Monday, February 23, 2015

The Walking Dead Recap, Episode 5.11: The Distance

Episode 11: The Distance

We start right after Aaron showed up in the last episode. Everyone else is in the barn and Maggie and Sasha bring him into the barn to meet the others, having already taken his weapons and gear from him. Of course everyone goes into full suspicious-eyes mode. Aaron starts to give his shpiel about how he has a community he wants them to "audition" for. He has pictures and tells them that he's been following them and his job is to bring people into the community. Unfortunately, this sounds a whole lot like a memorized speech, almost like he's selling them a vacation or something. Rick punches him in the face. Okay, assuming this Aaron is being truthful, he's got the most dangerous job ever! If he's going around approaching people who've all obviously been through hell, you gotta know they're going to be paranoid, and you're probably going to get punched in the face. Just sayin'.

Ah, suspicious eyes! (Source)
When he wakes up, they've searched him and found a flare gun. Rick asks him how many of his people are outside, to which he replies that it doesn't matter what number he gives them because they won't believe him. (Which is true.) He finally tells them that there's only one other person with him, and they came in two cars so they can take the entire group back to their community. When asked how he knew they'd be a good fit, he says it's because he's watched them and, despite having no food or water, they didn't turn on one another. I liked that. Smart guy. Looking for the right things. 

Rick isn't at all convinced, but Michonne dissents. She says that she wants to find out. If Aaron is being truthful, they need the community. This is different because Michonne is disagreeing with Rick, which we haven't seen her do much. She kind of did it in episode 9, but even that wasn't so blatant or in front of the entire group. Once she speaks up, Glen and Maggie speak up as well. Eventually, the three of them plus Abraham and Rosita decide to go look and see if the cars are where he says they'll be. Rick says if they aren't back in an hour, Aaron is dead and the rest of the group will come.

Everyone other than Rick, Aaron and Judith hide outside the barn to be lookouts. Aaron tells Rick that he used to take medicine to Nigeria, so he's used to having guns shoved in his face and he knows they aren't bad people and they won't kill him. Rick replies that even if they aren't bad people, they still might kill him. 

The five who are going toward the cars discuss whether Aaron is telling the truth and whether they should shoot first and ask questions later. Eventually they find the cars (one is a motor home, which we haven't seen since Dale's day) right where Aaron said they'd be.

In the barn, Rick is trying to crush nuts to feed Judith, who is hungry. Aaron says he has a jar of applesauce in his pack which Rick can feed to Judith. Rick wants to Aaron to eat a bite first, which seems logical to me. Aaron doesn't want to, claiming he hates applesauce and he has mommy issues about it. This was the first thing he did that seemed really stupid to me. Even if you don't like it, just eat it, man, if you really want to convince him. Otherwise, it just looks like you're trying to poison his baby! Dur! Finally he does and Judith gets fed. 

At the cars, Abraham and Rosita kill a couple of walkers and make sure no one's hiding in the motor home. Rosita seems to be having a bit of a hard time, and Abraham is trying to figure her out. He asks her if before, when they found out about Eugene's lie, did she think he was going to hurt her. She says no, it's not you. Not sure what this is about yet, but I'm sure they'll explore it more in coming episodes. I will say that I'm glad to see Abraham showing some genuine concern for Rosita. So far, I feel like he's treated her like an indifferent colleague, despite the fact that they're sleeping together. Nice to see him looking at her like he actually cares.

When they all get back, Michonne says unequivocally that Aaron has proved he's not lying and they're going to the community. Obviously most of the group wants to check it out, and Rick agrees to go. When they ask where it is, Aaron doesn't want to tell them because he doesn't entirely trust them. Okay, I get that. He's just being cautious too, but it doesn't bode well to finally talk them into trusting him, then refuse to return the favor. Michonne says he won't be driving, so he'll have to tell them where it is. He finally says they have to take a Route 16 north, to which Rick replies that they'll take Route 23, a parallel road. Aaron says that isn't smart because that route hasn't been cleared. This is one of those things that's almost unwinable. If the route isn't clear, they're sure to run into walkers (which Aaron calls roamers). But if he's lying, they don't want to just go where he says either. You can bet this journey will have some drama!

Daryl wants to go to Alexandria. (Source)
Rick says they'll leave at sundown. Michonne goes to talk to him, asking if they're really going of if he's just trying to get Aaron to tell him where the camp is. He says they're really going. He then asks her what she heard when she first came upon the walls of Woodbury, and then of Terminus. In both cases, she replies, nothing. He tells her that he's not sure anything will convince him to take his children in, but he's willing to go and see. This might have been the most interesting conversation of the episode. I really like the dynamic between these two. They understand one another and look out for each other emotionally, in much the way Daryl and Carol do for each other.

Sure enough, as they drive along, Michonne starts looking at Aaron's pictures. You can tell she's getting excited about this community. Then she asks why there aren't any people in the pictures and Aaron stammers out an answer. She immediately becomes suspicious and asks Rick if he asked Aaron the three questions. When he says no, she asks them. Aaron's answers are, "A lot," "Two," and "Because they tried to kill me." After that, Rick finds a listening device, and everyone freaks out because they realized Aaron was listening to them on the road. Aaron doesn't try to deny it, saying that of course he was. It was how he learned about them. But Rick is worried that someone else might have heard their plan and may try to trap them.

About then, Glen, who is driving, drives into a herd of walkers. Suddenly he's hitting walkers left and right, and the windshield is covered in gore. Eventually they get out ahead of the heard and the car spins to a stop. They turn to look for the motor home, which holds everyone else, but it's gone. Apparently Abraham saw the walkers and got the motor home off the road. 

Walker roadkill. (Source)
Up ahead by a water tower, a flare gun shoots off. Rick, Michonne, Glen, and Aaron are forced to run because they can't get the car started again. (Walker guts in the engine will do that, as Abraham learned with the fire truck. We still don't know exactly what happened there, btw.) Michonne is afraid the others in the motor home will think Rick's group shot off the flare, so going toward it is the best way to bring the two groups together. 

They run around, trying to find one another. Several of them almost die and Rick shoots the flare gun into a walker's eye. Obligatory awesome walker kill. Eventually they all find one another and head for the water tower. The motor home is there and everyone else is in a building and all right. Aaron runs inside calling for Eric, who turns out to be his boyfriend. Apparently Eric had hurt his ankle and gotten himself surrounded by walkers. The arrival of the part of Rick's group in the motor home saved his life. 

Obligatory awesome walker kill. (Source)
Aaron thanks everyone for that and suggests they wait until morning to get back on the road toward the community, which is called Alexandria. (Worst kept secret of this season, I think.) Rick is amenable, but he still doesn't trust Aaron and Eric enough to let them be in the same room.

Not everyone in the group agrees and Glen talks Rick into calming the heck down and being a little less paranoid.

The next day, they get back on the road. Noah and Aaron talk. Noah tells Aaron how he hurt his leg, and Aaron says there is a gifted surgeon at Alexandria who might be able to help with Noah's leg. There was some talk online about Noah dying in this episode, which obviously didn't happen. Still not sure how I feel about Noah, but I don't mind him hanging around a bit more so I can make up my mind.

Eventually, the community comes into view. Abraham is obviously worried about gas, but says they'll make it. Next scene: they've broken down. (I laughed heartily.) Actually, it's not a fuel issue, but rather that the batter in the RV died. Luckily Glen, thanks to the teaching of Dale, knows where extra batteries are kept in the RV. This was such a great nod to Dale who we haven't seen since season 2. Awwww.

Michonne and Rick talk again. She tells him he has to let the fight go or it'll turn on him. It's what's kept him going and what's kept them all alive, but now that they've found a safe place, he has to let it go. Rick tells her that Bob was trying to convince him of the same thing before he died, but the rules keep changing. 

They get the RV started, but Rick wants to take a moment before they get back on the road. He heads off into the woods by himself and puts a gun into a plastic canister Not sure what this was about. For a moment, I thought he was going to have a spiritual moment, but it looked more like he was hiding guns, just as he did before they entered Terminus. Not sure what the point of this was, but I'm sure it'll be important later.

They finally reach the gates of Alexandria and Rick and Michonne both hear children playing behind the gates. This was really cool. They just sort of smile at one another, and know they've finally found a safe place. You can tell Rick is all kinds of relieved and now feels better about taking Carl and Judith inside the walls. (How cute is the baby who plays Judith with all her baby chub? She always looks at Rick like, what's up dad? And if you watch her close, she always looks right at the camera. So funny!)

Arriving at Alexandria (Source)
Well, the episode ended there. I gotta say, probably not my favorite episode. It had more action that last week, but less character development and nothing truly epic that happened. This was one of those parts that had to happen in order to get to the next part of the story, which will obviously be at Alexandra. So it was fine, but I didn't totally love it like I did last week's episode. 

I'm excited to see what Alexandria is like, and what awaits the group next. They don't know what they'll encounter inside the walls, and I'm sure they'll continue to be cautious, but based on what I know about Alexandria from the comics (which I haven't read) it's the next big place they're going to be for awhile, so I can't imagine it'll be like Terminus. You never know, though. They do like to change things up in the show as compared to the comics. Guess we'll see.

What did everyone else think of this episode?

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