As far as impromptu season finales go, The Tower was a solid way to cap another very enjoyable season of The Walking Dead. In a lot of ways the resurgence of the main show has me far less interested in the two spin-off shows.
A royal encounter
The Machine Gun Girl that Ezekiel, Yumiko and Eugene met officially introduced herself as Princess. Apparently she was a pretty popular character in the comic and it didn’t take long to see why. It’s hard for new characters 10 seasons into a series to resonate, but Princess has the kind of out there and enthusiastic personality to stand out and become a fun supporting character. That was even before she scared off their horses with her machine gun and absentmindedly led them through a minefield.
Princess has been alone for a year decorating the city with “rotters” so she was a little off in a good way. Ezekiel was amused while Yumiko didn’t trust her at all. After fessing up she led them through the minefield for fun in hopes that they’d want to stay around with her, Eugene empathized and forgave her. The wheels she promised to provide were at a bicycle shop. Princess has the kind of free-spirited zest for life character that’s been missing since the start of The Whisperer War.
Alexandria fled the community and holed up in hospital tower hoping to lure Beta and the horde to an ambush at Oceanside. Navigating a horde seemed tricky and risky from the outside even before the reveal that Caleb and Aaron stayed behind to scout. This didn’t seem like the best plan.
Unfortunately due to The Tower being in the awkward position of wrapping the season for now some of the plot breadcrumbs like Luke sending Carol and Kelly to retrieve some wires don’t pay off yet.
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Tiger and Cub
Daryl tries to reach Michonne on walky talky, but only gets static. No problem though as Judith finds him on patrol. She wants to be his new apprentice. Hopefully she fares better than Henry. Daryl is reluctant initially, but no one can say no to Judith.
She seems like she regrets it after watching Daryl kill a Whisperer and leave her body in a ditch. Judith explains she’s emotional because Michonne has gone to help some people. Interestingly she leaves out the part about Michonne possibly having a lead on Rick still being alive. In fairness that was probably the smart move as Daryl absolutely would have left to find Rick.
Negan’s couch sessions
Negan is with the Alexandria crew, but wisely staying on the outskirts. There’s no better way to do than shadow the other semi-outsider, Lydia. Unfortunately, Lydia is so good on the guy who killed her mother even if she hated Alpha. Negan insists Lydia still grieve Alpha as she’s the only mother she’s got.
This is complex stuff and once again shows that psycho Negan probably should be the youth counselor at Alexandria once all this Whisperer business is done. Jeffrey Dean Morgan, as usual, kills in these scenes when he drops that Negan bravado and is just a regular guy trying to help an emotional teen.
Beta brings the beer…and the horde
Beta has apparently found a new level of crazy to reach — I blame the Alpha mask — and is hearing from walkers. The dead ones not his crew masquerading as walkers. Initially he takes the bait, although it’s unclear how Alexandria was directing this movement. After seeing a cat, he realizes through his magic crazy powers that Alexandria hiding out at the hospital. Again, this felt a little too difficult to make sense out of for now, but it seemed like some answers would be provided with the actual season finale.
For now we know it looks real bad for the Alexandria Hospital crew, but Ezekiel, Yumiko, Eugene and Princess might be able to get some help if they can meet the scheduled rendezvous.
The Tower wasn’t the season’s strongest episode, nor was it intended to be. I suspect when the season finale airs this will look much stronger in hindsight.
That does it got this season for now and with another show I regularly watch and review on extended hiatus I might finally go back and fill in the review gaps from the earlier seasons. Stay tuned.
Rating: 8.5 out of 10
Photo Credit: AMC