Rick and the survivors arrived in a planned community outside of Alexandria, Va., and it appeared to be the perfect place for them to settle down. For the entirety of “Remember,” we -- and Rick -- were waiting for the other shoe to drop. Some hint that the people running this seemingly idyllic community were secret psychopaths or cannibals or even people who read the end of a mystery first.
What we got instead, in the very last moment of the episode, was a reversal of the tried and true “Walking Dead” formula. For once, it wasn’t the new characters who pose a threat to stability, it was Rick. And not just any Rick. No, this is the newly clean-shaven Rick, back in a sheriff’s uniform. He may look less of a wild man on the outside, but in those eyes, he’s a caged tiger.
Gathered on the porch of Carol’s big, new, free house in the planned and fortified community, Rick and Daryl wondered if perhaps living in the village would cause them to lose their edge. But Rick didn’t seem concerned. If these people weren’t up to the job of keeping the town safe, well, he’d just take the town away from them. Much as we hate to admit it, that seems like a very Governor kind of thing to say.
And according to a much-touted “Easter egg” in the episode, Rick’s new constable uniform features a shoulder patch with a Latin phrase, which translates to “We will rise again.” For those with encylopedic memories of “The Walking Dead,” that is a phrase the Governor himself uttered way back in Season 3.
The group’s arrival at the so-called Alexandria Safe-Zone has given us a whole new lineup of characters, which usually means a lot of people will no doubt be killed as we get closer to the season finale. The cast of “The Walking Dead” is like a wheat field, it gets built up and cut down as the seasons progress.
But while we wait for so many people’s inevitable demise, we can marvel at the new group of interesting characters introduced to us.
The leader of the Alexandria Safe-Zone is Deanna, a former congresswoman whose ability to get a good read on people has made her a very effective leader. Or so she says. Though she does have a few blind spots. Such as giving a guy who wears a Members Only jacket the job of patrolman. Not once in the history of modern cinema, from the works of John Hughes up to the present, has a character in a Members Only jacket been anything but a pain and a menace. And judging by Aidan’s sadistic penchant for stringing up walkers, nothing good will come of this guy. He’s already taken a swing at Glenn and almost got Tara killed. And on top of that, Deanna doesn’t even seem to have much faith in him. So who knows what he’ll do next?
And then there’s Jessie, the hairstylist who gave Rick his first haircut in forever, who seems to be a very obvious potential love interest and who seems to have an extremely jealous husband, who likes to smoke his cigarettes menacingly in the dark.
But not everyone seems to be trouble. Young Carl has his eye on the sullen preteen girl skulking around town. And there’s Aaron and Eric, the gay couple who brought Rick to this town. Though Aaron seems way too friendly to be trusted, it’s becoming increasingly possible that he’s just as nice and caring as he seems. Perhaps a “Walking Dead” first?
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