Last week, we found out that two important characters were kidnapped, and their fates hung in the balance. What went down this past Sunday? Let's find out.
This episode wasn't like previous episodes. It was intense, but it had a different kind of intensity and a subtle build of tension. I didn't expect this episode to focus solely on Carol and Maggie like it did, but it was really awesome to see Rick and the main group from a different point of view; I can't remember the last time that happened.
Last week, I was hesitant because I wanted Carol and Maggie getting kidnapped to be plausible given what badasses these women are. While the kidnapping was a bit sketchy, I can see how they got kidnapped, especially considering Carol's breakdown.
Here's what my brother and I think: Carol's trying to reform. She's trying to stop killing people. This was revealed by her overall hesitancy to shoot the people in the woods instead of getting kidnapped. Maybe she felt bad that Sam Anderson died. Maybe she's trying to take a page out of Morgan's book and not kill people. Whatever the reason, I'm glad we got to see a glimpse of her humanity.
When Carol overcame her fear to kill everyone, I was proud of her. It's really hard to do what she had to do, but it was a matter of survival (just survive somehow, eh?). Though I feel bad for her having to do these things, I'm glad Carol is back to being a badass. (Though setting those people on fire was brutal.)
Speaking of badasses, can we talk about Maggie? She was amazing in this episode. I love how she's choosing to build something in spite of everyone telling her that having a baby is a bad idea.
(Also, when the lady lunged at Maggie's stomach with a knife, I freaked out. I'm glad the baby's okay.) The moment at the end with Glenn and Maggie almost made me cry, and so did the moment with Daryl and Carol. It was beautiful.
The new characters in this episode, though they were short-lived, interested me. I saw potential of redemption in a couple of them, but they were gone shortly thereafter. Paula's actress did a wonderful job of making me hate her but also showing the vulnerability of Paula. It's interesting how the apocalypse has changed people--for some, it's made them better; for some, it's made them worse. And it's all a matter of chance--for example, if Paula hadn't been in the situation she was in where she had to kill her boss, would she be here now? I also loved her analogy with the coffee beans. Her whole character arc raised some interesting questions about morality, the apocalypse, and the way people have chosen to deal with it. (Also, her death was so gruesome... It was almost worse than Noah's.)
I also found it interesting how Maggie assured Paula that Rick wouldn't attack them, and yet when Carol and Maggie escaped, Rick and his group were already invading the warehouse. It's an interesting example of just how morally ambiguous Rick has become. Was Maggie really sure that Rick wouldn't invade or was she just bluffing? Was she surprised to see him there? I guess we won't ever know for sure. I also like how Rick thinks he killed Negan, but he actually didn't. (But Rick just flat-out shooting him was yet another example of Rick's new, edgier personality.)
All in all, this was a quieter episode and a bit slow-moving at parts, but I loved the parallels and comparisons and questions it raised. Moving forward, the main thing I'm concerned about is Carol. The Walking Dead is notorious for developing a character before they kill them off (see: Beth Greene). I'm glad Carol is getting this character development, but I'm really worried that means she's going to die. At any rate, we have three episodes left in the season, and things are getting intense. I'm both excited and very nervous to see how it all goes down.
Have you seen "The Same Boat"? What did you think of it?