I liked the finale a lot. Cap, do you still feel like Eugene is beyond redemption? It's interesting to me that sabotaging the bullets WASN'T his long-term plan, but something he came up with after being inspired by Father Gabriel. (Which is a nice way of making Gabriel instrumental in the turnabout, too -- inspiration is his superpower.)
When Rick slashed Negan's neck, I was dumbfounded. I really thought he was dead. I heard someone on Twitter ask why Rick thought a slashed throat was a way to incapacitate Negan, but from what I understand, that's not what he was trying to do at the time; the decision to save him came after he had downed him.
I'll be interested to know if we'll see Dwight again; I expect he'll eventually become one of Rick's crew, rather than living at Hilltop.
Another great touch -- seeing Negan's "wives" dressed in flannels instead of those lacy club clothes was a great shorthand for showing that his corrupting & self-serving influence had been lifted. They'd just appeared in one shot earlier in the episode, and I was wondering why they were back...until their later appearance showed why they were included in the earlier scene.
Will we ever see Heath again?
Loved to see the Saltside women save the day, too.
So I'm hopeful that this finale presages a new era for Walking Dead...and interested to see how far things go with Maggie, Jesus, and Darryl. I see Jesus as a mitigating force on that side. But for a while, I'll be happy to see the towns join forces as they face a huge horde of zombies.
I didn't watch Fear -- maybe we'll catch up with it down the line, but Kathy & I could use a little break from The Walking Dead, and we'll just enjoy iZombie for now.
I was ... OK with the finale. Not great, but a relief that all of these Negan stories seem done with.
My wife was burned out enough by TWD's bad writing this season that she wouldn't let me watch Fear until the next night (and I had to talk her into it).
I do think we'll see Dwight again, possibly with Sherry. He's mid-level important in the comics.
Heath is important in the comics, too, but the actor playing him got a better gig (I've forgotten what) and wasn't available this season. I guess we have to wait until his new show gets canceled, or the producers decide to recast him.
I'm OK with waiting for the original actor, because TWD is an ensemble show and somebody with a different name could do what Heath is supposed to do. I haven't liked actor switches going back to Bewitched, where I wanted to shout at the other characters, "Don't you notice that someone else is pretending to be Darren?!??" It raises meta issues I'd rather not think about while trying to watch a show!
I was sorta glad to see the insurgent scene, because I've been saying since Negan was spared in the comics that it doesn't make sense that everyone would just go along with Rick when he decides his mercy outweighs his wrath. So in that sense I'm glad to see the issue addressed.
But I really don't want to see an Alexandrian civil war. Or anything that reminds me of Negan. Stick him in a cell and forget about him. Hell, recast THAT part and just never show him in anything but shadow, so the actor can go on and do different things. (Like Rampage, which he is in.)
And WTF is Jesus doing there? This is the "spare everyone" guy, and he's joining the "We want to kill someone" team? I hope there's more to the story, because that makes zero sense.
Oh, and raise your hand if you think Alden is gonna be "the widow's" next bf. Yeah, I thought so.
As to Eugene, as soon as Rick fell into that trap -- all along I was hoping he wouldn't, because it's just more evidence that he's a terrible leader -- I turned to my wife and said, "Eugene sabotaged the ammo." Why? Because there was no other way out. (And, weirdly, surrounded by bad guys, nobody does a thing. I would hit the deck and open fire. But no, TWD people just stand around waiting for the big plot twist.) So, unless the producers were going to wipe out the entire cast and start over, something had to go wrong for Negan, and that was the only thing big enough I could think of. So it had to happen. It's a bit silly that every gun blew up at the same time, but hey, it looked good. (Of course, Eugene could have mentioned this to Rosita and Daryl, but maybe he hadn't decided yet.) Whatever, I guess I have to forgive him.
To sum up: I wasn't thrilled, but the episode got the job done and maybe next year the show will perk up a bit. We've got the Whisperers and the Commonwealth coming up, and both of those scenarios are more interesting than Negan.