Episode 13 of ‘The Walking Dead’ this season may not be jam-packed with action, but it certainly has a lot of interesting things going on. Our main characters are beginning to come to terms with their new community in Alexandria. Some are making the transition just fine, some remain suspicious, and some just can’t handle it.
We open the episode with the character who’s having the toughest time in Alexandria. Sasha takes some framed photos from the house she’s staying in, then goes out to target practice with them outside the community’s walls. Sasha keeps looking around as if she hopes Walkers will hear the noise. In fact, she even says “Come and get me” as if she’s hoping to be attacked.
Also outside the walls as this episode gets underway are Rick, Carol and Daryl, who are holding a secret meeting in the location where Rick’s hidden gun went missing. The trio still have no idea who took the gun, but Rick knows that they need more weapons, so he hatches a plan with Carol to break into the supply building in the community and get a few. While they’re talking, a lone Walker shows up and Carol kills it with a round of bullets. When they check to make sure the Walker is dead, they notice that someone has carved a “W” into its forehead.
Later on, Daryl runs across Aaron in the woods. Aaron claims to be hunting for rabbits, but the scene implies that he’s been following Daryl. The two men come across a horse grazing in a field. Aaron says that children in the neighborhood have named it “Buttons.” Daryl tries to get a rope around the animal, but a group of Walkers show up and scare it off. When the two catch up with the horse, it’s too late. Walkers attack it and enjoy their dinner. Daryl and Aaron get revenge by killing all the Walkers. As bad as it is to be a human in the zombie apocalypse, it’s much worse to be a horse. Every time one shows up on ‘The Walking Dead’, it doesn’t live very long.
Deanna throws a welcome party for our group of heroes. Everyone is invited – including the anti-social Sasha, who has been told by Deanna that if she wants a job as lookout for the community, she’ll need to attend. When she gets there and tries to mingle, however, she flips out on a woman who tries to have an innocent conversation with her. This is the same reason yours truly doesn’t get asked to many parties.
The most interesting dynamic at the gathering is between Rick and Jesse the haircutter, despite the fact that Jesse has shown up with her husband, Pete, whom we learn for the first time is a doctor. While Pete seemed a little creepy when we first met him in the last episode, this week he seems more normal. Later that evening, Jesse holds baby Judith and, when she hands Rick’s daughter back to him, Rick plants a kiss on Jesse’s cheek. Well, it looks like Rick just passed up Pete on the “creepy” scale. Jesse’s son shows up and notices that Rick doesn’t have a hand stamp for the party. Rick lets him stamp his hand with a big red “A,” which immediately reminds Rick of the train car back at Terminus.
Daryl can’t bring himself to go to the party, but gets invited by Aaron to join him and Eric for a spaghetti dinner. Aaron takes Daryl to his garage, where he shows him a disassembled motorcycle. He asks Daryl if he’d be interested in putting it back together, and also tells Daryl he’d like him to take over for Eric as one of the community’s recruiters – because he knows that Daryl needs to be outside the walls from time to time. He tells Daryl that he trusts him to know good people from bad people.
Meanwhile, Carol sneaks out of the party and into the supply building, where she nabs a few pistols for herself, Daryl and Rick. However, while on her way out, she runs into Jesse’s son, who followed her there. The boy tells Carol that he’s going to have to tell his mom that he saw her there. Carol gets right up in the boy’s face and tells him that if he rats on her, he’ll wake up some morning outside the walls tied to a tree until Walkers eat him. On the other hand, if he doesn’t blab, she’ll bake him some cookies. Carol has great parenting skills, doesn’t she?
When Rick, Carol and Daryl meet the next day in order for Carol to give them the weapons, Daryl refuses to take one, saying he’s fine with just having his crossbow. He seems to have a new trust for the community after his dinner with Aaron and Eric. Rick has no problem taking a gun, and sticks it behind his belt and under his officer uniform. Later that day, back at the community, he eyes up Jesse once again, and seems to contemplate using his gun on her husband, Pete.
With only three episodes left this season, it seems more and more likely that it will be Rick, rather than some outside threat, that destroys the happy community at Alexandria. Of course, we still don’t know who took the gun that Rick had hidden outside the walls, nor do we have any idea who carved that “W” in the Walker. We know from past seasons that Rick can become emotionally unhinged, but what if this series turns him into a true villain? Could fans deal with that and, if it happened, could the character have any chance for redemption?