This is why we can’t have nice things, Rick.
Between last week’s carnage in the warehouse, the death of Deanna Monroe’s firstborn son, and Father Gabriel’s dire warnings about wolves lurking amongst the newest members of Alexandria’s flock, this was the one moment this season at which the heroes of The Walking Dead really and truly needed to keep their cool and play well with others.
So of course, this was the episode in which Rick Grimes officially coveted his neighbor’s wife so hard that he decided to throw said neighbor out a window.
Even before that, though, there’s obviously a growing rift between Grimes gang and their new neighbors in the Alexandria safe zone. It doesn’t help that Nicholas, the callow jackass with the wimpy mustache, is trying to sow seeds of mistrust in order to cover his own role in Aidan’s death. In his videotaped debriefing after the accident at the warehouse, we see him offering up a version of the story that we know is a lie.
“Aidan was trying to save us, then Glenn distracted him,” he says, among other giant lies. At the end, he pleads with Deanna to eject Glenn and everyone else from the community. “These people, they’re not like us. I know you see it, too.”
Deanna cagily replies, “You don’t know what I see. And I see a great deal.”
Of course, we know what Deanna sees; we’re seeing it right along with her, watching this interview through her eyes. So if we see that Nicholas is full of crap, presumably she sees that, too… but then, if that’s the case, why is she setting Carol’s sympathy card on fire and leaving her sympathy casserole uneaten on the doorstep? Does this view of the truth go both ways? Is there a tiny Deanna inside all our heads who knows, because we know, that the secret ingredient in Carol’s baked goods is LIES?
It remains to be seen. But speaking of things that Deanna sees: It’s not news to her that Rick is living next door to a wife beater. She says as much when he goes to her about the Pete Problem, basically admitting that she turned a blind eye to his spouse-abusing tendencies because the community needed a surgeon. (Sidenote: I’ll buy that Deanna was willing to be pragmatic about Pete’s abusive nature, since that wouldn’t necessarily affect his ability to provide medical care. But even in Alexandria, shouldn’t it raise some concerns that Pete is also visibly drunk 23 hours a day?)
Rick, who is not even pretending not to want to kill Pete at this point, suggests his own solution: They separate Pete from his family, and if he won’t comply, they’ll kill him. Deanna balks at this, because it’s uncivilized, which leads to the best Grimes-ism of the episode:
“Warning someone to stop or die, that is civilized nowadays.”
Deanna, however, is still convinced that exiling people is the way to go—though she as much as admitted in a previous episode that this is basically the same thing as a death sentence. What she hasn’t seemed to consider is what happens when you exile someone to zombieland and they don’t die: Namely, they come back.
“I wouldn’t kill you. I’d just send you away,” Deanna says to Rick. Rick, having literally just pointed out that *sending* someone away and *keeping* someone away are not the same thing, looks thoroughly exasperated.
NEXT: Other players in Alexandria