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This season of The Walking Dead hasn’t been easy to digest. What started via an emotional blow slowly slogged via standalone episodes for unwell-known personalities, while the fan favorites licked their wounds and also the display dropped in ratings alengthy the way. Though the midseaboy finale bore some of these exact same markers, it ended through a genuine feeling of hope that perhaps the earlier half (returning in February) will be better. Maybe now all its productive groundwork will certainly pay off.

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People died, others escaped, one more was imprisoned, and also even more still plotted for something we’ve been anticipating given that the second episode ultimately occurred. In other words, just your typical midseakid finale during the time of walkers.


We begin at Hillheight through Maggie — still feeling the high from as soon as she and Sasha conserved the neighborhood from the Saviors’ walker strike — as she kneels by Glenn’s grave. The moments right here are brief; some might even wonder why incorporate them at all, yet it attempts to tie it back approximately in the end.


Making her daily peace at the gravsteustatiushistory.orgebsite, she then walks up to her lookout short article apeak the colony’s wood wall surfaces. Gregory calls up from below, suggesting she not let her heroics the various other night go to her head. She’s quick to speak to out just how he’s clearly bothered by how many type of of his own people seem to choose Maggie and also Sasha — the other perboy on lookout duty also pressures Gregory into providing Maggie her apple, because she’s pregnant.


Negan is liksteustatiushistory.orgise enjoying his management at Alexandria. Carl and Judith watch as he shaves in Rick’s bathroom, while he recommends always moving the blade versus the grain. We continue to see flashes of some of the characters: Daryl looks over that mysterious note and key he received one more time prior to breaking from his cell at The Sanctuary; Tara brings Oliusing (frightened however still established to watch over Judith) the lemonade mix Negan commanded her to prepare; Rick and Aaron arrangement to cross the lake of walkers in a canoe riddled with bullet holes; and Carl helps set the dinner table for a spaghetti supper after playing house via his tormenter.


The episode picks up in time directly where we last observed Rosita, Eugene, and Spencer returning from their bit excursions to discover Negan has actually arrived. As the one who can’t host a poker face, Eugene is on the verge of tears as he walks via the gates, while Spencer tries to make nice with the Saviors. He even retransforms among the women’s advances, yet Eugene is told to scurry off.


Carol is enjoying a much easier life. The last time we saw her was when she first entered Ezekiel’s Kingdom in the second episode, and she’s continuing whatever before semblance of a solitary presence she have the right to muster. Ezekiel and also Mbody organ can’t assist yet drop fresh fruit and vegetables at her doorstep. She catches Mbody organ prior to he leaves to quickly check on his wellness before letting him loose. But his continue to be is extended once Rictough, one of the warriors close to Ezekiel, arrives asking to soptimal to them both.


Rick and Aaron proceed their race throughout the lake prior to they capsize, and it’s not straightforward. Their canoe is taking on even more water than supposed as walkers reach for them. They make it to one more watercraft, however are captured off guard once a walker pops out from under the provides. Based on what we understand around walkers and water, they don’t swim, but one pops up from the water and brings Aaron right into the lake. So, it’s not all too clear what’s maintaining them afloat. Still, Aaron lives and also is able to swim to the massive boat in the center. (Last episode, the swarm made it seem prefer some sort of land framsteustatiushistory.orgork, yet it’s a watercraft filled through provides.)


Back at The Sanctuary, Daryl is trying to be as sneaky as he deserve to. He hears voices prior to water spills from around the edge, so he hides in a room filled via loosely lain garments and food. He quickly changes and also starts scooping peanut butter out of a jar with his bare hands once what looks choose chess pieces capture his eye.


The scene cuts ago to Rick and also Aaron, that discover among the stash of weapons and food a handwritten note that reads, “Congrats for winning however you still shed,” alongside a sketch of a middle finger. Rick remarks the just point this man must’ve ran out of is ammo, while Aaron notes the uptick in wind will certainly make it less complicated to drift back to shore on the boat.


Meanwhile, Daryl prepares to make his following relocate as he’s currently totally adjusted and utilizing a spoon to complete off the peanut butter. But before he goes, he grabs a hat and also flips over the chess table.


By this allude, Rick and Aaron have actually currently ridden the watercraft ago to their truck and also are loading provides right into it. Rick says he wouldn’t have actually blamed Aaron if he didn’t want to continue to risk his life to gather supplies for Negan, because any type of responsible perboy who’s been accustomed to their way of life would certainly object. He notes that also Michonne takes problem via his watch. But Aaron reminds him he was tbelow once Negan killed Glenn and also Abraham, so he understands they’re conserving stays by adhering to his requirements. “It’s giving up every little thing,” he claims, “but either your heart’s beating or it isn’t, either your loved ones’ hearts are beating or they aren’t.”


As they leave, the video camera shoots to the various other side of the lake, showing a pair of boots belonging to the mysterious figure who laid the traps.


We then inspect in on Michonne and her solo mission. She’s still aiming her gun at the Savior who’s driving her to check out Negan. Michonne tries to ask just how long she’s been with Negan and also why she was out on her own, however the woguy remains silent. Despite her threats, she ultimately puts dvery own her tools and also points her gaze at the road ahead. She remarks she’s not going to kill Negan this particular day, but she’s going to discover a method that will readjust just how her individual story ends.


At Hillheight, Enid is food preparation dinner via Maggie at the table when Sasha walks in transferring an apple pie. Maggie have the right to smell it under the covering and ravenously cuts right into it. Sasha mentions a guy in the nest made it for them as a thank-you for saving them from the walkers, while another suggested Maggie campaign for president of the colony. Maggie is already reasoning like a leader: She notes the nest demands writing tools for the youngsters and asks Sasha if Jesus have the right to go out and gain some. She lies by saying he currently went out on a run early on in the morning and also forobtained to tell Maggie.


Enid calls out Sasha as soon as Maggie leaves the room, saying exactly how she heard Jesus left yesterday. Sasha reiterates it’s for Maggie’s very own great to be maintained out of the loop; otherwise, she’d desire to help. Though it’s not the soundest rationale, she wants to keep the procedure small in situation any type of accountcapacity drops on others, which has been the very same frustrating logic maintaining Rick from acting. Enid retorts that Sasha isn’t alone and isn’t the only one who desires to check out Negan eliminated, however Sasha is steadfast and also claims they both have to defend Maggie.


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Rosita similarly desires to make a move, even if that implies her very own death. She’s sitting in the church at Alexandria, staring at the bullet Eugene produced her and also speaking via Father Gabriel. He presses her to explain why she must be the one to die, why she has to be the one to pull her cause and also gain recorded in the process. She notes that Aaron has Eric, Michonne and also Carl have actually Rick, and also Daryl’s a strong fighter. Gabriel brings up her connection to Sasha, and Rosita remains silent. Trying to dissuade her from her suicide mission, he assures they’ll uncover a way to win together when the right minute comes along — or they produce it themselves — yet they require her.


A brief scene continues Daryl’s escape route. He runs dvery own a hall, stopping just to slip previous an open up door via males distracted by gambling. He finds a much better weapon along the method in the create of a metal pole and also sprints onward.


Back at Carol’s home, Richard emphasized their advantage over the Saviors, which is the facet of surpincrease. He remarks Carol must be nsteustatiushistory.org to the people of violence and also fighting, however she sindicate responds with “You’re wrong,” while Mbody organ calls her the many qualified fighter in the room. For his part, Morgan’s unconvinced to sign up with Richard’s side because he doesn’t desire to kill; Carol doesn’t desire anypoint to perform via this whatsoever before. Ezekiel’s man suggests they’re conserving lives by taking resides, and also it’ll acquire also worse if they don’t act quickly. Before leaving, he cautions that whatever before blood is spilled by their inaction is currently on them. Carol, still, seems unfazed and also asks Mbody organ to tell everyone they’ve met that she’s left so no one else arrives at her dooraction.


At Alexandria, a still blood-stained Spencer walks right into his home to find it totally ransacked. On a small note, the computer system results provided in this scene made it scene choose a flashback sequence. So, it was a little bit jarring to realize it was a flash-forward, via Spencer now in a pair of khakis and also a blue polo, standing in front of a mirror holding a bottle of whiscrucial and also practicing exactly how he’ll say hello.


Defeated, Rictough currently walks in the direction of a “no camping” sign he knocks down to expose a camouflaged trailer. The inside is littered via gives, including his crate of empty milk bottles he was checked out moving earlier. He picks one up and flings it on the floor prior to taking a minute to wenable. The minute feels unvital, given Richard appears even more choose a background character, yet he’s fearful for the future of his house and also perhaps his trick hideaway will certainly have significance dvery own the line.


On the other hand, Spencer walks dvery own the street of Alexandria as soon as he’s quit by Rosita. Sitting on a bench, she asks if he has a hot day. He claims he wants to continue the good momentum he has actually via the Saviors by trying to gain closer to them, and also maybe someday — months or years in the future — they’ll attempt to fight ago. He then asks why Rosita started and then so abruptly ended their fling. Even though she admits she was simply making use of him for his body and occasional sweetness, he asks her for a no-strings-attached dinner. If you hadn’t already revisteustatiushistory.org the comics, this was another indication he might not make it back to have actually that dinner he promised.


But initially, we uncover Daryl escaping out of the very same door he tried in an earlier episode — just this time, tright here isn’t a gang of Saviors waiting to ambush him. As he fiddles via one of the parked motorcycles, a stray guard wanders over and tries to plead for his life. He guarantees to not sheight him or tell anyone he fled, saying just how he’s just among those people trying to obtain by. Taking no possibilities, Daryl swings his pole and bludgeons the male to death as Jesus runs into check out. “It ain’t just around gaining by, it’s about obtaining it all,” Daryl states. He grabs a gun that looks a lot like Rick’s pistol from the man’s holster prior to he and also Jesus ride off.


Approaching Rick’s residence, Spencer desires to soptimal with Negan however is blocked by among his guards, a woman called Arat. Negan ultimately makes a crack about how she shouldn’t be rude and also enables him to pass, excited by the whiskey in Spencer’s hand.


Back on the road, Michonne’s driver brings her to the wanted location. Up ahead, they can spot Negan’s Sanctuary and the walkers guarding it. The Savior claims, “We’re all Negan,” and warns that whatever setup Michonne is aiming for won’t work, because Negan will outnumber her. She advises Michonne to make this automobile completely disappear by burning it and also rolling it down a hill, in enhancement to making use of the silencer covert in the glove compartment. In a bit of a surprise moment, the electronic camera cuts out to a distance, yet we check out and hear Michonne shooting the woguy before she turns the auto about to drive residence.


Rick and Aaron lastly make it earlier to Alexandria and are recorded off guard by Negan’s men, that taunt them as they enter the gate and also make them wait as they sift through their offerings. Meanwhile, Negan is enjoying a drink on the porch via Spencer, toasting to the day when he gets himself a vacation residence in Alexandria. He mentions the only thing missing is a pool table, and Spencer points out the next-door neighbors across the street have one in their garage. Negan is thrilled by Spencer’s eagerness to please, but desires to stay exterior, so he has the table carried out to the street.


The men proceed to detain Rick, but rotate on Aaron once they discover the middle-finger message in their batch of provides. He tries to explain they didn’t create that, but the Saviors hold Rick at gunsuggest while they make their suggest by brutally attacking Aaron. Though Rick’s red, tear-splotched eyes are the exact same ones he supplied to have actually prior to exploding on an opponent, he watches helplessly. Aaron fans needn’t concern, but Spencer fans have to.


On the street, Spencer sets the pool table as the Alexandrians gather to watch. He mentions the real reason he involved see Negan was to talk around Rick. While he may not agree with Negan’s approaches, he says he understands he’s trying to acquire neighborhoods contributing to a greater good. But Rick, he says, doesn’t have actually the best history through adhering to the rules, nor was he the original leader. Spencer recalls just how his family all passed away shortly after Rick arrived, and also that his out-of-control ego will cause him to try and also take over as soon as aget.


He asks Negan to put him in charge instead, so he deserve to be the leader his mommy was. Negan, however, isn’t persuaded. In truth, whatever he simply heard verified Spencer doesn’t have actually any kind of guts, considering that he waited for a moment when Rick was ameans to slither in and also swindle the leadership of Alexandria amethod from him. As Rick is lastly enabled to collect a bloopassed away Aaron, Negan decides to see if Spencer has any guts at all — by cutting open his stomach in a moment comic-book readers have actually been mentally preparing for. However before, the hints were there: Negan applauds toughness and looks dvery own on the weak. So, when he asked why Spencer wasn’t brave enough to go and also take what he wanted — somepoint Negan advised to Dwight many times — it was the end of the Monroe family members.


He then asks someone to clean up the mess and also continues to taunt the silenced crowd via Lucille. Spencer’s death further pushes Rosita to her breaking suggest as she watches in angered horror, and she whips out her gun with the single bullet and also fires. Of course, we currently recognize Negan will certainly show up in later episodes, so the bullet gets lodged in Lucille.


Negan screams at Rosita for disfiguring his beloved weapon as Arat pins her to the ground with a knife. He picks up the bullet casing and concludes it was handmade, however doesn’t believe she was the one that made it. He threatens to reduced up her challenge, yet not if she squeals on whoever crafted the bullet. She insists it was her, leaning her cheek right into the knife as blood leaks from the cut. Negan commends her “badass”-ery, however is never one to let things slide — unmuch less it’s Carl. He tells Arat to shoot someone, and she turns and also fires at Oliby means of.


Rick and Aaron reach the scene in a rage, however are forced to swpermit it as Negan recounts how reasonable he is for bringing Carl earlier house after his assassicountry attempt, killing Spencer for trying to usurp him, and also offering him one much less mouth to feed by shooting Olivia. Rick spits out that the supplies are waiting at the gate and tells Negan’s guys to leave, yet Negan still wants the name of the bullet-maker. Tara tries to take the blame, yet Eugene chokes through tears that he’s the engineer. Negan takes Eugene as a prisoner, no doubt to improve his arsenal, and deems whatever Rick gathered for him as inenough — he’s in a “serious, serious hole.” He then departs, leaving Rick to knife Spencer in the head once he emerges from his pool of blood as a walker.


Later that night, Rick kneels over a little axe and the mysterious note in among Alexandria’s prison cells. Michonne walks in from the shadows and also embraces him. She claims she wanted to go via him and also Aaron on the run, but “had actually to go my method.” What she found made her realize she doesn’t want to perform things her method, yet their method (her and also Rick’s). Though worried about the Saviors’ sheer numbers, she isn’t swayed from her feelings. “We’re gonna save standing, so what carry out we carry out via that?” she asks. “How execute we make that intend something? We’re the ones who obtain points done. You said that.”


For the initially time in a lengthy time, Rick agrees and also falls into her adopt. After fading to babsence, the scene picks up through Maggie, who climbs as much as the same lookout post and also sees Rick, Michonne, Carl, Tara, and also Rosita getting here at the entrances. They join Sasha and also Enid, and also while the reunion is composed of some clichéd hugs and head nods, you couldn’t assist however come to be emotional watching Rick adopt Daryl after seeing him safe and also sound beside Jesus. His longtime friend hands him his gun, signifying the rerotate of the old Rick, though perhaps one a tiny much less impulsive and also a little even more strategic.


Negan’s biggest blow was making all these personalities feel cut off from each other, because — and also this is a paraphrased Harry Potter movie quote right here — they’re not much of a threat if they’re alone. Rick, Michonne, Carl, and currently Spencer and Rosita have actually all failed in trying to assault Negan on their own. But their arrival at Hillpeak means they’re prepared to merge colonies, and also a teaser trailer for the second fifty percent of seachild 7 confirms they’ll attempt and also baracquire a deal with King Ezekiel to rise their numbers.

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It’s a move many of us have been waiting for — however the first salso episodes were such a slog, you need to wonder if it was worth the wait. So much this season, we’ve been bogged dvery own via side stories that resulted in minimal payoff. Will following year’s return be just as taxing, or will certainly the momentum ultimately pick back up through the Rick we know and also love ago to his semi-normal self?


While you chsteustatiushistory.org on that, there’s an included risk to all of this. Just after the end credits, the episode revealed a last scene: The guy Rick and Aaron stole from at the lake complied with them back to Alexandria. His challenge is still concealed in shadows as he spies Father Gabriel on lookout duty, but his shoes give him away. The last minute is simply him walking in the direction of Alexandria’s front gate. I guess quickly we’ll learn what he supposed through that middle finger.