[WARNING: The following story contains spoilers from Sunday's episode of The Walking Dead. Read at your own risk.]
The other shoe has finally begun to drop on The Walking Dead.
Although Rick (Andrew Lincoln) & Co. have been suspicious of their new hosts ever since they arrived in Alexandria, those suspicions became even more crystallized on Sunday's episode as events both inside and outside the walls forced battle lines to be drawn. At the heart of the discord was the Alexandrians particular brand of cowardice, which ultimately got a few people on both sides killed.
Let's start with Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) and the construction crew. While they were out gathering supplies to continue building the wall around Alexandria, a group of walkers surprised them. The group put up a bit of a fight, but when Francine, one of Alexandria's own fell in battle, the others wanted to run and leave her behind. Abraham refused, and quickly turned into a one-man killing machine as the others looked on in awe.
The Alexandrians' same selfishness proved much more deadly on a scavenging trip. Noah (Tyler James Williams), Glenn (Steven Yeun), Tara (Alanna Masteron) and a reluctant Eugene (Josh McDermitt) joined Aiden and Nicholas on a search for computer parts that Eugene could use to get Alexandria's power grid back online. But when they arrived at the warehouse, they quickly learned the mission would be more dangerous than they even imagined. Making matters (much) worse, when Aiden began firing at a walker dressed in armor, the zombie suddenly exploded, leaving Tara with a massive head wound and Aiden impaled.
While Noah and Glenn insisted on trying to save Aiden, Nicholas showed his yellow streak by trying to run. Glenn and Noah stayed behind as long as they could before they, too, had to leave Aiden to die a gut-wrenching death at the hands of the walkers. When Glenn and Noah caught up to Nicholas, he was just moments from running out the front door to certain death and, as Glenn tried to stop him, all three of the men were trapped in a revolving door with walkers on all sides.
At this point, even the gutless Eugene stepped up. After previously telling Tara how useless he would be on this mission, Eugene found some backbone and hauled Tara out of the warehouse on his shoulder. He then used the van (and Aiden's terrible dubstep mixtape) to lure many of the walkers threatening Glenn & Co. in the revolving door. When the herd had thinned a bit, Glenn devised a plan to break the glass so he could escape and kill the remaining walkers, but Nicholas again threw a wrench into the plans. Once the door become the slightest bit ajar, her slipped out, leaving Noah exposed to a group of walkers who pulled him away and made an extremely hard-to-watch meal out of him. RIP, Noah. I knew you were doomed the minute you talked about wanting to be Alexandria's new architect.
While things were considerably more quiet inside the walls — Constable Rick's big job for the day was figuring out who broke Jessie's (Alexandra Breckenridge) owl statue — a different kind of cowardice emerged. When Jessie's son Sam came begging Carol (Melissa McBride) for more cookies (geez, kid, give it a rest!), she eventually decided to teach him how to make them himself. However, during the baking lesson, Sam seemed to reveal a troubled home life. In no time, Carol was telling Rick that Jessie's husband beats her (and perhaps Sam). That, coupled with Rick's strange encounter with her husband earlier in the day, made it pretty clear what Rick needs to do. But Carol decided to vocalize it anyway. "Only one way it can go. You have to to kill him."
But even though the events of the day offer plenty of reasons for Rick to move forward with his plan to take over Alexandria, there's one little hiccup. Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam), who is perhaps the biggest coward of all and who has, to this point, been mostly silent, burst into Deanna's (Tovah Feldshuh) home to warn her about what Rick is capable of. "I'm afraid that false light is here inside these walls," he says. "Rick and his group — they're not good people. They've done unspeakable things." Although Deanna argues that Rick has admitted what they did to survive, Gabriel remained steadfast. "They can't be trusted. The day will come when they put their own lives before yours... and destroy everything you're trying to build."
Assuming Deanna listens to Gabriel, she might be a little bit more wary of her new guests, which could make Rick's takeover much more difficult than he originally intended. That is, of course, if Rick takes Carol's advice. (Then again, given his feelings for Jessie, why wouldn't he?) Plus: Maggie (Lauren Cohan) must've heard Gabriel's confession, so perhaps she can warn Rick. Either way, war seems imminent and, with the season finale only two weeks away, highly likely.
What did you think of the episode? Were you sad to see Noah go? Proud to see Eugene step up? How do you feel about Gabriel betraying the group that saved his life twice? And do you think Rick wil go on the rampage? Share your comments below!