TV Review: The Walking Dead 7.10 “New Best Friends”
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The Walking Dead
Episode 7.10 “New Best Friends”
Directed by Jeffrey F. January
Written by Channing Powell
Starring Andrew Lincoln, Norman Reedus, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Lauren Cohan, Chandler Riggs, Danai Gurira, Melissa McBride, Lennie James, Christian Serratos, Sonequa Martin-Green, Josh McDermitt, Khary Payton, Austin Amelio, Tom Payne, Katelyn Nacon, Alanna Masterson
Air Date: Sunday, February 19, 2017

Warning – SPOILERS for AMC’s The Walking Dead…

On last week’s mid-season 7 premiere of The Walking Dead, Rick and some of his crew from Alexandria went to both the Hilltop colony and the Kingdom to get the two communities to join his fight against Negan and the Saviors. But both of those groups turned Rick down, fearing that they’d lose if they went up against the Saviors. It seemed like the Alexandrians would remain on their own. When they returned home, they find their pantry has been emptied and Father Gabriel is gone. At first, it seemed as if Gabriel made off with everything and abandoned them, but Rick knows better. He found a clue left behind – the word “Boat,” and figured out that he must return to the boat area where they’d recently found supplies. When they arrive back to the area, they are surrounded by a new group of people carrying weapons. But Rick wasn’t afraid; instead, he smiled.

In the latest episode, 7.10 “New Best Friends,” we find out why Rick was smiling and what happened to Father Gabriel, as well as what’s happening back at the Kingdom and with the self-exiled Carol.

Episode 7.10 opens up with King Ezekiel and his close crew from the Kingdom having their regularly scheduled meeting with The Saviors, where they will turn over the necessary “tribute” of food. As usual, the smug Saviors treat them like shit and have yet another altercation with Richard, Ezekiel’s right-hand man. The Saviors want to take Richard’s gun and ban him from having any, since he’s so combative with him. This leads to a stand-off, where Morgan actually intervenes with his stick. But Ezekiel puts a stop to it, having his people stand down, as usual. Morgan loses his beloved stick, but Richard, now more than ever, wants to take down the Saviors.

Richard recruits Daryl for the start of a plan to provoke Ezekiel into fighting the Saviors. It almost works, but when Daryl realizes that Carol would end up a casualty of this war, he bails out. The two men argue and then it comes to blows, where Daryl threatens Richard against causing any harm to come to Carol. In the end, Richard says, “I would die for the Kingdom,” and Daryl replies, “Why don’t you?” before walking off.

And now on to Rick and company — Michonne, Aaron, Rosita, and Tara. We see them being led into a junkyard area. This new group — unofficially known as the Heapsters — clearly appears to be organized, but Rick still seems confident. The leader, who we find out is a woman of few words named Jadis, meets Rick and tells him that their lives now belong to her. But Rick schools them that, no, it’s the Saviors who own their lives, and if something happens to him, the Saviors will come for these new people. Of the Saviors, Rick says: “They kill you or they own you.” He then implores them to join him in fighting the Saviors, but Jadis flat-out says no.

Jadis has Father Gabriel brought out, and Rick gives him a nod, confirming that he knows the holy man didn’t betray them. The group closes in on Rick and his people, but Gabriel manages to grab a knife and hold one of the Heapsters, Tamiel, hostage. Gabriel explains that the Saviors have everything – guns, fuel, food, etc. – but if they join the fight, he promises they will be greatly rewarded. He claims that Rick can do anything, so Jadis has Rick brought to a place known as “Up Up Up,” which is the top of one of the junk heaps. Once up there, Jadis explains that “we take, we don’t bother,” but that things are getting harder for them. Cans have rotten food in them, which means that she might have to change the way they do things. But first, she has to know if Rick is worth it, so she tosses him off of the heap.

It turns out, they’ve tossed Rick into a pit of sorts, where a spike-armored Walker attacks him. Obviously, they want to see if Rick can survive this altercation, which of course he does, with a little coaching from an on-looking Michonne. He gets a spike through the hand, and injures his leg in the fight, but he is victorious, so Jadis lowers him a rope. At the top, Jadis says she wants “Guns, a lot,” from Rick and then she will join his fight. She asks if they can win, and Rick confidently says they can. They haggle over the anticipated spoils, and Jadis ends up agreeing to give Rick back some of the supplies from the boat. (We also learn here that the Heaps were watching the boat area waiting for someone to take the dangerous chance to get the supplies out since, again, they don’t “bother,” they just “take.”)

Rick and his crew get ready to leave, with plans to head back to Alexandria to drop off the supplies, get Rick stitched up, and regroup before heading out to look for guns for the Heapsters. But hot-headed Rosita doesn’t want to wait, and is ready to go out on her own to get guns, and says she doesn’t care who she has to kill, she will win. Meanwhile, Gabriel is so thankful that Rick understood his clue and followed the trail back so far to find him, because he was beginning to lose hope. “What made you smile?,” he asks Rick. “What make you so confident?” Rick pats him on the back and replies, “Because someone showed me that enemies can become friends,” alluding to how they became friends. As they all head out, the Heapsters warn “Guns soon, or else.” Before they leave, Rick grabs a metal cat sculpture from the junkyard and hands it to Michonne, telling her it’s to replace the one she lost.

Meanwhile, out near the Kingdom, Ezekiel and his group find their way to Carol’s cabin, where they drop off a cobbler. (Jeez.) When they leave, Daryl arrives, seeing her for the first time in a long time. They hug. (Awww…) “Why’d you go?” he asks her. She says she just couldn’t lose anymore people. “I couldn’t lose you,” she tells him. She says she didn’t want to kill anymore. “There wouldn’t be anything left of me after that.” Then she asks what happened with the Saviors. “Is everybody OK?,” she asks. Earlier, Daryl had told Morgan that if Carol knew what the Saviors had done (killing Abraham and Glenn, among other things), she would return and join the fight. And that’s why Daryl lies to her now, and says everyone back home is OK, and that they made a deal with the Saviors just like the Kingdom did and that everything’s fine. After they have a meal, they hug, and Daryl takes off again, saying he plans to go back to the Hilltop.

Later, we see Daryl back at the Kingdom visiting the tiger Shiva, who is in her cage for the night. The tiger seems to like Daryl, which Morgan notices when he shows up. Daryl says he found Carol. Morgan knows right away that Daryl did not tell Carol the truth about what happen, because if he had, she would have showed up with him ready to fight their enemies. Daryl stresses that they need to get the Kingdom to join the fight, but Morgan says he can’t do it. Shiva growls and Daryl pets her before he goes to leave. “Whatever it is you’re holding on to, it’s already gone,” Daryl tells Morgan. “Wake the hell up.”

The next morning, Daryl heads out of The Kingdom on his way back to the Hilltop.

The second half of Season 7 has been all about Rick attempting, and failing, to gain allies in his fight against the Saviors. Perhaps, the Heapsters will be what brings everyone else together, but it still seems like a long way off.

Image Gallery


The Walking Dead Ep. 710 Official Sneak Peek: ‘A New Camp’

Rick and his group are taken back to their captors’ camp.

The Walking Dead Ep. 710 Official Sneak Peek: ‘New Best Friends’

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