“Now”: Or, Rick (Finally!) Gets His Groove Back
From the story of Morgan’s spiritual and moral journey, we return back to the once idyllic housing complex of Alexandria. The haggard mayor surveys the aftermath of the senseless carnage, and evidently she has aged about ten years. She sets her sights on the long road that leads to Alexandria, and guess what’s coming down the pike? Rick and Co., being followed by the hordes of zombies drawn by that dang truck horn. Yikes. The gates are strong, but is the mayor’s resolve? What a cornball intro! I can do no better.
The citizens check the walls. Rick is looking as sexy as ever, covered in an irresistible mixture of blood, sweat, and other bodily fluids. He delivers a pep talk to all: the rest of the crew will return from battle victorious; Sasha and the Ginger will lead the walkers away from our walls; we will be okay. One man steps up for Rick and points out that the original plan to draw all the walkers from the quarry to out of town worked. People are still understandably doubtful.
Man who steps up admits bravely that he was the one who inadvertently led the Wolves to Alexandria, in some convoluted way I didn’t quite catch. Ooops. Silence. His bad, I suppose. The mayor shuffles off, clearly in shock. Hairdresser Mom begins to clean house; recall that she has a dead female wolf in her foyer. Bust out the mop and bucket!
After she drags her vanquished Wolf to the dead pile o’murderers—I presume they plan to unceremoniously cremate them in the spirit of Morgan’s zombie-rid scheme—Rick sidles over to talk her up. Poor Rick has not had sex since his wife died in childbirth, so we really cannot fault him for trying to score. His timing, however, is questionable.
The rather large, bespectacled young woman who runs the commissary tries to ration the food out. It does not go over well. People start raiding the pantry. A young man intervenes and points out that the chubby older guys hoarding the canned corn sat on their butts when crap went down. I think he’s the mayor’s son. Way to go, mayor’s remaining son! Your shell-shocked mom needs you know. Perhaps I misjudged the millenials in the show. So what if he lives in his parents’ basement?
Man who stepped up for Rick and messed up majorly reviews the list of the dead, which a few people have painted on the steel walls. Maggie is in the armory, preparing to go out. In search of Glenn, perhaps? Honest Man wants to help her.
Alone in her living room, the mayor feverishly draws a map with cryptic scribbles. She finds her son in the kitchen with a small collection of hoarded food. Hmm. Spencer is the one who stopped people from hoarding earlier. Hey, we’re going to die soon anyway, so may as well eat and drink now. He yells at his mom, it’s all he fault, we were never safe here, you suck. Forget my kind words about Millennials earlier! They still suck balls.
Disaffected Ron and Kalm Karl exchange words. Where the heck is Enid? She was Ron’s g-friend. She was totally sweet on Karl with a K, though. Karl pushes Ron down when he advises him not to be rash and go beyond the walls in search of the lovely, tortoise-munching Enid, who no doubt is getting peckish about now. By the way, remember Enid writing “JSS” on anything and everything a couple eps ago? It stands for “Just Survive Somehow.” That is what she wrote on the note she left for Karl. Yep, even if you have to eat hard-shelled amphibians in the raw, Just Survive Somehow.
The psychiatrist is boning up on her anatomy, regretting that she did not pay closer attention in med school. Tara checks in on her. She ends up having to give her a pep talk, as the psych is filled with self-doubt. In particular, she’s fretting about a patient hooked up to a beeping monitor.
Hairdresser Mom finds a zombie locked in a house. It looks like she slit her wrists, died, and then turned. A neighbor. Mom opens the door a crack and stabs her in the head. Then, she delivers a speech to her grossed out citizens. “If we don’t fight, we die,” she proclaims. A woman after Rick’s own heart! I see a future for these two crazy kids.
Honest Man shows Maggie a safer way out: an old sewer. He insists on accompanying her, essentially out of guilt. What disgusting creatures await them? What smelly horrors? Ah, yes, not one but TWO skeletonized, slimy walkers. Honest Aaron is largely useless after bloodying his head on a metal ladder. Maggie and he are both attacked, and Aaron saves her. Is he getting in the way, or can she use his help? He wants to make himself indispensible, so looks like she is stuck with him.
Back to the Psych, trying to save her patient. He’s a large, beefy fellow. Would NOT want to have to stab him in the head. He responds favorably to the bolus she injects into his IV. A look of relief washes over her face. God only knows what it was! Learning on the job.
Ron and Rick have a convo. Do not trust Ron, Rick! A) You killed his dad. B) He’s a teenager. Rick does not hear me, of course, so he gives Ron a large revolver with which to defend himself and his family.
Psych finds Tara and plants a big, juicy kiss on her lips. Guess we know who the other lesbian is.
Maggie and Honest Aaron are trapped. Did Maggie just reveal that she is PREGNANT? They have to go back. She fears Glenn is never coming back.
Hairdresser Mom needs to re-style her younger son’s hair. He’s afraid to come downstairs, but Mom has a plate of tempting cookies, most likely held together by hair, lint, and dust.
Night. The mayor wanders Alexandria’s streets. She pauses upon hearing what sounds like a couple arguing inside a house. Nosy! A walker surprises her. She grabs shards of broken glass and starts stabbing him—in the chest. Have you learned NOTHING, Mayor? The head, go for the HEAD! Naturally, blood squirts out all over de place, right into the mayor’s eye. One would think that getting zombie blood in your eyeball would infect you, but so far in the series one must be bitten to make this so. She knocks him down and goes for the head.
Our beleaguered Mayor is covered in zombie guts and blood, which is a definite improvement from her previously worn-out state. There’s nothing like an adrenaline rush to really make you feel alive, is there? Rick intervenes to help. This is the first time we have seen her defend herself. Resigned, she tells Rick that Alexandria needs his leadership, not hers. They gather up the basket of hoarded food she was on her way to returning. Is it unrealistic to try to rebuild community in the face of such seemingly insurmountable obstacles? Zombies, Wolves, food shortages, Ron’s crappy attitude and numerous unhelpful Millennials? No, responds Rick. It is totally worth it.
Maggie and Aaron stand watch atop the walls. Maggie steps down to try and erase Glenn’s name from the wall. Aaron assists her, and lets it be known that naming her progeny “Aaron” or “Erin” would be totally cool with him! WTF??? Talk about your ill-timed suggestions.
Spencer and a comely young lady (I think it’s the Ginge’s former partner) chat. Spencer distractedly munches on some water biscuits that he stole from the pantry. From experience, I can say that these crackers are of the most tasteless variety. If Spencer is not careful, he’s going to start coughing on the dry crumbs.
Rick and the Hairdresser discuss the fate of the missing others. She shares that she has accepted life for what it is. He agrees. There’s talk of the future. “Tell me there’s more,” she implores. They kiss. Rick is going to have sex with the wife of the man he killed but a few weeks earlier. Don’t judge.
The Mayor angrily slams her hand on the buckling fence. As she walks away, the camera reveals what appears to be a crack in the wall. Blood is dribbling in. Someone should definitely take a look at that.