By: Casey Johnston (@DarthHockey)
WARNING: There are spoilers ahead for the latest episode of The Walking Dead.
A Plot: Eugene’s Survival Instincts
The Walking Dead has come a long way since the group got to Alexandria. The show was on the verge of becoming unwatchable as more and more episodes contained mundane storylines that didn’t feature characters like Rick and Daryl enough and didn’t move the story along in any meaningful way. At the show’s lowest point, if you’d have told me an episode was going to focus mainly on Eugene, I would have tuned out for that weekend. That’s no longer the case. This episode was interesting, it drove the story (even if only slightly better than the bottle episodes of the dark ages of TWD), and it made me uncomfortable in a way that I should be uncomfortable when I watch an episode featuring Negan.
While Eugene’s story tonight shared its importance with Dwight’s story, it was Eugene’s story that had me more focused for an hour. There is plenty that can be said about Eugene’s cowardice but the man is a survivor. He made it through his time with Abraham and Rosita, then his time with Rick and company, and he’ll make it through his time with Negan. Of course, the big difference here is that Negan isn’t trying to protect Eugene, at least not in the same way his previous companions were. So Eugene will need to adapt, and he’s doing just that. I knew from the moment Eugene first encountered Negan tonight that he would be bowing and saying, “I am Negan” before the episode was over, so I was not surprised when that very thing happened. But don’t be fooled by Eugene’s sudden embrace of the Savior lifestyle; he’s just doing what he needs to get by.
B Plot: The Curious Life of Dwight
I’m not embarrassed to admit, but I don’t fully get what happened in Dwight’s story tonight. I know why Sherry left and I know why Dwight let her go. He never really wanted her to marry Negan, even if it meant saving his life. Letting her go was the easiest decision he’s had to make since the start of the zombie apocalypse. I just don’t really understand why Dwight got the doctor killed. Maybe I missed something while feeling nostalgic about playing Yar, but I don’t get why the doctor had to die.
In any event, Dwight is being set up to be the traitor to Negan and this is how he’s getting there. I don’t know how it will happen yet, I but I think Dwight will be the final piece in bringing all the communities together to fight Negan. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if we find out within the next one or two episodes that he’s been in contact with someone from Hilltop or the Kingdom.
Thanks for reading!