by Transmute Jun
Warning: this review contains multiple spoilers for The Walking Dead Season 11, Episode 21.
At the end of the last mini-season, the Commonwealth took over Alexandria. Since then, the story has been focused in the Commonwealth itself, and we did not know what had happened to the survivors’ former home. I had presumed that it had become a colony of the Commonwealth. Now we know that the situation wasn’t that benign… Alexandria has become an outpost, and the people who remained within are likely little more than slaves, and have possibly been dispersed. Are any of them still left at the former colony?
The implication (from the little revealed this episode) is that Alexandria is being used as a processing center… a hub to send people on to other places. Was Annie’s group sent there? Or did they go somewhere else? Was the train headed there? It seemed that way, based on the engineer attempting to contact the outpost. Connie, a ‘Designation 2’, was on the train. My guess is that Annie’s group was also ‘Designation 2’s, which is why they were separated from the rest of the workforce. So it is possible that they will meet up with Daryl’s group next episode, if their truck was headed to Alexandria as well.
‘Designation 2’ is an interesting issue. It reminds me of the CRM’s ‘A’ and ‘B’ categories. From World Beyond, we know that the As were infected people who were to be used for study, while Bs were useful people who were willing to fight. I’m guessing that ‘Designation 2’ isn’t quite the same thing… but thinking about the CRM leads me to wonder if there is a connection. If ‘Designation 2s’ are never seen again, perhaps they are sent to the CRM? Or perhaps I am just reaching for strings to tie all of this up into a nice, neat package. With the number of sequel series being released in The Walking Dead universe, there’s no guarantee of any storyline being completely wrapped up by the end of episode 1124.
Case in point: Maggie is clearly tortured by the loss of Herschel, and Negan is worried for his wife and unborn child. We know that Maggie and Negan end up together in New York in the Dead City sequel series. This episode leads me to wonder if perhaps they will both still be searching for their loved ones at the end of the main show.
Of course, if all of the children were still lost, then you would expect Daryl, Aaron, and Rosita to be with Maggie and Negan. Regardless of their location or ultimate fate, nothing motivates people more than their loved ones (particularly children) being at risk. Whatever revenge the former Alexandrians exact on their Commonwealth captors, it will be significant.
While I was surprised to hear that Ezekiel was still angry with Negan for the Savior days, the conversation between the two brought home the main point of the episode: if they want to get through this, the Alexandrians have to work together. It seems as if this has been accomplished, and now they are ready to leap into action. With only three remaining episodes, I’m expecting some significant storyline development next week.
It was not mentioned this episode, but I have to wonder what happened to Jerry, Aaron, Lydia, and Elijah, who were headed back to Alexandria (via horse and cart). Have they arrived yet? And if so, what happened to them?
One big nitpick for this episode…. How could the train engineer kill himself with that spike? It seems like a terrible way to go, and a method that could easily have gone wrong (injuring instead of killing). Surely, there was some other way out for him. It felt as if the engineer killing himself was a story copout, as it did not seem believable.
The roadmap for the remainder of the season is clear: three episodes to cover the Alexandrians getting back together and retaking their former home, Eugene’s trial, and the fall of Governor Milton (and possibly the Commonwealth as a whole). It feels as if there isn’t quite enough time for all of that, but this also creates a sense of urgency as we approach the end of the series.
For those who play the AMC Walking Dead mobile games, this week’s Walking Dead: No Man’s Land season mission shows Daryl, Gabriel and Rosita fighting Commonwealth soldiers to take over the train.
Do you watch The Walking Dead? Join the conversation on the FoCC forums!