A bit of a nutty season, no? As much as I still love Rick, maybe he shouldn’t plan things anymore. First his plan to lead the quarry herd away from Alexandria got a lot of people killed in the first half of the season, which led to the walls collapsing and more deaths, like his girlfriend. Then he planned to kill all the Saviors with zero information about them or their compound, and ends up on his knees with his son, new girlfriend and 8 besties all at the mercy of Negan. I think maybe we should put someone new in charge for awhile.
I think both halves of the season were a bit uneven in quality, but both sides at least flowed pretty well. Both showcased some excellent episodes, with lesser “filler” episodes finishing up the quota, but let’s be honest, that’s pretty much normal for most shows all the time. And both used me emotionally, so I dub this season a giant tease. However, I do feel that when the action was going, it was spot on, particularly The Wolves attacking and the herd swarming into Alexandria. Unfortunately, I don’t feel there was enough proper character development in the quieter episodes to balance out the excellent action. Carol’s transition was definitely the best, but it came very late. Overall, I’d say this season stands tied with Season 5 as “mostly okay.”
Favorite Episode: The Next World
I know a lot of fans didn’t like this episode, but I really did. Overall, it was a lot of fun (aside from the Deanna Walker business) which is not something I’m use to from this show. And taking a chance to lighten the mood, especially after No Way Out, goes a long way in my book. Any time I need a pick-me-up, the chase scene set to the Benny Hill music on YouTube does the trick. And then to end everything with Richonne made me deliriously happy. A buddy road trip and romance episode rolled into one worked really well just this once. Yes, it was out of character, but sometimes a show needs that. Why do you think there are so many hideous musical episodes of various series out there? (Except for Buffy’s Once More with Feeling, because that was amazing!)
Favorite New Character: Negan
Yeah, he’s a bad guy. So what? He’s handsome and charismatic and might actually add some depth to a group of characters that have been falling a bit flat as of late. He graced the screen for only ten minutes at the end of the season, but I haven’t been able to get him out of my head since. And I cannot wait to see more. I’m almost at the point where I don’t care who was on the other end of Lucille; I just want October to be here to see Negan swing his bat again.
Saddest Death: Tabitha
Yes, the goat. Partly because I wasn’t attached to anyone else who died, but mostly because I’m feeling rather snarky today. (Hey, my original answer was “The Cameraman Negan Killed,” so I’m reigning it in a bit.) Obviously I can’t include whomever Negan actually did kill, because we simply don’t know, and Tabitha may have outranked them anyway. Most of the death count this season was Alexandria randos, half of who didn’t have names. I never cared for Deanna and Jessie’s sons were idiots. Denise’s death leaves me sad for Tara, but otherwise I’m not torn up about it. She was a good character though, there just wasn’t enough of her. I had nothing against Jessie but she had to die because a.) her sons died and b.) she stood in the way of Richonne. Basically, all the deaths this season were fine because the characters were expendable. We didn’t have time to really get to know anyone. I probably felt more for Tabitha and Eastman in the 90-minute Here’s Not Here episode than all the dead Alexandrites put together. So when I say “Tabitha,” I’ll include Eastman by extension, who was given a heartbreaking backstory and amazing performance by John Carroll Lynch.
Most Memorable Walker(s): Sewer Walkers
Could we not anymore with mixing water and walkers? These guys were absolutely disgusting and a bit of shocker when they came at Maggie and Aaron since they were camouflaged so well with the rest of the sewer sludge. It looked fabulous…disgusting, but fabulous.