Spoilers. You know the drill.
Well the drill is kinda busted in this episode. Perhaps I was already on a down streak after I stopped the Oscars just to watch this week’s episode, but it left me feeling a little dull. This was not completely unexpected. The shift also happened in the WD comics as we went from looking for a place to survive to several communities fighting for dominance.
Jesus is basically now trying to open the lines of communication between Alexandria, which I guess it’s what our team of survivors call themselves, and Jesus’ own group: the Hilltop. It should be interesting to know that the Hilltop has survived just by being a farming community that ran out of ammo a while ago. I say it should but, I was feeling less and less thrilled about them as we get to know them. Jesus wants our survivors to think that the Hilltop trades to survive.
They don’t, they just pay a tax to the Saviours so they don’t get killed. The Saviours are Negan’s group. We haven’t met them yet (ok except for that biker group but they’re history). The idea, I guess, is to build anticipation. The Hilltop’s leader is Gregory. Or so we think. He’s an asshole that doesn’t seem to be interesting in trading with Alexandria.
But as a group returns from paying tribute to Negan, hell breaks out when one of them, Ethan, delivers a message which is simply to stab Gregory. Rick reacts and kills the dude, which immediately brings the Hilltop down on our survivors… Oh wait, that’s right they’re not really fighters. So Rick and his group stand their ground as Jesus tries to placate the situation. The Saviours have hostages. And demand more provisions.
With this new development, Maggie realizes they have the upper hand and wants half of the provisions from the Hilltop in return for taking out Negan. Are we thinking of ourselves a little too kickass? Yes, Rick’s group has survived everything thrown at them but by the skin of their teeth. They are not invincible. They’ve lost people along the way.
We got just basically an introduction to a larger world and its politics. I’m not crazy about this shift because it’s the time that the comics also lost me. I’m hoping for some improvements on the series, but I’m not too thrilled about this start. I didn’t like this episode. I dread the ones that will come after, if that’s how they’re going to be from now on.
- We’re in the build-up-to-Negan phase. But so far, there’s no anticipation.
- The Hilltop resembles very much Alexandria when our team first met them. So, is Rick’s team a bit… predatory? Well, we know that Alexandria got hit pretty bad with the Zombie Herd… But still.
- Rick’s group’s edge is… guns? That runs out, I hear. Very, very quickly. They can’t hold that for long.
- Abraham’s drama of finding himself apparently involves sleeping with Rosita but flirting with Sasha? Am I reading this right? This is not going to end nicely.
- Literally, the only fighter worths his salt that the Hilltop has is Jesus. Jesus’ style is evasive. He’s not much for offensive might. He’s still a terrific asset for hit and runs.
- Gregory is uninteresting, chauvinistic and uncharismatic. Not quite sure why Jesus stays there.
- Maggie is the diplomat and the negotiator, you could say she was trained by Deanna but has the interests of Alexandria in mind.
- Maggie and Glenn find out that the Hilltop’s doctor, Harlan, is an obstetrician. They finally see their baby via ultrasound.
- Daryl does not reunite with his crossbow yet. Yes, I know I always say that.
That will do for now.