REVIEW: The Walking Dead, S9 Ep12 – Guardians

The Walking Dead Guardians 3

The Walking Dead was all about contrasting leadership styles as we spent time at the Whisperers camp while Michonne had a chat with Negan about how to keep Alexandria running.

The Walking Dead Guardians 2As reluctant as she is to admit it, Michonne is ostensibly the leader of Alexandria, something that Negan knows well enough. She asserts her judgment and authority during a council meetings, even harshly declaring that she was willing to sacrifice the Kingdom to ensure Alexandria’s survival. But she changes her mind about the trade fair in the end, despite the doubts she shares with Aaron, she still seeks to support the values laid down in the charter.

She has an interesting chat with Negan as they both discuss his escape and return and he volunteers to be a leadership consultant of sorts to her. Now that, as Judith reminded Michonne, he is a changed man and no longer the monster that terrorized everyone (that honor goes to Alpha), he needs to have some contribution to the plot of the story or else there is really little point in keeping him alive, especially on a show like The Walking Dead, where characters are fairly dispensable.

The Walking Dead Guardians 4Henry is caught following the Whisperers and when they capture him, he witnesses firsthand how cruel Alpha can be. Her leadership style is brutal but also effective in its way of instilling fear in all her followers. At one point, Alpha orders Lydia to kill Henry but the girl hesitates and both of them are saved by the convenient arrival of a horde, as well as Daryl and Connie coming to their rescue (with Daryl wearing one of the icky walker masks.)

The Walking Dead Guardians 1There was also a bit of Rosita pregnancy drama which felt very much like filler (others agree) and was basically about characters we don’t really care about that much. I personally think Rosita deserves a better storyline on The Walking Dead than this soap opera-ish love triangle (or square if you count Eugene’s unrequited love for her). They resolve it in the end and there’s not much more to it than that.

There’s obviously more trouble brewing between the remaining communities and the Whisperers but with the latter simply trudging along in their gross masks and pretty much just intimidating the groups around them, the conflict doesn’t seem like it will explode soon. Something bad is going to happen at the trade fair, that much is certain, and it will be interesting to see who emerges out of that alive.