Home Entertainment Television Recap: THE WALKING DEAD S10E8 – “The World Before”

Recap: THE WALKING DEAD S10E8 – “The World Before”

The mid-season finale is upon us.

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Hey, Deaders! Walkers? Walking Dead fans? I don’t know what to call you. But I do know that you should check out my recap of the last episode before reading on, just in case.

In this week’s mid-season finale (!), Alexandria deals with a loss of their own while Daryl and Carol begin a mission of their own.

“We all have a past.”

In a field in the darkness, Alpha is giving her new Whisperer Dante a mission: infiltrate Alexandria. Be her eyes and ears in that place. Exact her will.

And so he does. Dante leads a group of walkers near Alexandria and calls for help when he sees people nearby. They save him and bring him into their community, trusting him immediately. He’s the one who painted the “Silence the Whispers” message all over Alexandria. He sabotaged the water supply by playing with the water lever, making people think they were drinking safe water when their water was in fact undrinkable. He killed Siddiq’s patient, Sheryl, by suffocating her with a pillow.

In Siddiq’s room, Dante is watching over his dead body. He closes Siddiq’s eyes but rushes when he hears a knock at the door: it’s Rosita and her baby Coco. She asks after Siddiq but Dante says he was called away to help with a vomiting child. While Dante is attempting to lie to Rosita, the low moans of Siddiq’s resurrected corpse can be heard. Rosita is trying to back away and puts Coco inside the nearby bathtub. Dante lunges at her, and chokes her while Siddiq is slowly approaching the vulnerable Coco. Rosita manages to overpower Dante, stabbing him in the shoulder and stabbing Siddiq in the head, finally putting him to rest.

“He’s the only family I have left.” 

Aaron’s hanging out at the bridge when Gamma walks over to him, asking him about that baby that Hilltop saved all that time ago. He confirms that the baby is still alive and that the people who adopted him named him Adam. Gamma confesses that Adam is her nephew, and she’s wondering if she can see him in exchange for information, which Aaron will allow only if he can confirm her intel is true.

In Alexandria, Daryl, Carol, Gabriel, and Rosita are interrogating Dante. He’s sorry about what happened to Siddiq but admits he wasn’t part of the initial plan, which was to instill fear and paranoia into the hearts and minds of Alexandrians as well as push the leadership to make poor decisions. Alpha thinks that places like Alexandria are false promises to its residents, ready to crumble to bits at the slightest hint of darkness. Aaron walks in and is shocked that Dante would do this to them.

Later, he thinks back to all the times he discussed militia training around Dante, and how he let Dante medically treat his daughter. Aaron tells Daryl and Carol that Gamma, whose real name is Mary, told him where to find the Whisperers’ horde. Carol is eager to head there after Siddiq’s funeral but Daryl is hesitant, sure that the whole thing is a trap. Aaron tells them that Mary wants to see her nephew Adam, and that he believes everything she’s telling him. Daryl asks Aaron to form a team at Hilltop to meet them near the walker horde, but wants Carol to stay behind. He’s upset with her since she didn’t tell him she’d be using Lydia to show Mary that Alpha hasn’t been telling the truth. Carol isn’t having any of it, though.

“Siddiq is dead.” 

Remember when Michonne, Judith, and Luke left Hilltop to check on Oceanside? So much has happened since and it feels like a lot of time has passed since then. Anyway, Luke hitched a ride because he wanted to hang out with a girl he’s been flirting with over at Oceanside. They notice fresh tracks on the rode but they suspect it was a lone Whisperer scout, so they’re pressing on. Judith and Luke get to talking about music and history, and Luke suggests they stop by a library he knows about that’s close to where they are. Michonne doesn’t like the idea but Judith manages to convince her.

Everyone’s exploring the library, and Luke heads off to the music section. He finds what he’s looking for and laughs in excitement, but is caught by two walkers from the other side of the bookshelves surrounding him. He manages to get his knife out but a stranger kills one of them and runs away before Luke can ask him for his name. He kills the other one and runs into Michonne and Judith. Michonne is agitated and reveals to them that Siddiq is dead and that they need to get to Oceanside so they can go home.

“Maybe Dante was right about us.” 

Siddiq’s funeral is being held at Alexandria, and it’s an emotional affair. Ezekiel travelled all the way from Hilltop to be there. After Gabriel concludes his sermon, Carol walks up to Ezekiel. He still hasn’t told her about his thyroid cancer diagnosis, which I’m guessing he was relying on Siddiq to help medicate. Things are still awkward between them, and Carol walks away from some brief small talk.

Rosita hears some walkers banging at the gates and goes off to dispatch them. She’s flashing back to the night Siddiq died and is getting distracted, which is when Eugene rushes in to help her. After they’re done he offers his condolences to Rosita.

Gabriel’s at home watching Dante’s interview tape and is frustrated with himself. Rosita enters and says that Eugene had to help her kill a walker, and she’s been thinking about death. In the past when she died, it was done. Now, if she dies Coco will be an orphan. Gabriel isn’t really listening to her because he has so much on his mind, like how Lydia didn’t know about Dante. Rosita is surprised at Gabriel’s mood, and he essentially tells her to get over it. She felt helpless but that feeling will pass.

“Who are your people?”

At Oceanside, Michonne is briefing some women on Alexandria’s situation and of how they need to change their vetting process when bringing in new people. Suddenly, some Oceanside guards drag in a flailing madman. Luke recognises him as the man who saved him in the library. The man was trying to steal something but was caught, and refuses to answer any of their questions except for where he’s headed, which is to his family. Just then, some walkers enter the fray.

“Look what people did to the world.” 

Gabriel heads to Dante’s cell to have a word with him. In the interview tape Gabriel watched earlier, Dante mentioned his son Jimmy was killed by walkers. Gabriel wonders if this was even the truth, but Dante doesn’t think it matters. At this point Gabriel enters the cell while they’re talking. Dante assures Gabriel that people killed the world, that nobody deserves a second chance. Gabriel stabs Dante in the neck. Dante struggles and pushes Gabriel against the wall but he stabs his side multiple times, and repeatedly stabs him in the chest when he’s already dead. He’s screaming while doing it. He looks at the blood on his hands and cries.

“Screw these freaks.” 

Daryl and Carol meet up with Connie, Jerry, Magna, and Kelly so they can find the walker horde. They cross the border but Daryl and Carol are lagging behind, watching the trees for movement. Carol thinks she spots something but Daryl stops her as she was about to walk into a bear trap. Daryl tells her to cut the shit out, to stop going after Alpha so hard that her life is at risk. Daryl says he’s the person she talks to when she needs to say something, and they hug each other.

“What are you really doing here?”

At Oceanside, Judith is watching over the strange man while he’s knocked out and tied up. He wakes up to find her reading a book from his bag, which he’s going crazy over. He tells her repeatedly that it’s for his daughter and that she needs to put it back in his bag. She doesn’t oblige. Michonne comes in and asks for some alone time with the man. He confesses that he was on a supply run and needs to get back to his family. She asks him why he saved Luke, and he doesn’t have an answer other than he needed to help someone. That he had mercy. This reminds Michonne of what Rick Grimes used to say. She tells him that she can only let him go when he helps them rebuild the damage he caused when he tried to steal a boat, and he says he has a way of doing that.

Michonne goes to Judith and tells her that the man lives on a naval base about two days away, and that it might have enough weapons to fight the entire horde. She’s conflicted as she feels she has to get to Alexandria, but Judith points out that going to the base could end the war. Michonne agrees, and they embrace.

“I wasn’t wrong about this.” 

Daryl and the others finally make it to where the horde should be but they find it empty. Daryl’s pissed off while Aaron is a little bit more practical about it, arguing that the horde could have been there recently. Everybody walks off but Carol remains.

At Oceanside, the man introduces to himself as Virgil to Michonne when she gives him back his stuff. She has a proposition which he accepts, that bringing back all the weapons he has will pay off his debt.

Before she sets out on her journey, Michonne says her goodbyes. She gives Judith a walkie talkie and wants her to call her every hour. They have a long, sad hug, which scares me.

“We stick together.” 

Daryl, Carol, and the rest are heading to their side of the border when Carol stops and stares into the distance. Daryl wants her to fall in line so they can leave together but Carol stands her ground. She sees Alpha watching her in the distance. Carol gives chase, and so does the rest of the group.

Alpha leads Carol into some sort of cave system, and Daryl asks the rest of them to follow her while he takes care of some walkers that have followed them. As such, he enters alone, brandishing his knives.

He cautiously walks through the cave, silently calling for Carol. The ground underneath him gives in, and he tumbles to the depths below. Here he finds the entire group has found their way down here too. They’re on top of some raised ground, while Alpha’s walker horde is below them, hands stretched out.

The End

And that’s it for the mid-season finale season 10 of The Walking Dead! Overall, this was a very strong chunk of episodes. The show has certainly reinvented itself. The writers have done a great job at setting the Whisperers apart from the Saviors in a really meaningful way, and the absence of core characters like Rick and Carl actually worked very well for me. It’s given the supporting cast room to grow and come into their own, characters like Gabriel and Rosita, and even Siddiq!

I don’t know when the show will be back, but I read that every season resumed in February of the next year, so I think it’s safe to assume a two to three month break until it comes back.

In the meantime, what you do with your time is up to you. Read that book you’ve always been telling yourself you were going to read. You know those walks you promised yourself you’d go on? Do those. Watch a movie. A good one. Or you can go back and obsessively go over my previous recaps to see if you missed anything.

Until then, take care!

 

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