The Walking Dead: JSS
October 19, 2015 6:11 AM - Season 6, Episode 2 - Subscribe

Just when it looks like things can return to normal, or as normal as things can be in the apocalypse, a new problem arises for the Alexandrians.
posted by LizBoBiz (149 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I continue to be charmed by Eugene and Tara. The new doctor talks and makes faces in a manner distractingly reminiscent of Garrett from Community; I half-expected for her to yell "Crisis alert" when the Wolves attacked.

The attack itself was exciting, even if no one who matters even a little bit died. Carol continues to successfully defend her Walking Dead MVP title. Carl continues to have an astoundingly terrible haircut; that no one has told him to change it is the clearest sign the show has given us so far that this truly has become a world devoid of kindness or mercy.

I am loving that this season isn't making us wait through a bunch of bullshit about hanging out on a farm or trying to figure out that a clearly evil eyepatch dude is evil before getting into the action. It doesn't always make sense, but things not making sense is always going to be the price of admission for this show. I'm going to hope that I'm not jinxing this by saying that this is my favorite season so far.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 6:41 AM on October 19, 2015 [6 favorites]


The attack itself was exciting, even if no one who matters even a little bit died.

I was thinking that it was a good thing they thinned out the town by killing all those people I don't know.

I'm thinking that we didn't see all of the wolves. So now I wonder, did they strike on purpose at this time because they knew Rick's crew would be away? Did they somehow intentionally break the barrier in the quarry holding the zombies back? If they did know, then they must have had someone on the inside. I bet it was that girl.

Except for the huge gaping logic hole that was the point of the first episode, this season has been good so far. Probably due to the fact that the only talking/arguing is while zombies are being killed.
posted by LizBoBiz at 7:12 AM on October 19, 2015


If they did know, then they must have had someone on the inside.

Im pretty sure we were supposed to think they DID have someone on the inside from the shots of Aaron going through the backpack and seeing the recon photos of Alexandria and the wall.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 7:18 AM on October 19, 2015


That was Aaron's backpack that got dropped when he and Daryl were saved by Morgan at the trap with the trailers.
posted by LizBoBiz at 7:22 AM on October 19, 2015 [11 favorites]


Huh, now that makes perfect sense. Its like they have one episode with a decent amount of action in it and i totally lose my ability to follow any of it.

Did no one else find it a bit weird how non-verbal the Wolves were? like they spoke sometimes and eventually but why not use their words in addition to their appearance to intimidate the obviously afraid alexandrians?
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 7:24 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I enjoyed this episode, but holy shit, Carl's "WHAT?!" when Preacherman talks to him is the worst acted thing in the history of TWD. Didn't they do multiple takes? But still, he rocks an M16 as well as anyone.
posted by dis_integration at 8:09 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Fantastic episode. A scene of Rick telling Morgan to go back and tell the community that they were moving forward with the herd plan would have been helpful, since it took me a few minutes to figure out how he'd gotten back to Alexandria so fast and why no one from Rick's group was with him.

Carol was so amazing in this episode that I'm worried she's not going to survive the season since she risks overshadowing Rick. Looks like this season will be focused on survival vs. growth - are you Carol/Rick (who go to the extreme in eliminating people who pose future threats to the community) or are you Morgan (whose mercy has directly put the community at risk - people he previously spared attacked and killed Alexandrians and people he spared during the attack now know that Alexandria has guns (and one of them is now armed)). Morgan's mercy and restraint are what you need to build a civilization, but Carol and Rick's ruthlessness may be the right choice when your civilization just needs to survive. The Alexandrians, new and old, need to figure out a way to transition between survival and growth and watching them figure out how to navigate this switch should make for good TV.

I don't really see how Deanna will remain in charge after this episode. She was right that she would only be a liability if she went into the community, but it's pretty obvious that Alexandria needs someone who has practical fighting skills and that doesn't seem to be her (and it's definitely not her son).

Did anyone catch what Morgan said to Gabriel re who taught him how to fight? I couldn't understand the response (I thought he said "a change agent" but I have terrible hearing).

I really liked that they also let the new characters have some more screen time. Aaron, Dr. Denise, Ron, Jessie, and Enid were all great in this ep. I feel the show would benefit so so much if they could figure out a way of giving more characters a backstory like Enid's scenes in the beginning. LOST did this really well and it's one of the things I liked about that show.
posted by longdaysjourney at 8:34 AM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


Carol is great in this one and I loved the not-so-subtle symbolism of her having trouble washing the bloody W off her forehead. Homo homini lupus
posted by dis_integration at 8:38 AM on October 19, 2015 [10 favorites]


What is the significance of the red A that Carol saw on the railing?

(Morgan was taught by a cheese maker).
posted by LizBoBiz at 8:41 AM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


What is the significance of the red A that Carol saw on the railing?

I thought maybe that was a blood mark from the Wolves that got shot, saying that that building was the Armory?
posted by dis_integration at 8:44 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I continue to be charmed by Eugene and Tara.

My mom said she thinks they ought to couple up. I'm like, "I don't think Tara is interested, mom, she's gay."

Mom says "Yeah but you might have to lower your standards in the apocalypse."

I think the A was the stamp Pete's youngest son was handing out at the party.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 8:48 AM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


It finally makes sense why they're in a nice suburban neighbourhood: Home invasion gun porn. And of course the Wolves don't have guns, because they're crazy and evil...

Who wrote this, Wayne LaPierre?
posted by Sys Rq at 8:59 AM on October 19, 2015 [7 favorites]


(The red A ostensibly means family but subtextually it's a really heavyhanded Scarlet Letter thing about Rick usurping that lady's husband.)
posted by Sys Rq at 9:01 AM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


The red A is the same red A that was written on Rick's hand by Jessie's younger son, Sam, during their first "house party" at Alexandria -- it was his way of saying "Rick is one of us" then, and he was sitting on that stoop earlier in the episode as well (which I think is when he wrote it on the railing).
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 9:14 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


A scene of Rick telling Morgan to go back and tell the community that they were moving forward with the herd plan would have been helpful, since it took me a few minutes to figure out how he'd gotten back to Alexandria so fast and why no one from Rick's group was with him.

They did this last week.

In the last thread, several people posited that Enid's father was exiled, but now we know he was eaten. Right? I was so confused last week by this but now I think I was reading fact where instead there were hypothesis.

When Carl and Enid were in the house, sitting back to back, she said "this place has too many blind spots. That's how we - " and then she got cut off. She had to be getting ready to say that's how we (the Wolves) infiltrated Alexandria. Right?

I like Aaron so much.
posted by lyssabee at 9:18 AM on October 19, 2015 [6 favorites]



They did this last week.

Yeah, the constant shifting between b&w and color in that episode was so distracting, I don't remember much else. :)

posted by longdaysjourney at 9:39 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Did no one else find it a bit weird how non-verbal the Wolves were? like they spoke sometimes and eventually but why not use their words in addition to their appearance to intimidate the obviously afraid alexandrians?

To be fair, they got down to business tout de suite leaving little room for get to know ya chit-chat.

Also, don't speaking parts pay more? A budget thing?

This episode kind of redeems last week's but if they hadn't embarked on the "let's empty the quarry" folly the Wolves wouldn't have made as much forward progress as they did.

That said, glad to see Carol in the centre of the action.

Aaron, Dr. Denise, Ron, Jessie, and Enid were all great in this ep.

Agreed. Dr. Denise was a big hit at our place.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 9:40 AM on October 19, 2015


Hey! I don't watch TWD anymore, but I did see the i09 recap title, that says it's "The Most Brutal TWD episode ever". Would y'all agree?

I ask out of curiosity.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:57 AM on October 19, 2015


whats the metric on "most brutal"? sheer body count? probably.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 10:00 AM on October 19, 2015


Dunno, it seemed like a dumb thing to say about TWD, surely they'll top the harshness by the mid season finale, right?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:02 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I thought I was becoming a bit numb to the gore, but watching Enid tear into that turtle was difficult (to say the least).

When Carl and Enid were in the house, sitting back to back, she said "this place has too many blind spots. That's how we - " and then she got cut off. She had to be getting ready to say that's how we (the Wolves) infiltrated Alexandria. Right?

I would agree. She was incredibly calm when the Wolves arrived and was going to say goodbye to Carl when the rampage began so I'm betting she was in on it. If the Wolves found Morgan, they probably found her too.
posted by thefang at 10:04 AM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


"A" is also the title of the season 4 finale and is seen frequently in that episode, most notably on the boxcar that Rick & crew are confined.
posted by entropicamericana at 10:05 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I thought I was becoming a bit numb to the gore, but watching Enid tear into that turtle was difficult (to say the least).

I've mentioned this particular way of experiencing the show in other TWD Fanfare threads:

Try describing it out loud to someone who can't see what's happening.

"So she walking along, and there's a tortoise crawling along by the side of the road. Oh. Oh shit."

"What?"

"She's eating it raw. Like, out of the shell."

"Ew."

or...

"Who just got shot?"

"So, Carol snuck up behind one of the Wolves chopping someone up. He was so engrossed in what he was doing he didn't know she was there and she shot him in the back of the head."

"You go, Carol!"
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 10:51 AM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I think the message is that when Carol sees the 'A' which is the mark of the town and maybe a stupid Scarlet Letter reference she sees the 'A' in the context of the cannibal car, i.e., she sees the town as a place where people are waiting to be eaten.

Enid's turtle-eating fate made me sad. I wonder what the JSS is supposed to mean.

I think it was very good, the introduction of the attack. We're like, Carol is doing something with celery soup, then AX TO THE HEAD

The first couple episodes are set up well. The first big zombie set piece in the first episode, the zombie herd goes awry because of a mysterious noise, what could it be, we're back in the pretty houses where the brutal attack makes the mysterious noise, the attack (which, is that it with the wolves? somehow I thought it would be more than that), the response to the attack that is informed by the different character arcs, and then what is going to happen with the huge herd?

So good job, zombie show.
posted by angrycat at 10:53 AM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Oh, Just Survive Somehow

Nihilism for the win!
posted by angrycat at 11:00 AM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


I think it was very good, the introduction of the attack. We're like, Carol is doing something with celery soup, then AX TO THE HEAD

I liked that too. It reminded me of the intro to the 2004 Dawn of the Dead remake where we see the world go from morning in suburbia to the apocalypse in just a few minutes.
posted by longdaysjourney at 11:03 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


We're like, Carol is doing something with celery soup, then AX TO THE HEAD

Oh! That's another thing! Cream of celery soup is fucking useful, for all the same things you might use cream of mushroom. There's no reason it would be the last thing left, unless all these people are completely casserole illiterate.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:06 AM on October 19, 2015 [8 favorites]


"The Most Brutal TWD episode ever". Would y'all agree?

Not remotely. I don't think any of the people who died even had names. Meh.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:09 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I don't think any of the people who died even had names. Meh.

New band name: Random Alexandrians.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 11:20 AM on October 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


"The Most Brutal TWD episode ever". Would y'all agree?

Somewhat. There were a lot of repeated and lingering shots of the Wolves hacking away at dead bodies with hatchets and machetes, which I found quite disturbingly brutal: like they're not simply killing the Alexandrians, but defiling them. (Also deliberately invoking horror-movie dismemberment tropes, I thought.)

But as Sys Rq notes, that the victims were all anonymous extras did lessen the impact compared to (for example) Herschel's death, or the slaughter trough at Terminus.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:27 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I thought the framing of the invasion with the casserole timer was brilliant.
posted by 2ht at 11:29 AM on October 19, 2015 [13 favorites]


I was expecting Carol's "don't stop until they hit the ground" instructions to Timid Pantry Assistant to pay off in some unpleasant way, especially once Morgan's obviously-walking-into-a-trap scene started.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 11:31 AM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


I thought the framing of the invasion with the casserole timer was brilliant.

I'm not sure whether or not this was intentional (I suspect that it was), but this episode went hard on using really sustained grating noises that heightened the sense of unease. The truck horn, then the timer, then the heart monitor alarm; I found them all really obnoxious, and that obnoxiousness somehow made the episode better.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 11:33 AM on October 19, 2015 [12 favorites]


The truck horn, then the timer, then the heart monitor alarm; I found them all really obnoxious, and that obnoxiousness somehow made the episode better.

This show has tried my patience many times, but gotta say: A+ for sound design in this episode.

I was expecting Carol's "don't stop until they hit the ground" instructions

Is it me, or does "don't stop until they hit the ground" not cry out for a dance remix?
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 11:39 AM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


I actually thought this episode was pretty meh. It felt disjointed, like a plotty episode whose purpose is to move things along. I liked Enid's backstory, and I think Eugene is turning into a really interesting character ("you don't want to be a coward" - wow), but overall? It was kind of dissatisfying. I get it, the Wolves are brutal. But why did we only catch a tiny glimpse of Carol shedding a rare and intriguing tear? (I loved someone's observation upthread that she had trouble getting the W off her forehead.) And I kept wondering where the hell the zombie hordes were - we heard the horns at the end of the previous episode, and we know the quarry wasn't far from the compound - shouldn't they have been at the gates pretty soon after the horn stopped? And oh my GOD, ersatz barber lady, do something about Coral's ridiculous locks instead of giving your surly son little trims every week which he hides under a hat anyway!
posted by flyingsquirrel at 12:08 PM on October 19, 2015


"The Most Brutal TWD episode ever". Would y'all agree?

I found the ending of Terminus more brutal, but this was a contender. In both cases, I'm mostly just happy to watch Carol do her thing. Rick's version of 'we gotta do awful things to make it in this world' is blustery and stupid, full of dumb speeches and worse plans.

Carol's is both plausible and entertaining - the zombie apocalypse turned her into someone deadly, but she's still human, and she's smart enough to keep it to herself most of the time. Really, my only complaint is that by getting her so right, they highlight what a bad job they have done with most of the other characters.

I also liked Morgan's conflict here, and remain glad that at least one character on the show still openly believes that life is precious. (I did feel like taking a minute to tie someone up was dumb, but everything else he did felt on point.)

Upon preview:
And I kept wondering where the hell the zombie hordes were - we heard the horns at the end of the previous episode, and we know the quarry wasn't far from the compound - shouldn't they have been at the gates pretty soon after the horn stopped?

I was okay with that based on two things:
1) When Morgan arrived - zombies are considerably slower than he is.

2) Adding a wave of zombies to the mix would've made an already packed episode too busy, I think.

That said, I'll be disappointed if they don't crash into the gate pretty soon into the next episode, yes. (And while I really enjoyed this episode, I can see why you could disagree.)
posted by mordax at 12:14 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


They showed so many more buildings in Alexandria. We have never had a great idea of how large the place is, but (even with the newly deceased and hacked Random Alexandrians) there are a ton more housing space than people.
So . . . each of those houses has a lawn. All of that space is not being used (except as the smoking area). Why the hell are they expanding the wall?
Again . . . the dumbening hurts.
posted by Seamus at 12:15 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


A random observation: they're clearly using the same set for both Carol's and Stabby Scissor's kitchens.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 12:19 PM on October 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


But why did we only catch a tiny glimpse of Carol shedding a rare and intriguing tear? (I loved someone's observation upthread that she had trouble getting the W off her forehead.)

I think she felt responsible for the death of the smoking lady - Carol had earlier told her that she shouldn't smoke in her home. Smoking lady goes out for a smoke and is one of the first to die as a result.

There's a behind the scenes vid up at AMC's site where Melissa McBride talks about Carol's not liking what she has to do/has become (starts at 1:30).

http://www.amc.com/shows/the-walking-dead/video-extras/season-06/episode-02/inside-episode-602-the-walking-dead-jss


More about the practical effects:

http://www.amc.com/shows/the-walking-dead/video-extras/season-06/episode-02/making-of-episode-602-the-walking-dead-jss

posted by longdaysjourney at 12:20 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yall keep going on about how terrible Carl's hair is but remember, he is a teenager. They have terrible taste in hair.
posted by LizBoBiz at 12:24 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


He is not fully respecting the hair game.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 12:33 PM on October 19, 2015 [12 favorites]


Not the first time Rick taking all the starters away from the main living area has resulted in a massacre at the now vulnerable home base. Somewhere, Amy's ghost is like "screw you dude!".

Also, I like teen angst as much as anybody. Which is to say, not at all. But I thought it was really beyond silly that the kid Carl is love triangling it out with supposedly for Enid would choose to walk off into a battle where people were getting hacked to bits because it would just be too humiliating to be near Carl and Enid after Carl bumbled through saving him. I mean seriously.
posted by cashman at 12:36 PM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


The invasion was SO well done. I barely registered what was going on until it was fully underway, which really ramped up the shock.

Got really annoyed with Morgan. Letting those Wolves go is just asking for them to come back with bigger numbers. Pretty much knew that by the end of the episode he was going to be faced with a kill or be killed situation, but it was still satisfying when it came.

Yeah, the turtle was disquieting, wasn't it?!? And CArol the Angel of Death.

No reason Morgan and Gabriel can't be trained for medical work if they're not into fighting.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 12:46 PM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I thought the framing of the invasion with the casserole timer was brilliant.

I missed the Casserole setup. When Carol sets the timer, I saw the baby monitor and thought Carol was setting a timer to wake up Judith after a nap. So when the timer went off loudly I thought oh crap - did Carl and Carol forget about Judith?! Is she okay? For me that would have been a much better way to go than the casserole. You'd just had Carol contemplating the cigarettes post-fight, dude finding the photos, and Carl was all about sweating where Enid was. And then the alarm goes off.

I also thought Carol's "W" in addition to the face covering, was dangerous for her. Oh sure it turned her into the Reaper and it was cool to watch, but let somebody look through a scope and see a "w" on your head and it's a wrap.

But I did like Morgan showing the Wolves the Alexandria Connection. They should have let him say "out....ouuut.... SCRAM!"
posted by cashman at 12:49 PM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I also thought Carol's "W" in addition to the face covering, was dangerous for her. Oh sure it turned her into the Reaper and it was cool to watch, but let somebody look through a scope and see a "w" on your head and it's a wrap.

She probably knows she has nothing to fear from the incompetent manning the lookout tower.

But I thought it was really beyond silly that the kid Carl is love triangling it out with supposedly for Enid would choose to walk off into a battle where people were getting hacked to bits because it would just be too humiliating to be near Carl and Enid after Carl bumbled through saving him. I mean seriously.

Eh, you've just been saved by the son of the man who gunned down your Dad? And now this kid wants you to come cower in his house? Would be a pretty tough nut to swallow if you've not been living on the Outside for awhile and are not suitably afraid. Also teens are dumb (confession: have been a teen, am still dumb).

Felt bad for the turtle and that scene made me more nauseous than anything else previously aired on this show.
posted by longdaysjourney at 1:03 PM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Oh, and I was totally waiting for Carol to go undercover and infiltrate the wolves.
posted by 2ht at 1:03 PM on October 19, 2015


But I thought it was really beyond silly that the kid Carl is love triangling it out with supposedly for Enid would choose to walk off into a battle where people were getting hacked to bits because it would just be too humiliating to be near Carl and Enid after Carl bumbled through saving him. I mean seriously.

That whole scene was worth it for ending with Enid telling Carl to get back inside the house.

plus ça change.
posted by Uncle Ira at 2:09 PM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I also thought Carol's "W" in addition to the face covering, was dangerous for her. Oh sure it turned her into the Reaper and it was cool to watch, but let somebody look through a scope and see a "w" on your head and it's a wrap.

There was no one in town with the skill to shoot her, or even with the guts to try in the first place.

The turtle thing made me kind of sad too only because I saw it and was like "maybe she will keep it as a pet!" and then was like oh right zombie apocalypse
posted by poffin boffin at 2:16 PM on October 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Raw turtle made me think of salmonella.
posted by cardboard at 2:30 PM on October 19, 2015 [8 favorites]


I said to my wife, "Fucking hell. Turtles are possibly the only food to come with a built in cook pot and she's eating it raw?"
Yeah, I got eye-rolled. But come on! Fire, it's man's best friend.
posted by Seamus at 2:56 PM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Seconding poffin boffin's reaction to the turtle scene! I couldn't help wondering, early on in the ep, what it is costing Carol to play this role. When she mentioned Ed and her spring cleaning casseroles, it can't be good for her to be replaying that life except now without the daughter she lost etc.
posted by Iteki at 3:01 PM on October 19, 2015


Since there are no wild tortoises like that in Virginia, the poor thing must have been an escaped pet. A sad end for little Sheldon! shut up that's his name
posted by gubo at 3:06 PM on October 19, 2015 [12 favorites]


I kept thinking during the turtle-eating that she was going to get shot by someone who mistook her for a walker.
posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 3:06 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


As much as this show is filled with one boneheaded decision after another (usually because characters withhold crucial, very obvious information from each other for no good reason), I'm pretty sure I know why Carl hasn't gotten a haircut yet.

Ron not wanting to go in the house with Carl and Enid wasn't weird to me at all; I mean, think about it.

Here's a guy (Carl) who's ostensibly Ron's rival for the only age-appropriate girl in town (Enid), and Carl's dad shot Ron's dad in the face less than 48 hours ago. Why the hell would Ron want to go into a house with Carl when he's waving a gun around, again? Yeah, he saved him from the murder-chaser, but how many of us have made irrational decisions/behaved unlike ourselves when we're running away from someone trying to stab us? Ron's a dumb, grieving teenager who doesn't have especially good critical thinking or reasoning skills (yet).

Wouldn't Ron's FIRST instinct be to find his mother and little brother and ensure they're safe before holing up somewhere, after he's out of immediate danger?

That turtle scene was hard to watch, and I felt bad for Enid throughout. You have to be pretty goddamned hungry to choose eating a critter raw straight out of the shell like that, and I got the sense that she would've taken the time to cook him if she wasn't mortally afraid and physically drained after watching her parents die.

Building a fire from scratch is difficult even for an experienced camper, and when you haven't slept or eaten properly in a couple of days, even more so. I'm sure surviving through a few years of traveling with her folks on the road taught Enid the dangers of starting a fire during the daytime, since the smoke's clearly visible to Walkers and Humans alike.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 3:13 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


There sure were a lot of conveniently-sized bones in that damned turtle to spell out J S S.
posted by QuakerMel at 3:15 PM on October 19, 2015 [14 favorites]


there are no wild tortoises like that in Virginia

You sure?
posted by Sys Rq at 3:17 PM on October 19, 2015


Support for the idea of Enid as spy.
posted by QuakerMel at 3:30 PM on October 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Yeah Sys Rq it looked more like a tortoise to me than any of those native species. I can accept that they hired a tortoise to play the role of a box turtle, though.
posted by gubo at 3:38 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


From the support for Enid being a spy:
Once inside, the most obvious slip of the episode happens when she’s talking to Carl about how it’s impossible to secure the place because it’s too big. “That’s how we…” she begins, but doesn’t finish the thought. The “we” there is almost certainly her referring to the Wolves.

Or she could have been about to say "That's how we were able to sneak out so easily."
Seems just as reasonable.
posted by Seamus at 3:46 PM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


Wouldn't Ron's FIRST instinct be to find his mother and little brother and ensure they're safe before holing up somewhere, after he's out of immediate danger?

Yeah, it was fairly clear to me that Ron was going to look for his mom, not simply refusing to hang with Carl out of spite. Also, I'm pretty strongly in the "Enid is a spy" camp so I found myself wondering what he might know from her/about her (perhaps that whispering Carl spied earlier was her trying to tip Ron off that it would be a good afternoon for him to not be home?) - to me, it looked he was wavering and thinking "maaaybe I should go hide with Carl" and then he saw Enid in the doorway and was like, "yeah, nevermind". So possibly he understands better than Carl does that Enid is in fact dangerous/not to be trusted/in league with the wolves and so did not see "hide out with Enid" as a good survival move.

Anyways, I was very relieved Carol survived. It's one thing to pull the "dress up as a baddie" routine when it's the zombie invasion of Terminus and you can arrange to have a wall of walkers between you and the guys with the guns, but in this chaos? All it would've taken is somebody from Rick's group to show up guns blazing, or Deanna's son (or some other panicky Alexandrian with a gun) to get twitchy at the wrong moment, and it could've gone very badly. Besides, Carol's such a badass, she should have more tricks in her arsenal then just being a Master of Disguise.
posted by mstokes650 at 3:48 PM on October 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


Oh man, Carol would be the best nanny ever. I love her when she returns to her killing badassery, but only slightly more than I love it when she gives young children the zombie apocalypse talking to about not being weak.

Count me as someone else who was genuinely worried that either Carol or Morgan was going to get shot by Pantry Lady who is, presumably, still hiding in the closet and ready to shoot whoever comes in. OTOH, after Morgan let some Wolves go AGAIN he'd kind of deserve to be shot. Sigh.

The turtle scene was deeply upsetting to me, though I thought that this finally made Enid more interesting. I still don't get how she got from turning up at Alexendria to (presumably) working with the Wolves. Did the Wolves send her to infiltrate? Why the "JSS" on her hand, then? I remain confused about Enid's motivations even as I agree that JSS is a pretty good ZA philosophy.
posted by TwoStride at 3:49 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


It was extremely weird to me that not a single Wolf had a gun. I mean, that has got to be for some wacky sharps-like claws and fangs only(??) bizarro identity claim/ideological reason of theirs that will be later explained, right? Because of course the last folks standing will have found All The Guns by now. Then Morgan let several of them go and one looked like he picked up a stray handgun on the way out. Something tells me we'll be seeing that particular gun-carrying Wolf again real soon.

Enid's backstory has me so confused. Looked like the walkers around her car in her flashback were munching on one fresh corpse only-- her mother's? Could have sworn we heard last season her father was banned or sent away from somewhere -- and had assumed it was from Alexandria, no? Or was he actually banned from the Wolves? Hmm....

Not super convinced Enid is a Wolf Spy per se, though it certainly seems like that's what the showrunners want us to think right now. I'd like to think if so, maybe she's wise enough to play both sides... and her survival skills are just super attuned (a la the Carol/Daryl/Michonnes of this world) and she saw the community's unpreparedness and knew Alexandria would all fall apart eventually, and so she was prepared to have all the keys, know how to climb the walls, and bail after never having gotten soft. (JSS, y'all!). I will confess I thought she might kill Carl for an extremely brief moment there when they were sitting back to back on the floor...

I, too, was sacred about Morgan dying from friendly fire at the hands of Carol's newly-deputized arsenal protector, Olivia.

The memory of Dr. Pete was really proactively tarnished in this ep, rightly so, of course. Dr. Denise told us Pete never let her participate in practicing any medicine.. and look at her now. Ron can't raise his arm, presumably because of Pete's legacy of violence towards him. "Mom, is Rick your friend??" The lock in Jessie's closet was meant to keep the kids safe from Pete, etc etc. Then we see the ol' Scarlet Letter make a new appearance. My guess is Jessie and Rick will be hooking up in 3...2...1...

Dr. Denise rocked. Loved Eugene's advice to her.

Poor Aaron. Poor Deanna. It sucked to be them in this ep.
posted by hush at 4:21 PM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


If anything, this episode highlighted how truly useless the Alexandrians are (were).

Deanna's other useless son utterly failed as a sentry, couldn't hit the side of a barn, and then was too cowardly to go in and fight against people armed only with blades when he had an assault rifle.

Olivia, despite standing in the armoury, hadn't even armed herself.

Meanwhile, 3 or 4 of Rick's team basically killed or repelled the entire Wolves force.

Sad to see Morgan stride off into the sunset. His interactions with Carol were great, but his 'no killing' stance is so deluded.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 4:35 PM on October 19, 2015


One other question: was a zombie somehow driving the truck that crashed into the watchtower, or was that instead just one of the fastest transformations from death to zombie we've seen if the Wolf driver caught a bullet from Deanna's otherwise-useless son?
posted by TwoStride at 4:49 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


One other question: was a zombie somehow driving the truck that crashed into the watchtower, or was that instead just one of the fastest transformations from death to zombie we've seen if the Wolf driver caught a bullet from Deanna's otherwise-useless son?

The latter, I think. Given that the trailer was not in fact full of zombies as I suspected, there doesn't seem much point in putting a zombie in the driver's seat.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 4:54 PM on October 19, 2015


A random observation: they're clearly using the same set for both Carol's and Stabby Scissor's kitchens.

Wasn't Alexandria a planned development? If so, you'd expect the houses to have basically the same layouts. That's a pretty good excuse for reusing sets.
posted by jimw at 4:58 PM on October 19, 2015


I thought it was "yeah that's how we.... got surprised by the zombies at our car in the intro".
posted by Iteki at 5:08 PM on October 19, 2015


I kept thinking during the turtle-eating that she was going to get shot by someone who mistook her for a walker.

That was the point of the turtle scene, to chronicle her descent into savagery comparable to the walker eating her mom. And she pretty much has to be the spy. The photos were taken from inside the compound, you could see the support beams.
posted by scalefree at 5:09 PM on October 19, 2015


The photos were taken from inside the compound, you could see the support beams.

Those photos were from Aaron's bag, that he dropped when he and Darryl were saved by Morgan from the Wolves' trap at the supermarket warehouse. He showed them to Rick when trying to convince the group to come to Alexandria.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 5:12 PM on October 19, 2015 [6 favorites]


Overall a good episode, but that doesn't mean I won't nitpick a bit :)

What is the Wolves' motivation for raiding the place and just hacking people to bits? Other than the fact that the writers need conflict to keep the show moving, of course.

Why would the Wolves abstain from guns? I mean, not even a .38 for emergencies? It's the zombie apocalypse, and they're brutal gangsters. If you want me to believe that they voluntarily forgo one of the most useful weapons available to them, you gotta explain that to me. (Or is it supposed to be that the Wolves just haven't been able to scrounge up any guns? Unlike literally every other group we've seen? Sorry; that's just not plausible.)

Why is Morgan all "give peace a chance!" while the Wolves are going around dismembering unarmed men, women, and children, without provocation? Morgan. Dude. If ever there was a time to shoot first and wrestle with ethical questions later, this is it. (He clearly has some kind of history with the Wolves—but if that was ever explained, I've forgotten it.)

Enough griping. On the plus side:

The truck horn was well played. In one stroke, it connected everything back to the previous episode: thus explaining where the sound had come from, reminding us that (as if things in Alexandria weren't bad enough) there's a metric fuckton of zombies about to descend on the place, and causing us to realize what the invasion means for Rick & company out in the field. The connection with the heart meter was clever, too.

And the way the raid was bracketed by the casserole timer, and the way the raid blindsided the Alexandrians (and us, the audience).

Enid-as-Wolf makes sense to me.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 5:19 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


The gun thing is weird. I assumed at least that Enid got the gun Rick buried on the first day that went missing.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:57 PM on October 19, 2015


Potato Planet, this clip from S5's finale "Conquer" should remind you about Morgan's history with the Wolves.

Remember, he ran into this same Wolf again this episode and the Wolf said something like, "You can't even do it, can you? You should have" (in reference to Morgan's inability to kill another human being, even one that's clearly an enemy who wishes only to do him harm).

Sure enough, that Wolf came back -- and I guarantee we'll see him again. Chekhov's Wolves always come back.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 6:34 PM on October 19, 2015


I imagine the next time Carol opens her mouth to give some advice about soup use or mending curtains there is going to be like this awkward silence
posted by angrycat at 6:36 PM on October 19, 2015 [9 favorites]


Well, that was just tons of fun! I highly approve of every single second of Carol in general, and in this episode in particular she was super-A+-amazing-Wonder!Carol. She gets more badass with every breath. And she's so fucking smart, I don't even know! I can't! Just, yay!

After about the third aeon of that horn blaring, and especially after Morgan arrived and turned it off, I kept waiting for Rick and his Zombie Army to show up and save the day. But who needs an army when you have exactly one Carol (which is apparently about half-a-Carol more than you really need to get the job done anyway)?

I also super appreciate Carol showing Morgan how this whole moral/ethical dilemma thing is done. FIRST you headshot the people hacking your town to bits, THEN you settle in with your angst. (With the exception of Morgan at the very end... did anybody who wasn't Carol actually kill a Wolf?) I don't think she's going to be able to pass as sweet little Mrs. Peletier any longer. Not that there's really anybody left to pass with.

Final bullets:
* I'm on Team Enid (is a Wolf), too.
* Is Morgan really striding off into the sunset? We JUST got him BACK! (whine)
* WHY couldn't they just let that Wolf kill Gabriel? WHY?
* There was a huge shout of joy and loud applause when, after Gabriel and Morgan spent like five minutes tying that Wolf up, Carol just walked up and capped him. GO CAROL!
* Where the hell is Judith!? Roomie and I are terrifically worried for her.
posted by kythuen at 6:42 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]



What is the Wolves' motivation for raiding the place and just hacking people to bits? Other than the fact that the writers need conflict to keep the show moving, of course.


I think that the wolf that Gabriel and Morgan tied up was about to tell us their motivation before Carol shot him but I think he managed to get out "this place shouldn't exist" or something.

Also, what are you guys talking about Morgan leaving? Did I miss the end of the episode or something?
posted by LizBoBiz at 6:51 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Neighbor: "mmmm, Carol! this casserole is delicious. Can you share your recipe?"
Carol: "Oh, sure, I could tell you... but then I'd have to KILL YOU."

*followed by nervous laughter, because then they remember Carol and the Wolf massacre*
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 6:54 PM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


If you want me to believe that they voluntarily forgo one of the most useful weapons available to them, you gotta explain that to me.

Possible theory: the Wolves sent for this attack were a bunch of expendable low level members sent to probe the defenses. Their higher-ups hoard the guns and ammo and don't dispense them freely.
posted by Pryde at 6:55 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


Thanks, Unicorn. I'd totally forgotten about that.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 7:02 PM on October 19, 2015


Did anyone who isn't already aware of Carol's badassery, who also survived the attack, actually SEE Carol being a badass? Her disguise worked for the Alexandrians as well as it did for the Wolves.
posted by olinerd at 7:06 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Morgan saw her.

did anybody who wasn't Carol actually kill a Wolf?

Coral, saving teh day for Ron.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 7:08 PM on October 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


My personal theory about the Wolves and guns is: they've seen herds before. They know guns are useful, but they also attract more Humans and Walkers in equal numbers.

A gun stops being useful after the last bullet's fired. Coming across more weapons caches is only useful when you procure the same type of ammo as the gun you're carrying, which is hardly guaranteed. It seems obvious these guys aren't skilled enough to make their own bullets, because who even knows how to create molds for new metal casings and all that other shizz these days?

If the Wolves are following some kind of zen-like philosophy about civilization being mankind's downfall, it totally makes sense that they'd eschew living in communities, prefer knives and other hand tools for combat/defense and roam as nomadic, loosely organized bands of scavengers who occasionally raid settlements for supplies and potential Wolf recruits.

I'm just spitballing here, but it's possible the Wolves figured out that smearing Walker guts on themselves and being as filthy/non-verbal as possible was key to their long-term survival. Vonnegut said "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be." I'm guessing the Wolves are pretending to be Walkers, and the W on their foreheads help them differentiate from random Walkers or stray Humans wandering through their territory.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 7:11 PM on October 19, 2015 [6 favorites]


The Enid as a spy theory makes no sense. If she was a Wolf, why didn't she tell them where the armory was so they could go right there and secure it? And why the big reveal of a Wolf carrying Aaron's bag and photos? Although I wouldn't put it past this show to have a fairly incoherent plot point like that, it seems a bit much. But then again, why focus on her background for the first 10 minutes or so, and why that ominous scene of her first arriving at Alexandria? I hope they wrap everything up with her. (My fave theory is that she's the leader of the wolves, but that seems crazy)
posted by dis_integration at 7:12 PM on October 19, 2015 [5 favorites]


Olivia saw Carol being a badass -- she is currently caught in an uncollapsed probability wave, but theoretically she survived. She didn't see Carol kill anybody, but she did see Carol covered in blood with a W on her face, teaching her how to shoot like a boss.
posted by kythuen at 7:16 PM on October 19, 2015 [3 favorites]


The focus on Enid at the start of this episode, the interrupted "that's how we" to Carl, her oddly emphatic response to his "don't say goodbye," her general weird affect... either they're setting her up as the last scion of a Rick-esque tribe and Carl's future bride, or she's somehow connected to, if not actively working with, the Wolves.

If she's not a Wolf, she's the greatest waste of foreshadowing in the history of TV.
posted by kythuen at 7:28 PM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I don't really buy Enid as a spy. This show generally like their villains with mustaches a'twirlin'. Like, if she were the plant, I'd expect her to be wearing all black and maybe be strangling kittens when she went out into the woods. I find the earlier suggestion that she was just going to point out that she and Carl could move freely in and out of the compound much more plausible, just given the years I've watched TWD.

Personally, I think she was leaving because she decided that the Alexandrites were chumps, just like her parents. (She was less comfortable alone, but it seemed like she survived better solo.)
posted by mordax at 7:33 PM on October 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Enid being connected to the Wolves sounds plausible, but working for them doesn't really make any sense. She could have just killed a bunch of people and opened up the doors at night for a Wolf invading party if she was on their side. I think it's more like she knows what they're all about, and when she saw that they were attacking, decided she didn't want to do anything with the loser Alexandrians in a fight against the Wolves.

I get pretty annoyed at how simplistic Morgan's morality is being portrayed. It's just stupid. I think it would be cool if he was very distressed about killing the Wolves, even begging them not to put him in the position to kill them. But letting a vicious killer loose moments after you've seen them kill your defenseless friends, while knowing they intend to kill more defenseless people is just a straw-man version of pacificism/humanism that TWD loves to bring out again and again. In the TWD universe, mercy is just a quality that certain pathologically stupid people have.

The Wolves themselves not having guns is just dumb. No other group has failed to procure guns. It's obviously not that they are philosophically opposed to them, since that one Wolf took a gun at the first opportunity on his way out. The Wolves just seem like an excuse to have high-level zombies for our heroes to fight.

Carl's almost getting tricked by the Wolf who he just shot pleading for help made no sense. This is something he could have plausibly done in season 1, but is totally contrary to his character at this point.
posted by skewed at 8:07 PM on October 19, 2015 [15 favorites]


Carl's almost getting tricked by the Wolf who he just shot pleading for help made no sense. This is something he could have plausibly done in season 1, but is totally contrary to his character at this point

I expected Carl to be completely cold blooded and execute the guy begging for his life, and for this to frighten Enid and Ron, but instead he made a mistake he wouldn't have made since at least before meeting the "Claimed" guys.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 9:51 PM on October 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


BTW, the new doctor is played by Merrit Wever, who won an Emmy for her work on Nurse Jackie and gave the best acceptance speech ever.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:30 PM on October 19, 2015 [7 favorites]


You have no idea how much it upsets me that people in the zombie apocalypse have a kitchen that much nicer than mine.

For real.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:36 PM on October 19, 2015 [15 favorites]


The whole spy thing makes no sense to me. The wolves are all fierce and animalistic and nonverbal, and their plan for taking over Alexandria was "Let's climb the wall and bash our way in with a truck and kill everybody we see."

These aren't diabolical people who plan things, and having a non-wolf-looking person hang out in town for a year or so spying on them is totally NOT in character for them.

I suppose I might buy the theory that these are the "beta" wolves and the "alpha" wolves, who *are* diabolical, haven't been seen yet.

Carol was great, Morgan was great, and I liked the new doctor and Eugene and Tara. Otherwise kind of a messy episode.

At least they didn't kill Enid (yet). Usually when they suddenly give someone a backstory it means they're about to die pointlessly.
posted by mmoncur at 1:00 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


You have no idea how much it upsets me that people in the zombie apocalypse have a kitchen that much nicer than mine.

ZOMG, 100%
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 1:02 AM on October 20, 2015


although didn't the wolves do that crazy trap that aaron and daryl wandered into that seems a little more sophisticated than chop chop chop
posted by angrycat at 6:22 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


People outside the walls are wary and potentially dangerous, and need to be cunningly trapped. Alexandrians are soft and timid, and best dealt with through brutal shock and awe techniques that leave them frozen in fear. Either there is an intellect and some kind of feral ethos guiding the Wolves methods, or the writers just adapt the Wolves to meet the plot requirements and distract you from any inconsistencies with some gore and viscera. With TWD I'd put stronger odds on the latter.
posted by cardboard at 6:43 AM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


I loved the shit out of both this and the previous episode. I can deal with the plot holes and "Why didn't they just ________?" moments. But at least the episodes are well-paced, with a sense of urgency, some consistency of character, and an increased scale. I can't disagree with too many of the complaints here--I for one, don't know why they didn't just firebomb the goddamned quarry--but compared to the endless scenes of people in small rooms or on abandoned roads just fucking yelling at each other, this show has reached a fucking golden age.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:05 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


Hey man, I like the scenes of abandoned roads just fucking yelling at each other. That makes sense. It's a post-apocalyptic wasteland where you have to keep going from place to place to get resources, scavenge for supplies, and avoid herds of the dead and marauders. I actually wish they'd do more of that, instead of continually finding magically untouched (Hershel's Farm) idyllic oases (Woodbury) where the people are soft and in denial of what the world has become (Alexandria) and Rick's group has to convince the bulk of the inhabitants that Hey, the world really is bad y'know?

For me that has gotten tired, and really unrealistic. There is always a balance, but I would love to see more suspense and spaced out moments where the reality of the environment comes in. Where they really acknowledge the world they are in. Where they posit what humanity will turn into next and ponder their place in the world. I mean on a regular day in the actual world with all the trappings of society and community we still get stressed out and have a hard time. But these characters aren't really showing the stress of the world they live in. Maybe that's why that kid's reaction was so poor to me.

But regardless of how much tv drama and love triangle stuff they continue to let dominate the story, I hope we get more Michonne next week. I could use a new Michonne heavy episode actually.
posted by cashman at 7:59 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


I think Hershel's Farm, Woodbury, and Alexandria are all very different scenarios. The first was "people who cannot grasp the seriousness of what has just happened." The second was, "safety at the price of fascism." (Between these two, the prison was, "You can protect yourself against the undead, but your fellow man might be the bigger danger.") Alexandria was/is, "If you wall yourself off, you may be safe for a while, but if you stop adapting to the world outside, you are still doomed."

I think repeated attempts to settle down make a ton of sense.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:04 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


Really, a better way to describe Hershel's farm would be the consequences of trying to process the new world through the lens of the old.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:10 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


Earlier I said: did anybody who wasn't Carol actually kill a Wolf?

Answering myself, I also forgot that stabby scissors lady killed one of them dead dead dead in her lovely house. Between her and Carol, the Real Ex-Housewives of the Zombie Apocalypse are doing pretty damn well for themselves!
posted by kythuen at 8:26 AM on October 20, 2015 [6 favorites]


rosita and recruiter guy killed several.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:32 AM on October 20, 2015 [5 favorites]


Oh, Morgan! We love you and we want you to stay! But good lord. People were literally being hacked to pieces, and he was screwing around tying up a guy who was going to happily hack him and everyone else to pieces if he got free. And what the hell were they going to do with that guy if, by some fluke, they got through the invasion with him alive? Put him on trial? Banish him, so he could live to hack another day? Lock him up somewhere and read him poetry until he came to his senses? Apart from some brutal interrogation scenes, there was no future for him there.

Morgan was clearly more physically capable than Carol in that battle, taking on six Wolves at once in hand-to-hand (or stick to knife)-- and yet it was Carol you wanted on your team, because she wasn't screwing around with sticks and knives, she knew you had to secure actual guns and not end up in stick and knife fights to begin with if you wanted to get through that alive.

I am heartbroken for Morgan, but he needs to find a middle ground that involves protecting the actual babies in strollers that were in that town, so civilization can get back to that place where that kind of thing works. I got the impression he was leaving at the end, I guess, from the fact that he was walking in the opposite direction as Carol, stick in one hand, lunch bag in the other -- carrying I don't know what, possibly the last of his non-peanut butter protein bars. If you are leaving at least take some of your equipment, Morgan! (I hope he didn't actually leave).

Also, I am convinced the person who wrote the review saying this was the most brutal episode ever was, actually, a turtle. This was definitely more violence against turtles than I ever wanted to see so it was probably quite traumatic for them.
posted by instead of three wishes at 9:42 AM on October 20, 2015 [10 favorites]


Enid's timeline here is confusing to me. We know her father had been exiled, so it seemed to me that her story is something like:

1) Enid and parents come to Alexandria.
2) Dad gets exiled. (Mom goes, too?)
3) Enid keeps sneaking out to visit Dad/parents.
4) At some point, she decides to stay with them.
5) But then they get eaten.
6) She comes back to Alexandria, with some regret and second thoughts because Deanne's decision to exile her Dad led to her parents' death, but she has to JSS (like Dad taught her) and Alexandria is her best chance for that.

Is that the deal? I can't make the pieces fit any other way.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 10:27 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


I saw it as:
  1. Enid and parents come to Alexandria.
  2. Dad gets exiled and takes family with him.
  3. Mom and dad are taken out by zombies.
  4. Enid JSSs back to Alexandria.
  5. Enid continues going over the wall to play with things.
  6. Rick & Co. show up.
3 and 4 are what are shown in the flashback.
posted by cardboard at 11:56 AM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


We know her father had been exiled

HOW DO WE KNOW THIS SOMEBODY PLEASE TELL ME
I checked the wiki Unicorn on the Cob posted last week but it didn't say.
This is slowly driving me insane.
posted by lyssabee at 12:04 PM on October 20, 2015 [5 favorites]


Okay, reading the transcript from s5e12 "Remember," I may have misconstrued the discussion between Deanna and Rick when she says she exiled three men that didn't work out, and Ron introduces Carl to Enid and Mikey (who are playing video games) as someone who'd been there 8 months but didn't speak for 3 weeks or so after arrival.

I remember/just read again that she says she has her mother's knife. (from the chat transcript for s5's episode called "Try"):

Carl: Cool knife.
Enid: It was my mom's.
Carl: What happened to you before you got there?
Enid: Does it matter?
Carl: It does.

So, I think I conflated that Enid's dad was one of the three men Deanna exiled in the past that "didn't work out" and that we obviously knew her mother was dead -- we saw that in Enid's flashback, and clearly I'm not the only one who thought Enid's dad had been in Alexandria at some point but been banished outside by the ASZ townsfolk.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 12:21 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


If anyone else wants to pore over older Walking Dead show transcripts, they're here.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 12:22 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


I must've done the same thing. I remember thinking really clearly that Enid's dad had been exiled, but maybe that was a false inference from the way that scene was edited.

Now I have to go back and re-watch some season five episodes.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 12:24 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


I mean in my head that was the only logical reason for Enid to be sneaking out over the wall periodically -- to visit her father, who was living in the woods. She even says this in the "Try" transcript:

Enid: I don't want to forget. And running makes me feel better. I can't forget. I dream about it.
Being in the forest with them.

I guess in my mind, "them" = her parents.

Seeing her flashback now puts this "them" in the context of "walkers" roaming the woods.

We have clearly established that Walkers are a more survivable threat than humans, and Enid was shown throwing a kitchen timer and almost playing with them as she wandered around outside the ASZ's walls.

So, yeah. The showrunners intended some misdirection there, I'm pretty sure.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 12:29 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


Considering how often this show changes producers and game plans, it is entirely possible they did mean to hint to her folks were exiled but have now decided to do something else.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 12:53 PM on October 20, 2015 [2 favorites]


Thanks everyone. Yes, they do love the misdirect, don't they? I'm terrible with nuance in TV shows and sometimes if a plot line isn't spelled out for me I just don't see it.

I thought she kept sneaking out because the people of Alexandria were annoying/creepy in their obliviousness to the outside, and she didn't want to forget what it was like.
posted by lyssabee at 1:04 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


I liked this one a lot too. It was fast paced, the characters acted mostly logically within their own parameters, and there were some great scenes.
posted by codacorolla at 3:05 PM on October 20, 2015 [3 favorites]


Yes. Big improvement over last week.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 3:17 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


I say it again, everyone who's looking for a plan or a scheme or a misdirection here will be disappointed. There won't be a spy, there won't be a super intelligent leader of the Wolves revealed, the Wolves might not show up again at all. The writers aren't sending subtle clues in the dialog, they're just trying to write normal human conversations and not always succeeding.

I could be wrong of course.

Oh, Morgan! We love you and we want you to stay! But good lord. People were literally being hacked to pieces, and he was screwing around tying up a guy who was going to happily hack him and everyone else to pieces if he got free.

I actually liked the portrayal of Morgan here. He seems conflicted and confused and maybe not quite sane -- which fits perfectly the character who we last saw* living by himself in a fortress and writing on the walls and mumbling to himself about being "clear".

I think Carol is a real hero and Morgan is more of a wildcard. He can defeat 20 enemies, but he might or might not do it depending on whether he got his medication...

As much as I'm complaining I've liked these first two episodes. Much less weirdness and confusion and unbelievable comic book stuff than last season, and I like the threat-driven plots rather than philosophizing.

* aside from about 10 "Morgan walking with a staff" scenes since then.
posted by mmoncur at 5:05 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


The Wolves totally reminded me of the Raiders in Fallout Shelter, so I kept wondering when my Level 50 dude was going to get off of his coffee break and show up with the MIRV and end them.
posted by Dr. Zira at 6:31 PM on October 20, 2015 [1 favorite]


I really want to see Morgan and the Cheesemaker.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 7:02 PM on October 20, 2015 [4 favorites]


I really want to see Morgan and the Cheesemaker.

Yes! Flashback for Morgan, please! I don't think we've had one of those for him. That would be great. Like, a good 10 minute flashback.
posted by cashman at 7:04 PM on October 20, 2015


I really want to see Morgan and the Cheesemaker.

They DEFINITELY made the wrong spin-off of this show.
posted by mmoncur at 1:52 AM on October 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


No one else thinks Enid stole Judith? I have no idea why she would do that (road food, maybe?) but it's definitely on my mind.

Also, she's totally got some connection to the Wolves.
posted by mediareport at 3:05 AM on October 21, 2015


I don't think that this is the conclusion that the writers think that I should reach, but I'm finding myself agreeing with Morgan. I mean, it's The Walking Dead, so of course he goes about demonstrating his convictions in the stupidest possible way, but I do think that ultimately Morgan is doing what's best for Morgan, and I can't fault him for that.

Killing people is psychologically bad for you. We know this intuitively, but even if we didn't, it's demonstrably true on the show. Rick is fucking nuts. He’s not troubled or mentally ill, he's fucking nuts. He's only marginally less eager than the Wolves to perform violence against the Alexandrians (comparing "let's kill them' to "let's only kill them if they try to prevent us from taking over'), and the first thing that Morgan sees when he arrives in Alexandria is Rick shooting a dude in the face.

The Grimes crew all seems uncomfortably comfortable with committing violence. On top of that, Rick's pronouncement that they would no longer be recruiting is morally repugnant to someone like Morgan (and sort of a bizarre thing to put into the narrative, since everyone in the audience knows that the rate at which The Walking Dead goes through supporting cast will almost certainly quickly make such a policy structurally unsustainable).

So if I'm Morgan, I'm thinking about how two days earlier I could go about my business and didn't have to kill anyone. And although I doubt that the writers have put this much thought into the character, Morgan was a black man living in America for a lot longer than he's been a survivor in the zombie apocalypse. He's probably entirely too familiar with what happens when society gets comfortable with the notion of a largely self-selecting group being designated as purveyors of violence on everyone else's behalf, especially when community leadership decides to give them full backing and support. So, yeah, it's time to go.

TEAM MORGAN
posted by Parasite Unseen at 9:31 AM on October 21, 2015 [12 favorites]


TEAM MORGAN

I'm more TEAM CAROL: the notion that it's important to always be *ready* to take violent action, but to save it for when you really need it and play nice until the moment comes.

That said, Morgan is a super important presence on the show for the reasons you discussed, and I'll be very disappointed if he's leaving.

Above and beyond what you had to say, I'm feeling a need to keep him around narratively: Rick's position isn't just simplistic, brutal and unsympathetic, it's *boring*. We *know* what Rick will do. We all know what Rick will do, every time. He will do the dumbest, craziest, most bloodthirsty possible thing at every turn unless physically restrained. There's very little dramatic tension in that, and it leads to a bunch of stuff that has us facepalming every episode.

Morgan introduces a bona fide important dimension to the storytelling: 'do we need to do this?' There's more than one possible answer. More than that, he does it in a manner that we can enjoy with the nonlethal stick fighting, instead of Dale's incessant yammering about how 'the group is broken.' It's normally not a drag on events.

I hope they keep him around, and I also hope Rick's 'no newcomers' thing is being put into play to have people prove him wrong and make civilization progress a little. I want to see people rebuilding because that's what people do, and the more they *don't* do that, the less natural this all feels.
posted by mordax at 10:02 AM on October 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


TEAM CAROL

Carol doesn't need your team. After your team is entirely dead, she'll calmly plunge a knife into each of your skulls to prevent you from turning, then quickly help herself to whatever you might have had on you that she finds useful.

In the end, it will just be Carol and the cockroaches. THAT IS IT.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 11:28 AM on October 21, 2015 [7 favorites]


The Grimes crew all seems uncomfortably comfortable with committing violence.

The last group of supposedly friendly humans they met tried to kill them and eat them. They had a remarkably well-organized setup specifically dedicated to killing and eating humans, including a vast network of friendly welcoming advertising designed to lure in more unsuspecting humans to kill and eat.

i would shoot on sight any unknown person i met after that too
posted by poffin boffin at 11:37 AM on October 21, 2015 [8 favorites]


They seem to be playing up the characters' varying attitudes toward violence.

Eugene's cowardice; Gabriel's cowardice / conscientious objection (and newfound change of heart); Morgan's prowess in combat but reluctance to kill; Carol's ruthless practicality (and the emotional toll it exacts even on her).

Rick's just like: IS THERE ANYONE AROUND WHO NEEDS SHOT IN THE FACE, I'M AVAILABLE, JUST LEMME KNOW, SERIOUSLY I CAN TAKE CARE OF THAT FOR YOU, I'M PRETTY GOOD AT THAT SORT OF THING, REALLY IT'S NO PROBLEM, IF YOU'RE ON THE FENCE ABOUT IT MAYBE I SHOULD SHOOT THEM IN THE FACE JUST TO BE ON THE SAFE SIDE

The Alexandrians don't seem to know what they think of violence; they're still too inexperienced with it. The massacre may be the catalyst that finally shows them the importance of being able to defend themselves.

Glenn, Daryl, Tara, Rosita, even Abraham have the most level-headed handle on the matter: they're willing and able to do what it takes to protect themselves and their people, but they aren't eager for conflict.

So, it's encouraging to see a theme emerging, without it being too heavy-handed or one-dimensional.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 12:45 PM on October 21, 2015 [11 favorites]


The last group of supposedly friendly humans they met tried to kill them and eat them. They had a remarkably well-organized setup specifically dedicated to killing and eating humans, including a vast network of friendly welcoming advertising designed to lure in more unsuspecting humans to kill and eat.

While it's not surprising that this experience would leave the Grimes group deeply suspicious of outsiders, there’s no reason why that should be any concern of Morgan's.

The Terminus group trusted the wrong outsiders, and that trust was exploited until Terminus somehow turned the tables and slaughtered them. Then Terminus decided that exploiting trust was a workable system, so they exploited the trust of the Grimes group, until the Grimes group turned the tables and slaughtered them. Then the Grimes group decided that exploiting trust was a workable system, so they exploit the trust of the Alexandrians…

So you end up either resigning yourself to an endless system of trust, exploitation, reprisal, and adoption of tactics, or you reach the point that Morgan is at and just opt to remove yourself from an unhealthy situation.

No question, watching the Carol response to things makes for much more entertaining television, but Carol has a history of maintaining deeply harmful interpersonal relationships, and I haven't seen any indication that that’s come to an end. If I had to choose between her philosophy and Morgan's "just walk away" (if that is indeed what he's doing), I'd go with Morgan in a hot minute.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 1:19 PM on October 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


Yeah, Carol is kind of the living embodiment of JSS.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 2:57 PM on October 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


While it's not surprising that this experience would leave the Grimes group deeply suspicious of outsiders, there’s no reason why that should be any concern of Morgan's.

right, that's why i didn't use that experience to explain anything that morgan did? because that wouldn't apply to him? i didn't even mention him?
posted by poffin boffin at 3:47 PM on October 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


re: salmonella

Remember, everyone's already got Teh Zombie and turns after they die. They turn faster if they get bit (possibly because of a huge bolus of the agent). So, everyone's a little bit dead, so bacterial/viral infections aren't so pathogenic anymore.

/pet theory
posted by porpoise at 4:46 PM on October 21, 2015


i would shoot on sight any unknown person i met after that too

I actually don't necessarily disagree with Rick turning into a murder machine, given the horrible experiences he's suffered. Like... I could make a case for, 'This makes sense for him to do.' It's just... depressing and one-dimensional and entirely predictable. I'd maybe do better with it if he didn't also speechify about it on top of also being dumb.

No question, watching the Carol response to things makes for much more entertaining television,

The 'entertaining' part carries a lot of weight with me. At the end of the day, TWD is still a dumb show, even handwaving the fantasy elements. For me, the experience works or falls flat based on how awesome it is in the process. (I am, as I have mentioned before, a non-ironic fan of Z Nation on the grounds that it's got a sense of fun.)

Carol is awesome, therefore TEAM CAROL despite my feeling like Morgan is the person civilization actually needs to continue to exist. (And it's also why I feel like the show itself needs both - a good story should embrace more than one perspective about how to handle something this big.)

but Carol has a history of maintaining deeply harmful interpersonal relationships, and I haven't seen any indication that that’s come to an end.

Nobody could really argue with that because she's still on TEAM RICK, yes.

So, it's encouraging to see a theme emerging, without it being too heavy-handed or one-dimensional.

Yeah, this, exactly. I want this out of TWD instead of the constant emphasis on 'you gotta do horrible shit to make your way in the world.' I want the premise examined from a variety of angles, via action rather than talk, and it seems like they might even be doing that this year.
posted by mordax at 4:55 PM on October 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


Carol doesn't need your team

Oh, and: I know. Who wants to be on a team that needs them? Way too much pressure.
posted by mordax at 5:01 PM on October 21, 2015


TEAM MORGAN

You can craft a compelling and plausible story for someone in Morgan's situation that makes him an admirable character, but you have to ignore what Morgan's actually doing to apply it to him in this show. His own squeemishness got several Alexandrians killed. He saw that the wolves were indiscriminately slaughtering unarmed, non-aggressors, and had the power to stop them. When you know there are 10 homicidal maniacs on the loose, taking five minutes to tie one up rather than kill immediately is unforgiveable. He'd be thrown out of the group for this if the show was realistic at all. Notice he doesn't extend that ideal to himself, he uses deadly force to defend himself when threatened, just not for others.

The writers clearly want to make an ethical counterweight to Rick, that's cool. I think it'd be a great storyline for Morgan to decide that Rick's crew is just too dangerous to be around, that they'll force Morgan into to many lethal confrontations. But what he's doing is just awful, and it comes back to the writers continually struggling with characters who aren't nihilistic and vicious.

Still, gotta admit I'm liking the season so far.
posted by skewed at 7:16 PM on October 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


You can craft a compelling and plausible story for someone in Morgan's situation that makes him an admirable character, but you have to ignore what Morgan's actually doing to apply it to him in this show.

While I understand your position, I don't agree at all. There are a couple of underlying assumptions that you're both making, and assuming that the characters on the show *should* be making that I don't think are supported:

1) Morgan's decision making process is strictly rational, like you would expect to see from soldiers or MMO raiding parties.

When confronted with something as viscerally shocking as people being chopped up with machetes for essentially no reason, a lot of people aren't going to immediately jump to rational tactics in response. Most people - probably myself included - are probably going to experience a rush of adrenaline that pushes them to act like Jesse and cower until forced to do something in self defense.

Morgan's response was a lot like that - he doesn't have to hide in a literal closet because he's not personally in a whole lot of danger, but he's handling a shocking situation by hiding behind the mantra that's keeping him sane right now.

(Dude's as crazy as Rick in his way. This is part of why I'm TEAM CAROL. Morgan is clearly processing the death of his wife and son, his role in that, and so on. It looks like the thing that keeps him going is the decision that he won't keep killing, so when he's shocked, it's kind of his default state to be snapped out of. Essentially, I'm arguing that panic and grief has the same effect on Morgan as Bruce Wayne.)

2) All life is equally valuable.

Most of us *here* believe all - or almost all - human life is equally precious, and must be defended. Within the context of the show, it's clear that Rick's group does _not_ believe that: Rick was pretty clearly willing to just dump the Alexandrites in a ditch and forget about them if they didn't cooperate.

Morgan, on the other hand, has already demonstrated almost supernatural combat skills. He turned Rick's entire old neighborhood into a zombie-free zone without any backup. He's *valuable* in a way that the Alexandrites proved they were not, simply because they _were_ killed so easily.

From their perspective, what Morgan did is worth maybe a verbal warning, which I'd argue Carol gave by shooting his prisoner. (Hard to say 'we will not tolerate this' more clearly than by completely destroying his effort.)

Worse, this is not something without precedent in real life. It happens all the time: in many groups, there are people who are considered too valuable to risk alienating, and so get away with stuff that would get lesser team members fired/jailed/etc. Morgan's too good at zombie killin' to fail.

... and crud, I just defended the writing on The Walking Dead. Okay, time to get some rest and rethink my choices in life.
posted by mordax at 9:14 PM on October 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


The Terminus group trusted the wrong outsiders, and that trust was exploited until Terminus somehow turned the tables and slaughtered them. Then Terminus decided that exploiting trust was a workable system, so they exploited the trust of the Grimes group, until the Grimes group turned the tables and slaughtered them. Then the Grimes group decided that exploiting trust was a workable system, so they exploit the trust of the Alexandrians…

It's basically iterated rounds of Prisoner's Dilemma with new players swapped in to replace the old who lost. In this world, violent conflict is inevitable. Whoever strikes first, wins. As long as they don't do it prematurely when they don't have the advantage. But in the end it's a zero sum world so you bide your time until that moment of advantage comes along & then you seize it.
posted by scalefree at 10:24 PM on October 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


MetaFilter: IS THERE ANYONE AROUND WHO NEEDS SHOT IN THE FACE?
posted by scalefree at 10:31 PM on October 21, 2015


I appreciate this discussion because, well, I have thoughts and feelings about it. And also I don't really feel like I can fully express them without also unfortunately causing everyone here to feel like they need to avoid me at any future meetups.

Which is to say that I really like the Morgan-Carol-Rick continuum schema (we should probably place Glenn and Maggie between Morgan and Carol) but that I think my response to it is that while Carol's actions make a lot of sense in isolation, I feel like it's very easy for her to get to where Rick is from where she is, and more to the point I think she makes it easy for other people to become Rick. The thing I don't quite know how to discuss about myself is that watching those scenes of Carol being pragmatically murderous inspires the sorts of feelings in me that we're attributing to Rick. I think that violence is seductive. And not just movie/television violence, but real actual violence, at least for many people and arguably, everyone, assuming they can reach a place where they overcome the fear and revulsion and use it to empower themselves, as Carol has. It is empowering -- in a way it's the very definition of empowering. And it becomes its own end, not a means to an end.

My reaction to the wolves is this bone-deep sense that they abrogated whatever right they had to not be shot in the back of the head without hesitation. Carol is like some sort of platonic ideal in actualizing that response, and I think that's why so many of us find her both compelling and even admirable. But my concern is that this whole "what is justified?" thing is ambiguous and a moving target which, nevertheless, can at any particular moment seem self-evident and incontrovertible. So what we see in the real world is that the line moves. The more you're the judge and jury who solves problems with violence, the greater you feel is your scope for this sort of action. And that's exactly what we see in the character of Rick.

I think we all see Carol on one side of some line, and Rick on the other. Carol is rational and Rick is sort of nuts (understandably so, and it seems to be the lesser of two evils in this context, but still). But I'm not actually sure that Carol is remotely as rational and sane as we think she is. My sense is that Carol is just far, far more controlled than Rick is. And that control allows her to keep a more rational and pragmatic lid on the violence that I suspect she unconsciously yearns to commit.

This isn't as much inference and projection on my part as you might think -- with her mask off with the boy, she practically snarls. And that's partly out of protectiveness, of course. But it's the protectiveness of the abusive parent who believes that they're toughening up their child. Carol would never beat a child, but she's now clearly able to be emotionally abusive to one. Because it's a brutal, unforgiving world, right? But that's what they always say. Carol's intentionally looked into the abyss at monsters in order to survive. What she's not quite dealing with yet is just how much of the monster she's invited back into herself.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 11:38 PM on October 21, 2015 [10 favorites]


Yes, exactly, Ivan. Which is why Morgan had the most striking line in the episode, after we see Wolf Carol swoop in and kill someone for the first time:

"YOU DON'T LIKE THIS," Morgan tells her. It doesn't stop her in the moment, but it sure resonates with her later.

We know Morgan's been there and managed to come out the other side. Not completely rationally, as mordax noted above, but definitely in a human, understandable way.

(I'll be very surprised if we don't get a Morgan flashback episode this season.)
posted by mediareport at 3:12 AM on October 22, 2015 [2 favorites]


Mediareport, it's rumored that episode 4 is Morgan-centric and that might be where we get to see his post-Clear flashback/staff-training montage.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 8:19 AM on October 22, 2015


You can craft a compelling and plausible story for someone in Morgan's situation that makes him an admirable character, but you have to ignore what Morgan's actually doing to apply it to him in this show. His own squeemishness got several Alexandrians killed. He saw that the wolves were indiscriminately slaughtering unarmed, non-aggressors, and had the power to stop them. When you know there are 10 homicidal maniacs on the loose, taking five minutes to tie one up rather than kill immediately is unforgiveable. He'd be thrown out of the group for this if the show was realistic at all. Notice he doesn't extend that ideal to himself, he uses deadly force to defend himself when threatened, just not for others.

It's pretty unlikely that Morgan would be exiled, as he was arguably as effective as Carol in stopping the attack. By my count, Morgan removed seven attackers from the battle (the one attacking Gabriel, the five that he chased off, and the one in the house that I'm assuming he killed). Additionally, he's the one who turned off the truck horn, and he saved at least one person (Gabriel) that Carol had decided to leave to die.

Carol is an effective killer, but it's also pretty clear that anyone who isn't furthering her immediate objectives is expendable to her (see the aforementioned leaving Gabriel to die). Although the people of Alexandria don't know it, she's also demonstrated that she doesn't particularly care if the people that she kills deserve it or not, so long as she's keeping her core group safe (as demonstrated when she murdered Karen and David). She's a focused agent, whereas Morgan is more of a big-picture guy. Both approaches have their uses, and it's likely that both are going to be necessary if the group is going to ever be ok.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 8:32 AM on October 22, 2015 [2 favorites]


I would legit be Carol's apocalypse understudy and walk the earth with her, like Kane.

However, Morgan probably sleeps better at night than Carol does. My dad says that there are two kinds of people in this world: those that sleep well at night, and those that eat well during the day. Very rarely do you get the opportunity to both sleep well AND eat well -- that means you love your career and have a clear conscience about what you do for a living, plus it pays well enough for you provide everything your family needs to thrive.

Carol eats well; Morgan sleeps well. I can't think of anyone on the show who manages to do both.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 8:44 AM on October 22, 2015 [8 favorites]


Wow, somehow I completely missed that Morgan and Carol's similarities are interesting. They both appeared in the first few (3) episodes of season one. They are both people whose spouses were bitten and who died. Morgan finally took down his walker wife, but not before she got their son. ( I wish the show would have shot that scene and been holding it, but there's just no way they did.) Carol had to hack her husband up to keep him from turning. Both Morgan and Carol lost young children on the show, to walkers. And now here Carol and Morgan are, having come out the other side. One is known by the audience mostly for killing walkers, and now the other is known by the audience mostly for killing people.
posted by cashman at 10:02 AM on October 22, 2015 [5 favorites]


I also don't think we've seen the last of that trio of Wolves that Morgan let go with a handy intelligence report about what kind of weaponry the Alexandrians have. I'm thining they'll probably go back, report to the rest of the pack, and return with a larger force.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 11:27 AM on October 22, 2015


Carol had to hack her husband up to keep him from turning

Daryl was pick-axing the victims of the attack. Carol walked up and *volunteered* to hack up Ed.
posted by entropicamericana at 12:11 PM on October 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


I also don't think we've seen the last of that trio of Wolves that Morgan let go with a handy intelligence report about what kind of weaponry the Alexandrians have. I'm thining they'll probably go back, report to the rest of the pack, and return with a larger force.

I'm sure they will, but it will likely play out a lot differently with the A-Team there instead of out playing Pied Piper, leading a hoard of Walkers out of Hamelin. With Rick, Daryl, Glenn, Michonne, Abraham and Carol, you've basically got a much more badass collection of stone-cold, practically invincible super-hero killers than a Fast and Furious movie. They heal quickly, have perfect aim, and never hesitate. What could stop them? I half expect them to reveal that they have, in fact, been Asgardians all along.
posted by dis_integration at 12:29 PM on October 22, 2015


I also don't think we've seen the last of that trio of Wolves that Morgan let go with a handy intelligence report about what kind of weaponry the Alexandrians have. I'm thining they'll probably go back, report to the rest of the pack, and return with a larger force.

I think that it's obvious that they will, but the only reason why it's obvious is that I know that it's the second episode of this season of a television show. In real life, if a gang is about to engage in hand-to-hand combat with a group of dudes that they've never faced before, they don't have larger numbers to report back to; they show up with their whole crew (or at least have the rest of their crew somewhere that they can keep an eye on what's happening). In real life, if roving raiders sent in a party and the party came back with "they wiped us out, except for a few of us who were allowed to leave", that group would move on and look for softer targets. It seems likely to me that the Wolves already had solid intelligence on the Alexandrians, given that they timed their attack for when the group's most capable fighters were out herding walkers, and any intelligence that they might have gleaned from this raid amounts to "we got smeared by the token non-combat group that they left behind", which would be unlikely to result in further provocation. Learning that the Alexandrians have guns (which, again, it seems likely that they already knew) is some low-value information, given that every single group that isn't the Wolves that we've seen so far has guns. I certainly wouldn't risk the lives of a bunch of my people in a bid to learn whether a group living in a world where everyone except my crew has a gun has guns.

So, yes, the Wolves will probably be back (and in greater numbers), because their logic is set up to tell an exciting story, not because it makes any sort of sense.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 2:04 PM on October 22, 2015 [3 favorites]


I think we all see Carol on one side of some line, and Rick on the other. Carol is rational and Rick is sort of nuts (understandably so, and it seems to be the lesser of two evils in this context, but still). But I'm not actually sure that Carol is remotely as rational and sane as we think she is. My sense is that Carol is just far, far more controlled than Rick is. And that control allows her to keep a more rational and pragmatic lid on the violence that I suspect she unconsciously yearns to commit.

Very good analysis!

I consider Carol the "lesser evil" between the two, although I'm not sure why. I think she's just as nuts as Rick is, in the sense that most of us would hesitate before killing someone, and she doesn't hesitate. But she's a very practical kind of nuts.

While Rick seems to want the power that comes with violence--I don't think he enjoys killing, but he certainly enjoys making speeches about it--Carol just seems purely pragmatic. While most of us would try to think of any possible solution other than killing, maybe even causing us to be slow and bad for the group like Morgan tying up the Wolf, Carol considers killing to be a quick and simple solution to many problems. This would make her a psychopath in the real world, but pretty much a perfect person to have around in the Zombie apocalypse.

When Rick kills it's hard to tell why. Did he kill Shane out of anger, or in self defense? Did he kill Pete because he wanted to defend (and romance) his wife, or because Pete was a threat to the group? Or just to prove he was right? He's so emotional it's hard to know what drives him.

Carol, on the other hand, has repressed her emotions so much that she just does what needs to be done. This is very much in line with her background as a survivor of abuse. But I wouldn't be surprised if she has a breakdown at some point.

As for Morgan, he started out as a "Gabriel" -- doesn't believe in killing at all, even if he could save people -- and is on his way to becoming a Rick or a Carol. Or maybe not, maybe he can become a true hero who still feels compassion and mercy.

But they're all nuts...
posted by mmoncur at 3:36 PM on October 22, 2015


The ridiculous zombie horde from the quarry could actually work to the group's benefit if they could figure out a way to turn them against the wolves. That would be turning wolf tactics against them.
posted by codacorolla at 4:35 PM on October 22, 2015 [2 favorites]


it's rumored that episode 4 is Morgan-centric

Oh, ok. But I deliberately stay away from the tedious Talking Dead stuff and any rumors like that. I don't mind folks' predictions here, but I'd rather not hear any spoilery stuff that's spreading on the net, preferring to be surprised. If that changes I'll start reading the Talking Dead threads.
posted by mediareport at 8:30 PM on October 22, 2015 [4 favorites]


it will likely play out a lot differently with the A-Team there instead of out playing Pied Piper, leading a hoard of Walkers out of Hamelin.

When, lo, as they reached the quarry-side,
A wondrous semi opened wide,
As if a plotline was suddenly hollowed;
And the A-Team advanced, and the walkers followed,
And when all were near to the town at last,
The horn on the semi truck stuck fast.
Did I say town? No! It was lame,
They could not kill, the Carol way;
And in after years, if you would blame
The wolves, they were used to say, --
It's dull in our town since the walkers left!
I can't forget that I'm bereft
Of all the bloody sights they see,
Which the Rickster also promised me.
For he led us, he said, to a joyous place,
After shooting that kid's dad in the face,
Where gun wounds gushed and bad blood grew,
And Enid put forth a turtle stew,
And everything was strange and new
posted by cashman at 7:38 AM on October 23, 2015 [5 favorites]


It seems likely to me that the Wolves already had solid intelligence on the Alexandrians, given that they timed their attack for when the group's most capable fighters were out herding walkers

That wasn't the plan though--it was only supposed to be a dry run that day and any intel would have reflected that. It only turned into the mess it did because the walkers burst out of the quarry unexpectedly.

The group still might have been away from town busy doing the dry run, but they would have been able to respond quicker, and with the full group returning instead of just Morgan.

Now, it's possible the Wolves somehow engineered the break out from the quarry, but it doesn't seem especially probable. If they knew about the horde piling up, releasing them a day or two earlier (before Rick & all knew about that threat and started preparing) would have made a lot more sense. Alternately, they could have done a lot more to sabotage the herding efforts directly. The blaring horn would have been a good start, but that turned out to be unintended.
posted by Pryde at 12:44 PM on October 24, 2015


I feel like Rick just can't win. He has had to pay some serious consequences for letting people who were threats live. What was he supposed to do in these situations? And what does Morgan expect to happen with all of these people who try to kill him after he knocks them around with his stick? Does he think they'll see the error of their ways and want to make friends?

I have a love/hate relationship with this show. Sometimes the writers have these characters do some shit that infuriates me. But I'm excited for every damn episode. The good ones are really good.

I also like the comment about how Carol has been living JSS for some time now in terms of her abusive background. I also don't see how she is that different from Rick though. I still think that she's bad ass and would be on her team. And I love Rick. Especially when he has that crazy beard. Not that into him when he's clean shaven.
posted by mokeydraws at 5:58 PM on October 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


A pretty good episode! Carol continues to make this thing worth watching.

I was also excited to see Merritt Wever join the show—total wish fulfillment casting for me.
posted by EXISTENZ IS PAUSED at 7:28 PM on October 28, 2015


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