The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 8: How It’s Gotta Be Review

If you would like to read my review of the last episode, click here.

Synopsis: This mid season finale will put everything Rick and his group has done to this point to the test. Can Rick continue to fight? Or has he lost his will? (IMDB)

Writers: David Leslie Johnson and Angela Kang

Director: Michael E. Satrazemis

Rating: TV-MA

Running Time: 44mins

Rick and the other survivors have been having it pretty good this season, too good which is no longer becomes satisfying to watch. Now that the Saviors have escaped their predicament, it was time to warn everybody but of course that didn’t happen in time. How did they get out? We really didn’t get much of an answer, however, it came later on.

Rick and Carl had a deep conversation about the future while walking back from their run in the first episode while in the present day, the Scavengers ditched Rick at the Sanctuary. He, Carol, and Jerry hopped into a car to try and warn everybody but only got into an accident. Meanwhile, Aaron and Enid took a trip to bring Oceanside back into the fold. Aaron and Enid’s trip didn’t start off well once Enid shot Cyndie’s grandmother before being surrounded themselves and that it was it for them.

In Alexandria, everyone seemed to wonder if their plan worked which we know didn’t. Everyone was looking towards the future until Negan showed up outside their gate. Carl took charge of the situation and had a plan. His plan was to have them escape from the back and then hit them on the road. This would mean that they’d be giving them Alexandria, at least for now.

Carl approached Negan and made a passionate plea to try and stop whatever was happening. He didn’t want to die but he offered to die if it meant making things different. Carl tried to appeal to Negan’s humanity, however, it was all a distraction so the others can escape. Dwight ensured their escape from the outside. With the others gone, Carl went about torching the place so it would be of no use to them.

While waiting for a Savior convoy, they shared each other’s regrets. Dwight led the Saviors to them with Dwight taking out a few himself except for Laura (Lindsley Register) who shot him before getting away. He couldn’t go back to the Sanctuary now so he pleaded them to take him in for his insider knowledge and they reluctantly agreed. Dwight also shared that it was Eugene that helped the Saviors escape. Meanwhile, Negan finally broke through the gate and directed the Saviors to find Carl and blow up everything else, leaving Rick’s house. Carl got away and hid in the sewer. 

Everyone else got in the sewer except for Michonne. Rick stumbled into his house, looking for everyone, but only found Negan. They had a cool, however short, fight before Rick got away. Rick found Michonne and they went into the sewer together, reuniting with everyone left from Alexandria.

In the Kingdom, Ezekiel was still feeling down until he got some unruly visitors so he hid. The Saviors wanted Ezekiel but none of the people were willing to give him up. While that was happening, Ezekiel provided a distraction to try and save the others. When confronted with Carol, he wanted her to save the others like she saved him. Morgan was lurking on the outside

Seemingly on the way to Alexandria, a Hilltop cavalcade got ambushed by Saviors. The Saviors also got a hold of Jerry and were threatening to shoot him if they didn’t cooperate. Simon told them of the other ongoing attacks but the Hilltop would be safe as it acts a food producer. They decided to turn around and head back to the Hilltop with a box that they were going to put Maggie in. Back at the Hilltop, Maggie was angry and killed one of her Savior hostages and put him in the box to send a message. She also wanted everyone to prepare to help the others. This secretly made her emotional as she was walking away.

At the Sanctuary, Eugene finally decided to do the right thing and helped Gabriel and Dr. Carson to escape. Whether or not they did remains to be seen.

In the sewer, Carl explained to Rick that he brought Siddiq before showing he and Michonne a Walker bite. Things definitely got emotional to say the least.

Overall, this was a good midseason finale and also the best episode of the season so far, actually giving the characters stakes with the Saviors actually having an impact. It was clear that most of the characters would get out of their respective situations but the focus on Carl and the sequence of him taking charge was probably the best part of the season so far with Chandler Riggs providing an excellent performance. Carl being bitten means that he’s probably going to die since another fakeout would take away from his sacrifice and his speech about willing to die to change things. Now that Alexandria and the Kingdom are in ruins, it will be interesting to see what will happen and how the Hilltop will be involved.

Score: 8.5/10

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