This Walking Dead review contains spoilers.
The Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 14
The Walking Dead moved at a lightning-fast pace this week to nowhere really all that interesting. “Still Gotta Mean Something” is all about addressing a few hanging plot threads as the season races towards the finish line, one that will apparently end with…one more big battle?
It’s unclear exactly where the last two episodes of season eight will lead. It feels like Rick and his remaining forces should have been arming up and marching to the Sanctuary by the end of the episode. Instead, things are fairly quiet in the end. Negan’s rolling up to his home base to bash some heads and Rick’s taking a bit of a breather to read the letter Carl wrote him. Does that mean next week’s episode will be the final march?
I’m glad we got the little battle at the Hilltop in last week’s episode, but now I wonder if this would have made a better final battle full of heroes, villains, and zombies. Showrunner Scott Gimple has been teasing a “very big” finale to this story, but I’ve not seen any hints of a lead up to that in the final episodes of the season. Usually, we know exactly where things are going by now, but this year I can’t quite say how the finale is going to go down. Maybe that’s a good thing?
But getting back to “Still Gotta Mean Something,” the most interesting story of the night involved Negan and Jadis, who had it out back at the junkyard, but this wasn’t the house of horrors execution we all expected from the former Heapster leader. Instead, it turns out that Jadis might have some people on the outside…
It’s unclear exactly what is up with that helicopter, which we first saw in the first half of the season as Rick traveled to the junkyard to make a new deal with Jadis (you remember, the dumbest part of the first eight episodes). The helicopter really seems to be a tease for what comes after all out war – perhaps it’s even connected to Georgie somehow?
We likely won’t find out what that helicopter is all about, but maybe the point here is that Jadis was trying to trade Negan for a passage to a new place? I mean, her bag was packed, Negan was strapped, and there was a cart with a zombie screwed into it… Actually, I have NO IDEA what she intended to do with that zombie/cart hybrid. Was it supposed to eat Negan? That would mean she wasn’t trying to trade him for… This whole sequence was a bit confusing. Hit me up in the comments if it made sense to you!
It was nice to see these two villains have a chat, though, and to hear more about Negan’s past and how it relates to what Jadis still holds dear – even if Negan idolizes his deceased wife with a bat he uses to murder the shit out of people. The show has largely fixed the problem with Negan this year by not putting him in every single episode and cutting back on the dick jokes. Negan has mostly come off as a real person with actual motivation this season. He’ll never be as interesting as some of the other villains on this show – namely the Governor, Shane, or Jadis for that matter – but he’s no longer the worst villain The Walking Dead has ever had. That said, his era will be remembered as the worst the show’s ever been.
For once, I’m excited to see what Negan will be up to next, though. Simon’s almost certainly going to die next week. That was the deal with Jadis after all – he promised to take care of Steven Ogg and make me really sad to see him go. Ah well, it was a good run.
What’s more interesting is what the hell is going to happen to Dwight? Negan picked someone up on his way back to the Sanctuary and it’s probably the Savior who knows Dwight is a traitor. That means that Negan might be preparing to put an end to both of his main lieutenants. Or perhaps Dwight and Simon will team up to overthrow Negan and that’s how the season ends, the former leader out on the street begging Rick for mercy… Doubtful.
Elsewhere, we get the interconnected stories of Rick, Morgan, and Carol, who are all out searching for people in the aftermath of the battle at the Hilltop. I’m glad Carol found Henry, reversing her long and awful history with kids that look up to her. She finally saved a child. Morgan’s story on The Walking Dead also seemingly came to an end this week with the death of Jared – a moment long-teased since the vile acolyte murdered Benjamin last season. I’m guessing all there’s left for Morgan to do on the show is participate in the final battle and then bounce to Texas.
Rick and Morgan also found the escaped Saviors and murdered the shit out of them. I didn’t love this moment, especially since it shows how little Rick has learned from the death of his son. Yes, it JUST happened and the guy is trying to stifle the pain somehow, but I wish the show wouldn’t go out of its way every week to show how little of hero Rick is left. As he viciously murdered the Saviors who saved him from being eaten alive by walkers, I wondered why I would root for this curly-haired douchebag at all… It’s clear to me that the next world belongs to a leader like Maggie and that General Rick needs to retire.