Gregory ain't gonna work on Maggie's farm no more.
At least, that seems to be the way things are going after "Go Getters," The Walking Dead's first Lauren Cohan-centric episode of Season 7. This week, we catch up with the recent widow as she recovers from pregnancy complications at the Hilltop colony, and grieves the death of her husband Glenn (Steven Yeun). Meanwhile, Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green) is experiencing her own grief over the death of Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) as she helps nurse Maggie back to health.
Hilltop seems like exactly the place they need to be right now, but Gregory (Xander Berkeley), Hilltop's sniveling leader, has other ideas. Gregory doesn't care about about Maggie's health (he doesn't even remember her name) and isn't interested in renegotiating the terms of his deal with Alexandria in light of certain Lucille-related events. He only wants to make sure that the Saviors don't find out Hilltop is aiding and abetting these people who killed so many of Negan's (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) henchman.
He even would have turned them over to the Saviors, if it wasn't for some quick thinking on Jesus' (Tom Payne) part. But Jesus finds the courage to stand up to Gregory by episode's end, and he removes Gregory from power. Jesus and Sasha hatch a secret plan to find the Saviors' hideout, and Jesus jumps into the back of a Savior truck as it leaves Hilltop with Negan's offering. Inside he's surprised by another stowaway: Carl (Chandler Riggs).
Carl got in the truck when he and Enid (Katelyn Nacon) arrived at Hilltop while the Saviors were paying a visit. Enid went inside the gates to be with her mother figure Maggie, and tie some balloons to Glenn's grave. Right before they separated, Carl and Enid shared their first kiss. Awwww, teenage love!
Keep reading for a more detailed breakdown of what happened in "Go Getters."
Baby's All Right
Maggie wakes up in Hilltop's infirmary looking at a bouquet of blue flowers. Dr. Carson (not the Dr. Carson who ran for president — this guy's an obstetrician, not a pediatric neurosurgeon, though he may also believe that the pyramids were used for storing grain for all we know) tells her that her illness was due to a separation of the placenta from the uterus, likely caused by trauma (you don't say!). The good news is that Maggie and the baby will be alright as long as she stays at Hilltop and chills out for the duration of her pregnancy.
She goes outside and meets Sasha. They go to visit Glenn and Abraham's graves — they've been buried in Hilltop's garden. Sasha gives her Glenn's pocket watch, which Maggie leaves on the grave as a sort of headstone. They have a good cry together.
"It feels like everything is wrong," says Sasha.
"Not everything," answers Maggie.
They're joined by Jesus, the nicest guy in the post-apocalyptic hellzone. He left the flowers by Maggie's bedside, since blue flowers inspire strength and calm. Now he has green flowers for the graves, which are for release.
Then Gregory, Hilltop's weaselly leader, charges in.
"Good God, you're finally awake," he whines. "You people said you got 'em all."
If you recall, Maggie and Gregory made a deal in Season 6 that led to this whole mess. The Grimes Gang would take out the Saviors in exchange for half of Hilltop's supplies (Negan-like terms, to be honest). They thought they wiped them out when they attacked the Savior's satellite dish hideout, but that was only a platoon, and Negan struck back in full force. Gregory's incomplete information led to Glenn and Abraham's deaths. And now here he is bellyaching about having these people inside his walls.
"I'm happy we could patch you up, but you need to go. Make sure you let 'Rich' know what we did for you," he says. He doesn't remember names — he calls Maggie "Marsha" — and doesn't even recognize that Sasha isn't a Hilltop resident. In thirty short seconds, he telegraphs his incompetence as a leader. This guy has absolutely no people skills. He notices the graves and shouts "Did you do this? We don't bury our dead, we burn 'em!" He frets that if the Saviors find out Maggie and Sasha are there, they'll think Hilltop and Alexandria colluded against them.
"We did," Sasha reminds him. Gregory, get it together, man. He tells them that since he's a good guy, he'll let them stay until tomorrow morning, but after that they have to hit the road.
Time Is Weird
It's hard to get a sense of when things are supposed to be happening this season. This seems to be happening a few days after Maggie and Sasha arrived at Hilltop at the latest, but events later in this episode seem to be happening weeks later. Since Negan came to Alexandria days earlier than the promised week for his first offering in "Service," that episode took place just a few days after Glenn and Abraham's deaths, which means that Dwight's torture broke Daryl was very quickly, so the events of "The Cell" happened in a very compressed timeframe.
Enid and Carl's arrival at Hilltop happens after the Saviors' visit to Alexandria, which means that Maggie had probably been at Hilltop for almost a week and nobody told Gregory what was happening. Criticizing The Walking Dead for being unrealistic is foolish, I admit, but the timelines and tempo aren't adding up for me this season.
Jesus Is Not a Leader of Men
Sasha and Jesus talk about what to do. Jesus says he'll try to change Gregory's mind, and Sasha's like "that's not good enough." She asks why Gregory's in charge and he's not.
"I'm not a leader," says Jesus, which makes his nickname very ironic.
Maggie arrives and Jesus leaves, and Sasha and Maggie discuss what they should do about staying in Hilltop. Sasha says Gregory is an idiot, and Maggie says he's a coward, which is more dangerous. I say he's both, which makes him an irritatingly formidable foe.
That night, they're woken up by fires and music coming from a fortified Gremlin car. The Saviors are showing the services they provide. Hilltop's gate is open, and walkers are streaming in. Jesus does ninja moves on the walkers while Maggie crushes them with a tractor, which she then uses to run over the car and put the music out. It's pretty rad.
The next morning, Gregory is day-drinking while Jesus implores him to not be the kind of garbage person who would let a pregnant woman fend for her life in the wilderness. Gregory reminds Jesus that he's the boss, and implies that Jesus doesn't have the fortitude to lead. Maggie and Sasha come into his office to pitch him on why he should let them stay, and he sexually propositions Maggie. Disgusting.
Then the Saviors arrive. Gregory tells Jesus to put Maggie and Sasha in a closest (as Enid knows, that's a great hiding place!) while he talks business with Simon (Steven Ogg), Negan's right-hand man. Steven Ogg is essentially playing the same creepy, menacing goon he plays on Westworld, which is pretty funny. That mustache can only play one type. The difference between the characters is that Simon doesn't like whiskey, while his cowboy on Westworld will kill for whiskey.
Simon tells Gregory that the people who killed Hilltop's former Savior representatives work for the Saviors now. Simon says that he's Gregory's Negan, which could mean that Simon is skimming a little something off the top for himself. Simon asks if there's anything else Gregory wants to tell him, and Gregory says "actually there is." He leads him to the closest to turn over Maggie and Sasha, but when he opens it, there's nothing in there but scotch. Jesus put them in Gregory's room. So now Gregory still has Maggie and Sasha, and no scotch.
As Simon is leaving, he tells Gregory to kneel. Gregory complies, and Jesus looks on like, "what a worm."
Jesus Takes the Wheel
Gregory is livid as Jesus lets the women out of the closet. They try to talk some sense into him, and he interrupts with, "Honey, I'm talking to Jesus." Wow, this guy.
Jesus has finally had enough, and says they're staying, or he'll tell of Hilltop about Gregory's deal with Alexandria, which would lead to Gregory losing his position. The way Jesus sees things going forward is that Gregory can continue to act like he's the top dog, but he's no longer calling the shots, because Jesus has had enough of Gregory's cowardly leadership. He's not putting himself in charge, just relieving Gregory of his duties. Gregory says that he'll continue to deal with the Saviors, and snivels to Maggie that Saviors can be reasonable. She punches him in the face and takes Glenn's watch out of his pocket — he'd picked it up off Glenn's grave. Terrible.
"This is our home now," she tells him, "so you're going to learn to start to call me by my name. Not Marsha, not dear, not honey. Maggie. Maggie Rhee."
It's a heart-tugging moment, Maggie claiming Glenn's surname as her own. Glenn will live on through her and the baby.
Jesus tells Maggie and Sasha that previously he just accepted that Gregory was in charge, but not anymore. He insinuates that Maggie is going to take over.
Maggie walks away, and Sasha asks Jesus to find out where Negan lives, and keep it between the two of them.
Gregory? More Like Bleh-gory
Gregory is not good in this episode. He's a completely one-dimensional slime-ball. Everything he does is to show how despicable he is. He's all selfish cowardice, no nuance. He would be more effective if we actually thought he had Hilltop's best interests at heart. The Walking Dead is usually better at having its characters at least thinking they're operating from some moral code, even if it's twisted, as a way to show how people are coping with the world they live in. But Gregory in this episode exists only to antagonize the good guys. Hopefully he gets more fleshed out going forward.
The Emo Adventures of Carl & Enid
The B-plot of "Go Getters" was Enid and Carl deepening their relationship as they trekked to the Hilltop. As Enid leaves Alexandria, Carl tells her he's not going to keep saving her. She tells him she's sorry he had to see Glenn and Abraham get their heads smashed in. He says he's not.
As she's riding her bike along the road, a wild walker appears, but Carl, moments after telling her he's not going to keep saving her, saves her by hitting the walker with a car. He plays it off like it's a coincidence that he saw her, as he was just out for a Sunday drive. He joins her on the road. They talk some more about that night in the clearing. I don't really know what purpose these mumbly conversations are supposed to serve. I guess it's just to show that Carl and Enid are fatalistic but have feelings. They find some roller skates, which speeds up their travel time. Okay.
They get to Hilltop at around the same time as the Saviors, and they watch them from the woods. Enid says "you weren't taking a drive." Uh no doy. She says that she would feel bad if he got killed by Saviors, which, again, okay. They kiss for the first time after that very romantic conversation, and then she goes inside while he climbs into the truck.
The Carl and Enid stuff was a tedious way to put Carl in a position to recreate an iconic moment from the comics where he jumps out of the truck at the Saviors' compound the Sanctuary and goes on a machine gun rampage. It remains to be seen how Jesus' presence in the truck complicates that plot.
What did you think of "Go-Getters?"
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.