WARNING: Potential spoilers for The Walking Dead TV and comic series ahead.
I know I say it every week, but man, what an episode of [The Walking Dead](series:201193)! We were low on the gore this week, but it was more than made up for by being introduced to a new setting and many new characters, as well as farewelling a much loved character from the show: Rick Grimes' beard.
But while it was impossible to miss that golden fleece being shorn, and Rick suddenly looking about 20 years younger, there were plenty of things that slid by a little more subtly than that.
Take a look at the 5 things you may have missed from The Walking Dead episode 12, "Remember":
1. There were a whole lot of comic similarities
The community of Alexandria is a big setting in the comics, and last night we met many of the TV equivalents to many characters familiar to comic book readers. Take a look:
Deanna Monroe and Douglas Monroe
In the comic series, the leader of Alexandria is Douglas Monroe, an Ohio Congressman. However, it seems like the writers have opted to change the leader from Douglas to Deanna. Deanna has already asserted herself as a strong and very switched on leader, telling Rick that she can read people well, and even thanking Glenn for knocking her son, Aidan, on his ass.
The TV version of Jessie was played by Alexandra Breckenridge, and looked quite different to her comic counterpart. In the comic series, when we meet Jessie she is married to Pete, the community's doctor, and the mother of Ron. Already on the show the writers have given TV show Jessie an extra son, Sam, as well as a love of owls. In addition to all of this, I couldn't help but feel like we might see more and more of Jessie as the episodes go on, and if the comic series is anything to go by then she will be close to the center of a rather big storyline soon enough.
Another character we got to meet in this episode was Peter and Jessie's son, Ron. He lives in Alexandria with his mom, dad, and younger brother, Sam. In the comic series, Ron played a pivotal role in a storyline involving Rick and Ron's father, Pete, the community's doctor, soon after Rick and the gang arrived in town.
In the TV series we met Olivia as she took the group's weapons from them. In the comic series Olivia is in charge of the weapons storage. She's a very helpful and pleasant member of the community in Alexandria, and introducing her early on in the episode suggests we'll definitely be seeing her again soon.
There was also a pretty direct quote from the comic series, when right at the end of the episode, Rick, flanked by Carol and Daryl in a very powerful shot, uttered this fantastic line:
We'll make it work, and if they can't make it, then we'll just take this place.
2. More mentions of wolves!
Back in the mid-season premier, "What Happened and What's Going On," we saw a couple of very brief mentions of a group known as the 'Wolves;' first there were spray painted signs, and then there were mysterious 'W's' carved on the heads of some dismembered walkers. All in all, it looked like it foreshadowed some serious shit.
In last week's episode, the group dined on a literal wolf pack (well, wild dogs, but close enough), and this week in "Remember" there was yet another reference to wolves when Carl found a comic book with 'Wolf Fight' written on the back page. All of these brief sightings throughout the last three episodes are not for nothing; the writers are warning us that something big is coming up, (we've already got a few theories on what it might be over here), and until it's revealed, I'm willing to bet we'll see more of these subtle wolf references.
There was also something else about the comic book, but I'll mention that further in the article.
3. There were possums inside and outside of Alexandria
Just before the group entered through the gates into Alexandria, they were startled by a rogue possum which Daryl quickly shot, proclaiming, "we brought dinner." Daryl clung onto that one last object from the outside world, carrying it into his interview with Deanna and then gutting it on the porch outside. However, that wasn't the only possum in "Remember," Carol did a pretty damn good job of playing possum as well.
From the start Carol seemed to be the only one who was seriously playing those Alexandria folks, firstly she clumsily gave up her weapons with a big happy grin, and she then later spoke so lovingly of missing her deceased husband Ed, you know, the one who used to beat her senseless. But Carol didn't just stop there. She also donned some new clothes worthy of a Stepford wife, and volunteered for community work, ending up with a gig cooking or the elderly.
Carol's undercover approach is a great move for the group. Her volunteering to work with others in the community is inspired, after all, surely this is the easiest way to get accepted into the fold and quickly learn valuable information. Who knows what Carol's possum act might uncover in future episodes, but I'm willing to bet it'll only be useful.
4. Where's the gun?
In last week's episode, just before reaching Alexandria, Rick stashed a spare gun in a blender outside of a shack. This week he made his way back to the shack only to find the weapon gone. Now, enough of a fuss has been made of this gun to determine that it definitely will show up again, and when it does it will most probably mean trouble for someone. However, for now the biggest mystery is not who the gun will be used on, but who took it.
I have one major theory for who took the gun, though, as always, I love hearing your theories in the comment section. Personally I believe that it was Enid, the young girl who seems to have cast a spell over Carl Grimes. From what we know of Enid she showed up a few months ago, and didn't talk to anyone for three weeks.
Enid also seems to have trouble with a life behind gates, being spotted in an abandoned house by Carl just before the group entered Alexandria, and then being sighted again as she headed into the woods. While Enid's explorations could be nothing, I have a sneaking suspicion she has something to do with the group known as the Wolves. Remember that comic book that Carl found with 'Wolf Fight' written on the back of it? Well later on, we found out that belonged to Enid.
Is Enid some sort of spy for the Wolves, a wolf in sheep's clothing, so to speak? If that were true then I definitely think that Enid, or someone she knows, found Rick's gun, and that probably means bad news for anyone inside Alexandria.
5. Time was mentioned again
Yes, Season 5 we get it, we should all be paying attention to time.
I've mentioned this time and time again (sorry, couldn't resist), but it's something that keeps being dragged up, though I thought it was particularly well done in "Remember." While talking to Rick, Deanna tells him it's time to make a choice about whether or not the group commits to Alexandria, saying:
Rick, it's 3:37pm, you're sceptical, you have a right to be, but it's time to decide, if you're the one that's doing the deciding.
Rick then looks at his watch, and turns it, setting it to the correct time, in doing so acknowledging that he has decided to stay, and to rejoin some semblance of the real world again.
The turning of the watch was also a nice tip of the hat to Dale, who way back in Season 1 defended his winding of the watch by paraphrasing Faulkner:
I like what, uh, a father said to son when he give him a watch that had been handed down through generations. He said "I give you the mausoleum of all hope and desire, which will fit your individual needs no better than it did mine or my father's before me, I give it to you not that you may remember time, but that you may forget it for a moment now and then and not spend all of your breath trying to conquer it."