(photo courtesy of amctv.com)
The Walking Dead “The Distance” Recap and Review
Sullywood Rating: 8/10
Fellow Dead Heads! We begin tonight’s new episode of The Walking Dead back in the barn where Maggie and Sasha arrive with newcomer Aaron. Not the warmest of welcomes, looking at you Judith. The Ricktator looks none too enthusiastic about our new visitor. Maggie states that Aaron has a community and he wants them to audition, so like Zombie Idol? Aaron’s job is to convince people to come with him. Aaron definitely saying and doing all the right things. Aaron tells Sasha to give Rick his pack, stating there is an envelope with pictures of his community. Although….Aaron says they’re not the best quality, Daryl isn’t the biggest photography fan and says “nobody gives a shit”. Aaron continues to describe his home; there is a question from the audience, Rick? PUNCH, Rick lays down the hammer and Aaron simply lays down
Rick believes others are coming, Maggie doesn’t believe Aaron wants to hurt them. They look in his pack and find some goodies, including a gun Carl doesn’t recognize, you serious Carl? You’re a cop’s son and you’ve never seen a flare gun before? You really piss me off sometimes Carl. Aaron comes to and congratulates Rick on his right cross. Rick continues to question Aaron asking how many people are out there. Aaron asks if it matters, because they won’t believe him anyways, he says 1 eventually. Aaron wants to be trusted and owns up to leaving the water for them in the previous episode. Aaron suggests driving to his community; their cars are a few miles away. The group is understandably cautious and suspicious. Aaron continues to plead his case. Michonne volunteers to search for the cars. Michonne has clearly had enough of the Ricktatorship this round. Michonne goes with Glenn, Abraham, and Rosita to looks for the cars, Rick says they have 60 minutes. The rest of the group goes outside to be lookouts for Aaron’s “other” people. And then there were 2, Rick and Aaron. Aaron mentions he used to work for an NGO and he delivered food, so he was used to people putting guns in his face. Rick says they’ve got an hour, if they aren’t back he’s putting a knife in his skull.
Michonne’s group is now walking along Route 16 and Glenn says to fire on command. Michonne says what if they are people like them. The group is clearly having trust issues, trust falls anyone? Glenn asks why Aaron’s people would want to save people like them and Michonne responds with they are the type of people who saved a priest, who took in a girl who was with the Governor when he rolled up to the prison, and a crazy lady with a sword (obviously talking about herself). We see the camera zoom out from the group and slowly lower behind an old tractor, where we see a man crouched behind it looking upon the group, guessing this is Aaron’s guy?
-Judith is not happy; she wants food Rick, hurry up! Aaron mentions he has some applesauce in his pack. He says it’s not a trick, but just smart on his part for survival, because if the “Roamers” hear her, he’s dead meat. Rick decides to investigate the suspicious applesauce. Like Mary Poppins, Rick brings over a spoon full and wants Aaron to eat some, Aaron thinks it’s crazy that Rick would even think he would poison Judith. Aaron mentions that he is the only one that can help her, because he has…..applesauce. That’s gotta be a first for action/adventure TV shows. Rick forces the applesauce towards Aaron, who balks and states that his mother made him eat it as a child and he hates it (along with salmon patties, which are awesome, this guy doesn’t know good food). Also, really dude, its freakin’ applesauce and this guy just said he’s gonna shank you, eat the freakin’ applesauce. I’ve now typed applesauce more than I ever imagined I would in my lifetime. He finally eats it. Aaron states that Rick and Judith would be safe in his community; they have walls where nobody would hear her cry. Rick replies, “you have 43 minutes”, better keep trying Aaron.
We pan back over to the group where Mihconne statues “He was telling the truth”, we then see an old car and a motor home. They hear noises and Glenn yells “Not one step closer asshole”, but it’s just those silly walkers and Abe and Rosita layeth the smacketh down on them. Abe and Rosita investigate the motor home, all clear. But not before Abe hits the jackpot, Spaghetti O’s! (Well the generic, fake, made up kind for TV) The importance of this find cannot be overstated. Earlier we saw a weird look given by Abe to Rosita. Clearly they’ve been a little cold to each other since the Eugene incident and Abe asks if she thought he was going to hurt her when he was going all Hulk. She say’s “It’s not you” and then DOES NOT say “it’s me”, first time in television history that “it’s me” did not follow “it’s not you”.
Back at the barn, Rick stakes claim to all of the canned goods found in the motor home. Rick still is unsure about going. Michonne explains that Aaron’s been right so far and that she believes he won’t hurt them, and demands that they all go to Aaron’s camp, she asks for people to speak up otherwise, not a peep, and Rick agrees, “We’re going”. This was a really good sign of growth from Rick. The old Rick would have fought tooth and nail to get what he wanted, and for the others to agree with him. I like that he stated his opinion, the group disagreed, and he went with them. He asks Aaron where is camp is. Aaron sort of balks at the idea of taking them all of a sudden. Maybe I just didn’t understand him, but I’ve rewound what he’s said like 4 times now and it doesn’t make sense to me. Michonne urges him to tell them. Aaron tells them the way to go and Rick says to go another way and that they’re leaving at night. The group is not thrilled about this idea, rightfully so. The one thing that really bugged me about this episode was how it was if the viewers were supposed to be annoyed with Rick and his stubbornness in this episode. But really, the group has ran across some extremely untrustworthy people and he is doing the right thing. I know they are kind of at a crossroads with their efforts, but man people, lets be a tad bit more cautious. Rick asks Aaron where the camp is and they’ll leave right now, Aaron shakes his head.
Outside Michonne asks Rick if he was for real about going, he says “We’re going”. Rick asks what she heard when she rolled up to Woodbury and Terminus, and she said nothing. Rick’s point is that when something has seem too good to be true, it has been, and he’s not sure what it’s going to take to convince him to go in.
It’s now night time and we’re off to Aaron’s place. They take Rick’s alternate route. While traveling, Rick looks in the glove box of the car and sees a bunch of license plates. Aaron says that he collects them, and wants to get all 50 states for his house. He says “see for yourself” and hands her the pictures from earlier. She looks through them, and then notices something peculiar; there isn’t a single person in any of them. Aaron has an excuse for that; he was going to have a group photo but bad quality. HUGE RED FLAG FOR ME, and for Michonne. She asks Rick if he asked Aaron “The Questions”. Rick did not, so she does. And its time to play everyone’s favorite game show….”THE QUESTIONS”. Summary: he’s killed “a lot” of walkers, 2 people, and he did so because they were going to kill him. I never stop getting a kick out of how they will call the zombies “walkers” to other people as if they know that term well. Everything is fine…until…..a group of walkers is encountered and half of them end up on the car; think bird shit on your windshield but 1000 times worse. They stop the car and look for the motor home, can’t see it. They try to get the car going again but too much walker guts, hate when that happens. Michonne gets out and starts cleaning up the walker leftovers. All of a sudden, a flare goes up in the air (yeah I can rhyme pretty well). Aaron starts to panic and they all get out of the car. A crap ton of walkers appear and its walker bashing time. Glenn is almost a goner, then Aaron is almost a goner, then the greatest shot in Walking Dead history happens: Rick uses the flare gun on a walker, and it’s beautiful, like Katy Perry “Fireworks” beautiful. Glenn and Aaron come to Rick and Michonne’s aid.
The 4 of them walk to the area where the flare went off. We see someone on guard in the dark, its Daryl! Yay! Reunited and it feels so good. Aaron begins asking “Eric?”, and say his name and he shall appear. We meet Eric, Aaron’s friend, who is injured, broken ankle apparently. We learn that Eric is more than a friend to Aaron and they embrace each other after clearly going through a rough couple of hours. We see a brief conversation between the two, showing the audience they appear to be normal and not Governor like, but we’ll see. Rick is eavesdropping in the background, looking like his usual caveman self. Aaron thanks the group for saving Eric. Aaron wants to go to his camp tomorrow, Rick agrees, but says he needs to sleep away from the group. Aaron says “The only way you’re gonna stop me from being with him right now is by shooting me”, referring to Eric. Glenn steps in and reminds Rick of Aaron’s trustworthiness so far. Rick allows it.
And we’re off to Aaron’s! No, not the place you rent furniture from. Aaron and Noah share a nice conversation, Aaron mentioned there is a surgeon named Pete at his camp. We see Washington D.C. off in the distance, some nice music playing as well, all is nice and good. But wait, that battery is looking bad, Abe thinks they can make it. Anddddd….they don’t make it. Abe is not happy and neither am I, catch a damn break already…wait, what was that Glenn? Glenn says all you need is another battery and opens a secret compartment to reveals some batteries, woohoo! Abe asks how he knows that, pour a drink out for Dale, we all miss him and his fantastic hat and his knowledge of RV’s. Michonne pleads with Rick to just let go, let the fight go, and embrace their position. Personally I don’t think the fight lasted too long with Rick, and I think he’s actually the sane one of the group for once. Rick mentions something very interesting here “The rules keep changing”. To get real deep here, he’s right, and he’s right about life. We as humans compute situations and results, we understand and remember those results and it helps us make decisions in the future. But in their world, there doesn’t seem to be that right solution for every situation, must be tough. They get the RV going and Rick needs to take a moment, which means secretly hiding a gun in a blender, I don’t like the look of that, usually means he’s going to need it later on.
-They roll up to the gates of Aaron’s community, and its silent…oh wait, what’s that? Kids laughing and playing? Michonne gives Rick a smile, knowing that that is what he needed to be convinced. Carol says to Rick “Even though you were wrong, you were still right”, amen Carol. End of episode.
I loved the episodes pacing tonight. For the lack of action and suspense the last two episodes had, “The Distance” more than made up for that tonight. I really do feel like Rick has some points and I’m shocked people like Daryl and Michonne are so quick to trust Aaron, but I suppose that’s what the previous episodes were supposed to teach us, that the group is tired of being on the defensive and wants to trust the outside world.
From what I’ve seen, I really like Aaron, and Eric for that matter and hope they become allies to the group. I really don’t have a prediction for what will happen but I am still very suspicious of there being no people in Aaron’s photos. Now I know this is cheating, but looking ahead to scenes for next week’s episode, they don’t show a single new person in that community, which worries me. I personally have not read the comics and am the furthest thing from being an expert of them, but I am familiar with the character of Negan and where he comes into the comics, near Washington D.C. Also, apparently Aaron is a player in the comics as well, so it appears that Negan may be coming in the near future after all. To me, Negan feels like Venom to the Spider-man series, everyone wants to see him, but will he be done right? Only time will tell, but from what I’ve read, it doesn’t appear we’ll see Negan this season so something to keep in mind for the future. Until next time, this has been your self-proclaimed expert.