The Walking Dead – Promises Broken review S11 E7

Promises Broken finally gives Maggie and Negan an overdue discussion as Eugene manages to make things worse at the Commonwealth.

Negan has grown tired of watching his back around Maggie. If she wants his help, she has to promise they’re square if he stays. This is pretty sensible request of an ally, but again, Negan did bash Maggie’s husband’s head in with a spiked baseball bat. 

Maggie reluctantly agrees to the truce and accepts Negan’s offer to teach her basic Whisperer training. As usual, Maggie is a very quick study and gets the movement and walker herder skills down pat. Being this adaptable is what’s kept Maggie alive so long. 

Negan expresses his condolences as Maggie and Elijah are confronted by walkers of their former community. Elijah’s sister’s best friend is among them, but no signs of his sister yet. C’mon Elijah, this is The Walking Dead. Long missing family members are now just walkers you haven’t encountered yet. 

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Easily one of the biggest gamechanger moves TWD ever did was giving the Search for Sophia the realistic tragic end it deserved. That removed the protective barrier from everyone for a long time and created the sense that everyone was (eventually) fair game. 

Maggie doesn’t want any of Negan’s efforts to relate, but he explains how he felt like he failed as a leader for letting people invade his community and kill boyfriends, girlfriends and friends in the middle of the night.

This is the hard truth that Maggie, Rick, Daryl, Carol, etc. conveniently leave out in their narrative of the war with the Saviors. They were the ones that came in like thieves in the night and brutally killed the Saviors. Maggie asks if Negan would have changed anything looking back at it. Negan’s response?

“Yeah, I would change some things. If I could have done it all over again. I would have killed every last one of you.”

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It’s a hard truth, but it’s tough to argue that the lives of the Kingdom, Alexandria and Hilltop residents would probably have been a lot simpler and less bloody without that ambush. Negan, Maggie, Elijah and Gabriel lead a herd and Elijah spots his sister, now a walker, among them. It’s funny who you run into at a walker herd.

Over at the Commonwealth, Princess rightfully calls out Ezekiel for trying to tough it out instead of seeing a doctor. These guys have ice cream trucks. Pretty sure they’re not getting their one doctor killed every other episode. Sure enough, Ezekiel comes back after a round of antibiotics and some IV fluids and seems like his old Kingdom self. 

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Yumiko chats with her brother, Tomi, again and sibling pressures him again into becoming a doctor again at Commonwealth. Tomi still wants nothing to do with it, but their conversation gets interrupted by Commonwealth guards who take him away. Ominous. 

Eugene and Stephanie get another round of walker cleanup duty in potential Commonwealth annex territory. Of all the various communities, the Commonwealth definitely has their stuff together with an actual expansion plan and means of clearing property for use. It sure feels like the Commonwealth could have warranted at least another season on its own.

the walking dead - promises made review - stephanie and eugene

While clearing, Eugene spots the bratty dude and his girlfriend completely oblivious to walkers crashing their picnic. Instead of being remotely grateful, the dude yells at Eugene and then berates Stephanie for getting walker blood on his girlfriend. Eugene can’t take any more and punches the dude in the face. Maybe it was the act of being a big man in front of Stephanie, but Eugene has typically been smarter than punching someone without assessing the situation. 

This was definitely not a good move. Yumiko chatted with Governor Melton’s secretary (Margot Bingham) only for her to cancel it since someone ‘attacked’ Melton’s son. Yep, definitely not a good move, Eugene.

Lance Hornsby, who you might remember from the Commonwealth orientation video… said he intentionally held Mercer and the security crew back to Eugene could make the save and be in a position to ask for anything he wanted. Now, Eugene has to give up something — Alexandria’s coordinates — or stay in prison. Always the hero, Eugene quickly asks Lance to wait presumably to give him the location. 

Not surprisingly, the weakest subplot featured Daryl slumming with Leah and The Reapers. The Colonel just feels like such a boring character retread of far more interesting villains that this subplot is playing out like a waste of time. 

The biggest development is Leah still has a decent side to her despite teaming with this clearly unhinged psycho. The Colonel, I mean, in case you thought I was talking about Daryl. 

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They find a random dude in the woods looking for supplies to help his dying wife. Making it back to their makeshift living area, the woman looks like she was either shot or gored. It doesn’t look good and the husband is definitely hoping for a non-existent miracle.

Leah tells the guy and the son to leave and once they’re gone, the wife/mother thanks her as they’d never leave while she was still alive. And she knew the danger they’d be in once she died. How is that still a thing for people? That’s almost parental neglect at that point. Leah can’t take the mercy shot, but Daryl does. That’s a better use of resources since Daryl’s arrows are reusable. Think about the environment, Leah. 

Promises Broken was another strong episode with some exciting developments on two major subplots. Daryl and The Reapers (a great name for a band) isn’t carrying its weight, but at least it’s not stupid. The series is winding down to its final season break point on a good note.

Rating: 9 out of 10

Photo Credit: AMC 

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