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Sunday, November 17, 2019

[RECAP] Season 10, Episode 6 of The Walking Dead, "Bonds"

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Care of Den of the Geek
The sixth installment of of The Walking Dead season 10 felt slightly anticlimactic in the sense that it felt very much like a set-up episode for far more impactful things to come.  Now that's not to say that this isn't GOOD, but this episode felt like the necessary step in order to get us closer to what will be a dramatic conclusion to many of our current storylines.  At least for this first half of the season.

We continue to see the "bond" if you will between Carol and Daryl, as he joins Carol in her pursuit of...well, that's not entirely clear.  To Daryl, she says that she wants to do a sweep for the still missing Negan but we definitely get the impression that there's more to it than Negan.  Nevertheless, Daryl will be damned if he allows her to venture off on her own and get herself killed so he goes along with her.  It's during this outing that they have a bit of a heart to heart and Carol insinuates that she knows that there's something brewing between Daryl and Connie.  Daryl, true to form, denies that there's anything there.  Nevertheless, Carol advises him that even if he's not thinking about going that route, he SHOULD be considering it because he cannot live the rest of his life living like a recluse with dog as his only companion.  Daryl considers it but agrees to least not in this episode.

Ultimately, we end up finding out that Carol's adamant desire to venture out had nothing to do with Negan but everything to do with Alpha and trying to find her.  When pressed, Carol tells Daryl that her goal was to come out and destroy Alpha's walker horde.

Care of TV Line
Huh?  I have to say this kind of behavior from Carol was really disappointing because this whole "plan" seems so lofty, ill advised and reckless from such a seasoned warrior such as her.  Daryl indicates that he feels similarly but at the same time, abandoning his best friend to her own devices is the last thing he wants to do.  Instead, he sticks by her and tells her that if they're REALLY going to do this, they need to be very smart about this because they're putting their communities at risk by challenging Alpha.  Eventually, they make their move but are quickly separated and become at risk of being overrun by a portion of Alpha's horde.  It's at this moment that Daryl, in a moment of slick cunning, incapacitates a walker and uses their guts to cover himself and essentially mask himself among the incoming herd.  It works but when he reunites with Carol, he discovers that Carol has taken a Whisperer hostage to bring back to Alexandria.  Daryl KNOWS that this can only lead to some serious ramifications but it's too late now, especially since this whisperer now KNOWS who they are.

At the same time, in a bit of a goofy blooper reel kind of format, Negan is the odd man out, trying to fit in with his captors at the Whisperer camp.  Beta is clearly VERY threatened by Negan, all to Negan's amusement (which is awesome for OUR amusement of course).  Alpha however, tells Beta that he needs to test him and ultimately, it's her word so...he obliges her.

Care of Lyle's Movie Files
Via this wacky sequence, we see the many ways Beta tests Negan including digging a hole, killing a boar and scalping walker skin.  The whole montage is silly (which is what it's MEANT to be), with its kooky music, not to mention jarring considering this a show STEEPED in seriousness and drama.  To be confronted with this scene sequence is definitely...different.  Ultimately, Beta doesn't warm to Negan at all (despite all his humorous one-liners, surprise surprise) and he attempts to leave him in a precarious enough situation within the horde that would kill most men.

MOST MEN.  Negan is clearly not MOST MEN and as a result, he strolls right through the Whisperers (in SUCH a freaking cool scene), in his leather jacket, covered in walker blood and walks right up to Alpha, ignoring Beta.  He formally introduces himself to Alpha and pledges his undying allegiance to her and an offering of any information she wants on Alexandria and Hilltop.

So the question is: Is Negan serious?  Or is he playing the LONG con?  There is a part of me that thinks he is playing the long game however, a larger part of me thinks that they may play to the comic source a little by being all on board...until he perhaps gets a better glimpse to the type of abuse that Lydia was subject to by Alpha.  Let's not forget that Negan's life was hanging in the balance because he rushed to protect Lydia from attackers at Alexandria.  Therefore, if he gets wind of the kind of physical and mental abuse Lydia had to endure at the hands of her mother, that may turn the tide for him and he potentially COULD be the one to attack Alpha from the inside (as it occurred in the comic).  But we'll need to see how this plays out further to determine that.

Care of You Tube
At the same time, things are going from bad to worse at Alexandria with more and more individuals falling ill to some sort of flu like ailment.  Dr. Dante appears to managing it all on his own, while Siddiq spends time with his baby girl CoCo, and deals with his further escalating PTSD.  We keep getting more and more glimpses to Siddiq's deteriorating mental state on account of...whatever happened the night of the pike deaths.  It's becoming more and more evident that there was SOME level of involvement from him on that fateful night that is accounting for all the guilt and flashbacks he's been having.  From what we can gather, it seems that in the next episode we will FINALLY get some answers as to what secret is haunting him and I have to say, I'm really not looking forward to reliving that awful moment in the barn.  But, considering how in the comic there is NO explanation as to HOW the whisperers gathered all our heroes, and HOW they went about killing them, I do appreciate the show (ie, Angela Kang) making the decision to "flesh out" this storyline so to speak and make us understand the WHY and the HOW.

Care of The Hollywood Reporter
Finally, in a piece that is exciting to me, we see Eugene continue his conversation with a mysterious woman/pen pal on the other end of the ham radio.  After casting aside all the formal, technical jargon, the two of them lower their walls (well, more so Eugene) and get to know each other better.  Eugene tells her that he's originally from outside Dallas, TX and she tells him how she was from a small town in Pennsylvania that Eugene was actually very familiar with.  It was actually kind of touching to hear two people sincerely bond and talk over these OLD memories at something so charming as an ice cream shop, something so safe and comfortable...and long gone in this awful, post apocalyptic world.  And frankly, I'm just happy FOR Eugene to be sincerely bonding and speaking to a woman who seems to value his conversation.  This is unlike Rosita who seems to LOVE to keep stringing men like Eugene along for amusement and in a fit of feverish delirium wanted to talk to Eugene over the ham radio, after totally being a b&*$h to him....even though he was essentially nanny dearest to her baby while she was working out.  Whatever Rosita.

Care of IGN

Frankly, Eugene's segment was probably the most exciting for me purely because of the probability of what's to come down the line (most likely in the second half of this season), based on the comic lore.  But, beyond that, the impression is definitely given that things are going to come to a head in the next two episodes, in major climatic fashion.  It's at the very least on the horizon.

The Walking Dead airs Sunday night at 9:00pm on AMC.

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