Second episode of the season and already we get another director known for amping up the action and gore. Welcome back Jennifer Lynch: you are always welcome here. Well, as long as you don’t kill a beloved character. If you’ll remember Walking Dead Family, Ms. Lynch directed Spend, the episode where we lost Noah, but we were also treated to some of Steven Yeun’s best acting of the entire series.
Choosing to open with Enid’s history was a great way to set the tone of the episode. After all, this is a show about survival and Enid certainly proved that she can stand up to the task after losing her parents. Adopting the mantra of Just Survive Somehow, Enid turns into a tiny Daryl and becomes a very quiet individual who has no qualms eating whatever crosses her path. Tortoise? No problem. Clearly, Enid was a Cannibal Holocaust fan prior to the viral outbreak. I felt nothing but heartache for her when she stumbled across Alexandria. While she’s been on her own, eating raw meat, they’ve been safe behind their walls with their balloons and cocktail parties. I can’t say that I blame her for helping the Wolves. A teenage girl is a teenage girl no matter what the world’s current status is and a teenage girl is not someone that you want to piss off.
After Carol puts Shelly Neidermeyer in her place and tells Sam to get over his dead dad who used to hit him, she puts together one of her miracle casseroles, checks Judith on the baby monitor and sets the timer for 45 minutes. The next 45 minutes are going to be the bloodiest that Alexandria has ever seen and Rick and company are out trying to wrangle a parade of walkers. No matter. Carol, the woman who single handedly took down Terminus, is here and she’s about to remind everyone that she is a literal wolf in sheep’s clothing.
Father Gabriel humbles himself and admits that his past behavior was about him and not about Rick’s group. Very much his father’s son, Carl accepts this apology and agrees to show him how to fight. Perhaps Father Gabriel will prove to be an asset after all. Alexandria is certainly going to need another fighter after what the Wolves are about to do to them.
In what felt like a nod to Serial Mom, Mrs. Neidermeyer is taken out first while she’s enjoying her dirty habit. Carol just happened to be looking on and judging her smoking habit, so she’s the first to know about the Wolves and she’s also the first to spring into beast mode and start taking them out. In what I imagine the streets of Florida to look like on any given day, the Wolves are running rampant and killing everyone in sight. No, not just killing, but savaging, anyone they see. This is what being on bath salts looks like, right? These people are taking a gruesome sort of glee in killing the people of Alexandria, but why?
In what is, clearly, my favorite kill of the episode, Jesse is left to defend her boys against a lone wolf and she does not disappoint. It is in the tradition of The Walking Dead that victims rise up to be survivors and Jesse has now joined that club with Daryl and Carol. Jesse doesn’t need a gun to protect her house. She has shears and any hairstylist will tell you that shears are just a wicked awesome extension of your hand, which is why it is totally believable and awesome when she takes down that feral woman with a pair of 5.5 inch haircutting shears. You can see a mixture of emotions coming out of Jesse in this moment and it’s equal parts scary and sad. Looks like we may have a budding Carol on our hands. Hooray!
Poor Tara. She always gets left with the cowardly lions of the group. She also has some sort of magical quality that makes them look deep within themselves and find their inner badass. Or, inner Carol, as this episode would suggest we all need. Denise, our new doctor who has magically appeared, is the female version of Eugene. They did a nice job of introducing her and it will be interesting to see how she evolves.
As pointed out by Enid, the Wolves are just people. Ultimately, everyone got thrown into the same situation, but each person chose a different path of survival, which leads me to…
Much has been made of the letter “A”. At the beginning of the episode, Sam is seen holding his A stamp that he was using last season. At the end of the episode, this A stamp has been put on the entrance to Carol’s house. Did Sam put it there? Did the Wolves put it there? Are the Wolves actually survivors of Terminus? That could, potentially, explain why they are wild and why the letter “A” would have significance to them. Maybe I’m overthinking stuff and thangs, but the tall, long haired Wolf that Morgan sparred with looks reminiscent of the crazed people let out of one of the train cars back at Terminus. The Wolf that Morgan and Father Gabriel had tied up told them, “We’re freeing you. You’re trapped. You need to know people don’t belong here anymore.” Echoing Enid’s point, one of the Wolves tells Morgan, “We didn’t choose.” before running out of Alexandria. WHAT DOES IT MEAN?! WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?! And why does everyone tell Morgan everything?
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The zombie apocalypse is the only time I shall be eating a Spring Cleaning Casserole.
Why is it that teenage boys NEVER want a haircut?
Morley cigarettes seem to be the generic brand of choice for television shows, but I still would like to request to see The Cigarette Smoking Man as an Easter Egg Walker one of these days.
Oh, Aaron. Are you the reason the Wolves infiltrated this gated community?
Article first published at The Horror Honeys. Lisa is the TV Honey.
Images: IMDb & Forbes.com