By Contributing Writer, Lady Cocotte
In my household, Sunday means one thing: a new episode of The Walking Dead! After last week’s rip roaring mid-season premiere I’m dying to see where they take us tonight. We start off at Rick’s house. Rick is getting suited up. Judith is playing. Michonne, in a towel and robe, is looking for toothpaste. And Carl is being a teenager. Other than the guns, walkers and one-eyed kid, it’s just your standard everyday homelife. Alexandria is back to business as usual. Rick and Daryl are heading out on a scavenger mission. Daryl questions Dr Denise about an item on her wishlist: orange soda (or, as she calls it, pop). “Tara was talking about it in her sleep, I think. Either she likes it or she doesn’t. But if she likes it, it would be a really nice surprise.” Aww, the doctor’s being romantic. They pass the remembrance wall on their way out. They’ve added quite a few names… Eugene gives them a map of agricultural supply places nearby. “Even if they’ve been cleaned out my bet is that the Sorghum would be untouched. That there is a criminally underrated grain that could change the game with our food situation from scary to hunky-dunky.” Rick is hopeful they’ll find food. Or people. “Law of averages gotta catch up.” Daryl isn’t sure adding members is a good idea. Not too long ago Rick was the one who didn’t trust outsiders. They’ve both changed since the walls fell.
Rick and Daryl come across a feed store advertising Sorghum. They open the rolling doors to find a delivery truck full of food and garden supplies. “The law of averages,” Rick states. They leave their car and head out in the truck. Daryl has them stop at an abandoned gas station. He finds a vending machine on it’s side. They can’t turn it so they chain it to the truck and over it goes. “Soda and candy? Why the trouble?” Rick asks. Suddenly, Rick is bumrushed by someone. Both Rick and Daryl draw their guns and the interloper freezes. He claims he was running from walkers and hit Rick by accident but his face is covered and seems sketchy. Rick believes him and puts his gun away. Daryl is wary. Rick asks who the guy is. He finally pulls his face scarf down. “Paul Rovia but my friends used to call me Jesus.” He claims he’s alone and as he trots away Rick yells out, “How many walkers…” Daryl stops him. “Not this guy.” Once Jesus runs off, Daryl questions Rick about asking the questions. “He was clean. His beard was trimmed. There’s more going on there.” Oh, good. Kind Rick may be back but he still has his wits about him. Then gunfire breaks out around the corner. They run over to investigate but it’s just firecrackers. Daryl looks at Rick. “He swiped your keys, didn’t he?” They race to the truck but Jesus is already pulling away. “Sorry!” he calls out.
Michonne is patrolling the walls. She sees Spencer head into the woods with a shovel strapped to his back. She follows him because, Michonne. Spencer is waiting for a walker to make it’s way through the brush. Michonne glides over and takes the walker out. Michonne asks him why he’s there. “I walk after my shifts. Been doing it for a while. You’re the first one to notice.” Michonne asks about the shovel. He doesn’t answer. He takes off and Michonne goes with him. Carl and Edith are also in the woods. She asks him why they’re out there. “Because we’re kids. It’s what kids do.” “We’re not kids,” she tells him. They hunker down under a tree to read comics (because they’re not kids). Then they hear footsteps. It’s just Spencer and Michonne trudging along. After they’ve passed, Edith admits that she doesn’t want to go into the woods anymore. Carl says ok and stomps away. He’s being kind of a jerk but he did just get shot and lost an eye so I guess we should cut him some slack. Edith wordlessly follows him. They come across a walker. Edith wants to run but Carl says, “Michonne is out here. We’re not leaving it.” He calls the walker over. As it gets closer, they both have a strong reaction. Carl tells Edith to go home. “We should kill it,” she shoots back. “This is bullshit. It should be dead.” He stops her and tells her to leave. “We’re not killing it.” She doesn’t understand what he’s doing but eventually runs off.
Rick and Daryl run after the truck. They come across the vending machine that has finally disconnected from the truck. Daryl breaks into it. He pulls out some soda and tells Rick, “This is a special request from the doctor.” “Whatever she wants…” Rick rasps. “She saved Carl’s life.” As they share a punctured soda, Rick explains that there might be good people out there who deserve to be in Alexandria. “What, like this guy?” Daryl asks. “No. Not this guy.” And with that they start running again. Eventually they see Jesus changing a tire on the truck. They sneak around and pounce on him. Jesus fights them off. He has amazing skills. Like special skills. They only get the best of him when they pull their guns. “You gonna shoot me over a truck?” They get their keys back and tie Jesus up. He can’t believe they’re going to leave him there. “The knots aren’t that tight. You should be able to get free… after we’re long gone,” Rick explains. Jesus wants to talk but they toss him a soda and climb into the truck. Rick seems to be having second thoughts but Daryl is happy to go. “So long, you prick!” he shouts as they drive away.
As Rick and Daryl drive towards home, they start to hear banging on the roof. “That son of a bitch is on the roof!” Daryl cries in frustration. Rick comes to a hard stop and Jesus flies off the roof. He takes off running and they chase after. Daryl chases him on foot while Rick deals with some nearby walkers. Jesus makes it into the cab of the truck but Daryl is right behind. As they scuffle, a walker appears behind Daryl. Jesus pulls a gun on Daryl and says, “Duck.” Daryl does and Jesus shoots the walker. They continue to wrestle and Jesus’ foot kicks the truck into reverse. It starts rolling towards a lake. Finally Daryl and Jesus notice. They jump out but Jesus doesn’t get far enough away. As the truck rolls backward into the lake, the open door hits Jesus on the head and knocks him out cold. Rick runs over just in time to see all of their supplies sink to the bottom of the lake. Rick asks Daryl if he’s ok. “Yeah. Law of averages… some bullshit, man.” Daryl is prepared to leave Jesus where he lies but Rick points out he did save him. “He ever pull a weapon on you?” Daryl agrees to leave him in a tree, out of reach of walkers.
Spencer and Michonne keeping walking through the woods. Michonne tries to get Spencer to go back but he yells, “My family is dead. That’s not home. It’s just where I live.” He’s starting to sound like Edith (pre-Glenn). Michonne tries to reason with him but he claims he has “something to take care of” before he can even think about having a life. Michonne offers to help but he won’t let her. And then they hear a noise. Michonne pulls her Kitana but it’s just Carl, leading a walker towards them. Michonne freezes then turns to Spencer in concern. Spencer removes his shovel. “I thought I saw her that night. I thought I did.” He pulls out his blade. “I did.” And there is Deanna. Walker Deanna. Michonne grabs her and holds her for Spencer. He tries to look into his mother’s eyes while she’s trying to eat him. He puts the blade behind her head and stabs. As he cradles his lifeless mother in his arms, Michonne’s eyes fill with tears. Spencer looks at Michonne and explains, “So that’s why I was out here.” Michonne carves a D on the tree where Spencer has buried his mother. Spencer feels lost. All of his family is gone. “I’ve been out here chasing you all through the woods,” Michonne informs him. “You still got family. You still got a home. Let’s go…” And they do.
Rick is driving a car they found. Daryl is in the backseat next to an unconscious Jesus. Jesus keeps slumping over onto Daryl and it’s making him crazy. Rick says Jesus needs Dr Denise. Daryl grudgingly agrees. Rick doesn’t believe Daryl would have really left him. “I woulda. Right up in a tree. I woulda.” Rick still doesn’t believe him. “No. I know. Almost as soon as we got to Alexandria you got it. You saw. You, Michonne, Glenn. You all tried to tell me. So… shut up.” He swerves the car so Jesus falls on Daryl again. “And I’m finally listening,” Rick says, as much to himself as to Daryl. They pull up to Alexandria after dark. Daryl reminds Rick of when Rick told him they shouldn’t be adding people. “You were right.” “Nope,” Rick counters. “I was wrong. You were right.” And with that they drive through the gate. They’re home. They carry Jesus to the infirmary and wake up Dr Denise and Tara. They explain that Jesus needs help. Daryl makes a point of adding, “He ain’t staying, though.”
Carl is on the porch with Judith, showing his sister the North star. “If you get lost at night, just find that star.” Michonne interrupts. She asks Carl about his day. He tries to avoid the conversation but she won’t let it go. Michonne warns him that he should have left Deanna or killed her. “No, that’s stupid,” he tells her. “I wasn’t going to leave her out there like that. You wouldn’t… I couldn’t kill her.” Michonne asks why. “Because it should be someone who loved her, someone who’s family. And I… I’d do it for you.” Michonne looks at Carl with love and respect. She has a family. She has a home. They hug and she whispers, “Me too.”
Rick collapses on his couch. It’s been a long day. Michonne joins him. They watch Judith asleep on the baby monitor. She asks where Daryl is and when Rick tells her he’s watching over a guy she says, “You found a guy?” “Crazy day,” he responds. He doesn’t want to get into it so he asks Michonne about her day. She’s also too burnt out to talk. Rick pulls out some mints. “Oh, got you something.” She laughs and asks if it’s instead of toothpaste. “Uh huh. Well, I do have a crate of toothpaste for you. It’s currently at the bottom of a lake.” She gets mock-serious. “Oh, so you had a DAY.” Rick laughs and pats her hand. Except now they’re holding hands. And looking at each other. Is this happening? Is this really happening? Yes! Yes it is! Now they’re kissing. Oh my god, they’re kissing. For reals. They stop kissing and start laughing. But now they’re kissing again. This is really happening! I’m getting butterflies. Rick and Michonne are kissing! And now they’re asleep in bed, naked. Post-coital naked. OMG, OMG, OMG. A voice calls out, “Rick! Rick, wake up!” They both spring for their weapons. Naked. Jesus (not naked) is standing at the foot of the bed. “We should talk,” he tells Rick.
Next week: Carl pulls a gun on Jesus. “What the hell are you doing in our house?” Jesus tells Rick, “We got off to a bad start.” Abraham, Daryl and some others load into the motorhome and drive off. A big group of people we don’t know walk down a road. Jesus tells Rick, “Your world is about to get a whole lot bigger.” They see an overturned car and Daryl warns, “It’s wrong.” Rick handcuffs Jesus. They walk down an unfamiliar hallway. Rick has a gun to Jesus’ head and says, “If this is a trick it won’t end well for you.”