Thoughtful & Abstract: The Walking Dead: 'The King, The Widow, and Rick'

"Why do I still watch this show?" - Kim
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In which Shawn and Kim ask "Why back after?"

Shawn: What did you get for Thanksgiving?  AMC was kind enough to give us a turkey.  And I have a few thoughts.

1.)  Rosita kicks ass.  The best part of the episode was finally seeing Michonne and Rosita get to do something.  The season has had some of the worst flow for side characters. Michonne is a major character and other than glimpses of her, I don't remember her contributing anything to this season.  So we get to see Rosita and Michonne team up to raise some hell.  And lo and behold, Rosita blows away a dude with a freaking missle launcher and we get opera music blasting from speakers.  Easily the best part of the episode.

2.)  Just Jesus being Jesus-y.  I was tired of "peace and love" Jesus before his first appearance this season.  Now he's foisted his Daddy issues on Maggie.  He's falling for the old "if I treat them well, they won't try to bash in my brain while I sleep" plan.  Unfortunately the minute he falls asleep, the prisoners are making a plan to bash his brain in.  While we wait for the inevitable, Maggie makes a decision to bring the prisoners into the Hilltop.  It's relatively predictable but I like seeing her give a speech and her logic based on her father's experiences makes a logical sense that the writers don't always respect.

3.)  And Negan's gone again.  No Negan.  No Negan.  All Negan all the time.  No Negan.  I don't think it's the best way to utilize the most dynamic character currently on the show.  The writers just don't have as much fun with any other character as they do writing dialogue for Negan.  Most of the main stories are being told episodically.  Why do we go all or nothing on Negan?  After last week, it was distracting not to even get a scene of him.  Know your audience please.  I shouldn't be having to dedicate part of a review of the episode to what wasn't there.

4.)  "Why back after?".  I'm all for doing naked crafts in the junkyard.  I'd support a whole episode dedicated to nude junkyard crafting.  I don't even get Rick's need to go visit Jadis.  And her dialogue isn't clever or cute or entertaining.  "Still alone you?"  Well, now he's naked and thirsty and doesn't even have a space for activities.  Every scene they appear in is a waste of my time.

5.)  Carol's Cookies.  Stop me if you seen this story before - child befriends Carol, Carol calls them stupid, child is persistent, Carol gives them a gun.  I thought I'd get much more out of the Ezekiel and Carol storyline this episode.  There are lots of issues to be resolved and it has the most potential of the three titular stories.  "The King" portion of this episode is mostly just The King being depressed and mopey.  It's hard to get excited about what felt like filler within a filler episode.

6.)  Like father, like son.  Carl meeting this character that I guess we saw earlier but I forgot about already was another pretty meaningless scene for me.  Asking his Dad's questions was a nice touch.  But was anything else worth it?  We get that there is a trust curve happening.  How do you learn to trust people after all the crap they've been through since the very start?  This doesn't move the needle much for me.  Carl meets a pretty decent dude and neither want to execute each other.  Maybe there can be a play date for Carl at Dave & Buster's next week.  Carl isn't doing much but wasting our time this season.

So the best part of this episode is Michonne and Rosita wasting time doing very little of matter except blowing up a-holes.  The rest is little more than a "here's where we're at" except for Negan who's in the "you don't need to know" category.  I just feel like I'm wasting my time too.

Kim: A day and a half.  That is how much time has passed in the show since the opening of the season.  Michonne said so.  This is the only thing that we gained from this episode, really.   Well, that and the fact that Queen of Mt. Trashmore likes to do art in the nude.  But I’ll get to that in a bit.  As has become the norm, allow me to complain about a few things first. 

Let’s start with the fact that it’s been so long since we’ve actually seen Rosita and Michonne doing anything but sitting on their asses, that I completely forgot what it was they were healing from.  They mentioned in the car that they were both still healing and it took all three of us watching to recall what it was that had happened to them.  You see, while it’s been a day and a half in the show, it’s been a long eight months for the viewer.  This isn’t even my biggest issue with the scene. 

Remember when we first see them, Michonne is getting into the car.  Rosita hops in and Michonne takes off when she realizes she has a partner in crime.  They are driving down the road, having a discussion about what they’re doing, where they’re going, and why. There’s a commercial, maybe some scenes of other storylines, and when we get back to these two, Rosita is driving instead of Michonne.  I mean, how far is the drive to the sanctuary that you have to split it between two people?  I’ve driven eight hours at a shot before needing a break, and even then, it was just to pee.  On the good side of this, Rosita blew up that dude with the rocket launcher, and it was spectacular.  Of course, these two muck it up anyway, and it takes Daryl and Tara, out on a clandestine adventure of their own, to tie up the loose ends.  However, I have to wonder if our foursome bothered to take any weapons from that warehouse. 

Side note:  If we could just follow these four for the rest of the season, ensure that they somehow pick up Carol and just forget about everyone else, I’d be far more satisfied with this show. 

Dear, writers:  we have already seen a member of our gang locked up and naked in the past year.  Recall that it was Daryl, as Negan had him locked up.  Why did you repeat this scenario?  Let me guess, they’ll feed him cat food instead of dog food, so it’s not the same, right?  Try writing something you haven’t already written.  So now, we’ve got Rick locked up by a naked artist who at least has the sense to wear an apron.  Coincidentally, this is my preferred way to cook, so I feel you, Javis, Jarvis, Janis, or whatever your name is.  Why Rick would wander back there all alone in the first place is beyond me.  Didn’t he learn like the rest of us did, that Trashopolis only functions when you have something to offer them?  He brought them nothing but Polaroid pictures, I’m assuming of dead Saviors and the damage that they have caused. 

Or, maybe I’m wrong.  Perhaps Rick took some last-minute dick pics, knowing that Mad Maxine might be interested in seeing his Georgia Python.  Maybe that’s why she really locked him up, naked - hoping to take a ride on that later.  Not that it matters, because this was a really stupid move by Rick and I can’t believe no one pointed it out to him beforehand. I mean, if these people are truly who they've been portrayed to be, they would just kill him outright and be done with his bullshit. I am still bothered by the complete lack of respect for the English language that this entire group shows.  I get that less is more, but in this case, less is annoying as shit - and this includes clothing. 

Gregory finally got his face smashed into a post, and the world rejoiced.  The long-haired prisoner is someone I am thoroughly finished with.  They should really just let him try to escape so someone can shoot him.  I vote for Jesus doing the shooting, just to shake things up a bit.  The new good-guy who wants to do all of the talking with Jesus is also on my nerves.  I don’t buy his kindness for one moment, and I’m pretty sure that whole situation ends poorly with that “Good Guy” killing some people in Hilltop, just to metaphorically bitch-slap Jesus. Hopefully Gregory will bite it in that whole scenario. 

Other questions I don’t really expect an answer to:  Why did they have Carol hang out with another kid? (lazy writing?) Can we give Jerry a bigger role in this show?  (Deuces!) When did Aaron and Enid become such good buddies?  Why do either of them feel it’s appropriate or smart to just wander out into the wild yonder all alone?  Haven’t they learned anything?   Where did Daryl get that truck?  Is the U.S. Postal Service working?  I mean weren’t they all writing letters at the beginning of the show? How did Maggie get a baby?  Is that the one that Rick orphaned?  Does anyone care that Rick is MIA?  What about Daryl?  Is anyone going to talk about Morgan? Why is Carl just roaming the country side?  Why is Carl still wearing Rick’s hat?  Why is Carl, period?  Why do I still watch this show? 

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