The Walking Dead: Rock in the Road
February 14, 2017 7:06 AM - Season 7, Episode 9 - Subscribe

Rick is introduced to a new community.
posted by LizBoBiz (15 comments total)
And now we start our 7 episode lead-up/slog to Rick finally getting Neagan in the season finale.
posted by LizBoBiz at 7:07 AM on February 14, 2017

To summarize:
  • Gabriel runs off with a bunch of supplies
  • Rick & Co. go to Hilltop to convince Gregory to rise up against the Neganites - no dice
  • Jesus takes Rick & Co. to the Kingdom to convince King Ezekiel to rise up against the Neganites - no dice
  • Daryl gets left behind at the Kingdom until the heat dies down
  • Carol runs into Kingdom Future Cannon-Fodder Guy to set up a plot point
  • Rick & Co. find a Neganite anti-zombie bomb and steal most of the bomb, then mow down hundreds of zombies in a spectacular bending of the laws of physics and materials science before being surrounded by zombies and making another improbable escape
  • Neganites (the heat) show up at Alexandria looking for Daryl - no dice
  • Aaron's husband appears and tells Aaron not to get involved in any silly revolutions
  • Rick & Co. find out Gabriel took their stuff and go looking for him
  • Rick & Co find Bartertown instead

posted by cardboard at 9:44 AM on February 14, 2017

No Neagen = best episode yet!

A sidenote: "Did I forget to mention the tiger?" No, Jesus, no you did not. Nobody ever forgets to mention the tiger. They just love watching the expression on the newbies' faces. Morgan did the exact same thing to Carol.

I enjoyed also Rick's confusion as he realized that the king wasn't actually crazy, and was listening to his arguments and sleeping on it before making a decision.

Btw, I thought at first those were Wolves at the end (enemy of my enemy, and all that) but on closer look they all seem to have smooth foreheads.
posted by Mogur at 9:54 AM on February 14, 2017 [3 favorites]

Nitpicking aside, I have to admit I enjoyed this episode overall. We've seen the Alexandria gang all separated over the past several episodes, and now with everyone back together things are shaping up for a real confrontation to end the season with.

I kind of wondered why Rick would agree to leave Daryl with Ezekiel and the Kingdom. Daryl is certainly not one to shrink from a fight, and I can understand why he'd be upset with Rick for insisting on it. I'll be curious to see if he really does try to stare Ezekiel into submission - or better yet, a staredown with Shiva.
posted by Roger Pittman at 3:16 PM on February 14, 2017

At first I wondered if he left Daryl there thinking that the Saviors would be searching for him, and that he might be found with the Kingdom drawing them into the war. That seems extremely cold and calculating for Rick. And shows a little more strategic thinking than the writers seem to be capable of.

This was a really good episode (for TWD). Lots of cheesiness and wtf moments, but stuff actually happened!

Greg Nicotero on The Talking Dead (paraphrasing): "It was an exciting episode because most of the cast was together for the first time in awhile. The show is so much better and more electric when they are together."

Huh. Who'da thunk?
posted by 2ht at 4:59 PM on February 14, 2017 [2 favorites]

>but on closer look they all seem to have smooth foreheads.

Ah, old style Klingons then.
posted by Catblack at 8:49 PM on February 14, 2017 [4 favorites]

That conversation Morgan had with Rick? It was exactly the sort of thing that never happens on any show anywhere. I mean, two people having a normal conversation about someone else? Who does that?

Also the car cable gag is straight out of Juan of the Dead, which is a really great zombie film.
posted by Catblack at 9:43 PM on February 14, 2017

I'm thinking again about Rick's grin at the very end. That was a big freakin' grin. Would seeing Gabriel do that for him? I don't think so, if for no other reason than Rick would want to lecture him first about not consulting.

Add to this: They've been working hard to conceal the identity of binocular person who was spying on Gabriel and then drove off with him, which suggest to me that the audience would recognize Binocperson by sight. I didn't watch some of the earlier seasons - is there anybody that Rick trusts still out there? Somebody that he would smile to see?
posted by Mogur at 5:44 AM on February 15, 2017

I thought his smile was just "These people have weapons! We can recruit them!". It didn't occur to me that he was smiling at a particular person. Interesting... Could binocular person be the soldier-type from the Kingdom whose name I can't recall? The guy who tried to convince Ezekiel to help Rick and Co.
posted by torisaur at 10:10 AM on February 15, 2017 [1 favorite]

Partner's comment at the end of the episode: "Who are these people? Why is Rick smiling?"
posted by tobascodagama at 11:34 AM on February 15, 2017

I thought binoc person was shorter and skinnier than the soldier guy, which is why I originally thought Carol (but then rejected that because why would she recruit Ganriel?). Well, only a few more days to go before we get some answers....
posted by Mogur at 12:02 PM on February 15, 2017

I thought it was funny when everyone said "Gabriel would never do this!" when that's really his default state with intermittent periods of being a loyal member of the group.
posted by LizBoBiz at 12:42 PM on February 15, 2017 [1 favorite]

The Rick administration has 100% complete confidence in Gabriel's loyalty.
posted by tobascodagama at 2:01 PM on February 15, 2017 [5 favorites]

"Who are these people? Why is Rick smiling?"

The whole episode he's been hearing "we don't have enough people" with a smattering of "not enough guns or people who can use them" as the reasons not to band together & attack. Suddenly he stumbles on a whole army of people, all armed & presumably proficient at using their guns. Problem solved!

As for who they are, it's Oceanside, the hidden community of women we've already met.
posted by scalefree at 6:54 PM on February 16, 2017

Not Oceanside, I got that part wrong. Too many communities.
posted by scalefree at 11:05 AM on February 21, 2017

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