Flashback: Ezekiel goes through his morning routine as he prepares for war; it’s akin to watching an actor prepare to go on stage. He then readies his solders for battle while bidding farewell to those staying behind. Ezekiel encourages Benjamin’s kid Henry to be brave in his absence and then promises his people salvation.
Flash forward to a MUCH less optimistic present day where the people Ezekiel promised salvation to gruesomely lay dead around him. Injured, he crawls out from a pile of corpses to assess the damage. The King cries out in despair as the soldiers he once knew turn around him. Overwhelmed, Ezekiel’s luckily saved by some of his surviving soldiers, who carry him away. Meanwhile, Carol breaks into the Savior compound nearby and wipes out a group of Saviors, causing more to show up and trail her.
Outside, a Savior kills the Kingdom soldier carrying Ezekiel and takes him prisoner. On their walk towards the Sanctuary Ezekiel attempts to attack him but it fails. He swings back the sword to kill him and is cut in half by an axe from Jerry (HOLY SHIT) He tends to Ezekiel, kills the nearby walkers, and braces to fight the rest. Meanwhile, Carol gets cornered by the Saviors in a shoot-out outside, which forces her to “surrender.” She takes one of them hostage, the Saviors kill the guy anyway, and that gives her time to open the gate to let the walkers into the compound. The walkers consume most of the Saviors until Carol has the upper-hand. She spots Jerry and Ezekiel struggling nearby.
Flash back again to The Kingdom where Ezekiel tells Carol the story of how he rescued Shiva. “When you’re asked to be the hero, be the hero,” he tells her. She finally understands they both made choices in their lives that led them to be the brave survivors they are now. Flash forward to Carol embracing the hero role and saving Ezekiel and Jerry while the Saviors get away with their guns.
The Saviors don’t make it far as Rick and Daryl drive up behind them. The Saviors open fire causing Daryl to spin out. Rick stays on the trail, swerving around walkers and Trojan horsing Daryl back into the mix. Daryl takes out the shooter while Rick jumps into the truck, stabbing the driver and crashing the truck off the road. Rick emerges (mostly) unharmed; he and Daryl finally completed the mission.
Carol and Jerry carry Ezekiel through the woods until they reach a walker-filled swamp. Ezekiel begs them to leave him and when they refuse he claims he isn’t anyone’s King. “I’m just some guy,” he admits as Shiva emerges out of nowhere and saves them. They do get away but unfortunately Shiva is overwhelmed and consumed by the walkers. NOOOOOOOOOO! Later, they finally return bloody and bruised to The Kingdom.
What did you think of this surprisingly emotional episode of The Walking Dead? Tell us in the comments!