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Friday, March 11, 2016

The Walking Dead 6x10: The Next World


Zombies don't exist.

I know, I know, I'm not breaking any news. But it's true, zombie don't exist and zombies (at least presented in traditional zombie movies) can never exist. Zombies defy the laws of physics, specifically law of conservation of mass. On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 least likely, 10 most likely) the likelihood of a zombie outbreak actually occurring is approximately -10,050,100,770.3691.

So, obviously, when watching The Walking Dead you need to suspend your disbelief. Believing in the zombie apocalypse is already a huge detour from reality. So, why then, is it so hard to swallow when the show introduces a man whose nickname is Jesus and is clearly magic?

"The Next World" jumps ahead two months from the previous episode and things in Alexandria seem pretty hunky-dory. However, food looks to be in short supply. So Daryl and Rick venture outside the walls in search of food.

Rick and Daryl actually find a nice stash of food conveniently placed in the back of a shipping truck. Everyone has seen this story before. This is The Walking Dead, that food truck is the sword of Damocles hovering above us by a thread. It metaphorically falling on us is only a matter of time.

As Rick and Daryl are packing up when a random man runs into them. He's bearded so naturally his nickname is Jesus. Jesus claims there are zombies behind him and, after some sizing up, Rick decides he likes him. Daryl hates him because...Daryl is a xenophobe now? I suppose having his bike and crossbow stolen by supposed allies has left him jaded. It's understandable but I don't like it. I like good Daryl!

So this Jesus character runs off and either he has already prepared some expertly timed firecrackers or already started a fire, talked with Rick and Daryl, ran around behind a building to place the firecrackers on the fire he had the foresight to start, then ran around the building again just in time to not be seen by Rick and Daryl who came to investigate what they thought were gun shots. By the time Rick and Daryl figure out the firecracker ruse Jesus has driven off with Rick and Daryl's food.

Here's a tip for Rick and Daryl. When you hear gunshots and you have a truck full of food, maybe you should just hop into the truck and drive off. Or, if you need to investigate, take the keys to the truck with you.

Anyway, Rick and Daryl catch up to Jesus and his truck. They attack Jesus but it turns out Jesus knows kung fu. However, one kung fu Jesus is no match for the combination of Rick and Daryl. So Jesus ends up tied up and Rick and Daryl drive away with the food.

However, somehow Jesus ends up on the roof of the truck. I guess he managed to Houdini his way out of the ropes and, somehow, got to the roof of the truck. All without being spotted or heard by Rick and Daryl. Whatever.

Rick and Daryl FINALLY hear Jesus on top of the roof and a sudden stop gets him off. There's an odd chase through a crop field. Eventually the truck is parked precariously near a hill next to a lake. Daryl and Jesus fight and Jesus proves himself not be a murderer. Naturally, in the course of this fight the truck is put into neutral, rolls into the lake and sinks to the bottom. What else down falls the sword of Damocles.

Jesus is brought back to Alexandria and locked in a room. Daryl is supposedly guarding the room but Jesus, I guess, teleports out of the room and into the bedroom containing a post-coitus Rick and Michonne (oh yeah, that happened too). I mean, I don't KNOW that Jesus teleported but it was either that or he managed to unlock the door and sneak past Daryl and know exactly where Rick's house was, sneak into that house and into his bedroom without being detected.

So, yeah, teleportation may be the best explanation. I'm not sure why that seems so far-fetched. Teleportation is just as realistic as zombies.

Other Thoughts:
Last episode felt like it could've been the mid-season finale. This episode definitely felt like it could've been the mid-season premier.

The beginning of this episode made me question if Rick and Michonne were an item. The end of the episode confirmed it. I'm fairly indifferent to their relationship but I do wonder if the end of the episode was the start of a romantic relationship or the continuation of an already existing one.

I'm from the midwest so I'm like Denise. I say pop.

There's that zombie impaled at the entrance of Alexandria. It wouldn't be too difficult to just kill it, right?

Wasn't Maggie pregnant? Was I imagining that? Is she still pregnant?

So when Rick and Daryl find a truck full of food and decide to take it, are they sure it isn't somebody else's?

So Jesus is wearing a stocking cap this entire episode. These days, if I were Rick and Daryl, the first thing I'd do is ask a person to show me their forehead just to make sure there are no W's.

It's nice that Spencer got to kill his mother's zombie...I guess. Still, he seemed to kill her in the most dangerous way possible.

The Walking Dead is the only universe where declaring that you'd kill someone is considered a sign of affection.

This is where I'd bring up that, considering how long Jesus was unconscious, he'd be facing some serious brain damage. But, again, he's magic.

I just have to point out again that I hate, hate, HATE xenophobic Daryl. I love Daryl. I don't want him to become Carol.

2 comments:

  1. He's bearded so naturally his nickname is Jesus.

    How come you never call me Jesus?

    Rick decides he likes him. Daryl hates him because...Daryl is a xenophobe now?

    Yeah, I didn't like that either. Like you said, maybe Daryl's recent experiences have changed them, but they didn't seem any worse than other stuff he's faced, and he was all gung-ho about bringing people into Alexandria at first. It's like the show feels like it can't ever have too many people arguing inclusion, so now that they've spun the wheel back around to "Rick wants to bring people in", they need someone to takeover the old "Rick wants to keep people out" position.

    (And seriously, Rick seesawing on whether he wants to expand or maintain the group is almost as laughably cyclical as the way the show cycles between "Group finds a safe haven" and "Group is scattered and on the run". Like, it only knows two overarching plots, and only two settings for Rick's character).

    Or, if you need to investigate, take the keys to the truck with you.

    In Rick and Daryl's defense, Jesus lifted the keys from Rick when he first ran into him (aka the classic pickpocket move). When they ran back to the truck, Daryl said something like "he take your keys?" and Rick patted his pocket to confirm they were gone.

    I have no idea how he triggered those firecrackers, though.

    I guess he managed to Houdini his way out of the ropes and, somehow, got to the roof of the truck.

    Again, Rick and Daryl did say they were leaving the ropes loose (the idea being that he'd be tied for up long enough for them to get away, but not for so long that he was helpless should zombies show up). Presumably, because of his super kung-fu skills, he was able to shake the ropes and get on the roof faster and more quietly than Rick & Daryl were expecting.

    Naturally, in the course of this fight the truck is put into neutral, rolls into the lake and sinks to the bottom. What else down falls the sword of Damocles.

    This seriously pissed me off so much. Like, that should be a huge blow to the community, and it was mostly played for laughs (by this show's terms, at least). Like, maybe they should go back and try to get something out of the truck? Was that lake THAT deep? Some of the food seemed to be in containers...

    Daryl is supposedly guarding the room but Jesus, I guess, teleports out of the room

    Was he guarding him? I thought they just left him locked up.

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  2. Last episode felt like it could've been the mid-season finale. This episode definitely felt like it could've been the mid-season premier.

    Right? AMC (or the producers) seem to really want to end their season breaks on a big cliffhanger, but the end result is that it really seems to skew their sense of when things start and end. This episode would have played A LOT better with the break between half-seasons for the audience reinforcing the passing of time for the characters.

    I'm fairly indifferent to their relationship but I do wonder if the end of the episode was the start of a romantic relationship or the continuation of an already existing one.

    I was confused by that too. And while I don't *really* care about their relationship, I did kind of like the whole thing they seemed to have going where Rick, Michonne, Carl & Judith were like this little family within the larger group, one born of circumstance and having been through a lot together, but without any kind of romance between Rick and Michonne. Like, their bond was bigger than romantic love. But whatever.

    I'm from the midwest so I'm like Denise. I say pop.

    As all normal, goodhearted people do, of course.

    There's that zombie impaled at the entrance of Alexandria. It wouldn't be too difficult to just kill it, right?

    As my wife can attest, I yelled this same thing at the TV. Like, this is what I'm always harping about. Zombies are finite. Kill that zombie, and you NEVER HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT AGAIN. And killing it is low risk. It's stuck. You have everything to gain and nothing to lose by just killing it on your way out. These characters should always be trying to kill as many zombies as they can, especially when the risk is that minimal.

    Wasn't Maggie pregnant? Was I imagining that? Is she still pregnant?

    Yes. No. Maybe?

    These days, if I were Rick and Daryl, the first thing I'd do is ask a person to show me their forehead just to make sure there are no W's.

    Right? I mean, I like Rick's three questions, but maybe add a fourth and make it #1: "Do you have a big W carved on your forehead and will you show us your forehead to confirm?"

    It's nice that Spencer got to kill his mother's zombie...I guess.

    Maybe I'm just an emotionless monster but I like genre fiction often applies normal approaches to grief to its abnormal settings. Like, I dunno, I feel like they have bigger things to worry about than whether or not his zombie mom is roaming around the woods. I get grieving for her, but she died when she became a zombie. Killing her zombie doesn't change that.

    This is where I'd bring up that, considering how long Jesus was unconscious, he'd be facing some serious brain damage. But, again, he's magic.

    And also a TV character, where head wounds and long bouts of being unconscious never have any lasting impact.

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