If you are not caught up to episode 5.04 of The Walking Dead, "Slabtown," stop reading now, as this article will contain spoilers. Also, please refrain from adding any comic book spoilers in the comments section below.
The Walking Dead's fourth episode of its fifth season, "Slabtown," was a figurative slap in the face to those viewers who opined that Beth Greene (Emily Kinney) would always stay weak and helpless, and therefore would never be able to survive on her own. In fact, she has probably been one of the most least-liked characters this show has ever had, on par perhaps with the likes of Andrea (Laurie Holden) and Lori (Sarah Wayne Callies).
However, she proved during last Sunday's Walking Dead that she is no longer the weak, low self-esteemed, overly reliant young girl we once met back in season two. Instead, she has become stronger, smarter and more independent, which are qualities essential to have in a zombie apocalypse. She no longer wants to escape that world by committing suicide; rather, she wants to prove that she too can fight and survive.
During "Slabtown," she awoke to a whole new environment, Grady Memorial Hospital. Upon meeting police officer Dawn Lerner (Christine Woods), it became clear right away to Beth that this new environment would present various challenges for her to overcome. Lerner demanded that Beth give back to the hospital group, after Lerner's fellow officers "saved her life" when she was being attacked by walkers in "Alone." And so, Beth was forced to work as a nurse/assistant.
One of those officers who saved her life, Gorman (Cullen Moss), demanded something else entirely of Beth, and it is something I frankly am not too comfortable putting into words. But, for the sake of comprehension, I will just go ahead and say it - Gorman wanted Beth as a sort of sex slave. Yes, someone who could pleasure him to his delight.
It started with a conversation at the hospital's cafeteria, and Gorman clearly trying to charm her, but to no avail. Beth was not interesting in him, but Gorman was interested in her, and it became predictable that he would try again with more persistence. Then, it continued with what is perhaps the most disturbing scene in Walking Dead history - Gorman forcing a lollipop that he had just tasted into Beth's mouth; luckily Dr. Steven Edwards (Eric Jensen) arrived in time to stop that.
That particular scene, among other reasons, left her understandably distraught and fearful, so much so that she opts to escape with her new friend, Noah (Tyler James Williams). Also, Beth now knows that she cannot go to Lerner for help because Lerner does not want to discipline her fellow officers, even when they have been consistently abusing and tormenting patients. So, the one person she can rely on is herself, which may not seem like much because she appears weak and powerless to everyone else.
However, the final scene between Beth and Gorman cements Beth's transformation into a true fighter, someone who will not quit even when faced with an impossible situation. In this scene, Gorman catches Beth trying to steal a key from Lerner's office, the key to escaping the horrors of Grady Memorial Hospital. And as if his intentions were not already flagrantly clear to us, he tries to force himself on her. As he is doing this, he believes that Beth will not fight him, and that she will just simply allow it to happen. Filthy Gorman could not have been more wrong!
Beth's quick wits finally put an end to Gorman for good in what is Beth's most badass moment yet:
Vengeance is sweet! He gets clobbered in the back of the head by what appears to be a lollipop jar, and then is killed by being devoured by Joan's reanimated corpse, a woman who Gorman had been known to molest as well.