Legion contributor and author Mike Spring is recapping and reviewing The Walking Dead for us this season. Follow him on Twitter @themikespring or like him on Facebook at Facebook.com/MikeSpringOfficial.
While the entirety of Season 7 has so far taken place over the course of just a couple of days, Episode 610 of The Walking Dead, “The Next World,” starts off an undisclosed amount of time after the events of the last episode.
We see a photo of Carl with his eye bandage on, holding Judith and smiling, and then we see Judith on the floor as a happy, smiling toddler. Rick is finishing getting dressed, and Michonne comes in in a robe and asks Rick if he has any toothpaste left. Carl walks in and has a much smaller bandage than we last saw him with. He seems fine. Michonne asks Rick to get her toothpaste while he’s out.
Next, we see Denise walking down the street when Daryl stops her to ask about some of the items on a list that she’s given him. She reveals that the soda she’s put on the list is for a surprise for Tara.
Rick and Daryl then drive to the gate of the compound. Eugene gives them a list of sorts, along with a lecture on Sorghum, which he wants to help their food supply. They drive out of the compound and away from Alexandria. Rick says, “Today’s the day. We’re gonna find some food, maybe some people.” Rick puts in a CD despite Daryl’s protestations, and cranks up a pretty terrible song. “Lure ’em away from home!” he yells out the open windows, and they drive away with the music blaring.
Cue opening credits.
When we return, we’re back at Alexandria. Michonne is atop the wall, standing guard. She spots someone walking off into the woods with a shovel and climbs down the wall to follow him. Inside, Maggie approaches Enid and asks her where she’s been. She questions Enid about where she disappears to during the day, and tells Enid she can come talk to her.
Back outside, Rick and Daryl are driving. They arrive at a farm with a huge old-fashioned ad for Sorghum on the side of it. They open up a truck inside and find it filled with food and supplies. They get the truck started and head back towards Alexandria. They stop at an abandoned gas station and Daryl tries to uproot an overturned snack machine. As they’re working on righting it by tying it to a chain on the truck, a man with a bandana over his face jumps Rick. Rick shoves him off and pulls his gun, and the man says “Hi.”
They ask the man what he’s doing and he tells them he’s running from a group of a dozen walkers that are now heading this way. He asks if they have a camp and they say no, they ask him if he’s got a camp and they also say no. They ask who he is and he says. “Paul Rovia, but my friends call me Jesus. Your pick.” Rick starts to ask him the three questions, but Daryl stops him. Jesus isn’t interested anyway and runs off. After he runs away, they hear gunshots and go around back of the building with guns drawn, but they find that it’s just firecrackers. Daryl realizes that Jesus stole Rick’s keys and they run back out front only to find Jesus driving away in the truck, with the snack machine still chained to the back.
Back at Alexandria, we see that Austin is the man with the shovel. He’s standing in the woods encouraging a walker to come at him, a knife in his hands. When it lunges for him, Michonne steps out of nowhere and kills it for him. Spencer tells her that he could have killed it. “Your mom told me I had to figure out what I want for my whole life,” she says to him. “Have you?” he asks. “I’m working up to it. Right now I just want to find out why her son’s walking around the woods with a shovel,” Michonne says.
In another part of the woods, Carl and Enid are out walking. They stop when she finds the remnants of a mylar balloon with a note tied to it, but it’s unreadable. She asks Carl why they’re coming out there. “Because we’re kids. That’s what we do.” “We’re not kids,” she replies.
Meanwhile, Rick and Daryl are running down the road chasing after the long-gone truck. They come across the snack machine which has come loose of its chains, and Daryl breaks into it and takes the last remaining snacks from it, as well as a few cans of soda for Denise. Then they set off running again.
Carl and Enid are sitting in the woods reading comic books and eating snacks when they hear leaves rustling. It turns out to be Michonne and Spencer. Enid tells Carl that she doesn’t want to come out in the woods anymore. He agrees and starts to head back to town. As they’re walking, they come across a lone walker. It turns around and Carl recognizes it. Enid wants to kill it but Carl refuses and sends her back alone.
Back on the streets, Rick and Daryl are still running. They finally come upon Jesus and the truck, which appears to have a flat tire. They flank him and Rick jumps him, but he fights back with alarming skill. They get the better of him, but their fight attracts a walker. As they’re pointing their guns at him, he asks “Do you even have any ammo?” They both shoot the walker in unison to prove that they do. “Okay. You gonna shoot me over a truck? I think you know I’m not a bad guy.” They tie him up and get the keys back. Rick tells Jesus that the knots aren’t that tight and he can get them loose after they’re long gone. They get in the truck and drive off. Daryl yells out, “So long, ya prick!”
They drive back towards Alexandria and they hear a loud thud. “I think that sumbitch is on the roof,” Daryl says. “Hold on!” Rick says and slams on the brakes. Jesus goes flying off the roof and they set off in chase of him. He evades them for a little bit, and some walkers that are tied to a nearby truck get loose. Rick dispatches them as Daryl chases Jesus into the truck. A stray walker sneaks up behind Daryl, and Jesus pulls a gun on him. “Duck,” he says, and as Daryl ducks, he shoots the walker behind Daryl. “Thanks,” Daryl says, then punches him. Daryl pulls him out of the truck, but Jesus’s foot hits the gear sift lever and sets the truck in reverse. As Daryl and Jesus spill out of the cab, the truck backs into a lake and sinks out of sight, taking all the food and supplies with it.
Back in the woods, Spencer and Michonne are still walking. They get into a conversation about Spencer’s mom, Spencer’s state of mind, and Alexandria. “That’s not my home,” he says, “that’s just where I live. You have a life there and maybe someday I will too, but before I can even think about that, I need to take care of something.” They hear leaves rustling and Michonne sees Carl running from a walker. Michonne and Spencer recognize it also. We finally see the walker come into focus slowly, and it’s Deanna. “I thought I saw her that night,” Spencer says. He pulls his knife, and with obvious difficulty and pain, he kills her.
“So that’s why I was out here,” he says to Michonne.
Spencer buries Deanna, and Michonne carves the letter D into a tree by her grave. “She left me a note,” Spencer says. “She said, ‘I still knew my way.’ I never knew my way.” “You loved your family?” Michonne asks. “Yeah,” he replies. “Then you knew your way. It’s home,” she says.
Spencer says, “They’re gone.” Michonne replies, “I have been out here chasing you all over the woods. You’ve still got family, and you’ve still got a home.”
Back outside, Rick and Daryl apparently find a car, and we see that they’ve got Jesus is in it with them, still unconscious. Then we see Carl sitting with Judith on the porch and he’s pointing out stars to Judith. Michonne approaches him and says, “I saw what you did with Deanna,” indicating that she realizes that Carl was leading Deanna to her and Spencer. “You should have left her or killed her,” she says. “I wasn’t gonna leave her out there like that,” Carl says, “You wouldn’t. And I couldn’t kill her.” “Why not?” Michonne asks.
“Because it should be someone who loved her, someone who’s family. I’d do it for you,” Carl says. Michonne looks at him lovingly and they hug.
Rick and Daryl finally arrive back at Alexandria. Jesus is still unconscious. As they drive into town, Daryl says, “You know I was thinking, You said we shouldn’t be looking for people no more. You were tight.”
“No,” Rick replies, “I was wrong. You were right.”
The gate opens, and the next thing we see is Rick and Daryl carrying Jesus into the infirmary/Denise’s house. They bring him inside and lock him in a room with a glass of water and a note that we can’t read. “We’ll see,” Rick says about the unconscious man.
Back at his house, Rick lyas down on the couch, and Michonne approaches him and tells him to move over. She sits down and shows him a video monitor of Judith, almost asleep. “Crazy day,” Rick says. He pulls out a pack of mints that he got for her from the snack machine instead of the toothpaste she asked for. They end up holding hands. They look at each other, and the next thing you know, they’re kissing. Before long, it turns into a full-on make-out session.
The camera fades to black, and when it fades back in we see Rick and Michonne asleep in bed, naked. Suddenly we hear Jesus’s voice saying, “Rick.” He and Michonne jump out of bed. Rick pulls his gun and Michonne her sword.
“We need to talk,” Jesus says.
Fade to black.