The Walking Dead‘s mid-season finale “From Start to Finish” opened where last week’s episode left off – with Alexandria’s fence crumbling and the walkers barreling into the once-safe community.

The Walking Dead Recap

As Sam (Major Dodson) draws a picture of a boy tied to a tree while ants crawl all over the crumbs of his past meals, outside his home is chaos. The watchtower has collapsed, giving the walkers the throughway they needed into Alexandria. Rick (Andrew Lincoln) orders the citizens to seek shelter in their homes while he and Deanna (Tovah Feldshuh) try to slow the horde by peppering them with gunshots. Though Rick emerges unscathed, Deanna suffers a zombie bite. Rick brings the limping Deanna into Jessie’s (Alexandra Breckenridge) home with Michonne (Danai Gurira), Gabriel (Seth Gilliam), Carl (Chandler Riggs) and Ron (Austin Abrams).

While running down the street away from the zombies, Carol falls down and hits her head. Morgan manages to save her from a certain zombie bite and brings her back to the townhouse that holds the jail cell. Though Carol is thankful to still be alive and unbitten, she won’t let Morgan look at her head wound. She acknowledges she trusts no one, least of all him. Down below, Denise (Merritt Wever) is talking to Morgan’s prisoner, who she eventually decides to treat.

Maggie (Lauren Cohan), meanwhile, just narrowly avoids getting bitten herself, climbing up a ladder and hurling herself up onto the lookout tower before the walkers can bite her. Down below, Eugene (Josh McDermitt) is panicked and flanked by zombies. When Rick’s walkie-talkie crackles on the ground, fielding a call from Daryl (Norman Reedus), Eugene picks it up and calls out for help. Instead of getting the help from Daryl, it’s Tara (Alanna Masterson) and Rosita (Christian Serratos) who cut down the walkers and bring him to safety in a nearby garage.


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In the townhouse, Carol waits until Morgan peers downstairs to make her move, shoving him aside and running down to the cell where she finds the W Man getting treated by Denise. When Morgan gets downstairs, he urges Carol not to kill his captive, and when she doesn’t listen, he knocks her unconscious with his staff. Then the W Man springs into action, knocking Morgan unconscious with his own staff then grabbing Carol’s knife and turning it on Denise. Rosita, Tara and Eugene find them in the basement. The W Man quickly gets the upper hand, snatches their gun and makes off with Denise as his hostage.

Sam, with dark circles under his eyes, asks his mother about the monsters as Deanna is rushed into a bedroom in his house, bleeding from her side and thigh. After Jessie implores him to be brave, he says OK and slowly closes the door to his room. Michonne stays with Deanna and talks about her plans for Alexandria, plans that she won’t see come to fruition.  Rick takes Jessie aside and shares his own plans to get to the armory and shoot off flares to distract the zombies .

Elsewhere in the Anderson house, Carl tracks down Ron in the garage. Ron, who thinks that Enid is dead, also thinks that Rick is going to get more people killed, still not trusting him after he killed his father. Ron, believing that they’re all going to die, tires to kill Carl, first with a gun and then with a shovel that ends up going through a window, attracting the zombies. Just in time, Rick breaks into the garage and saves the boys. Carl covers for Ron then follows him to his room, demanding his gun. After Ron turns it over, Carl empathizes with him, but reminds him that his dad wasn’t one of the good guys.

When Rick hears his other child, Judith, crying upstairs, he runs up to find Deanna hovering over her crib. Fearing that she’s turned, Rick is about to kill her when she assures him she’s still her. Though she’s yet to become a walker, she’s becoming increasingly weak, so Rick lays her down in bed and takes the farewell notes she’s written for her son Spencer and for Maggie.

Rick’s attention is once again drawn downstairs, as walkers have broken through the barriers they’d put up to delay them. With options running out, Rick leads the group upstairs, blocking the stairway with a couch. He then orders Michonne to bring two slain walkers with her. In order to walk through the zombies, they’ll all need to cover themselves in their guts – even the increasingly distressed Sam. Bravely, they all walk downstairs and through the walkers, emerging on the front porch and continuing on through the herd.

Outside Alexandria’s gates, Glenn (Steven Yeun) sees the walkers swarming into the town. He remains determined to go in and save their friends and family members. Enid (Katelyn Nacon) seems determined to bail, but after Glenn notes that his pregnant wife is in there, she has a change of heart and follows him. Climbing a tree, they see Maggie atop the watchtower.

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