In the previous episode of The Walking Dead, the action slowed down some so we could learn more about Morgan’s journey to Alexandria. The episode introduced two intriguing new characters, Eastman and Tabitha, only for both to be killed. And while the majority of the episode filled in Morgan’s story during his time off-screen, present-day Morgan decided to keep one of the Wolves alive — albeit locked up — in the hope that he could change.

In this episode, “Now,” the focus shifts back to Alexandria in the wake of the Wolves’ attack as some of the Alexandrians have to step up in order to protect their community. Meanwhile, Maggie heads off on a search for Glenn, and several people look for love at the end of the world.

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Rick Comes Home

The episode picks up where the previous episode ended, with Rick yelling for them to open the gate. Deanna spots Rick running toward Alexandria with a lot of walkers right behind him. Rick makes it inside the gate and the walkers are kept out, but they are now surrounding the community.

Once inside the gates, Rick makes a speech to try and rally the Alexandrians. He says that the wall will hold and the others will make it back. Half of the herd of quarry walkers may be outside the community, but Daryl, Sasha and Abraham will be able to draw them away like they did with the other half of the herd. He also says that once the walkers are gone, Glenn and Nicholas will make it back. We know he is wrong about Nicholas, but we are all hoping he is right about Glenn.

Rick tells the group they just need to hold it together for a while. They need to keep the noise down and leave the lights off at night. If they can make Alexandria as quiet as a graveyard, maybe the walkers will start to drift away. One of the Alexandrians says this place is already a graveyard and Aaron speaks up. He says that Rick’s plan managed to keep half of the herd away from Alexandria. He also says that he lost his pack while he was out on a recruiting mission and that is how the Wolves found their way to Alexandria. It was his fault. During Aaron’s speech, Deanna walks off, making all of the Alexandrians freak out.

Some Fall Apart While Others Step Up

Several of the Alexandrians decide to deal with their possible demise by trying to raid the pantry. Olivia tries to stop them, saying that they need to ration the food, but the Alexandrians think that is pointless since they will all be dead soon. Spencer, of all people, steps up and makes a big speech about how this “every man for himself” behavior will lead to the destruction of the community. Spencer’s speech works and he prevents the others from raiding their food supply.

Of course, Spencer’s speech was actually just selfishness. He figured out that while everyone raiding their supplies was a no-go, no one would notice if one person did it. So Spencer decides to steal some supplies and some booze for himself. Deanna catches him later on, and a drunk Spencer goes off on her about how all of this is her fault. He blames her for keeping them from seeing the truth about the world and puts his father’s and brother’s deaths on her head. Spencer may have a point about Deanna keeping the others from seeing the reality of the world, but the blame hardly falls on her alone.

Deanna is on a journey of her own in the wake of what happened to her community. She starts the episode in a very detached state but eventually starts making plans for how she wants to rebuild the community. Alas, Spencer’s words seem to put her back in that depressed state until she is attacked by a walker.

Deanna springs into action, immediately attacking the walker. Unfortunately, she does not seem to realize that you need to go for the brain, but Rick comes along and finishes the walker off. Deanna, covered in walker blood, tells Rick that she wants to live and she wants the community to survive. Rick says Deanna needs to lead her people, but Deanna believes that what her people need is him.

But Deanna is not the only one on a journey now. Jessie is also coming into her own. After dragging out the body of the woman she killed during the Wolves’ attack, Jessie finds a fellow Alexandrian who has turned and takes care of her. She notices that some of her fellow community members watched her take care of their friend-turned-walker and she makes a speech about how this is what life is like now and they have to see the truth of it. If they do not learn how to fight, they will die.

What is Up with Ron?

Carl approaches Ron to see if he has seen Enid since the Wolves’ attack. He hasn’t, so Carl figures Enid must have gone over the wall before the herd arrived. He wants Ron’s help in going after her. Ron refuses, saying it is too dangerous to go out there. The boys get into a rather amusing fight that ends almost as quickly as it begins. Carl plans to go after Enid on his own, but Ron says that he will tell Rick, and Rick and some of the others will go after Carl and someone will get killed. Ron says Carl saved his life and now he is returning the favor. Is this really Ron’s way of protecting Carl or does he simply not want Enid to return?

Later in the episode, Ron joins Rick on wall duty and asks if Rick will teach him how to shoot. Rick decides to give Ron a lesson right then and there. This will probably backfire on Rick at some point.

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Maggie and Aaron’s Not-So-Excellent Adventure

Aaron finds Maggie gathering supplies to get past the walkers surrounding the community and he realizes that she plans to go out to look for Glenn. Aaron says that even if Maggie’s plan to get past the walkers works — which it probably wouldn’t — she will still be out there alone. She thinks he is trying to talk her out of going, but he says he wants to go with her and he knows of a better way to get out than going over the wall.

Aaron takes Maggie to an old grate that he says leads to the sewers. They will go under the wall and hopefully come out somewhere past the walkers. But once they get in the sewers, they get into a sticky situation involving some very disgusting sewer walkers. They manage to take care of the walkers, but Aaron gets a wound on his head that could require stitches. Still, his guilt over his role in leading the Wolves to Alexandria pushes him to keep going.

Alas, when they get to the end of the sewer system, there is a gate blocking their exit and several walkers waiting right outside. Maggie says they are finished, but Aaron insists that he can keep going. Maggie screams that it is over and then quietly admits that she is pregnant. She says that is the reason Glenn did not want her out there, and if she had gone, she might have been able to help him. Maggie makes a heartbreaking speech about not knowing whether Glenn is alive or dead and how she has to live with not knowing. She starts to fall apart and Aaron comforts her. I hope we see more of their friendship in the future.

We Found Love in a Hopeless Place

Early on in the episode, Tara comes to check on Denise as she is watching over Scott. Denise says that Scott has an infection and will probably die. She also says that she is so worried about things inside the walls that she cannot focus on what is going on outside and that she keeps hoping a real doctor will show up at some point. Tara reminds Denise that Scott is still alive, and Denise goes back to her research. Eventually, she figures out how to draw the infection out of Rick’s wound and seemingly saves his life. She celebrates her success by tracking Tara down and kissing her. It is the end of the world, after all.

The kissing continues when Rick tracks down Jessie. He heard about her speech to the others. Jessie says that when she said they needed to see the world for how it is, she was not saying that there is no future. She then asks Rick to reassure her that there is more to this life, and Rick responds by kissing her. The kissing turns into full-on making-out, and I am just relieved that Ron does not see this.

Other Happenings

— Some of the Alexandrians have decided to write the names of the dead on the wall surrounding the community. Someone decides to write Glenn’s name on the wall, despite no one knowing what happened to him, but Maggie and Aaron scrub it off later on. Aaron also lets it slip that Aaron/Erin is a good name for a boy or a girl, depending on the spelling. I love that moment, but I hope it is not foreshadowing anything about Aaron. I am not ready to lose him yet.

— As the episode ends, Deanna takes a walk around the community and stops by the wall to taunt some walkers. As she passes by another section of the wall, it looks like some blood is seeping through. But is it blood or is it something else?

What did you think of this episode of The Walking Dead? Were you surprised by the reveal of Maggie’s pregnancy or have you suspected that since she decided to stay behind instead of helping Rick and the others deal with the herd? Will Rick take over leadership of the community or will he and Deanna share in the responsibility? With Rick’s insistence on not burying killers inside the walls, will the smell of all those bodies keep the herd from drifting away from the community? Or will Rick go take care of the bodies like Jessie wanted to? Is Ron trying to turn things around and learning to fight or does he have another motive in asking Rick to teach him how to shoot? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.

The Walking Dead airs Sunday nights at 9pm on AMC.

(Image courtesy of AMC)

Megan Cole

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV