The Walking Dead 9×03 Review

Warning Signs 

As the season starts to escalate, in this episode we see a number of confrontations. The groups are becoming divided, as a number of people are going missing. This is because people still can’t live with the fact the “Saviours” get to have this life and the innocent people that have died, don’t. It turns out that the members of Oceanside are taking matters into their own hands, realising they don’t have to listen to Ricks rules as Maggie has her own set after killing Gregory. Also, what is Anne up to and do we find out?

Justin’s Death

The opening scene before the credits is always something that catches the viewers eye, it needs to make us want to watch more and what to expect from this episode. We see that someone is being eaten by walkers in the middle of a grassy area, and after a little wait, we see Justin finally reanimate and become a walker confirming the death of his character. There are two things interesting about this scene, one we see a wound that wasn’t caused by a walker but by a weapon. This wound supports my theory in the previous episode of one of the Oceanside members using a harpoon at the logging site as well as showing Dianne from the Kingdom using a Bow & Arrow. The wound is a puncture, a quick and easy way to seriously hurt someone. Just like a crossbow, which we’ll get onto later in the episode.

Now the other thing I found interesting about this scene is once Justin becomes a walker, he does the obvious thing and joins the rest of the ones that were just eating him and walk past a wall. This wall has graffiti on it which says “Final warning” which im almost certain means that the saviours are being taken here to be killed and left to rot. We know now that the saviours wandering off arent just leaving, or forming a party to rescue Negan they, in fact, are being picked off one by one by the Oceanside group. This is going to cause a huge amount of problems when people start to find out.

Michonne

The first scene we’re shown as the episode starts, Rick wakes up and gets out of bed. He goes to make sure Judith is ok who is sound asleep still. Going outside, he goes to see how the growing vegetables are doing and we see a tomato ready to be picked. Anyone remember the dream sequence between Negan and Judith back in the last season? Maybe this is a direct reference to that. We also see him drop off the first tomato at what is clearly Carls grave. He leaves it there, as a symbol to Carl to the future that he envisioned before his devastating death.

Once Rick gets back home we see Michonne awake too, writing but there is something on her arm. That something is clearly blood, as she realises and wipes it away quickly. She is up to something and doesn’t want anyone to know especially Rick. She’s clearly been on outside the walls of Alexandria to deal with something.

Talking about the charter Rick praises Michonne for leading Alexandria by herself as Rick has been leading the project (Bridge). Mentioning Judith has a cough, they want to take her to see Siddiq to make sure she hasn’t caught anything. Notice how Carl originally saw Michonne as a best friend, to begin with, but eventually ended up thinking her as his mum. Judith is her number one priority, without Rick Judith is going to be her last connection to both him and Carl. Like most kids, they hate going to the doctors so Rick mentions that they’re going to have to promise her a family fun day which means that he would have to take a day off from the project at the bridge.

This is something that we viewers desperately need to see before Ricks departure. There was a dream sequence if you remember of Glenn spending time with Hershel and the amount of upset it brought was insane. So they do right now writing in a scene where Rick and Michonne spend a whole day together (not as a dream) and do stuff like a normal family like the apocalypse isn’t even happening. However, without Rick being at the bridge to lead things. He’s going to have to leave it up to Maggie and a few others as we’re told that she is personally delivering the food there as she doesn’t want any of her people going missing too like the Saviours.

Now we get onto something that surprised me, Rick stops Michonne from working on a document that’s “Building the future” however Rick tells her that he can think of another way to build for the future. Which clearly means to try for a baby, if Michonne ends up being pregnant this is going to be huge. Rick is leaving, who is going to be the father figure for Michonnes child? She is a very capable person of looking after two children, but in the apocalypse, she is going to need help. And people like Aaron hopefully will solve this problem and become a nanny, as he loves to look after kids.

Maggie and the Saviours 

In this scene, we see Maggie and Kal on their way to deliver food to the camp at the bridge. However along the way, they’re stopped by Jed and a few other saviours that claim they’re looking for a friend (Justin) that went missing last night. There is no way Maggie could’ve known about this as she has been at Hilltop for over a month now and hasn’t stepped foot outside the walls.

Jed carries on and talks about how he knows Maggie as the Widow. This goes on to show us that he doesn’t agree with any of what’s going on and is still Negan. This is an example of what Daryl was telling Rick in the previous episode, of how these people shouldn’t be here and don’t deserve a second chance whereas innocent people don’t. The others Saviours in the group looking for Justin defuse the heated moment and tell Maggie to mark him down for the tomato. Heading back before the next shift on the bridge, Jed and Maggie still looking at each other as we see the same fire burning in her eyes as we saw in previous episodes. Maggie sees Negan in Jed, and I think this is what changes her mind about visiting Alexandria (but not in good cause).

At the end of the scene, we also see Justin walk out of the woods where they’ve just come from. I think it’s either Maggie or the saviours that find him and deal with him, delivering him back to camp. This then causes a very heated moment, which we will get onto soon.

Judith’s play day

As mentioned earlier about Judith’s cough, Rick takes her to Siddiq to have a checkup. If someone saw this scene not knowing what the show was about they would just presume nothing along the lines of an apocalypse had happened before. Rick is trying his hardest to secure a positive future for Judith and wants her to grow up as a real kid before any of this happened. So keeping her at Alexandria behind huge walls surrounded with people that they can trust is her best bet to having a proper childhood.

After Judith clearly is entertained by Rick pretending to have his checkup with Siddiq, we’re given a beautiful scene where Rick, Michonne and Little ass kicker (Judith) are having a family fun day. We see them take walks, play hide and seek, have crawling races around the house and a picnic. Michonne even gives her a few tips on how to wield a weapon (in this instance, a stick). This could be some foreshadowing in the future as we may see a scene in a time jump where Michonne is giving her lessons as an older kid. In fact I’m certain that this will be shown again in the future, as the building in the background is the one where Carl ended his own life.

They end the play day with Rick reading a story to Judith on the stairs of their home, however, Scott is seen in the distance running down the street to report back to Rick. But he carries on reading as Michonne goes to deal with the problem. Worrying about what is happening, Rick heads over to leaving Judith to look at pictures as Scott tells him that Justin was killed and found after he is exiled.

Communities Divided

After finding out about Justin’s death, the Saviours are in an uproar about what’s happening to them. They have every right to be worried, startled and mad as any one of them could be next. The groups begin to push and shove each other which could have been much worse unless Alden didn’t step in. He reassures the Saviours that they’re going to find out who’s doing it to “us” and make sure it never happens again. Instantly Jed tells Alden that he isn’t one of the Saviours anymore but Alden simply means that it means everyone, not just them. Alden is the voice of reason like I said previously and is beginning to become a character popular. I certainly like his character anyway, we haven’t really seen much of him yet but the scenes we do see him in are always exciting to watch.

Unfortunately, Alden is punched in the face as Jed wants this situation to escalate. The current leader of the Sanctuary (Carol) steps in with her hand on her gun holster, stopping Jed but he tells her to unholster it and aim it at them. Which she does, along with various other members from the communities. As the Saviours begin to pick and blame certain people for them going missing and being killed, one that catches every viewers attention is the random person calling out the garbage lady (Anne).

Notice here that she doesn’t give a damn about what’s going on. But why? She clearly knows something that the group and all of us don’t know. It has something to do with that helicopter, and once called out about being blamed for the deaths she is shocked. She thinks everything that she is doing is discreet and nobody has noticed, Gabriel bravely steps in defending her as he doesn’t see why she is blamed at all. Back to the helicopter, the group that clearly own it are a very huge powerful one. Throughout the seasons we’ve seen helicopters randomly shown but never anything else happens with them, maybe these helicopters are all from the same place and have been spying on each community and seeing how they’re doing. But how did they get in contact with Anne? Maybe we’ll find out in future episodes but for now, it’s cleary through a frequency on the radio.

Image result for rick sees a helicopter

The scene is finally defused by Rick who turns up heroically on his horse and ever so famous .357 Colt Python which he has had since the start. After Rick turns up we see the ladies of the Saviours, (Laura and Arat) removing the weapons from the men so we can see that they’re trying to make peace with the other communities. Rick questions Gabriel about Anne’s disappearance last night, as he lies to him about where Anne was. Rick must have overheard or seen someone be suspicious about Anne before which has got him thinking. After all, she has betrayed Rick a number of times before and nearly get them all killed. Trusting Gabriel already, he gives Gabriel the task of keeping an eye on her and following her every move.

Rick talks with Alden

Shortly after the communities square up to each other, Alden chases down Rick about maybe arming a few of the Saviours they can trust with firearms. However, this wasn’t the deal they made as they can’t know that any one of them might turn at a given moment. But now that they don’t really have anything to defend themselves with against whoever is picking them off, Rick needs to maybe think about arming the others (He did arm Alden after all).

Rick and Maggie talk

Once Alden finishes up with Rick, Maggie arrives and overhears Rick mentioning that Justin was killed by someone which surprises Maggie. Showing her the body, we can see that he has clearly been murdered before he turned. Rick sees the puncture and instantly looks at Daryl as it’s clearly some sort of bolt wound. But would Daryl really do that? He would prefer to do it in plain sight as he doesn’t give a damn about any of the Saviours. However, Rick has seen how angry he was and how much he despised of Justin so thinking that he did it was obvious.

Gabriel questions Anne

We can see by the previous talk with Rick, Gabriel has questions of his own about the whereabouts of Anne last night and meets up with her in the kitchen. Collecting a few bits of food and putting it into her bag, we can see she that is planning to go somewhere again as the night comes. Gabriel asks her if she has anything to do with the killing of Justin, which she is telling the truth about. But she doesn’t tell the truth about where she was last night. Worryingly, Anne knows that Rick is onto her which isn’t what she wants. Would you want Rick questioning your every move? I certainly wouldn’t, so we know that Anne is now up to something that is very dangerous.

Leaving the tent, she tells Gabriel that she needs to get some rest (through the day?) as she apparently has an early shift tomorrow. This again hints at that she will be going somewhere tonight to do whatever she’s been doing the past few nights.

Further on into the episode, we catch up with what Anne is up to and it’s now night time. Just like we guessed, she has been contacting whoever it is on that radio at the Junkyard. Speaking to them, notice how she contacts them as Jadis. So she’s back in her act, and that she’s been in talks with them for a long time (At least 2 years). Or she’s just using Jadis again so they don’t know her real one.

Confusing us, a mysterious man says “what do you have, an A or a B?” Which can mean a few things? One it can mean either an Alpha or Beta, referring to the whisperers as a hint that they will be here soon. Or an A or a B as in two types of people, as she’s been trading with them for supplies. A could mean certain supplies and B could mean other supplies that are given to her for the trade. Jadis doesn’t answer and asks them if they’re the ones taking the Saviours confirming that she had nothing to do with Justin or Arat. We now know that she is buying a spot on the helicopter to be taken away to another world that she’s been promised, but she needs to collect an A to be taken with her. Meaning that an A could be a strong person that’s built for this world, which could be hinting at a departure for Rick.

Appearing from the background we see Gabriel overhears every word said in the conversation she’s just been having, as he questions her about the missing people. We can’t help but feel sorry for Gabriel in this scene, as he’s been betrayed after he shows his feelings for Anne over the course of the last few episodes. She tells him that originally it wasn’t like this, confirming that she’s been doing for a very long time back as Jadis in previous seasons. Along the way the voice has been asking for more and more, which also tells us she used to trade her own people for supplies to keep them safe. She has been doing it because she still feels an outsider, as the first thing that goes wrong they suspect her. Maybe she shouldn’t have betrayed or lied to so many people?

She wants Gabriel to leave with her, but that’s only so he doesn’t go back and tell Rick and the others. She asks him to help with one small part of the deal which is obviously to kidnap Rick, but they only said her an A to be aboard, so Gabriel’s spot isn’t there. As Gabriel says no as we all expected him to and that he has to tell Rick, he is knocked out. Confirming that if anybody else found out her plan would fail. One thing that does confuse me is that she tells Gabriel before he’s knocked out that “After all this time, I thought you were a B” Classing him as an A? But if Rick is classed as an A too then what do both him and Gabriel have in common? Maybe it’s that they don’t betray or lie to their own? So what is this place she speaks of? The Commonwealth? I hope so.

Rick interrogates Daryl

We see Daryl sharpening one hell of a blade, as Rick sits down opposite him and asks him about the death of Justin. Describing that the wound was an arrow or a bolt (which is from a crossbow) Daryl tells Rick that if he’d of done it then he would have done it in plain sight, for everyone to see. Again they disagree as Daryl tells them that this was always going to happen. Which is wrong, if Daryl had acted as Rick is acting then this would never have happened. They would’ve been able to get the wrong people in line, or inevitably exile them like Rick did with Justin. However the Oceanside group would still have been angry, I don’t think they would have had anything to do with the killing of them if Cyndie didn’t see Maggie make her own rules by hanging Gregory.

Going onto mentioning previous people that have died, Glenn, Abraham, Sasha as well as the countless members that other communities have lost he still doesn’t agree with what’s Rick saying. Even though Rick originally wanted them all to be dead more than anyone, Carl changed his mind about it for a better future that killing them was the only way to deal with things.

Now what I’m enjoying about this series the most so far is that Rick’s final episodes are filled with throwbacks. In the conversation he has just had with Daryl, Rick mentions that he wants Daryl to just see that way of doing things, and then maybe the best decision that he has ever made was “Not killing a guy that left his brother on a rooftop to die”. To any fan of the show, this triggers a memory in your head where we see Rick (Officer Friendly) Hopelessly leave Merle tied to the roof as he wasn’t right in the head.

Walking the Grids

What I think is the first ever conversation between Cyndie and Maggie, we see both of them spot a few walkers as Cyndie explains to Maggie that she knows where they’re coming from. She and her family used to live near here before Oceanside was created, but what drew them away from here? The population of walkers? Or maybe it was the Saviours that spooked them in fleeing. Or even this is the new plan to take out the next member of the Saviours, as this could be a distraction to kidnap Arat from the other group but we’ll get onto that later.

Heading towards the cabin, we see a group of walkers that are surrounding it as the roof is making noise from the wind. Walker kill of the episode coming from Cyndie, she uses the pitchfork to drive it through the bottom of the mouth through the skull of one of the walkers. This shows that Cyndie of Oceanside is used to killing them. As she steps onto the old rickety wooden cabin, her foot falls through one of the planks and thus resulting in the walkers breaking through the door leaving her to an agonising death unless Maggie doesn’t step in to help.

And boy do we see Maggie step in, throwing herself into a number of walkers she saves Cyndie leaving her to one walker that she is trying her hardest to not let bite her. We see just how rotted the walkers are, years after the outbreak they’re completely decaying as Cyndie literally pushes her hand through the walker’s neck without showing much force before it takes a bolt to the head from Daryl as help arrives on the scene. Maggie’s kill count now is at least 10 as she kills the remaining walkers without the help of anyone else.

Now comes the second moment we see Daryl and Cyndie sharing. Why would they show us this? Like before in a previous review, I’m supporting at least the friendship or even relationship between the two for the time gap that’s obviously coming after Rick’s departure.

As grid 5 didn’t show, we see the group catch up with them to find Beatrice laying knocked out on the floor (next to her harpoon). But why do we see this? My bet is that Arat was part of the group with a few of the Oceanside girls and managed to knock one of them out (Beatrice) before she was overwhelmed. They must have thought the best option was to leave Beatrice on the floor as if they would have stayed then Rick and the others would find out who’s been killing them.

Daryl picks up the harpoon, and Maggie picks up the radio showing us that they know something is going on here. We see the proof that Arat was in this group as Beatrice says she called in the all clear, but she didn’t. We now know that Oceanside is lying about the whereabouts of Arat as the episode escalates.

Meeting

Back at camp, the communities together discuss the problem at hand with Arat. Keeping it on a low, they don’t want anyone else to know especially the Saviours. They need to solve this problem before morning otherwise they’re sacrificing too much time away from the construction of the bridge. And if they don’t get it done in time then that bridge will collapse as the water level is rising further and further. Jerry mentions that what happens once they do find the culprit? What then? Will they be put in prison like Negan or will they be hung like Gregory. They will need to come together to decide what action is needed. What surprises me about this scene is when Cyndie speaks up, she looks so innocent and trustworthy but yet when she speaks in this scene we can clearly see that she is trying to hide the fact that it’s Oceanside dealing with the Saviours. She’s showing more about her personality, being more sly than we first thought. How will Daryl approve of this? As he seems to of taken a liking to her as we’ve been shown previously.

Rick and Carol (Final conversation?)

This could very well be the last conversation between the show’s veterans. Carol from weak to completely apocalyptic badass and Rick the born leader share a scene in the woods as they’re searching for Arat. They speak about the Saviours, whether they should be apart of this anymore. Carol is completely fed up by now as we can see as people are fighting, she tells Rick that she wanted to pull the trigger so much and just get it over with before it begins. Rick is adamant about it not coming to fighting anymore, he says it can’t come to it as it’s his promise to Carl and also his promise to Negan. Telling us that Rick still lives with his demons, he wants to go down to the cell where Negan is every morning to just kill him. But then realises that he isn’t honouring everyone they’ve lost in the past, he says “it’s either us or them” telling us that he wants everyone to live in peace.

As we see them both still searching for Arat through the night, Carol is taken hostage by Jed. As he pretends to be a walker, making moans and groans who does that hint at? The Whisperers. The show is telling us that they’re definitely coming. But this is nothing they clearly can’t handle. A number of times Carol has been held hostage before and every time she’s been savage about it. And this time isn’t any different, revealing a hidden blade from her sleeve she quickly turns the fight around and stabs Jed. I think any other time she would’ve killed him but after hearing Rick speak about how he doesn’t want anyone else to die, she spares his life. Showing us that she is starting to see Ricks way of thinking. Hopefully, this will pass on to Daryl and the others as he listens to Carol.

Jed talks about as he’s holding her hostage that he overheard them talking about every life counts, but that ended with Justin’s death. A the end of the scene, Carol tells Jed that every life counts as Rick tells him to keep pressure on the wound.

Maggie and Daryl

We see them both here talking about Rick’s plan, asking Maggie about if she agrees with it or if she’s just “playing nice”. She doesn’t know and wishes she could see it from Ricks point of view but simply can’t. Admitting that what Rick is doing is right, as it will be better for Hershel’s future as well as everybody else’s but she just can’t let it go that Negan still gets to be alive. We see Daryl still completely against his ideas, as he can’t let any of it go as he still feels the sense of guilt for people dying. But he needs to so that this future can be promised without him or anyone else sabotaging it. It’s like the show wants us to be against Daryl and Maggie, as they know what’s been written is for Rick’s last episodes. So the sense of making us just want everyone to be there for Rick when we know what’s coming but they don’t is getting harder and harder to watch. As people like Daryl who Rick sees as his brother is just not going with it. Daryl tells Maggie that he knows who took Arat, finally! It’s confirmed that both of them now know who has taken Arat and the others. Coming up to a few walkers, Maggie finishes the last one off as we are evidently shown a harpoon through the walker’s chest. But why do we see is specifically there? It’s to support our evidence that Oceanside killed Justin and the rest of the missing Saviours.

By the end of the episode, we see all of the Saviours leaving camp, either to a safer area for them back at the Sanctuary or they’ve chosen to leave on their own doing. This abandons all work at the bridge, which will leave it unfinished before the flooding arrives. We also see Maggie and Daryl talk some more, as she mentions that she didn’t just show Cyndie the way. Cyndie showed Maggie the way, making her mind up about going to Alexandria as her and Daryl are now both in agreement that they’re going to kill Negan.

Arats Death

For me, this scene is extremely depressing. Speaking about it earlier in the episode, Cyndie tells Maggie that they used to live close by the cabin they encountered. Which leads Maggie and Daryl to this rundown building. Cleverly written in my opinion we’re shown signs over the past few episodes but very subtly that Oceanside are the ones taking the Saviours. One of the two characters I didn’t want them to take was Arat, she showed that she’d changed in a number of scenes and that she was keeping the Saviours calm from doing anything irrational to sabotage their future. Talking about how they used to live here, Cyndie tells us that they gave us a “Final Warning” which I mentioned previously as it’s spraypainted on the wall. This is where we find out about they’ve been doing it because they know they had a choice now not to listen to Ricks rules as they saw Maggie kill Gregory without the decision of anyone else. Only hers.

Yes, we saw Arat kill Olivia back at Alexandria and slice open Rosita’s face but that was under Negan. If she didn’t, then we all know what would’ve happened. Most likely be tied to the fence he had set up or locked away like Daryl until she is broken again. Hell, she might have even been killed by Negan on the scene in Alexandria for disobeying and embarrassing him like that. She even says in the scene where if she didn’t do as Simon told her, that she’d of been killed too. We see Arat begging for her life as they hold her at gunpoint. Cyndie goes on to talk about the Saviours killed her mother and how Arat murdered her little brother in front of them all in this very spot and how she smiled about it and enjoyed it. Maggie and Daryl listen to what each side have to say and was on the fence until the ever so famous quote is spoken “No exceptions”. This, of course, was one of the last things we all heard before Glenn was brutally murdered. This causes Maggie and Daryl to walk away, and we see Arat take a spear through the back of the head driven by Cyndie.

This scene is very dark, Arat didn’t deserve to die. Everyone has done unspeakable things, Daryl has killed countless people and so has Maggie. But yet they get to live in this world? Why not Arat? Getting revenge on Justin was one thing, but getting revenge on Arat has now just completely destroyed anything that Rick has tried to do. Maggie and Daryl just let this happen, as they now know they will get what they want and not what Rick wants. It’s simply not fair and makes me furious at the characters. Especially Maggie, she knows first hand what it’s like for a life to be taken away from her but just lets them take Arats life as she begs for mercy.

That’s now twice Daryl has been spoken to about how all life matters now. Firstly from Morgan back in the previous seasons as he rescues them, and then by Rick but he just can’t accept it because he doesn’t want the Saviours to have a future. But that’s not his choice to make, a council should be formed that decides on the matter.

Final Thoughts

This episode was the best of the season so far, and by the next episode I believe we will see all hell break loose, as the Saviours are clearly going to know now that Arat has gone. The season is going great so far, it feels really fresh. However, there are only 2 more episodes left with Rick! I am not ready for it, at all. If they kill him off, viewers will be in more shock when Glenn was killed. I believe that Jadis will tell the mysterious voice on the radio about Rick, and they will class him as an “A”. I think this because of the herd that is coming for the bridge, which Rick believes connects the world together. Rick will somehow sacrifice himself and lead the herd to the bridge knowing that it will collapse as it wasn’t finished, which hopefully the helicopter will spot from the sky.

I think that the helicopter will somehow save Rick as Anne tells them that he’s an “A”.  Maybe by dropping him a ladder to climb up, or picking him up as he’s about to be swarmed by the herd? Maybe we will be left on a cliffhanger of the sound of the helicopter? Or I could totally be wrong and that could be Beta on the radio that finally makes an appearance in the show, ending Ricks life and wearing it as a mask. How spine-chilling would that be? I’d be terrified every time I saw it on screen.

Final Rating 8.6/10

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