Many people waited for Valentine’s Day this year not only to share special moments with their significant others but also to see the return of The Walking Dead’s second half of season 6. And wow, did AMC deliver!
Watch out, zombie fans, this post is filled with spoilers so stop reading if you haven’t seen the episode yet.
The action picks off right where we left it. On the one hand, we have Alexandria overrun with walkers, as our heroes try to make their way out. On the other hand, we have three friends in a gas truck that get ambushed by Negan’s henchman.
Unlike previous episodes, where the main characters were scattered in and around Alexandria, everything comes together in this one. Rather than focusing only on the point of view of some of the most important characters, the episode gives each of them time to shine, as they reunite to do the same thing they’ve been doing for a few years now: Fight to the death against the undead.
It’s Daryl who steps up to the plate early in the episode as he fires a rocket-propelled grenade at the bikers who stopped him, Abraham and Sasha. One RPG shot is enough to kill Negan’s soldiers and to save Abraham and Sasha. This particular turn of events also tells us that the show’s creators will postpone our meeting with Negan for at least one more episode.
Meanwhile, back in Alexandria, Rick and the gang are trying to sneak through a zombie-filled area by wearing zombie guts in the hopes of fooling them. But the plan to quietly sneak out and regroup takes a turn for the worse – as expected – because of Sam. We knew it would happen. The scared kid freaks out, lets out a cry, and the nearest walker gets him.
Jessie, his mom, is taken next, as she screams in horror and agony – what mom could stay silent watching her youngest boy die like that? And so, on Valentine’s Day, Rick’s new sweetheart dies.
He doesn’t have a chance to think about it all yet, as he still has to save Carl and the others. Ron, Jessie’s eldest, manages to grab a gun in the ensuing chaos and shoots just as Michone puts her sword through his back, killing him in the process. That’s how Carl gets shot in the eye. And everyone is running all of a sudden. Don’t worry, Carl will survive, thanks to Denise.
The last time we saw Denise, she was taken by a lone Wolf gang member who eventually dies thanks to a combination of zombie bites and Carol’s shooting.
Uncertain of what will happen to Carl, Rick picks up his ax, exits the shelter and start swinging left and right driven by sheer anger. However, that’s enough to motivate the others to take action. And it’s not just the old gang out on the street who help Rick: Everyone else from Alexandria joins the fight, showing that when push comes to shove, they’re able to stand up for themselves.
We already know Carol is a fearless leader, but episode 9 also shows us a different side of Rosita. She’s organized, she’s focused, and she can do what’s needed in emergency situations such as this one.
Glenn and Maggie’s encounter is also heart breaking, especially since the episode was scheduled for February 14th. After a long absence, Glenn comes to rescue Maggie, but does so by putting himself in apparent danger and it seems like he’s done for… until Daryl and Abraham save the day by joining the fight with lots of heavy weaponry.
Many characters go through major transformations in Episode 9, including Rick, who finally… finally… realizes that he can start trusting people again. In the aftermath of the battle, he promises Carl that Alexandria will thrive again. And we can’t wait for the next Walking Dead episode to arrive.