Monday, February 29, 2016

The Walking Dead, Season Six, Episode Eleven: Knots Untie

Well, Richonne is all set, and now it's time to get back to the business of living.  The Walking Dead, despite being about surviving a zombie apocalypse,  has always been about human relationships and or human interactions. Last week we met Jesus, a beloved character from the comics for the first time.  When he first meet Darryl and Rick, Jesus thought they were up to no good and so didn't mention the fact that he comes from a community similar to Alexandria called the Hilltop.  Now that Jesus has broken out of his confinement, it's time to talk business and that means trade between the two communities.  He knows that the Alexandrians are well equipped in terms of guns and ammunition but less so in terms of food. With over fifty people to feed, food is quickly becoming a problem.

Rick agrees to travel with a group of Alexandrians to the Hilltop to see what can be arranged. Along the way, Abraham has the conversation of the night with Glenn, questioning if Glenn meant to make a pancake when he dropped the Bisquick. Glenn and Maggie are expecting and it seems that this is a planned child, much to Abraham's two condom wearing at a time astonishment.  Perhaps if he weren't sleeping with Rosita and daydreaming about Sasha, the idea of settling and raising a family wouldn't be so scary.

At the Hilltop, the leader Gregory turns out to be a massive douche.  Proving that Rick has indeed evolved, instead of bashing Gregory's head in and simply taking what he wants, particularly because the Hilltop only has spears and no guns, he sends Maggie to negotiate for them.  I gotta say, I loved seeing Maggie step up to the plate.  I loved watching her press advantage and outwit the douche who wouldn't stop coming on to her and calling her honey.  Yeppers, #teammaggie.

It turns out what Rick's group has to trade, is what they have always had - their strength.  When Gregory is stabbed by one of his own people, as a message from Negan, the leader of the Saviours that he is not happy with the food the Hilltop gives in order not to be raided, he knows his back is up against a wall.  The Alexandrians may not have much food, or medicine but they can fight and Rick knows this.  Rick suggests that they take out Negan's group in exchange for food.  Violence is an everyday thing to Rick who has very much come to have a kill or be killed mentality about the world. Covered in blood after killing Gregory's assailants he simply says, "what" in answer to the astonishment on the faces of the Hilltop people.

At the same time that Rick's group is preparing to go into battle, there's the looming issue of Maggie's pregnancy.  Maggie manages to get an ultrasound at the Hilltop and as luck would have it, their Doctor is an obstetrician. On the way back to Alexandria, Maggie and Glen share the photo of their unborn peanut with the group and each person takes a moment to reflect.  Bringing a child into the apocalypse is a scary undertaking no doubt but this child is also a very stark reminder of exactly what it is they're fighting for.  It's a return to some form of normalcy, to hope and to a future.

Even as there is excitement about the pregnancy, there's also excitement about our beloved Richonne. Now the cat is out of the bag and people are talking about the change in status of this relationship.  I liked watching Rick driving, reaching out to hold Michonne's hand and her smile in return.  I even liked Michonne stepping up to knock someone on their ass when they dared to step to Rick because this time she wasn't just a convenient weapon, she was a woman laying claim to her man.  After giving us what we all wanted, The Walking Dead had better not f*ck up Richonne.

It's been a really long time since Rick's group has suffered a major loss. Clearly, The Walking Dead is setting things up for a big confrontation and an epic season finale.  If the story line stays true to the comics (go and read them, no spoilers here) we are coming up to a huge loss. Knowing that something big is coming doesn't make it any easier.  All I can say is that if someone has to go out, please don't let it be Michonne, Glenn, Maggie or Carol. Everyone else as far as I am concerned is fair game.