In last week’s episode of The Walking Dead, the group met the mysterious Father Gabriel and took shelter in his church. After some debate, Rick decided the group would head to Washington, DC, to help Abraham complete his mission. Meanwhile, Daryl and Carol took off after the person who grabbed Beth last season, and Bob was abducted by Gareth and the Terminus survivors because “a man’s gotta eat.”
In this week’s episode, “Four Walls and a Roof,” the Terminus survivors target our group, a familiar face returns and Bob has the last laugh. Read on to find out if The Walking Dead can deliver that mix of sweet zombie action and rich character development we crave.
The Walking Dead Recap: Father Gabriel Arrives >>>
If you were wondering why Bob went off into the woods to have a good cry in last week’s episode, we get the answer to that in this week’s opening scene. When Bob was attacked and dragged underwater by that walker at the food bank, it turns out that the walker bit him. He gleefully informs Gareth and the other Terminus survivors of this as they chow down on his leg, telling them that they are all eating tainted meat. It is a great moment, sure to delight comic fans.
This opening scene also gives us an idea of how twisted Gareth is, as if the cannibal thing was not a big enough hint. Gareth and the Terminus survivors have set up a temporary camp outside of an elementary school with walkers trapped inside. The walkers are close to breaking through the glass, something Gareth finds amusing. Gareth goes on a gross rant about women tasting better than men and says they were hoping to get their hands on Carol before she drove off with Daryl. I think it is safe to say that we all want Gareth to die, right?
Father Gabriel’s Secret
After the group discovers that Bob, Daryl and Carol are missing, Sasha thinks Father Gabriel set them up. Father Gabriel insists he is not working with anyone, but Rick pushes him into revealing what he has been hiding from the group.
Father Gabriel admits that when things first started, members of his congregation came to his church seeking shelter. Entire families stood outside, begging him to let them in as the walkers came after them. Father Gabriel stayed inside with the doors locked as those people were ripped apart. He made a choice not to let them in and he believes he is damned for it. Father Gabriel’s story — and his overwhelming guilt for his actions — is enough to convince the group that he had no part in what is happening to them.
Gareth and the Terminus survivors drop Bob off outside of the church, apparently not interested in sampling more of his tainted meat. Sasha and the others get him inside and Bob tells them what happened. He says Gareth saw Daryl and Carol drive off before they could capture them, so at least the group can stop worrying about their other missing friends for the time being. Bob also reveals his bite and the fact that his death is unavoidable.
With the threat of the Terminus group hanging over them, Abraham decides it is time they all leave for DC. Rick refuses to go until Daryl and Carol make it back, but Abraham is not risking Eugene’s life by sticking around. Rick and Abraham almost come to blows, but Tara and Glenn manage to diffuse the situation.
Tara comes up with a plan to beat the Terminus survivors, and agrees to go with Abraham’s trio if they stick around for another day to help. Abraham agrees to stay for half a day, and only if Glenn and Maggie also come along. Glenn and Maggie agree to the deal.
Sasha Breaks My Heart
After they get Bob settled, Sasha asks him why he did not tell her that he had been bitten. Bob explains that he did not want their last moments together to become all about the end of his life. As Bob drifts in and out, Tyreese tries to convince Sasha to stay with Bob rather than going after the Terminus survivors. He does not want Sasha to miss out on these last moments with Bob, as he did with Karen. Tyreese tries to get Sasha to forgive the Terminus people, if only so she will sit out the fight and not have to become a killer. Sasha hands Tyreese her knife and tells him to put Bob down if he stops breathing. Sasha is out for revenge, and I cannot blame her.
There are a lot of great performances in this week’s episode, but for me, Sonequa Martin-Green is the stand-out. She plays Sasha’s anger and sadness over Bob’s fate so beautifully and really helps sell how strong the Bob-Sasha connection has become. She also does a great job with Sasha’s numbness after helping to kill the Terminus survivors, as killing them could not bring Bob back or ease her pain in any real way.
Tara’s plan, which we only learn about after the fact, is to convince the Terminus survivors that the strongest fighters in the group have left the weaker members behind for easy pickings. Gareth and the others take the bait and enter the church. In a very intense sequence, the Terminus survivors search the church for the group, and Gareth tries to convince Father Gabriel to give up their hiding place on the condition that he can leave with the baby. Unfortunately for Gareth’s people, Rick and Co. are lying in wait for them to drop their guards.
After shooting some of the Terminus survivors, Rick tells them all to kneel. Gareth knows it is pointless to ask for mercy, but he tries to make a case for Rick letting them go. Rick knows that even if the Terminus survivors do not come back to attack his group, they will go after other people. So Rick, Michonne, Sasha and Abraham brutally kill the last of the Terminus survivors, ending the threat to their own group and anyone else Gareth’s people may have come across. As a bonus, Michonne gets her sword back from one of the dead Terminus guys.
Poor Father Gabriel is horrified by the violence of the killings, saying that “This is the Lord’s house.” But Maggie is quick to point out that it is “just four walls and a roof.” Yet, to the group’s credit, Rick and Tyreese do seemingly set about burying the Terminus guys at the end of the episode.
After all the chaos, the group gets a chance to say goodbye to Bob. Bob thanks Rick for taking him in back at the prison and says that he does not take back what he said earlier about nightmares ending. Bob and Sasha have a final moment together before Bob stops breathing. Sasha goes to put him down, but Tyreese steps up and does it for her. Rest in peace, Bob Stookey.
On a personal note, it took me a while to warm up to him, but I became rather fond of Bob in the back half of season 4, so I am sad to see him go. I was hoping we would learn more about him this season and I was very interested in his developing relationship with Sasha, so I am disappointed that his death robs us of both of those things.
That being said, killing Bob off feels like a safe choice on the writers’ part. Bob has been around long enough for his death to have an impact on the characters, but not long enough for it to really shake things up the way Hershel’s death did last season. But given how intense the show has been so far this season, I fear Bob is only the first member of our group we will lose this year. I can only hope that if we lose another character, that person gets the same emotionally satisfying end Bob got in this week’s episode.
Another Goodbye and a Return
After Bob’s death, Abraham loads up the bus to head to DC. Glenn, Maggie and Tara stay true to their word and leave with Abraham’s trio. Before they go, Abraham gives Rick a map of their route to DC so Rick’s group can catch up to them once Daryl and Carol return.
At the end of the episode, Michonne hears someone in the woods, and I start to freak out again. Thankfully, it is only Daryl, returning to the group. Michonne asks where Carol is and Daryl tells an unseen person to come out of the woods. Is it Carol? Is it Beth? If Daryl returned without Carol, what happened to her? If he returned with Beth, how did Daryl and Carol find her? Those questions — as well as the question of what Beth has been up to all this time — will hopefully be answered in next week’s episode.
What did you think of this week’s episode of The Walking Dead? Are you upset by Bob’s death? Do you think Rick and the others were too brutal in their killing of the Terminus survivors or did Gareth and the others have it coming? Was Bob going into the woods to kill himself or would he have returned and told the group what was happening to him? If the Terminus survivors had not been killed, would Bob’s tainted meat have done them in? Are you surprised the group split up again so soon and how long do you think they will be apart this time? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9pm on AMC.
(Image courtesy of AMC)
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV