AMC’s The Walking Dead
Directed by Lily Mariye
Written by Kevin Deiboldt
* For a recap & review of 11×14, click here.
* For a recap & review of 11×16, click here.
There are bodies everywhere at the building where Aaron and Gabriel are now explaining to Hornsby the supposed tale of what occurred there. Obviously they’ve got to lie a little. And Hornsby’s not buying the story right away. But Aaron and Gabriel stand firm, plus Daryl vouches for them, too. That doesn’t mean this is over. Hornsby wants “justice” and yet he works only for the elite in his community. Things are getting sketchy. How long can Daryl play along with this shit?
Princess and Mercer have been sleeping together a while. They make a very cute couple. Will that bond last when a wedge is inevitably driven between the survivors from Alexandria (etc) and those in the Commonwealth? It does seem like Mercer’s not quite brainwashed by the Commonwealth and isn’t happy with everything that goes on within their walls, however, he’s not quite willing to open up much.
What will it take for him to see the light?
Eugene gathers Connie and Kelly with him and Rosita. That’s when Rosita explains her experience with Daryl, sent to steal cash and the rest of the debacle. She’s haunted by it. She wants to let all the “good people” in the Commonwealth know the truth. After that, Connie and Kelly tell them about the list of missing peoples’ names. Obviously there’s a lot of bad stuff happening. They’ll need “inside access” to figure out more. That’s what gives Eugene a potential idea.
Ezekiel and Carol talk a little. He thanks her for what she did for him. He’s obviously hoping they’ll get close once more, yet she’s resistant. She can’t explain all the things she needs to do right now, only that they need to be done. Ezekiel remarks there’s “a lot more grey” here in the Commonwealth as opposed to being out in the wasteland, and it’s true. Out there, it’s very black and white: you kill zombies, you survive. Inside the Commonwealth, the shades of grey morality make it difficult to determine who can be trusted and who’s a snake lying in wait to strike.
Nobody’s safe around Hornsby. Rather than let his soldiers take care of a horde of zombies in the woods, he makes Gabriel and Aaron do the job. Naturally Daryl helps his friends. But the pecking order here is clear. Soon we see exactly where Hornsby’s taking his soldiers: they’re marching to Hilltop. Looks like we’re getting closer to that moment where we witness Daryl standing at the gates, looking for Maggie.
Ezekiel goes to Tomi, asking about a medical procedure done outside the regular Commonwealth system. They go so far as to steal medical supplies, getting caught before they slip out of the hospital. Although it’s no trouble: Carol’s the one to come for Ezekiel and Tomi. Then Ezekiel brings his supplies back to a makeshift veterinary hospital that’s actually a place for those in need to get medical treatment. The King continues to do good. Meanwhile, Eugene goes to see Max about digging into the Miltons and whatever else is going on, though she’s worried. He mentions Max’s brother and that resonates. Max goes to see Mercer, confronting him about the secrets. He just says it’s “part of the job” and blames himself for not paying enough attention to what was happening around him. Later, Mercer tells Princess that he killed two of his own men and covered it up. He doesn’t want to be that type of man, to let the Commonwealth corrupt him, but it may be too late anyway: “Maybe I‘m part of the problem.”
At the gates of Hilltop, Hornsby tells Maggie they’re looking for the folks from that building. He wants to have a look around so they can rule everybody there out as culprits. Maggie won’t allow that. Hornsby’s preparing for violence when Daryl chimes in, hoping he’ll be able to talk with Maggie. This is where we see the scene from earlier on as Daryl removes his helmet and speaks to Maggie, asking her to let the soldiers and Hornsby in for a quick check. So Maggie puts her trust in Daryl and opens the gates to Hilltop.
Hornsby pokes around Hilltop and finds a vehicle, curious if it’s the one that was at the building recently. Maggie says it just sits there. But Hornsby tries it out for himself. And he finds that it, indeed, does not start. Maggie takes this chance to tell Hornsby the Commonwealth has until sundown to do what they want, then they have to leave. It’s getting quite tense. A little later, we see young Hershel by his father’s grave and Hornsby starts questioning him, looking for info. Hershel’s too smart, he says nothing. Hornsby gives him that familiar hat; one he found “where all the bad things happened.” Elijah grabs him for touching Hershel, and this pulls out all the guns. A standoff. Nice to see Daryl take the side of his friends here, pointing his weapon on Hornsby and urging him to calm his soldiers. Thankfully no shots are fired. Hornsby’s ready to leave. But will he be coming back more violently next time?
Daryl isn’t going back to the Commonwealth. He lets the others know. They’re biding their time because something bad is definitely going down soon. Hornsby’s alerted by his soldiers that they’ve found something. What is it? It’s Leah’s camp. The soldiers take a look and Leah starts firing on them from the trees somewhere. Hornsby asks her to have a gunless chat. Leah’s willing to listen. Then, Hornsby says he has a job to offer. Wanna bet he’s going to send Leah to kill Maggie?