Here's the SDCC trailer. Discuss!

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* I don't recall the houseboat bit in the comics. So if it is Starton, he's a new character. Like everyone else, I can't think of anyone it might be.

I guess it could be one of the coastal women, but why would one follow Rick to the houseboat and back again? They need to be drawn into the budding conspiracy for plot reasons (they have weapons).

I suppose it could be one of Negan's men shadowing Rick to make sure he's following orders, but why make a big deal out of that? Unless it's Dwight, looking for an opportunity to do what he does in the comics (which I won't spoil here).

Heath hasn't been heard from lately, but he doesn't need to sneak around.

* Also, what is up with that Kingdom guy and his hidden clubhouse? He doesn't seem terribly stable.

* I don't think it was Jesus who slipped the motorcycle key and note under Daryl's cell door. I have a pretty good idea who it was.

* Anyone want to field why Michonne shot the red-headed Savior? (I didn't know she did, but my wife said we were shown a muzzle flash which I evidently didn't catch.) The obvious answer to what she was doing alone out there was running away. She could have been suicidal, but why drive away to kill herself? I'm a little baffled by the whole bit.

GREAT MINDS THINK ALIKE DEPT.

Rob Staeger (Grodd Mod) said:

  • I really liked the reunion at Hilltop...at first. But then, as we saw shot after shot of the cast, it just dragged for me. It felt a little too much like a bunch of hobbits jumping on a bed.

As that reunion dragged on, the camera moving from smiling face to smiling face to smiling face without adding any information, I turned to my wife and said "This is like the ending to Lord of the Rings!'

I think Michonne shot the Savior because she basically asked her to. I'm not sure if she was actively planning suicide on her solo trip -- Dwight went on a solo mission a few weeks ago, so they're not unheard of in Negan's community -- but I think she saw that her number was up when Michonne got the better of her, and decided that among her options going forward, it was the one she preferred. Possibly it was a matter of conscience -- if she survived, she'd have to tell Negan what happened, and more deaths would inevitably be on her hands. That's why she told Michonne to destroy or sink the car -- to remove any evidence that Alexandria had anything to do with her disappearance.  (She'd probably also get an awful punishment herself, for leading Michonne to the camp. Death, or the iron? Might as well let the nice lady with the gun do the job quick.)

And as for the ID of the man in boots being Dwight -- that's a good call. I'd totally forgot about his part in the upcoming chaos!

“I don't think it was Jesus who slipped the motorcycle key and note under Daryl's cell door. I have a pretty good idea who it was.”

Tracy thinks it’s Jesus, but I’m with you.

“Anyone want to field why Michonne shot the red-headed Savior?”

I’m not so certain the redhead was running away, but Michonne definitely shot her. Why? What I took away from it was that they both knew she had no choice. The redhead “was” Negan, after all.

I guess that's it, then. My mind was stuck on Redhead not answering the question, "What are you doing out here alone?" My first thought was running away, my second was suicide. I guess there was no significant answer, and that, as you guys say, Redhead knew she was doomed and preferred death by Michonne to death by Negan.

I'm current on the comic book but don't recall the Leslie William Stanton character.  My guess is that whoever wrote the series of messages at the houseboat is also the stalker in the boots. It almost seems like those messages could have been intended as bait to draw someone in. And the final message, "you won, but you still lost" points to some kind of game he might be playing.

I'd recommend that approach, myself. I've taken to reading TWD in 12-18 month installments. If you're waiting anyway, why not wait until the whole arc wraps up?

Rob Staeger (Grodd Mod) said:

I'm only one volume behind on the trade paperbacks -- volume 26, "Call to Arms." I might hold off until volume 27 is released, but that's apparently not until March 7 -- and since that's called "The Whisperer War Part 1," I might even hold off longer than that, and tackle the whole war at one time. 

Detective 445 said:

I'm current on the comic book but don't recall the Leslie William Stanton character.  My guess is that whoever wrote the series of messages at the houseboat is also the stalker in the boots. It almost seems like those messages could have been intended as bait to draw someone in. And the final message, "you won, but you still lost" points to some kind of game he might be playing.

Spoilers for the 2/19 episode of Walking Dead!

It looks like you were right, 'Tec -- although I'm not clear on the gender of "Boots." From the way they filmed it -- avoiding hands or any other gender clues -- I was already guessing female.

Regardless, it seemed a convoluted plan to get more supplies, when there were supplies to be had on the houseboat. The plan required that the Scavengers be able to follow whoever got the supplies (how did they, with no vehicle?), were able to sneak into whatever fortifications they were led to, were able to convince someone in those fortifications to do what they want without guns (instead of, I dunno, that guy just yelling for help or all of them being discovered by someone else just taking a walk) and that others would come for Gabriel instead of just writing him off. Frankly, it's a pretty stupid plan, and one that works (and works out in Rick's favor) only because the writers made it work, not because it makes sense. At least it didn't to me.

It could be that this episode was an entirely TV writers' invention. I don't recall the Scavengers being in the comic book -- well, not these Scavengers, anyway. There was a group of that name around issue #75 that consisted of six people, led by a guy named Derek, who came to the Alexandria gates and demanded entrance or their sniper would shoot Rick. Turns out that's a pretty dumb plan (how DID these people live so long?), as Rick's sniper takes out Derek's sniper. (As if the entire community of Alexandria would give up because they threatened to shoot Rick. Get real, idiots. I'D shoot Rick before I let you in.) The Scavengers open fire and Rick's group kills them all.

As to these Scavengers, as they are called on Talking Dead, I don't recall anything like them in the comics. Hence, a done-in-one entirely written by TV writers, and it shows. Just filler, and standard TV-writer filler at that. IMHO.

Did anybody else get a "Star Trek" vibe from the Scavengers? Oh, look, a strange, alien society that speaks in weird slang and make Kirk Rick fight someone in an arena. I could almost hear the Original Series' "fight music" while Rick was gladiating.

At least the undead gladiator was cool looking.

Incidentally, isn't it a little early in the apocalypse for people to forget how to speak English and adopt strange, slangy shorthand? Whoever the Scavengers are, they were ordinary Americans just two or three years ago (judging by Judith's age). I would think that would take a couple of generations of isolation, at least. More stupidness from TV writers.

And as long as I'm nitpicking, how did the Scavengers manage to build perfectly neat, 18-foot walls of garbage without power or vehicles?

And I sure hope they have antibiotics in Alexandria that Negan didn't take. That's a nasty cut on Rick's leg and a puncture wound on his hand. He probably needs a tetanus shot.

Have to agree on all of this, Cap. If you completely suspend disbelief the new group is "alien" in a novel way. I had the same thought about Rick's wounds, immediately.

Yeah, I agree as well. There's always some suspension of disbelief required to buy into everyone being expert marksmen and things like that, but this took it to a new level. I see the Star Trek reference in hindsight, but at the time I was thinking Road Warrior all the way with the misfit band of Scavengers and their weird fashion choices and devolved language. And yes it's way too soon in the apocalypse for this sort of society to have developed. But I guess Rick needs an army so now he has one. 

I think Talking Dead idenitified the boot wearer as the woman that Gabriel held the knife to.  The house boat thing makes no sense. The Scavengers needed two strangers to do the work that they couldn't do with all of the weapons and resources they have at their disposal? 

I'll forgive all of that stuff though because of the few excellent character driven scenes. Especially the reunion between Carol and Daryl. Good stuff.

The Scavengers were ridiculous and Star Trekky -- bad haircuts mean aliens! -- but I kinda loved 'em for it.
 

So now Rick has numbers. Not enough, though, even with the Hillttoppers who volunteered. Plus, we've spent a lot of time on The Kingdom. Would we have done that if they weren't going to get involved? So I expect The Kingdom to join. But what's going to change Ezekiel's mind?

My guess is Negan's men are going to kill young Benjamin. I don't recall him from the comics, plus Ezekiel's taken a shine to him, plus he's terrible at everything. So he'll do something dumb and get himself killed, and Ezekiel will decide to join to avenge him. After all, the kid is naive and optimistic -- a death sentence on this show.

That's not how it plays out in the comics, where Ezekiel is more of a hawk than Rick, especially with the surprise he's got. That will probably happen on the show, too, but we've already deviated enough that I doubt that will be the deciding factor.

And at this pace, will we get to the war before the end of the season?

What do y'all think?

Gave up after the mid-season hiatus - well, after the first couple episodes after that - so Rick finally starts getting his mojo back?
Way too late.
There's no-one left (almost) I care about and I'm sorry to say I've been, on reflection, bored for quite a while.
Had it's day.
Sorry.

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