I have good reason that this recap of season 5 episode 15 of AMC’s The Walking Dead is coming out on a Wednesday. I fell asleep from the snoozefest that was “Try.” And I just now bothered to wake up… Ok, seriously. It wasn’t HORRIBLE, but this is the episode before the season finale – the episode that is supposed to drive the conflict to come. And what I got was filler.
Note: Come on! It’s me. You know there are going to be spoilers throughout this review/recap. You may want to stop here and return after watching the episode.
I’ve made no secret about the fact that the past few episodes haven’t necessarily been my cup of tea. We lost Beth, Tyreese, and Noah. Sasha is a blubbering mess, Michonne doesn’t ring true to me, Glenn looks heartbroken, and who knows where Maggie is?
And where the hell is MORGAN?! I’ve been asking that very same question for weeks, but never have I missed the so-very-cool presence that is Lennie James more than I have the past few episodes.
SIDE NOTE: I’ve been hearing some buzz that perhaps Morgan is already dead, and that’s who Daryl and Aaron stumbled across in the woods in this episode. I will say this here and now, and ya’ll can hold me to it: If that’s the case, and the powers that be brought him back for little more than a few weak teasers, I’m done with the show. There’s just a lot of sloppiness going on, and that just might be the final straw for me.
Ok, back to “Try.” I’ll reference another AMC powerhouse here. Breaking Bad knew how to do a penultimate episode. They knew they needed to pull out the shock and awe, to show us what’s at stake for the final battle. In my mind, that’s what this show needs to leave us with at the end of each season. Now, I’m not saying I’m in the majority here, but this show is about the battle for survival. The Rick isn’t wrong in that regard. So to leave us with a snoozefest means making a mockery of what’s at stake here.
Now, don’t get me wrong, there were some moments in “Try” I did very much enjoy. Rosita going to Michonne with her fears about Sasha for instance. That led to a very smart and telling scene with the three women outside the walls. Sasha (and keep in mind this is just my opinion) is looking for SOMETHING – something to tell her why it is she’s still around after all she’s lost. And in her mind, that calling is “zombie huntress.” Now, me personally, I say go for it. It isn’t as if the walkers can offer much to the new world order, yet her friends are worried about her. When Michonne and Rosita stumble across Sasha, two things become very obvious to me:
- There are A LOT of walkers around Alexandria.
- The three women are pretty badass.
Michonne’s flashbacks threw me a bit, as I assumed she had settled into her new role, but perhaps she misses her katana a bit more than she is letting on.
Carl is smitten with Enid, and I can see why. She’s feisty and tough, just like Rick 2.0, but let’s save the junior high romance for next season.
Carol is still concerned about Jessie. With good reason – her husband, Pete (the town surgeon), is an asshole. And I give The Rick credit. He doesn’t immediately take it upon himself to strike Pete down. Instead, he goes to The Queen Bee, and confirms something I already suspected – people know what Pete is doing, or at least Queen Bee does. Rick is furious, and confused as to how Deanna can do nothing, yet doesn’t Deanna have a point? Pete is an asshole, but apparently he’s also a very gifted doctor.
The Rick is harboring feelings for Jessie, and he realizes the dilemma he’s in. If Pete’s out of the picture, he and Jessie can give into their feelings for one another, because let’s not beat around the bush, homegirl is feeling the vibes too. On the other hand, Pete’s the town’s doctor! Did I already mention that?
I was truly hoping Glenn would call out Nicholas, but he didn’t – at least not to anyone else. The Rick knows what went down, but does anyone else? Either way, Glenn did confront Nicholas, and while it wasn’t necessarily what I was hoping for, Glenn puts Nicholas in his place in his own way:
“Who the hell do you think you are?” Nicholas asks.
“I’m someone who knows who you are. I know what you did. And it’s not gonna happen again,” Glenn responds calmly.
“I’ve been protecting this place, helping provide for it. You just got here.”
“Don’t forget what I said.”
“Are you threatening me?” Nicholas asks with a bit of concern evident on his face.
“No. I’m saving you,” Glenn offers with a chuckle.
This harks back to something Morgan said to The Rick. Remember those awesome episodes when The Rick stumbled across Morgan’s fortified little city? Remember when Morgan was telling Rick, “See, ’cause people like you, the good people, they always die. And the bad people do, too. But the weak people, the people like me… we have inherited the earth.” It pained me to hear Morgan call himself weak, yet perhaps he makes a good point. The good people (the strong people) try to do what’s right. They try to take a stand, and often doing that gets them killed (R.I.P. Hershel). But the weak? They hide. They cower. They lean on the backs of the strong. And they are often left to cower another day (see Father Gabriel).
Is Glenn saving Nicholas? Perhaps, but I think he really just put Nicky on notice – You fuck up again, and I’m coming for you.
Then we go back to The Rick and Jessie. There is no denying the attraction between them. When The Rick goes to her and tells her that he knows the score, he also lets her know that he will have her back. If she needs his help, he will help her. And Jessie tries to do the right thing. When Pete comes home, she tries to kick him out. She tells him to leave, but like all angry, weak men, Pete is about the control, and he knows (even through his drunk stupor) The Rick’s the one that is messing with his control.
The bell rings and the fight is on. The Rick in one corner. Pete in the other. It’s a dirty fight, and it sets up a striking scene.
The fight winds up in the street – after they crash through a window. A crowd gathers. Jessie tries to pull Pete away but gets slugged. Carl tries to pull Rick away but gets shoved. Rick gets the upper hand. And then Queen Bee demands that they stop. Rick let’s go of Pete. Our beloved Rictator is a bloody mess and starts waving his gun around at the approaching Alexandrites. He tells the crowd that has gathered that their way is the wrong way! He says they need to take a stand and control who lives there. He adds that if they want the community to thrive, they need to fight… or they will die.
I didn’t see a raving lunatic. I mean, sure, he looked a mess, but isn’t he right? Isn’t Aiden, and Noah, Tyreese, Beth, and everyone else we’ve lost a testament to that? Or is Morgan right?
I assume we’ll find out in the 90 minute season finale. Unfortunately, I’m not expecting a whole lot.
That Michonne punch though!