Warning: this post contains spoilers from the most recent episode of The Walking Dead. Watch the episode on Sling on-demand before you read.
Well, that was probably bound to happen. In a show where shocking deaths have become commonplace, the biggest shock of all comes when two characters hook up.
After the inevitable tragedy of the mid-season premiere, the following episode offered a lighter (clearly much lighter) leap forward to a time when Carl is mostly healed, the streets of Alexandria are zombie-free, the wall is once again fully operational, and Rick and Michonne spend their mornings discussing toothpaste and their nights… Well, Jesus (newcomer Tom Payne) certainly got an eyeful, to say the least.
Perhaps because Andrea – who is still alive and in a relationship with Rick in the comics – died during the Woodbury ordeal back in season three, her storyline has been divided among other characters. Certainly some fans were calling for a “Richonne” matchup, but for most viewers that pairing might have come as a bit of a surprise. Sure, there have been some teasing glances and a growing closeness between Rick and Michonne, but to wake up in in the midst of their domestic bliss immediately after Rick’s former sweetheart, Jessie, and her sons were ripped to shreds… Clearly Rick no longer feels the need to wallow in mourning.
Elsewhere during the episode, a supply run turns sour when Paul Rovia AKA Jesus steals a loaded truck from Daryl and Rick only to lose it during the ensuing struggle. Carl and Enid struggle to be ordinary, disobedient teenagers while Spencer and Michonne come across the reanimated Deanna in the forest. It’s a poignant reunion between mother and son that echoes a similar scene between Carl and Lori: Carl reveals to Michonne that although he, too, had seen the zombified Deanna, the responsibility to kill her belonged to someone who loved her, as Carl had done for Lori. Carl also tells Michonne that he would kill her if she ever came back as a walker, which seems awful when you spell it out, but it’s possibly the strongest way to say “I love you” in their world of chaos.