It’s over. And yet, it feels like it’s just beginning.
There will be no more second or third chances for The Governor/Philip/Brian (David Morrissey). The king was taken down in the mid-season finale, Episode 8, "Too Far Gone." He had a much better TV death than in the comics. This time, he was sliced by Michonne (Danai Gurira), then put down by Lilly (Audrey Marie Anderson). Unfortunately, Hershel Greene (Scott Wilson) was Tyreesed — the Gov. used Michonne’s katana to take off his head and launch the Team Prison war.
RIP, Hershel. And RIP Meghan, who had a horror film-like death that had nothing to do with the war. Also, RIP Alisha, courtesy of Lizzie. (Not sure Mitch should RIP, considering his bad decisions; he should regret ever supporting "Brian.") And RIP Judith? Did someone save her or did one of those blasts kill her? The tank blasted the prison, the grenades blasted everything else, there was gunfire back and forth. But maybe someone grabbed her and ran. They could be saving her for a big happy reunion with Rick and Carl.
The episode ended with our teams in disarray. Rick and Carl are on their own; Daryl and Beth are together; Maggie seems to be with Bob, who was hit, and Sasha; Tyreese may be with the kids; Michonne is also out there, maybe solo (or with baby Judith?); and recovering Glenn seems to be on the bus with those Woodbury people.
It’s good to see the end of The Gov., so sad to see the end of Hershel, Judith (maybe) and Meghan, and just plain confusing to STILL not see Carol. Where is she? And who was responsible for those rats, including that new thing Tyreese found? Lizzie?
Read on for a full recap of Episode 8:
GOVERNOR TALKS HIS NEW GROUP INTO WAGING WAR
The Gov. is persuasive and all, but would you really go into war with this guy you just met? He gathers his new camp and convinces them if they stay there, they’ll die. The people who destroyed the camp he lived in with Martinez live in a prison, he says, and of course Martinez isn’t there to correct him since he’s dead. The prison has walls, fences, they could live there if they’re willing to take it. We see how he captured Hershel and Michonne. “They’re the key.” They’ll help them take the prison without firing a shot. It’s the compromise between The Gov. and Brian. The Gov. in him is always ready to kill, though.
MORE GOV. PEP TALK
He says not everyone in the prison is bad, but most of them are thieves and murderers. These people mutilated him and burned his camp, killed his daughter. Revisionist History 101. He wants to surprise and scare Team Prison. “And we will win.” Everyone says they are in. That was … fast. These aren’t warriors, and if the prison people are as bad as he says, wouldn’t they be afraid?
LILLY DOES NOT APPROVE
She said they didn’t have to fight for another place. Killing people? “Killing killers,” he says. He said himself they’re not all bad people. The only judgment he cares about is if Meghan and Lilly are still breathing. He plays the “I love you” card on her. She says she doesn’t even know who he is. Don’t be the new Andrea, Lilly!
GOV. TALKS TO HIS HOSTAGES
Michonne is seething. Gov. tries to feed them. Says they should eat, it’s going to be a long day, no one will hurt them. Hershel doesn’t believe him. He wants to know what’s happening. Gov tells Michonne Penny was dead, he knows that now. He needs the prison, that’s it. They are going to help him take it and no one needs to die. "I’m going to kill you,” Michonne says. Hershel says both groups can find a way to live together. “You’re a good man Hershel, a better man than Rick.” We know how The Gov. treats “good” men. Hershel says both Rick and The Gov. have changed. Gov. says he and Rick and he and Michonne could never live together. True. If they couldn’t live with Merle in the prison… Hershel knows The Gov. is willing to hurt people. Hershel has daughters. If Gov. knows what that’s like, how can he threaten to kill someone else’s daughters? "Because they aren’t mine.” It’s sad how many empathy-deficient people really are out there. If it doesn’t affect them directly, they simply don’t care.
The Gov. tells Lilly to stay by the trailers by the water, since the biters can’t cross the water. If that’s true, she says, why not stay by the water? Lilly wonders what Meghan will be in this world. "She’s gonna be alive,” Gov says. She’s gonna be like Carl. Go get yourself a preview.
GOV SAYS GOODBYE TO MEGHAN
He wants a hug goodbye but she has muddy hands so he picks her up and hugs her. She says she messed it up but he says she made it better. Lilly looks unsure, which is good. At least she’s questioning him.
GLENN & MAGGIE
Gleggie time! It’s good to see prison folks in action again. Glenn is still recovering but he and Maggie can spend time together again. They just have a cute talk. She goes to get him some water. Sweetness. Foreshadowing?
DARYL IS PISSED ABOUT CAROL
So Daryl finally knows. Rick makes his pitch. She killed two of our own. She couldn’t be here. She’s gonna be OK. Daryl looks mad. Rick says she’ll be OK, she’s a survivor. Carol said she did it for them. She wasn’t sorry. Daryl said that isn’t her. Does he not believe the story? This is why Rick should’ve brought Carol back. Let her explain herself. No one has told Tyreese yet. Daryl and Rick go to tell him. Is this going to kill the bromance?
SASHA THANKS BOB
She wouldn’t be there if it wasn’t for Hershel and Bob. Bob says Hershel, not him. Bob stops her. He put those meds in her IV bag. She’s still weak too.
TYREESE SHOWS RICK & DARYL SOMETHING
He still doesn’t know about Carol. Some rat in there? No, a rabbit, apparently. He thinks the same person who did that killed Karen and David. Remember the rats at the fence? They have a “psychopath” on their hands. Whoever did that didn’t kill the two, Rick said. On that note, “boom”! (Lizzie or Bob for the rats? What are you thinking on that?)
It’s The Gov. outside with a tank and cars. Rick says a council decides things now, not him. Gov wonders if Michonne or Hershel are on the council. Rick says he doesn’t make decisions anymore. Well, he did for Carol… Gov said Rick is making the decisions today. Go down there and have that talk.
RICK GOES TO TALK TO GOV.
Daryl and Carl nod at him. The Rick/Daryl bromance appears to be intact. Poor Hershel and Michonne are left kneeling on the ground. Daryl tells Sasha and Tyreese they don’t have the numbers anymore. If everything goes south, head for the bus. Wait as long as they can. Rick tells The Gov. he’ll talk as long as he wants,but let the hostages go. Gov. says this is just to show them he’s serious. Rick and his people have until sundown to get out or they die. Gov. has more people and firepower. “We need this prison.” It’s not about the past, it’s about right now. Rick says they have children and some of them are sick; they won’t survive. Gov says he has a tank and he’s letting them walk away; what else is there to talk about? What would you do? Just leave or fight? That prison is sick with flu anyway?
DARYL HANDS OUT GUNS
Bob gets one, Maggie and Beth too. Everyone in the prison gets arms for the fight, although Glenn is still sick.
WALKER CROSSES THE RIVER
Gov. had said they couldn’t do it, but Lilly sees one fight through the water. It’s one walker, so it’s hardly an exciting scene, but it shows that the “biters” can indeed get them over there. Meghan wants Lilly’s help digging, but Lilly is busy watching the walker and preparing to shoot. The walker falls and gets carried away by the water … so why did we watch that?
WALKER RISES TO BITE MEGHAN ... RIP MEGHAN
Meghan digs up a flash flood area sign … oh and there’s a walker in the dirt. Nice! Lilly runs over to shoot the walker, but he already bit Meghan. Oh dear… First death of the “war”? And it’s not even part of the war.
Makes it seem like it’s Rick’s choice: Let Gov’s people in or let his own people die. Gov shoots walkers, knowing the noise will draw more walkers. Carl wants to kill The Gov. right there. He’s a good shot and could end this right now. Daryl says he could just start something else. Daryl says they have to trust Rick. When has that ever been a good idea? Hate to say it, but Carl may have been right.
LIZZIE WANTS TO SHOOT NOW?
They have guns, she says the kids should have guns too, to help. Carol, is that really the message you wanted her to receive?
RICK WANTS PEACE
“We can all live together. There’s enough room for all of us.” More than enough, Gov. says. Gov says his family wouldn’t sleep well knowing he was under the same roof. They keep showing Hershel’s face. Hershel tells The Gov. it could work. Gov. says not after Woodbury or Andrea. Rick continues to push for peace. Gov. continues to try to make this Rick’s choice. Rick says “We’re not leaving. You try to force us we’ll fight back.” But gunfire will bring more walkers and take down the fences, leaving the prison worthless. They can all live in the prison or none of them can.
GOV GRABS MICHONNE’S KATANA
Puts it to Hershel's throat.
RICK MAKES HIS PITCH
Rick asks girl in ponytail (Tara) if that’s what she wants. Mitch says what Rick has is what they want. Rick tells the group they took in Woodbury people. Put down your weapons and become one of us. Rick makes his pitch. “We’re not too far gone.” We can come back. We can change. Not what he said to Carol…
HERSHEL GETS TYREESED
After Rick’s “we can change” line, Gov whispers “Liar” and beheads Hershel using Michonne’s katana. Like Tyreese in the comics. RIP Hershel.
THE BATTLE BEGINS
It’s gunfire on both sides. Michonne slips away and manages to get out of her ropes.
TARA DOESN’T WANT TO FIGHT
Not the best cop in training. Alisha says if they get separated, just go somewhere safe and hide and she’ll find her.
Just like in the comics. Beth is out of ammo. Maggie covers her as she gets more. The tank shoots cannons into the prison. Gov’s crew follows the tank. Maggie runs to help Glenn. Maggie tells Beth to get the people on the bus, that’s her job. They all have jobs to do.
RICK VS. GOV
Rick punches The Gov. Go Ricktator! Gov. punches harder, though.
RANDOM REDSHIRT HIT
Who are some of these prison people? Maggie runs off to find Beth. Daryl is also out there, you know.
DARYL VS. ZOMBIE
Daryl uses him as cover, but wouldn’t the bullets go through the walker?
BOB IS HIT
There’s an exit wound, that’s good. He’s with Maggie and Sasha as the bus drives off. (!) So they are separated from Glenn on the bus and the others, like Tyreese and Daryl, who are still fighting. Don't separate Maggie and Glenn!
LIZZIE SHOOTS ALISHA
Alisha was shooting at Tyreese but Mika and Lizzie have their guns and Lizzie shoots Alisha right in the forehead. Stone cold! She saved Tyreese, though … right? She also shot that other guy.