The mid-season finale of AMC’s hit show The Walking Dead ended with Woodbury’s tyrant leader (David Morrissey) pitting the newly-reunited Dixon brothers against each other. Last night’s episode returned with that fight and a literal bang.

In “The Suicide King,” as Merle (Michael Rooker) and Daryl (Norman Reedus) fight each other and walkers in the “arena,” Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and Maggie (Lauren Cohan) shoot out the lights and drop smoke bombs to clear the area. The Governor strides calmly through the ensuing chaos as Daryl and Merle escape with Rick and Maggie. The tear they made in Woodbury’s fence is now accessible to outside walkers.

Rick’s group meets up with Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Glenn (Steven Yeun) and discusses Merle’s involvement. In a surprisingly humorous moment, Rick knocks Merle out mid-rant with a blow to the head. No one wants him or Michonne in the group, and tensions run high as the sheriff tries to establish order. Daryl ends up leaving his surrogate family for his real one. He and Merle embrace and walk off together into the trees as Rick, Glenn, Maggie, and Michonne ride home to prison.

At the prison, Tyreese (Chad L. Coleman) and his gang bond with the rest of Rick’s group. Hershel (Scott Wilson) tends their wounds as Carl (Chandler Riggs) keeps watch. Tyreese asks Hershel if they can stay, but it’s not up to the doctor to decide. While waiting for tools to bury their dead, Tyreese argues with the rest of his group on further action. One man wants to kill the group and escape, but Tyreese acts as the voice of reason and insists they are good people.

Back at Woodbury, the townspeople want to leave. Andrea (Laurie Holden) tries to keep the peace, but invading walkers break up the riot. One man is bitten and the townspeople plead to Andrea to save him as the Governor walks out, shoots the man dead, and leaves onlookers in stunned silence. Andrea, unofficial representation for Woodbury, confronts the Governor on his dictator-like rule. He doesn’t care what happens to his people because he’s at war now. Andrea, unsatisfied with his answer, returns outside to deliver an uplifting speech on unification and the rebuilding of Woodbury.

At the prison, Carol (Melissa McBride) finds it ironic how quiet the world, an otherwise noisy place, has become. Rick returns, and she breaks down when she discovers Daryl is not with them. Rick nearly has a psychotic episode when he holds his (or Shane’s?) crying daughter Judith. Carol puts her in a makeshift crib with the words “Lil A—kicker,” Daryl’s nickname for the newborn, scrawled on front. Meanwhile, Hershel tries unsuccessfully to have a heart-to-heart with Glenn, who is angry at Rick and Maggie for starting a war against the Governor, so much so that he killed a walker on the way home by stomping on its head. In a tender moment, Hershel likens Glenn to his own son, and comforts Maggie.

Rick finally meets Tyreese’s group. Tyreese pledges their loyalty and aid against the Governor, but the sheriff wants them out. Hershel insists he start trusting people as Rick hallucinates and raves about a shadowy woman – Lori? – on the staircase above them.

Is Rick strong enough to continue on as the group’s leader? Where did Merle and Daryl go? Will the prison group be able to fight off the vengeful Governor? Take a look at next week’s preview to find out:

Jill Wronski

1 Comments

  • sparkyeliot91
    sparkyeliot91 on

    I’m pretty sure the shadowy figure is Lori, or at least the delusion that is stuck in Rick’s mind. He really chose a bad time to have a breakdown considering how many adversaries the group is facing, like the walkers and the Governor. I missed last Sunday’s episode, but just caught up with it yesterday since I recorded it on my DISH Hopper. I like that I can catch up with episodes of my favorite shows on my days off from DISH without needing to delete anything for space because my DVR holds up to 2,000 hours of entertainment.

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