Warning: Spoilers ahead for The Walking Dead Episode 2, "The Well" as well as some small comic book spoilers.
After a tense Season 7 premiere, it was a rather different mood in #TheWalkingDead Episode 2, "The Well" when we journeyed to a brand new community called the Kingdom. After seeing how established both Alexandria and the Hilltop were, it was quite a shock to see that in reality the Kingdom was light-years ahead of both, managing to grow massive amounts of crops, raising livestocks and even having a choir group singing Bob Dylan's 'Don't Think Twice It's All Right.'
With the change in tone this week, also came a much slower and dialogue-heavy episode. And while I'm predicting that may have made it unpopular with some viewers, it was kind of nice after the horror of Episode 1. Besides, it was also refreshing to hear and see so much about the Kingdom in one fell swoop, rather than have the information given gradually, which has so far been the case with Hilltop colony.
But whether an episode of The Walking Dead is a fast, gore-filled spectacular, or a slower, dialogue-heavy narrative, there are always details missed. So, here are five thing you might have missed The Walking Dead Episode 2, "The Well."
1. Morgan marked his trail for the others to find
Right at the beginning of the episode, as #Carol and Morgan were making their way to the Kingdom, you will have noticed Morgan carving a symbol into a tree and a mailbox post. While Morgan simply told the Kingdom folk it was to mark his way back, there was obviously a dual purpose to those markers, and it was cool to another indication of what savvy survivors the group are.
Over the last couple of seasons we've seen characters use subtle markers to send messages to other members of the group which would easily go unnoticed by anyone else. In Season 5 Morgan followed the trail of symbols carved into trees which ultimately lead him to Father Gabriel's church. Meanwhile in Season 6, Episode 6 Sasha and Abe wrote "Dixon" on the door of the building they were hiding, something which would not have been likely to have been picked up by anyone other than who it was intended for.
Finally we had Carol in Season 6, Episode 13 use all her smarts to drag her feet and leave a trail when she and #Maggie were being taken to the Saviors hide out. Luckily by the end of the episode Maggie and Carol managed to kill the Saviors, and when Daryl found them he specifically mentioned that the group had found them using her trail.
It was a small detail in Episode 2, but it was also really cool to see that these people are now genuine survivors, and have learned key skills to ensure their safety. While Morgan claimed he was making these symbols so he and Carol could potentially find their way back, you can be sure that he was also carving them to let Rick and co know where they were, and that they hadn't come to harm.
2. We got some new credits!
Since Jeffrey Dean Morgan's name was added to the credit last week, there's been even more changes to the sequence following the removal of Steven Yeun and Michael Cudlitz's names (RIP Glenn and Abe). Alanna Masterson, Josh McDermitt and Christian Serratos have finally made their way into the line up, and with it come a number of new and mysterious images.
- Alanna Masterson a.k.a Tara Chambler
She hasn't actually appeared in an episode since Season 6, Episode 12 (possibly because she was about to become a new mom!), but with her name in the credits we know that Alanna Masterson's character Tara hasn't disappeared forever. It seems fitting that Masterson's name appears near a washed up boat considering that the show sought permission to film on a beach for Season 7, and the rumor was that it was for an episode involving Tara and Heath.
- Josh McDermitt a.k.a Eugene Porter
After his character's damn fine, genuine outside the box thinking had him discover a factory that could manufacture bullets, it should come as no surprise that McDermitt's name shows up alongside the bullet factory. Eugene's discovery will undoubtedly be a huge boon for Alexandria (and the surrounding communities) in the episodes to come, and could even be the one thing that ensures the communities survival.
- Christian Serratos a.k.a Rosita Espinosa
Having been in the cast since Season 4, Christian Serratos has finally been bumped up to the credit sequence, with her name among the smashed glass of a rather derelict looking building. To be honest, I couldn't draw an immediate connection to Rosita from this image, though perhaps it's indication of her current broken state, or what's to come for her during Season 7 - or maybe you eagle-eyed viewers picked up something I didn't?
3. There was a great reference to Greek mythology
Last week we had biblical references, and this week The Walking Dead was all Greek to me with the clever talk of pomegranates. The offering of a pomegranate to Carol was clearly a reference to the story of Hades and Persephone. In Greek mythology, Hades, the King of the Underworld, was able to trap Persephone, Goddess of springtime, flowers and vegetation, in the underworld after eating a pomegranate seed.
As Redditor Nightsey pointed out, the eating of the pomegranate obviously didn't mean Carol would be trapped in the Kingdom forever, but rather it was symbolic of the residents of the Kingdom accepting the idea of the Kingdom and #KingEzekiel as a whole - after all, it's a rather weird concept.
Clearly Carol didn't eat the pomegranate when it was initially offered, and even left the compound to make a home outside of the community. But, when she opened the door to find Ezekiel on the porch with a pomegranate in hand at the end of the episode, it seemed like she might have been about to finally accept everything he was offering.
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4. Alexandria actually might have gotten off lightly only losing Abe and Glenn.
It was interesting to note that in contrast to the residents of Alexandria and the Hilltop, Ezekiel and his knights have chosen to keep the trade deal with #Negan and the Saviors a secret. And as Morgan's new apprentice Ben may have proved, it seems like the residents truly have no idea about the threat their community faces.
During lunch Ben told Morgan how his dad died, supposedly when a group were over run by walkers while clearing a building. However, in reality it seems more likely that Negan killed his dad while enforcing the trade on the Kingdom. This would explain why Ezekiel has become such a fatherly figure to Ben and his brother - he was racked with guilt over the death he partially caused, so now he's trying to give the boys the best life he can without their parents. Sure, Ben knows about Ezekiel's deal with the Saviors, but he also admits he doesn't know much about the agreement, meaning he probably doesn't know how ruthless the group can be.
But something else Ben said was also very interesting - his father was one of eight men who died in the same incident. Could Negan have killed eight members of the Kingdom in order to make his point to Ezekiel clear? If so, it really puts the loss of Abraham and Glenn into perspective by showing just how many more of the group we could have lost.
5. Carol seems to be taking over Michonne's storyline
While in recent seasons the TV series has tried to stick closely to the comic series, every now and then it deviates in interesting ways. And during Episode 2 it looked as though Carol had taken over Michonne's comic storyline when she had a heart-to-heart with King Ezekiel.
Warning: Once again I gotta let you know: Comic spoilers below!
After finding Carol among the apple trees in a very Garden of Eden moment, the pair ended up talking frankly and Ezekiel revealed how he came to be in possession of #Shiva, and why he puts on his bizarre King act. As it turns out, it was all for a good reason, giving people someone to feel secure in and providing them a safe place. Interestingly his whole scene was basically taken almost exactly from the comic series, though with Carol in place of Michonne. And as comic readers will know, this possibly means a romance is on the cards for the two. Obviously there is a lot surrounding Michonne and Ezekiel's relationship in the comic series, so it will be good to see if Carol completely takes over the storyline, or if it gets shared out among multiple characters.
The Walking Dead returns to AMC with Episode 3 on November 6 at 9pm ET
What did you think of The Walking Dead Episode 2, "The Well?"