REVIEW: The Walking Dead, S7 Ep9 – Rock in the Road

The mid-season premiere of The Walking Dead was an eventful one, with Rick back in his element and trying his best to build alliances with the other communities being oppressed by the Saviors. His pleas fell on deaf ears but I doubt this will be the case for long. Negan and his goons are due for a reckoning and it’s going to happen soon.

The Walking Dead, S7 Ep9First, Rick appealed to the cowardly Gregory, somehow still the leader of the Hilltop. While Gregory refused to commit to the cause, some of his people were interested in joining the fight. Jesus supported Rick and his group all the way and one could really ask for a better ally. (And his name still continues to be both entertaining and symbolic.)

Jesus turns out to have connections with King Ezekiel and so facilitates Rick and his group’s introduction to the Kingdom. They reacted pretty much as anyone would but luckily, they played along with King Ezekiel’s narrative and tried to appeal to him for support. They even had a nice reunion with Morgan who, for some reason, decided to cover up for Carol by respecting her desire for anonymity.

The Walking Dead, S7 Ep9But luckily, King Ezekiel’s still looking out for Carol who continues to wander around the woods, living as a hermit of sorts. I get it, she wants her space, but I have a feeling she’ll soon be joining the action, and anyone who has been watching The Walking Dead knows that Carol is one formidable ally to have.

This episode covered so much that it could have easily had material for three episodes. Considering the slow pacing of previous seasons of The Walking Dead, this was refreshing. There was even time for a large action piece with a horde of walkers being mowed down by a sharp wire tied between two cars driven by Rick and Michonne, the ultimate power couple. They also managed to salvage some of the Saviors’ explosives, to be used on their enemies at a later time.

The Walking Dead, S7 Ep9The group returned to Alexandria to find some of Negan’s goons hunting for Daryl. Good thing Rick left him behind in the safety of the Kingdom. And good thing Jesus stole one of the Saviors’ long range walkie-talkies so that they had some idea of Negan’s movements, although at the cost of listening to him make inappropriate comments to his people.

To their surprise, Father Gabriel had raided and emptied their larder and brought the supplies somewhere else. He left a clue though, and the episode ended with Rick and his group returning to where he and Aaron had found a boat and some supplies, only to be surrounded by a new, armed group of survivors. Rick’s reaction to this is to smile, probably knowing that he has found some potential allies for the fight ahead. The Walking Dead is back again and is gearing up for a truly epic confrontation with the Saviors.