After the devastating turn of events from last week’s episode, “Try” takes a more mellow tone as we focus on how different groups of people in Alexandria are reacting, following the unspeakable deaths of Noah (and Aidan).
The onset of the episode is a bit of an amalgamation between Deanna and her family at home, Carol cooking up something in the kitchen, and Sasha out in the wild (still very unclear what’s happened to her since a couple of episodes ago). Deanna plays a mixtape that was presumably Aiden’s, and we’re treated to a raucous-metal sound that acts as the backdrop to their mourning. Carol brings over her completed pasta-dish with a note saying that they’re very sorry for her loss. Yet when Carol drops it off at Deanna’s doorstep, Deanna only brings the note in and sets in on fire. I think it’s safe to say that things aren’t boding very well.
If I didn’t think it was possible to hate Nicholas even more from last week, boy was I wrong. Not only did he bail on his own people and the gang, but he lies about the sequence of events to Deanna. No shame at all. Glenn, clearly still shaken from the events of a couple of days ago, mumbles out what actually happened to Rick.
Carol and Rick have an informal meeting where they discuss Jessie and Pete again. Rick asks Carol why she’s investing her time in this issue of domestic abuse, to which she replies along the lines of “duh”. She then goes on to pinpoint why exactly Rick is involved. “I’ve seen how you talk to her”. We’ve all seen how Rick talks to her. It’s not a question of if Rick goes against Pete, it’s when. It almost seems too predictable when only a couple of seconds later, we get a Rick and Pete scene, where Rick in his most terrifying form tells Pete to “keep walking”.
Over at Alexandria’s informal graveyard the next morning, Rick finds Deanna at her son’s tombstone. It doesn’t seem like things are completely sour between the two (especially since Gabriel’s encounter with Deanna in “Spend” that now seems super out of place and random). But when Rick brings up the issue of Pete and perhaps capital punishment, Deanna instantly shoots the idea down. Killing simply isn’t the way here.
In the meantime Rosita finds Michonne and lets her know that Tara is being accounted for and taken care of, Sasha is still out in the woods missing. Without missing a beat, Michonne leaves her sheriff uniform and katana and runs out.
But they’re not the only ones in the wood. It turns out that lil’ Carl is doing some tracking of his own, following his unrequited love Enid. He’s quickly spotted by Enid and called out, even though she doesn’t really seem to mind his company. She explains to him that it’s a refresher for her to run out into the woods, since this is how it’s supposed to be. Not suburbia. They even manage to trap themselves into the trunk of a tree to avoid a walker parade, though Carl is a little shy in initiating things.
Glenn finds Nicholas and runs him down straight to the ground, as needed. All of those deaths are on him. When Nicholas tries to shut him down, Glenn swings back by saying that he’s not threatening him, he’s just trying to save him.
Michonne and Rosita eventually catch up to Sasha, and when they do, she’s on the brink of attempting to take down a huge herd of walkers. She tries to brush them off and starts shooting, almost as if it’s cathartic. The shooting triggers something of a flashback for Michonne, reminding herself and us of the Michonne-in-the-woods, cutting walkers left and right with her katana, armed with her two puppets and hoodie. She quickly switches on the offensive alongside Sasha.
In another part of the woods, Daryl and Aaron continue on their recruitment journey, where they find mysteriously and precisely killed walkers: some without any legs, some tied to trees. All depicting a “W” on their foreheads. Since this episode rarely featured these two, I’m guessing these walker sightings are hopefully building up to something bigger in the season finale next week.
Finally in Alexandria, Rick has come to terms with his feelings-ish and goes to Jessie, explaining that he knows she’s been getting beaten by Pete and that he’s willing to help. At first, she tries to push him away, saying that this is her own battle. But when Rick returns and insists, she says yes.
At that perfect moment of romantic build-up, Pete stumbles in. And it’s not good at all. He comes straight for Rick and attacks him, where the fight quickly escalates out of the window and into the street. It’s a spectacle for the Alexandrians as they all come by to watch, some like Jessie and Carl trying to intervene but to no avail.
By the time they’re finally broken up, Rick has gone out of control. He starts shouting daggers at everyone, proclaiming that they’re way of dealing with issues is medieval and that they’ve got to adapt. There’s no time for sitting and planning things like they do, they gotta act! “We have to control who lives here”. At this point, he’s turned full-on crazy and Deanna acknowledges it, replying that she does have the power to control who lives here (and she’s talking about you Rick, idiot). Just as he’s about to explode, Michonne comes behind him and whacks him unconscious.
Honestly, this was a boring episode. While there were moments of tremendous build-up in certain sections, particularly with audio helping out (especially with the music at the beginning), the distinct storylines have become a bit fragmented in connecting to each other. I’m guessing that it’s intended to be the filler, penultimate episode leading up to next week. Here’s what I’m looking for in the finale, aptly named “Conquer”:
- Some resolution with Pete vs Rick. This is lower on my request list, but seeing how much it got featured in this episode, there’s definitely going to be some last battle sequence next week.
- Carol badassness. As much as I love her feigning domestic-ness, I wanna see her surprise all the Alexandrians with her rough-and-tough abilities. Of course, if the writers decide to not end a season finale with the group on the run, perhaps she’ll hold it in for a bit longer (which is probably a good thing).
- Not one mention/sight of Gabriel. Can we make him as irrelevant as possible?
- “W”: this is probably the biggest thing. What do all the markings mean on the walkers foreheads? And what do they have to do with the Alexandrians? There’s gotta be a tie-in with the wolves-motif popping up here and there.
- Morgan’s return onto the show. It has to happen! While it’s a bit maddening that he really only pops up in premieres/finales and never in between episodes, maybe the writers followed this template so that we’re looking at a reunion in the next week.
- And last but not least: no more deaths (except for Nicholas)! That’s all I really ask for.