woman to join his crew in the fight against the Saviors. She gives him a flat out no, does some hand gesture and her group starts closing in on Rick and his people. They fight back (of course) but then Father Gabriel surprises us all and puts a knife to one of the new group members. The woman does another hand gesture and everyone immediately falls back. I don’t know about you, but this group gives me the creeps more than the Saviors.
Father Gabriel makes the case for Rick and his crew, especially with the fact that they were able to find Gabriel with one clue. Then the woman says to take Rick “up, up, up.” What the fuck does that mean? Michonne wasn’t trying to let her man go but he went anyway. Rick knew he had to do whatever was necessary if he wanted these people to fight. So, he went up, up, up to the top of one of many trash heaps that when he looked out, Rick saw was a giant maze, a place where a person (or people) could hide from everything. The Creepy Woman wants to see what Rick is made of and shoves him down the hill of trash. Right into the path of a walker, Mad Max version. This thing is covered in spikes, making it almost impossible for anyone to defend themselves. Rick, trying to get away, has his right hand impaled and his leg cut up from the spikes. And because they make a badass team, Michonne yells for him to use the wall of trash to save himself. And like a good man, he listens, bringing the trash down on the walker. He then takes a shard of glass and ends the walker for good, after which he turns to Creepy Woman and yells, “you believe us now?” She answers by throwing a rope for Rick to climb back up.
Once he reaches the top, Rick and Creepy Woman stand face to face for a moment. Then she says, “Guns.” It took everything in me not to say, “and ships, and so the balance shifts.” Damn you, Hamilton soundtrack!! They come to an agreement on guns and supplies (not ships) and just like that, Creepy Woman and her crew leaves, but not before she reveals her name: Jadis. She also revealed that her group had been waiting a long time for someone to get the supplies Rick and Aaron found. “We take, we don’t bother.” Okay.
Back at the Kingdom, Carol is disturbed yet again. The King and his guards were clearing some of the dead and tripped her trap wire. She may act like it’s a bother, but I think Carol likes the King’s attention (because he’s FINE). Before she goes back into the house, our favorite guy Jerry (#OhJerry) hands her a Tupperware full of cobbler, which she grudgingly takes. Inside, Carol is sitting in the quiet reading a book (it’s nice to know they survive the apocalypse) when she hears a knock on the door. Seriously? But when she opens the door she gets the shock of her life when she sees Daryl standing there. The two have a quiet but emotional reunion, which got this fan just a little choked up.
Back at the junkyard, Father Gabriel confesses to Rick about his departure from Alexandria. While on guard duty, Gabriel heard something and went to investigate. He was jumped and forced to clear out the pantry by one of Jadis’ people, which explains who was in the back of the car! Okay, Father Gabriel, I owe you an apology. I called you a chicken shit and clearly you are still Team Alexandria. Friends?
Back at Carol’s, she explains to Daryl why she left: to basically save what’s left of her humanity. She asked Daryl if everyone at home was safe and the way she asked was heartbreaking. So Daryl did the right thing and told her that everyone was fine. The relief that washed over her was palpable and the pair enjoyed a nice meal. Later, Daryl is sitting with a caged Shiva, who seems to like our man (because why wouldn’t she?). Morgan comes in and Daryl demands that he change the King’s mind about fighting. He won’t budge though, because he’s trying to hold on to something, just like Carol. And just like Daryl, which is why he lied to Carol about the Saviors. Our man let’s Morgan know that he’s going back to the Hilltop to get ready to fight. The next day, Daryl walks through the Kingdom’s gates, crossbow on his back and ready for battle.
Will Daryl make it back to the Hilltop without being captured by the Saviors? Will Morgan finally stand up and fight for his friends? And can we see a little more of Jerry?
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on AMC. Photos courtesy of AMC.