The Walking Dead: The Cell
November 7, 2016 8:12 PM - Season 7, Episode 3 - Subscribe

A group of survivors living in a community that seems to have it all, but at a price.
posted by cfoxhi (11 comments total)
Going back to the violence and psychological torture brought me right back to that awful state I was in during the premiere. Not a fun episode.
posted by cfoxhi at 8:15 PM on November 7, 2016

This episode worked for me. I still find Negan as a character to be deeply obnoxious, but I felt like they put some reins (however flimsy) on the worst of his monologues.

Honestly, I think that it's just easier for me to overlook an episode's glaring flaws if in exchange they don't put Rick or Carl anywhere in the script.
posted by Parasite Unseen at 9:06 PM on November 7, 2016 [1 favorite]

Yuck. About 95% of the goodwill they acquired with the King Ezekial episode is back in the dumpster.
posted by Mogur at 4:41 AM on November 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

Violence and psychological torture has been the modus operandi for practically the show's entire existence, so I'm not sure what you are expecting?

I've always hated when the show splits up the group and we don't see a majority of the cast a majority of the time. This is probably the first episode where it actually felt like an artistic decision that was necessary. Not only did they show us that they were torturing Darryl, but they gave us a little experience at what it was like from his perspective.

Of course, I'm probably giving the writers too much credit here. Haven't they've done the exact same "let's show off the doldrums of every day life in this new community by repeatedly showing the same thing happening day after day" bit before? Maybe when the group settled down into Alexandria. Oh well, it mostly worked here.

I know that Dwight is a comic book character a lot of people have been looking forward to, but he actually seems a little bit unnecessary here. He has been characterized so much like Darryl. He's trying to become Darryl. The vest, the crossbow, the motorcycle. His upcoming story would possibly even work better if they gave it to Darryl, since we have so much more backstory and goodwill built up toward him.

Man, there's being impudent and there's being smart, and Darryl should have chosen the smart route here. Break down. Say you're Negan. Give it a few weeks until they aren't watching you so closely. Then take your shot at Negan and escape or go down fighting.
posted by 2ht at 5:22 AM on November 8, 2016

So Daryl and Dwight are going to team up right?

Did Dwight get bit while he was out and about? He was keeping his hand in his jacket I thought.

I agree that I find the single character episodes unfulfilling but this one did work very well. Also, I finally learned that this is a thing that this show does so I guess I should be used to it by now.
posted by LizBoBiz at 5:26 AM on November 8, 2016

I just really can't stand Negan and recoil whenever he's on screen. So, yeah, I could have done with less of their encampment and more of just about anything else. Like I said, they lost nearly all my good will after the first ep and more of Negan is not what I need right now in my life (they gave me some Carol and Ezekiel last week, but after this ep, I'm watching because MrsMogur wants to, not because I expect to feel anything but crap after each episode).
posted by Mogur at 5:28 AM on November 8, 2016

The AVC recapper seems to feel Jeffrey Dean Morgan is miscast as Negan, but he actually grew on me here. The Negan of the comics looks younger, probably about the same age as Rick, but somehow aging him up just makes his juvenile swearing and posturing habits more absurd. The scene where he lowers his voice and says to Dwight, "...Your penis?" is comedy gold, but it's only funny to him; it's as if everyone else on TWD is in a bleak, existential drama, but Negan is the star of his own sitcom, and he's the only one who hears the laughtrack. Like Ezekiel, Negan has embraced the absurdity of the new world, and found a way to make it work for him, but...unlike Ezekiel, he is actively opposed to letting it work for anybody else, at least not unless that benefits himself more.

This episode was pretty good. I agree that if I were Daryl, I would absolutely have played along (hell, it's what Carol would do). But this is the same dude who chose to live outside instead of in a perfectly good house, so.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 9:08 AM on November 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

I also thought Dwight was bit, but wouldn't the symptoms be appearing by now? This episode worked for me too. I like meeting new people, perhaps because it's a relief to be away from Rick and Maggie. Negan's ridiculous dialogue is kind of growing on me. His, "are we peeing our pants yet?" surprised me by making me laugh. It's absurd and unexpected.
Did anyone else think Darryl was scoping out Negan's room for weapons or tools? And when he ran into that woman in the hallway WHY didn't she just say, "Darryl, it's a trap, go back to your cell" ?!
Thanks for posting this thread, cfoxhi! It's a relief to try to think about something other than the election.
posted by areaperson at 6:16 PM on November 9, 2016

The cigarette scene made me think of Jean Genet's Un chant d'amour but I somehow doubt that was intentional.
posted by larrybob at 12:18 PM on November 10, 2016

I'm confused. What was the Polaroid of?
posted by invisible ink at 9:24 PM on November 10, 2016

"I'm confused. What was the Polaroid of?"

It was Glenn after Negan killed him. In the first episode you could see one of the Saviors takea polaroid of what was left of Glenn just before they left. To go with their nasty collection.
posted by cfoxhi at 2:48 AM on November 11, 2016 [1 favorite]

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