Can you believe The Walking Dead finale is just a week away? After the events that transpired tonight in "Us," I guarantee we're going to be shaking our fists at the TV screen next Sunday and cursing AMC for the fact that we'll have to wait months to see what happens in season 5. I've done my fair share of criticizing this show's somewhat inconsistent quality over the seasons, but I can't deny that I always, ALWAYS come back for more.
If you're caught up on the latest Walking Dead (in other words, spoilers ahead), here's what went down in tonight's episode:
We kick things off with Glenn, Abraham, Rosita, Eugene, and Tara walking the train tracks, and Eugene sharing the mind-blowing theory that maybe it was the zombie plague that killed off the dinosaurs. Oh Eugene. Thank you for periodically bringing the nerdy comic relief during this entire episode, because after last week's Lizziepalooza, we needed it.
They make their way to a pitch-black, walker-infested, thoroughly nightmarish train tunnel, at which point Abraham regretfully announces his group is going to have to take a pass on account of their mission to keep Eugene alive and all. Tara, who is racked with guilt over her past alliance with the Governor, will literally follow Glenn into hell to try and make it up to him, so she's game. She's also lame, thanks to being shoved by Abraham earlier in a walker-scuffle, at which point her knee stopped working. Isn't this the exact same girl who managed to randomly twist her ankle in a previous episode? I guess every horror show needs a female with some sort of sprained ligament.
Tara's knee injury doesn't make it easy for them to make their way through the tunnel, but the massive collapse, chunks of debris, and crowds of trapped walkers make it worse. Where did all these walkers even come from? Tara naturally gets her leg trapped in the rocks, 127 Hours style, and just when it seems like the two of them are going to be zombie chow once Glenn runs out of ammo (by the way, they would have been, like, PERMANENTLY DEAF after his second shot), the calvary shows up in a dramatic silhouetted scene of six people raining gunfire into the walkers. It's Abraham's group! And Sasha and Bob! And who's this sexy vixen in the Lara Croft costume striding toward Glenn? MAGGIE.
A legitimately sweet reunion ensues. Awwwww. Followed by an ominous scene where Glenn lets Maggie burn her own photo since she's never going to be apart from him ever again. So touching! Except for the part where it's also spooky and filled with foreshadowing and downright weird. It's not like you can just print a new one at Walmart, MAGGIE.
(Also let us muse on the strange fact that Maggie apparently gives zero fucks about her sister who she's neither asked about nor written zombie-blood-messages to.)
Comics-readers know Eugene isn't likely to be quite who he claims to be, but not only does he have an entertaining personality, he's a straight-up decent guy for sending Rosita back to the tunnel. Props to your nerdy game-speak, your pitifully adorable crush on Tara, and your fine mullet, sir.
Elsewhere, Daryl's on the road with Joe's gang, learning about the code they live by: when you want something, you claim it. Daryl butts heads with a particularly scummy gang member, Len, a terrible neckbeard who nevertheless gains our sympathy a bit after he lies to the group and they beat the shit out of him. The next day, Len's corpse lies on the ground (an arrow just left in his skull like this is Ever-Replenishing Arrow World or something) and Daryl moves to cover him with a sheet -- then, disturbingly, doesn't.
The side story going on with Daryl and Joe's gang is pretty interesting. In many ways, these are Daryl's people. They represent the man Daryl believes himself to be, and it's easy to see him choosing to band together with these guys, adopting the point of view that staying in a group is all about efficiency and survival instead of friendship.
Of course, it's not quite so uncomplicated as running off with Joe's gang for a peaceful life of being the first to shout "CLAIMED," because Joe reveals that they're heading to Terminus. Not because they want sanctuary, but because they're looking for the 'stack of fecal matter' who attacked one of their group a while back. In other words, they're following Rick, Michonne, and Carl.
As for Terminus itself, we finally get a look at it when Abraham, Rosita, Eugene, Bob, Sasha, Tara, Glenn, and Maggie arrive. It looks cozy -- courtyard, a garden, flowers, laundry washboards -- except for the fact that it appears totally abandoned? Wait, not totally: there's a woman named Mary in front of a giant barbecue. "Welcome to Terminus," she says with a sweet smile. "Let's gets you settled and I’ll make you a plate.”
What did you think of tonight's episode? Any of my fellow comics fans feeling unsettled by that big-ass BBQ? Where are the rest of the Terminus dwellers? How far away are Tyreese and Carol? Where the hell is Beth? How long would you really walk around with half an uncooked, unskinned, contaminated-by-gut-bacteria rabbit, anyway?
Image via AMC