It’s been over two years since the three colonies came together to defeat the madman, Negan. Life is thriving among the different groups and for once, it seems as if things are beginning to fall in line for everyone. As a new group enters Alexandria, they find themselves questioning if it’s all too good to be true. Especially when a dangerous threat lies not only outside of the walls, but in their own jail.
Life has changed for the better for Rick Grimes and his fellow survivors. It seems that without Negan’s interference, the people who reside at Alexandria, The Hilltop and The Kingdom have thrived. They’ve established routes between the three colonies and work together to keep the roads safe for travelers. It is only because they are herding a large herd away from The Kingdom that they happen upon Magna and her small group traveling nearby in search of safety.
Much like how Alexandria embraced Rick’s group, Rick embraces and questions Magna and her fellow companions. Though there is very little trust given in the beginning, Andrea and Rick believe the group to be truthful and possibly a good fit for Alexandria. But Magna’s group is less than trusting of the perfection they see in Alexandria and they begin snooping.
Meanwhile you can see the true passage of time by how much Carl has grown. He’s no longer the adorable gun wielding little boy in his father’s hat, but a teenager in search of a way to become useful to the continued existence of the colonies. His desire presents a problem for Rick, as he desires to apprentice in weapon making up at The Hilltop. Though it kills him as a parent to let go of his only son, Rick finally agrees and they begin to make their way towards the Hilltop.
With everything that has happened over the years, it’s only reasonable to expect Rick and the other survivors to have become a little hardened. But as Rick and Carl travel the route to The Hilltop, they stumble upon some walkers. When the guard from the area arrives just a few moments later, Rick snaps and begins beating the man. In this moment, you see just how much darkness Rick is carrying after all of this time. He’s lost family, friends, his arm and even his ability to walk without the use of a cane. He’s a powerful man who has become one of the most dangerous creatures among the survivors. This could truly be the start of the downfall of Rick Grimes, because eventually he, too, will meet his end.
If this is the lead up to that moment, then I look forward to watching it unfold. Because if there’s something I’ve learned from Robert Kirkman’s The Governor series, he’s great at providing the path to the darkness for his characters. However, I think it would be interesting to see if Kirkman will attempt a switch between Negan (who is still alive and well, just imprisoned) and Rick. I could see Negan trying to manipulate more people into his reformation, especially once Rick’s downfall becomes evident to him.
The walkers have never been the biggest threats to the survivors in this story and time hasn’t changed that. A new threat is making its way towards the colonies, humans dressed as walkers who actually walk among the dead. It’s certainly an interesting twist and I look forward to seeing where this all leads.