by Billie Doux
Can you believe they actually gave us a Rick and Michonne honeymoon episode? It might not be what the rank and file Walking Dead fans wanted, but I did. I loved it.
Why am I so into these two as a couple? I think it's because their relationship isn't anything like Rick's previous relationships with Lori and Jessie. Rick and Michonne are equals. Sharing watch duties. Taking out walkers, where he even gave her more dead to take out because she's better at it. And there's the way she looked at him while he was sleeping. The way he told her that she was the one who led him to Alexandria, to their current home. The roof collapse and how it made them laugh was particularly adorable.
The focus this season has been on the different communities and people versus people, not the ongoing fight against the dead. Rick and Michonne versus the walkers at the carnival was something of a return to what used to be this show's primary focus. There also seemed to be a lot of callbacks to previous episodes (I assume they were deliberate callbacks, not just repetition on the part of the writers): falling through a roof, the military base, the somewhat comical supply run that Rick took with Daryl last season, the beer and pretzels Rick and Michonne stole from the golf-playing Saviors which was what Dwight brought for Sherry.
And there was the deer. Encountering a deer was what got Carl shot back in season two, and Negan's crew recently took a dead deer away from Michonne. This time, a deer died instead of Rick. I hope that deer isn't supposed to be a metaphor for their newfound love.
I liked that Rick and Michonne had a serious discussion about a future after Negan. Michonne thinks Rick should lead a coalition of the different communities, while Rick said he didn't want to do that unless she did it with him. I also liked how he confided in her that he hasn't been sleeping well because of losing Glenn, that falling in love is not a cure for grief, and that he knew there would be more grief coming.
Of course, since this is The Walking Dead, everything eventually got to be a lot less fun. When Michonne saw the walkers surrounding the deer and she thought Rick was dead, she was beyond devastated; she dropped her sword and stood there, motionless, as if all the fight had gone out of her forever and she was ready to die. Michonne seems so tough, such an Amazonian warrior, but she also has this soft, sweet voice and gentle smile that shows what she is really like on the inside. She is totally invested in Rick now. Would she really be able to carry on and lead the group if Rick dies? I doubt that the producers of this show are ready to kill off their main character, but I think that Michonne just became a major target. Producers, Michonne had better make it to season eight, I'm telling you now.
And yet, finding that carnival with all of the guns and food did feel like providence was smiling on them. The encounter with Jadis and the Scavengers felt positive, too. It was hilarious that they actually complained that the Alexandrians didn't clean all of the guns for them, and that 63 guns weren't enough. This exchange made me laugh:
Jadis: "Nine. And the cat back."
Rick: "Twenty. I keep the cat. We get you the guns. We fight together. Say yes."
And not just because of the cute bit about the cat sculpture for Michonne, but because it showed a little bit of levity on Jadis' part. It made her seem more like a genuine ally, like a possible future friend.
The remainder of the episode centered on Rosita, who is still absolutely determined to self-destruct. Rosita unloaded on Father Gabriel, projecting her guilt about the failed Negan assassination on him, and he unsuccessfully directed it back at her. Rosita simply refuses to absorb the lesson that if she attacks Negan, someone else will likely pay the price. So she and Sasha have decided to carry out a suicide mission against Negan with a long range sniper rifle. This will not end well.
Fortunately, after a long one-sided discussion with Judith, Tara has decided to tell Rick about the existence of the Oceanside arsenal. Not a surprise. I knew she would eventually. You don't introduce an arsenal in a show like this one and not get back to it later.
-- "Say Yes," the episode title, reminded me of a marriage proposal. I thought we were going to get one.
-- Michonne kept mentioning that they needed to go back, but Rick didn't want to go. That was so sweet.
-- The sun roof on that car saved the day. Has that happened on this show before? It felt familiar.
-- Rosita was taking out her own stitches. That cut appears to have left her with a "tears of a clown" sort of scar.
-- Tara was obviously thinking mostly about Cyndie, not necessarily the rest of the Oceansiders.
-- Michonne's aim with a rifle has improved. I bet she's been working on it.
-- Things I could do without: that exceptionally gross-out walker Rosita took out that looked like it was melting, and Rick removing that walker stuck in the windshield... in pieces. Boo. Ick. Gag.
Michonne: "Something serious happened here a long time ago."
Rick: "Yeah. These are serious rounds. Might be serious guns here, too."
Gabriel: "How are you going to make what needs to happen, happen? Anything is possible until your heart stops beating. Certainly more than yelling at a fool."
Rick: "It's chili... and mac and cheese... together."
Leaving aside the fact that I find chili gagworthy, that seemed like an obvious bit about the two of them as a couple. Rick is chili and Michonne is mac and cheese, or vice versa, and they're different, but better together.
Michonne: "You're leaving me eight."
Rick: "We could shoot them, but that would call the rest from the field. This is about doing it quiet with the sword. (Michonne smirks) You can handle eight."
Rick: "You take the slide, I take the Ferris Wheel?"
Rick: "Glenn saved me back at the start. I couldn't save him."
Sasha: "They can't catch us alive. If they do, we give them something."
Rosita: "It's a one way ticket for both of us. If it *is* both of us."
Sasha: "It is."
There are only four more episodes remaining in this season, so I'm betting this will be our last bit of fun and romance. Three out of four chili and mac and cheese MREs,
Billie Doux loves science fiction but hates horror, and is confused about why she loves The Walking Dead so much.