The Walking Dead 5.14 Recap

The Walking Dead 5.14 Recap

I like it when The Walking Dead throws me for a loop, but dang, man. Sometimes it's just plain heartbreaking. 

Be warned: Spoilers ahead.

Last week, I predicted something a little more action-packed for this episode, and I was right. There was some pretty epic zombie action, but also more of that gut-wrenching tension-filled drama where you know it's building up to something that's going to kick you in the balls later. There were at least two little "easter egg" signs of the coming beat-down: 

1) Noah and the architect guy, with the idea book. "This is the beginning." It was the beginning of Noah's extremely short-lived career as an architect, but it's also the beginning of what is coming with the Alexandians. 

2) Abraham at the construction site - there's a big metal sign there that says, "Something big is coming" right at the top. The sign probably literally refers to whatever pre-outbreak construction project was planned for the site, but I don't think the sign's wording and placement in that scene was accidental. 

TWD 5.14 - Abraham Ford

The moment I heard the dubstep blaring in Aiden's van, I knew it was his final episode. From the previews, I was skeptical about Eugene's future, and particularly so when he was protesting so much about going along on the supply run for the solar energy converter things. But the dubstep was Aiden's eulogy. I knew that prick wouldn't be coming back. 

The Rick + Jessie heat continues to build up, this time over a broken owl statue. Rick uses his keen CSI skills to discover that "nobody's seen anythang" and he and Pete spend a few minutes masking the ol' stink-eye behind some "let's be pals" small-talk. 

Speaking of Alexandria's least functional family, Sam clearly doesn't know what's good for him as he keep trying to bond with Carol. She's having none of it, of course, but tries to bribe him into fucking off with another batch of cookies. In the same way that she out-badasses most of the other characters on the show, she makes Rick look like a clueless punk by deducing that, a) Sam broke the owl statue, b) Pete is an abusive porch-dick, and c) the only way this can play out is for Rick to kill the miserable sonofabitch. 

The scenes with Abraham at the construction site felt kinda tacked on and out of place with all the rest of the shit going down, but it's fun to see Abraham at work and getting his groove back. I have the idea that maybe this is Abraham redeeming himself for his earlier failures with Eugene. He had a purpose then, and that purpose was stripped from him in a very brutal and devastating way. Abraham heading up the construction crew is a man finding his rudder again, and grabbing hold of that sumbitch while the motherdick storm blows on through. 

Father Gabriel's little crisis of faith also felt a little bit shoehorned, but it was absolutely necessary. I've been on the fence about that character for a while, but now it's pretty clear: he's a worthless scumbag, and when the shit goes down, he's going to be on the wrong side of it. I'm glad Maggie was there to hear it all, and I hope it's her that gets the honor of putting an end to that piece of human garbage. 

TWD 5.14 - Father Gabriel

The real show, though, was the multi-kill scene at the warehouse. With Glen in charge, everything looked clean and orderly, and for a few minutes there, it looked like they were going to pull it off and Eugene's big moment would come from something else entirely. Then they meet the Hurt Locker guy and Mr. Dubstep drops the bass on one of its grenades. Scratch Aiden, who gets skewered by shrapnel and then turns into a screaming Aiden-kebab. Tara gets dropped by head trauma from the explosion, and Eugene has to sack up and help his only real friend. Glen, Noah and the other Alexandria guy (Nicholas) go off the other way trying to find an exit they can secure, only to get trapped in a revolving door. Nicholas bails out, and Noah ends up getting ripped to pieces right up against the glass while Glen is more or less forced to watch. I'm guessing that Glen used fleeing Nicholas and taco-meat Noah as distractions to get the hell out of the revolving door, because he eventually does escape, throws Nicholas a well-deserved ass-whupping, and drives the survivors back to Alexandria.

Both of the warehouse deaths were extremely grisly, but Noah's death in particular was awful to watch. Not just because it was graphic and hilariously disgusting, but because of how Glen was forced to watch it while powerless to do anything to stop it. Sure, you feel terrible for Noah, who is getting literally ripped apart, but I felt twice as bad for Glen, who had to watch that happen to someone he cared about, inches from his face. That's really the first time Glen has lost someone in his charge, and I think it's going to be devastating to him for a long time to come. Also, I liked Noah. Him being with the group is Beth's final contribution, and it was really sad to see him go. 

In the end, it's kind of alarming how even admitted coward Eugene is more capable of noble acts of heroism and self-sacrifice than pretty much any Alexandrian we've seen so far. Aiden and the construction dude keep saying, "we have a system!" and that system of theirs seems to invariably involve cutting out on their friends at the first sign of trouble. Abraham takes on a whole goddamn swarm of walkers single-handedly when no-one else tries to rescue the woman who fell, but that's Abraham for ya. It took Tara getting injured for Eugene to find his balls, but I think he's going to be a more confident and capable person now that he's seen what he can do in a pinch. 

TWD 5.14 - Noah

Shit is gonna hit the fan when they get back to Alexandria. Deanna has just been warned by Gabriel that Rick and the Gang are apparently instruments of Satan, and now the scrounger team is showing up with one fewer Aiden than they left with. Now that she has the whole "false light of Lucifer" thing in her head, that's not likely going to go over well, no matter how many times she thanked Glen for punching that reckless ass-hat in the mouth. 

TWD has been ruthless with black men so far - T-Dog, Bob, Tyrese and now Noah all died tragic deaths. So did Morgan's son, apparently. And Morgan went nuts, and is now apparently wandering around on the hunt for Rick Grimes or something. And now Gabriel has been exposed as a cowardly, treacherous snake. I really hope Morgan makes more than a post-credits appearance this season and turns that shit around, because it's more than a little disheartening.

My prediction: Next week is going to be a little bit quieter and more talk-y, but it's going to be the last few tumblers falling into place so the whole thing can turn into one big shit-show for the finale. Looks like Carl finds out what puberty means, and there's going to be a lot of us-vs-them tension because of Aiden's death and Pete's domestic abuse, all made worse by Gabriel being a rat-fink. Hopefully Tara pulls through, but at this point, I won't count on it. 

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