The Walking Dead – Hostiles and Calamities
By: Jennifer Vintzileos
Last week was all about new potential allies and one of the most tearful reunions between Carol (Melissa McBride) and Daryl (Norman Reedus). But after Daryl’s escape from the Sanctuary, what happened? And while Jesus (Tom Payne) was there when Daryl escaped, who really let him free? Just as important: What will become of Eugene (Josh McDermitt) when he gets to the Sanctuary?
The episode begins at the last time we saw the Sanctuary with Daryl’s escape and Fat Joey (Joshua Hoover) dead. Dwight (Austin Amelio) goes immediately into panic as he runs to Daryl’s cell to find him gone, the note saying “go now” the only thing left. Heading back to his room Dwight realizes that Daryl has been there, as his room appears disheveled. Trying to understand what happened, Dwight is interrupted by a knock at the door. Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) has come to pay him a “friendly” visit with fellow Saviors and throw him in a cell. Apparently, during Daryl’s escape Sherry (Christine Evangelista) has managed to flee the Sanctuary as well. Dwight assures Negan that he will go out looking for her and bring her back.
With Negan’s return, Eugene has been brought back with him. Laura (Lindsley Register), one of the Saviors, brings Eugene around on a tour of the Sanctuary, including his own comfortable living space. She explains to Eugene that he is considered one of them and not a worker, meaning he can take what he wants. Through the market area, Laura procures Eugene a jar of homemade pickles, a food request he had made earlier through their tour. Eventually, Eugene is led outside to Negan waiting for him, his jar of pickles in hand.
As Daryl had been kept as a prisoner, Eugene is given a much better fate: join the Saviors and help Negan in creating weapons. The doctor also feeds Negan the story about him being a scientist in the Human Genome Project, a story that he had fed Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) and Rosita (Christian Serratos) earlier in the show in order to be kept alive. In exchange for his luxurious accommodations and a non-sexual night with a few of Negan’s wives, Eugene will learn to answer “I am Negan” when asked who he is. Negan dismisses Eugene, who smiles at his status in the Sanctuary.
Later that night, Eugene is graced with the company of Amber (Autumn Dial), Tanya (Chloe Atkas) and Frankie (Elyse DuFour). As he cannot have sex with them, Eugene shows them a good time the only way he knows how: playing video games and eating popcorn. Amber is still in a depressed state over her secret lover Mark (Griffin Freeman) being punished by Negan. Tanya and Frankie take an interest in Eugene and his scientific knowledge, asking him to show them a good time by making a homemade bomb. He agrees and Tanya and Frankie are impressed. The next day they approach Eugene with another request of their own: to make a drug concoction to help Amber end her life as she cannot live with her decision to be Negan’s wife. Eugene agrees to help them and sets out to get the ingredients.
Meanwhile, Dwight has found his way back to his and Sherry’s old home. It is vacant, save for a letter that Sherry has left him. She admits that she was the one who freed Daryl, mainly because she knew it was important for Dwight to keep his status with Negan so that both of them would be safe. Daryl reminded Dwight of the good and she couldn’t live with Dwight remembering the good parts despite his somewhat forgetful nature. To prove the seriousness of her leaving, Sherry has left her wedding rings with the note. A very distraught Dwight grieves his loss and first produces his wedding ring from his cigarette pack, then leaves a bag of pretzels and a beer in the house before heading back. The beer and pretzels are a little joke he had with Sherry.
Eugene finds that getting his ingredients is difficult at first as the workers do not take him seriously. But in a brief moment Eugene is able to flip the switch and immediately begins to treat the workers as a Savior. He is granted the meds, but it is not enough to prove his point. In addition to a pack of cold meds, he procures a bedpan, stuffed animal and the rest of the medication in the bin. A more aggressive Eugene has emerged and he sets to work making the pills.
Upon Dwight’s return, he pays a visit to Dr. Carson (Tim Parati) who was aware of Sherry’s displeasure at being at the Sanctuary. In an effort to cover up his own pain, Dwight frames Carson for Sherry’s disappearance and Negan buys it. This brings yet another burning ceremony with Eugene now being forced to watch the ordeal. Dr. Carson at first denies any assistance, but changes his tune when Negan assures him that if he admits to it he won’t burn him. Unfortunately, his admittance causes Negan to then throw the good Doctor Carson right into the fire and kill him anyway.
Tanya and Frankie go to visit Eugene once more to procure the pills he made for them, but soon learn that Eugene is onto their plan. He knows that those pills were never for Amber, but rather for Negan. He refuses to give them over and the girls leave the room assuming Eugene is a coward. Later, Eugene is visited by Negan to which he pledges “I am Negan” and is seen outside directing the crew to enforce the stationary walkers. Dwight joins him and Eugene reminds him that they are Negan, to which Dwight agrees.
Is Eugene truly taking a walk on the dark side or is this all part of a bigger plan? This Sunday we will check back in with Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and Michonne (Danai Gurira) as they start the search for weapons. Will they succeed? We’ll find out next time on an all-new episode of The Walking Dead!