Whose Episode Is It?
“Now” is mostly a general overview of Alexandria, so several characters get moments here and there, but particular attention is paid to Deanna, Maggie and Jessie.
Current Glenn Status
Still ambiguous. We’re at the point where it seems so obvious that he’s alive that I’m worried it’s all a long con and he’ll wind up being dead just for the emotional gut punch. Regardless, his nebulous status remains a big, tiresome distraction from the attempted drama going on in his absence.
Little Town, It’s A Quiet Village
This episode covers some necessary character turns, but it mostly feels like checking off boxes before getting back to the exciting stuff. In short, the Alexandrians aren’t doing so hot after the Wolves killed a bunch of people and Rick races up with a horde of zombies at his heels. If you thought the Alexandrians were whiny before, wait until there are a bunch of zombies pawing at the walls! Fortunately, Aaron points out the obvious: the quarry was opening regardless, and at least Daryl and the other led half the horde away from the town. This shuts the Alexandrians up, so they slink off to go be dicks in another part of town.
As for people whose names we know, Jessie’s youngest son Sam won’t come downstairs, since that’s where his mom stabbed a lady to death. Fair enough, kid. Jessie’s elder son Ron still kind of seems like he wants to kill Carl and Rick, but he winds up being nice to them. Whether it’s part of a long con or he’s actually come around on them is unclear. Still, if anyone has a valid beef with the Grimes family, it’s that kid. Imagine if a dad and son moved to your town and the dad killed your dad and the son stole your girlfriend! You’d probably threateningly finger your knife, too.
Dr. Denise is still doubting her skills, so Tara swings by for a brief pep talk and Denise is able to stabilize her patient. This all just seems like a retread of Denise’s last appearance, until Denise finds Tara and plants a big smooch on her. Tara’s deserved something nice for a while now.
And in a particularly distracting choice, several people mention Carol despite her not appearing once, which screams “We didn’t want to pay Melissa McBride for this episode.”
Man Is The True Monster
The Alexandrians aren’t done being jerks yet, so they start raiding the pantry because they think they’ll all be dead soon. The Alexandrians are eternally frustrating, because their “babes in the woods” shtick is stuff we saw in early seasons of this show, and their arguments are always so childish and short-sighted. They’re basically there so that one of the Ricketeers can tell them how lame they’re being (Jessie become an honorary Ricketeer this episode when she lectures the townspeople about “how it is” after she kills a walker). Anyway, this time the Alexandrians are stopped by Spencer, of all people, who plays up what a big hero he was during the Wolves’ attack (haha, nope) and convinces everyone to disperse. Then he goes ahead and helps himself to the pantry, because he’s still a big jerk.
Deanna’s basically been checked out since the Wolves’ attack, and it doesn’t help when she gets home to find a drunk Spencer yelling at her that she’s a dreamer and that everything that’s happened has been her fault. Again, Spencer seems to be the poster boy for the crappy Alexandrians.
A Shred Of Humanity
Michonne tells Maggie about Glenn, and obviously Maggie wants to go after him. But Aaron joins her, since he’s looking for redemption after inadvertently leading the Wolves to Alexandria by losing his pack in their trap last season. He shows her a sewer tunnel that leads out of town, but it’s too close to the zombie horde. Aaron wants to try it anyway, because redemption, dammit, but Maggie yells and the sewer grate is immediately beset by walkers, blocking the path. Maggie confesses that she’s also feeling guilty because she stayed in town even though she swore she and Glenn would never be apart again. And oh yeah, she’s pregnant. She and Aaron head back to town to wipe Glenn and Nicholas’s names from the “in memoriam” list someone painted on the wall. Sensible motivations from characters we’re invested in! Easily the highlight of the episode.
Deanna’s returning Spencer’s stolen groceries when a walker pops out of nowhere to menace her. That’s enough to snap Deanna back to reality, so she grabs a broken bottle and stabs the zombie, like, seven trillion times. She’s a step behind on Jessie’s character arc trajectory (since Jessie mega-stabbed that Wolf during the attack), so we can assume Deanna will give the Alexandrians a big speech in the next episode she appears in. Regardless, Deanna’s head is back in the game.
She asks Rick if her dreams for Alexandria were really so bad. He tells her no, and she concedes that he’s the one that needs to lead the town. Maybe Rick can be the Cheney to Deanna’s Bush! Deanna’s got a new lust for life, but she still doesn’t notice that there’s a crack in the wall, and it’s getting bigger.
Achievement In Grossness
Jessie and Rick finally french, despite Rick still looking like he hasn’t had a bath in three or four years. At least folks got some this episode.