→ March 8, 2015
Warning: Full spoilers for the episode follow…
“One morning, you’ll wake up and you won’t be in your bed. You’ll be outside the wall, far far away, tied to a tree.”
Holy crap, Carol!
Sorry, I’ll get into the episode as a whole in a bit but…
That scene between Carol and little cookie-craving Sam was amazing. Even more so perhaps because those ominous words were coming out of a woman dressed like a plain and dowdy homemaker. Rick, Carol, and the rest were worried about walking into a picture-perfect community that might turn out to be secretly evil but Carol was the one proving, right now, to be the most sinister element in the whole place. Her getting up really close to Sam and threatening him with death by disappearance/walker-disembowlment was basically the kind of false facade that they were all fearful of running into. Essentially, they don’t trust anyone because they all know the lengths to which they themselves would go to survive.
And what a disturbing play it was. Not only did it reinforce Carol as a no-holds-barred badass who will dirty her hands in a heartbeat, but it also played nicely off the contempt that our heroes, and some of the viewers, might have for the citizens of Alexandria. The kind that Sasha displayed when she couldn’t stomach everyone’s inconsequential bulls*** at the welcome party. As in, young Sam is supremely lucky to have grown up in in such a safe environment – so lucky in fact that he almost deserved to get shown a bit of darkness. A taste of the real world.
Plus, thanks to Carol’s newly-recovered “invisibleness” even if Sam does squeal people will have a hard time buying his story given Carol’s new persona. She’s in the perfect position here and I love the new role she’s taken as the group’s ground-level spy.
While I enjoyed the “coming in out of the wild” elements of last week’s episode, I enjoyed “Forget” a bit more. Mostly because it’s become clear that Rick, to some extent, is creeping toward what he grew to hate outside the wall. It all starts as “we need to keep our eyes open” and “let’s get some guns just in case,” but that’s pretty much how The Governor became who he was. And even though you can’t blame someone as lonely and shell-shocked as Rick is for kissing a pretty woman like Jessie on the cheek – despite the fact that her husband’s a dick and she herself was giving off signals – it already feels like a sign of him “taking” something from someone else. Pretty soon he”ll be shouting “claimed!”
Beyond the wall, out at Rick, Carol and Daryl’s cabal (where’s there’s still the case of the missing blender gun), Rick even suggested that the people in Alexandria had gotten “luckier” with their arrival. And while Rick and Carol (the two people who’ve changed their demeanor and appearance) were plotting to overthrow things at the drop of a hat, Daryl (who still remained a grimy outsider) seemed to have a change of heart by the end of the episode.
The Walking Dead: “Forget” Photo Gallery:
All of this created really cool tug-o-war of emotions for the viewer. Because on one hand, you’re like “Rick don’t mess this up!” But then you also see how Deanna doesn’t think anyone needs to be manning that watch tower and you’re like “Listen to Rick!” So in a sense, yes, Deanna is lucky that she now finds herself with people who are so traumatized and dangerous – like Sasha – that they’re willing to watch the perimeter 24/7.
Daryl’s adventure with Aaron outside the wall trying to wrangle “Buttons” (who may have been named after Red Buttons, star of “They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?”) re-ignited some of the “Daryl is gay” rumors this past week before the episode even aired. And it may have been the actual shooting of this episode, with Aaron, that sparked them back at the end of November. Whatever the answer is, or winds up being, their time together was great. And Aaron, despite his short time on the series, has already leapt out as a really engaging character. More so than a lot of other characters were able to do in the past when they were newly introduced. Hell, some of those characters still haven’t managed to interest anyone.
You can easily see now why Aaron makes a great recruiter. He has a way of talking to people, as an “outsider” within his own community, that truly reaches them. And it was that outlying status that helped him get through to Daryl. Well, that and their time out with Buttons. Because Daryl still sort of needs to know that the person he’s with can handle themselves in out in the open. And not be so precious that they can’t put a sweet horse out of its misery. Plus, given that Daryl would never have fit into Alexandria, or any type of suburb, before the zombie apocalypse, him getting offered a job that wouldn’t require him to assimilate too much was a tremendous idea. Throw in Spaghetti Tuesday (now on Wednesday!) and you’ve got yourself a changed Daryl.
It’s really interesting at this point to see, among the group, who’s resisting and who’s all in. Glenn, Tara, and Noah were uneasy at the party, but they eventually settled in. Abraham likes the booze, Carl likes the company. Maggie’s going to work with Deanna in some facilitating fashion. Michonne’s a believer too – hanging her katana up on the wall (trading it in for a cocktail sword). So that it’s put aside, but still part of her. So Rick and Carol (it’s funny to think how they’re working together now) not giving this place a full chance could lead to some intense group in-fighting at some point.
But Rick’s not the only danger. Another walker was found with a “W” carved in its head. Like the one back in the midseason premiere. Does this have something to do with the wolf graffiti (“Wolves Not Far”), or was that literally about wolves and not a gang of people? And speaking of symbols, we still need to circle back to the “X” mark that Morgan was following. The one that was also on the head of the crazy “We’re the same” dude at Terminus.