It was the shortest and most striking episode of the season so far. The Midseason finale, “Coda,” on The Walking Dead was a reunion of sorts with a gem of a shocker nestled quietly at the very end. It leaves us with a lot of thinking to do till the show returns. But mostly, it leaves this emptiness that makes you wonder: Where to now?
If you were worried about Lambert, the hostage cop that knocked Sasha out before breaking away, fear no more. He was not only faced with walkers trying to catch up to him, while he had his hands tied behind his hands, but he also had to deal with the new sheriff in town, Officer Grimes. Rick shows up in his stolen cop cruiser and tells him to stop. When Lambert doesn’t listen, Rick drives right into his back. Lambert flies forward and claims his back may be broken. But Rick is not up for any small talk. He is not interested in Lambert’s warnings and shoots him right in the head. Then exclaims: Shutup! I said it before and I will say it again, Rick is in badass mode. He will not tolerate insubordination and any nonsense that will put his people at risk.
Back at the church, the priest that escaped finds himself in front of a school that is filled with walkers. Although they are pressing their weight on each other to get through the glass front door, the priest is looking on the grounds, dazed in whatever it is that plagues his conscious. He finds Bob’s roasted foot covered in worms on a grate and throws it away in anger. He opens a bible that belonged to a Mary B. Is this the same Mary of Terminus? Where did he get this bible?
A few minutes later, the walkers break through and he runs off back towards the church. But there are too many for him to have time to move into the crawl space beneath the church. He runs to the front and knocks on the church doors that have been boarded up by Michonne and Carl, who think the priest is laying down safely in his room. Michonne grabs an axe and rushes to tear down the boards, while the priest screams from the front how he now sees and he understands. This priest could drive anyone to drink with the mystery and vagueness. What is it that causes him to be so deeply filled with guilt and how will this impact our group?
When the church doors open, the priest runs in but they are unable to keep the walkers from coming in after him. Michonne and Carl begin to wipe out as many as they can, but the congregation of walkers rushing into the church is too much for them. They run into the priests room and they all head out through the same escape route that the priest used to go to the school. They come around the front and put up a few boards to keep the mass of walkers that have taken over their safe haven. Thanks a lot Gabriel! This could have been a good hideout for a while.
The boards aren’t strong enough to keep the walkers in and they are able to break through slowly piece by piece. Not before a large red fire truck parks in front of the church door, blocking the exit. Abraham, Maggie, Glenn and the gang are back now that they’ve discovered that heading to Washington is pointless. They recently united group decides to join the others at Grady Memorial, since Maggie is ecstatic at the thought that they have found her sister and are going to rescue her.
Dawn is a nervous wreck, going extra hard on her exercise bike, because she can’t locate her three cops. She continues to try to feed some type of righteous propaganda to Beth who is insistent that the way of life they are leading is not right. Maybe she doesn’t want Beth to leave or she can sense that Beth’s time is limited at Grady, but she tries to get close to her. Dawn even admits to knowing that Carol and Beth have to have a connection because of how Beth takes care of her. Dawn’s constantly trying to make sense of everything negative that comes from the hospital and its twisted system. But Beth’s attempts meagerly to show her there is no sunshine in Dawn’s plans. It just doesn’t work.
An old man is bullied by one of the cops and Dawn turns the other way. This is what Beth has been arguing about the entire time. How could she be doing anything good when so many people are hurt by her system. These small instances are all big important issues to the individuals that don’t feel safe. The same cop that bullied the old guy, shows up to harass Dawn for protecting Beth. The cop is hoping to rally up the others to take Dawn down for being weak. He attacks Dawn and a brawl ensues. Beth becomes the winning asset when she stops the man from attacking Dawn and delivers the winning push into the elevator.
Sometime later, Carol is up and Dawn receives the call that she will have to make an exchange with Rick. In the hallway of Grady Memorial hospital, Dawn with her team behind her wait for Rick. Beth is all dressed up in the clothes she wore before she started using the scrubs. She is behind Carol’s wheelchair, ready to leave. The exchange is clean. Carol goes for a cop and Beth leaves for another. They lie that the cop Rick had to kill was attacked by walkers.And everything is fine. But as they turn their backs to leave, Dawn says that she wants Noah back. That technically Noah is her property. This is where she has always been mistaken. She can barter with the people she helps but she shouldn’t enslave help just to have an extra pair of hands.
Noah makes the sacrifice and says he’ll stay in order to make sure that there isn’t any more problems. Beth runs towards Noah and hugs him. She turns to Dawn and says that she understands now and that she gets it. From underneath the wrap on her arm, she pulls out a scissor and sticks it into Dawn’s chest. Dawn reflexively pulls the trigger and shoots Beth right in the head. Dawn begins to apologize but Darryl shoots Dawn in the head before the tears even begin to fall down his face. The group is stricken. But the other cops don’t want to lose any others on account of Dawn’s actions. Rick lets them all know that Noah is going with them and that any one else is more then welcome to join him.
The group leaves the hospital peacefully without any backlash from the Grady folk. Maggie, Glenn, and the rest of the gang have just arrived and are walking towards the hospital. Maggie’s face is filled with anticipation and she drops when she sees Darryl carrying Beth’s lifeless body.
Just a little good news before I close, Morgan has arrived. Well, not fully. He follows the markings on the trees until he reaches the school. It is unclear who is marking the trees with these symbols, but at this point it has to be someone in the group. He find himself at the church and puts out a cake, bullet, and what looks like chalk, on the altar. Then he looks around and begins to laugh. I don’t get whats funny but I can’t help but remember that he was once not so sane. He finds a map on the floor and it says “Sorry I was an Asshole. Come to Washington. The New World is going to need Rick Grimes.” And so now Morgan knows.
What a way to end the midseason. I’m still sweating over this. Did anyone predict that Beth would be the one to go? Any thoughts on where we will begin when the seasons starts again?
image source: AMC.com