Shannis Reacts: The Walking Dead, S7 Ep 8, “Hearts Still Beating”

Before I get started with this week’s recap, I must right a grievous oversight from last week. When Negan asked Carl to sing and Carl sang “You Are My Sunshine”, Evil Rob made a crack that he should have sung “Carl Poppa”, and I was all, “What on earth are you babbling about now, WEIRD HUSBAND?” And he tried to explain and I was just blanking completely at the reference. But then later he posted the video for me on Facebook (a Bad Lip Reading video) and it all came back to me. And that video really should have gone into last week’s recap and would have made it 9,000 times funnier. But I failed all of us.

But here it is. Let’s all enjoy it. Everyone loves Bad Lip Reading.

You know, Carl Poppa is actually a pretty sweet jam. I’m getting all jiggy with it. And y’all should be glad I’m confining that to my house, where no one else has to see it.

Good times.

And now! The mid-season finale!

But first… there will be spoilers.

Yes, spoilers. ALWAYS spoilers.

Yes, spoilers. ALWAYS spoilers.

Come on, lady. We’ve talked about this. I know you’re dead and all. But it’s not that hard to understand. We do spoilers on PURPOSE in these recaps!

Okay. Midseason finale. Let’s do this. And then we can all move on with our lives.

90 minutes. Again.

One of the production companies on this show is called Idiot Box Productions. This makes me sad because I always thought my dad made that up when I was a kid. Like he was the only dad ever who called the television the “Idiot Box”. 

My dad would be so much cooler if he worked here.

My dad would be so much cooler if he worked here.

We open on Maggie, crying next to Glenn’s grave. She is wearing a hat and overalls. Probably a disguise. She seems to be on watch duty. The old Hilltop man comes over to say dickish things to her but then this other dude makes the old dude give her an apple because she’s pregnant, and Maggie bites into it with a smug smile on her face. 

Negan is shaving. In Rick’s bathroom. While Carl and Judith watch.

Daryl is leaving his cell.

Negan is making spaghetti sauce. In Rick’s kitchen. While Carl and Judith watch.

Tara and Olivia are on the porch. Tara gives Olivia a container of lemonade mix. Olivia is all taking one for the team and refuses to leave Judith, and goes inside.

Negan is at the head of the table making Carl set the table and wait on him. This is actually super fun!

Evil Rob points out the Morse code chart on the wall. This apparently means that Daryl has been communicating to Rick in Morse code all season by BLINKING.

Translation: Rick, I miss you. Please help.

Translation: Rick, I miss you. Please help.

Or so the internet claims.  You know what though? Sometimes the internet has been known to be wrong. 

Rick and Aaron are what? Going into the swamp of zombies? In a canoe. This’ll end well. Evil Rob reminds me that they are going after a stash of weapons and ammo hidden on the houseboat on the other side of the lake. Details, man. I can’t keep all this stuff straight AND know the character names too. 

Back to the table at Rick’s house.

That spaghetti though.

So akward. That spaghetti though.

Negan’s tired of waiting for Rick to come home. “Pass the rolls.” No response. “PLEASE.” Carl passes the rolls. He’s probably afraid of dying if he doesn’t. 

I want rolls. Specifically, I want those homemade crescent rolls my mom makes at Christmas, and sometimes at Easter. 

Mmmm crescent rolls. True story: I once made these for Christmas when my mom had a broken shoulder. I am so lazy though that I cant believe this really happened.

Mmmm crescent rolls. True story: I once made these for Christmas when my mom had a broken shoulder. I am so lazy though that I can’t believe this really happened.


Ads. What is Into the Badlands? Is it a show? Is it a good show? Should we be watching it? 

Oh, and a fun Nike ad mocking people for watching shows about zombies. It’s cool. I prefer Ahnu shoes for running from zombies anyway.

Spencer and Eugene are having some sort of thing with the Negan peeps at the front gate. Blandfaced white girl makes threats. It’s all very dull.

CAROL! Reading a book on the couch by the fireplace. Morgan is lurking in the front yard. She lets him come in. Some dude knocks on the door with some milk bottles. He has something very important to talk to them about. Carol is like, I JUST WANT TO READ MY DAMN BOOK!

picard book meme
Back to the WORST canoe trip ever. Guess what? It’s going very poorly. Aaron gets pulled into the water by zombies. Who could have predicted such a thing?

He’s okay though. Apparently.

True story: taking notes to write these recaps makes this shit go faster.

Back to Daryl, dashing through the halls. He hears voices close by and ducks into someone’s room. Eats some peanut butter straight from the jar with his fingers. Takes some clothes. I mean, that seems legit smart of him, but I’d recommend a haircut or a comb or something at this point too. Just to complete the disguise. 

Rick and Aaron have located the arms and ammo they crossed the swamp to find.

Back to Daryl. Now he has a spoon and is gazing at some weird chess set. He knocks it over. There are no photos I can find of this chess set, but it seems to anger him and it seems to be representative of whatever long game Negan and/or his people might be playing, or just generally keeping track of the other communities, or something.

Contemplating these things this hard hurts my heart and my brain. Let’s all look at Daryl for a moment.

Daryl smolders
Back to the swamp. Rick and Aaron are loading their truck and having a deep philosophical conversation about life and living. The camera cuts back and we see they are being watched by a mysterious figure wearing BLACK BOOTS. Who can it be? Because, like, everyone on this show wears black boots. 

Ads. This new Ben Affleck rum runner movie looks all right. Evil Rob and I talk about all the new movies we haven’t seen yet. This somehow leads to a discussion of Marion Cotillard. Because of Assassins Creed. We like her.

 

"I do not know what is this bu

“I do not know what is this bummer you speak of.” 

Between Cotillard and Fassbender, Assassin’s Creed might turn out to be an all right movie.

By the way, I’m super high strung right now because my laptop is broken and I have to watch tv without it. I hate this.

Now back to Michonne in the truck with the lady with the bad dye job. Michonne wants to chitchat but the lady is like, nah.

Michonne monologues about not killing today, finding a way to win, etc. I’m not sure if I should be paying super close attention but it’s kind of boring so I tune out a bit.  

Back to Maggie and Rosita at Hilltop. And Enid. Snore. Agent Peggy Carter’s hat is hanging on the wall of their apartment. What??

Rosita charges Enid with keeping Maggie safe. This is… I don’t know. Everyone wants to go out and kill Negan, is basically the gist. 

Back in Carol’s house, the milk bringer is talking about threats to the Kingdom by the Saviors. He wants Carol and Morgan to use their wiles to convince Ezekiel to battle the Saviors.

Strike first. Destroy them.

Terrible idea.

Absolutely terrible.

More ads. Super tired of the iPhone ad with the old dude in the white swim trunks.

Ooh Norman Reedus will be on tonight’s Talking Dead.

That’s like a lifetime from now though.

It only just occurred to me that I could do this in Google Docs instead of Evernote.

AAAAAANYWAY.

Rosita is in the church talking to the priest about killing Negan. I hate his character so much I can never remember his name.

The conversation is so boring I’m just sitting here gazing at my Christmas tree. It’s super pretty.

My mom decorated this for me. I am highly unqualified for a tree to look this nice.

My mom decorated this for me. I am highly unqualified for a tree to look this nice if I decorate it myself.

They are still talking. The priest is like, please don’t go on a suicide mission. Rosita is like, crying.

Daryl still making his way through the halls. He picks up a piece of steel bar. I assume it’s a piece of steel bar. Alternatively, it might be a long light fixture, like for your apartment kitchen’s overhead light. But I’m pretty sure it’s a steel bar. 

Back at Carol’s house, she is refusing to fight. She just wants to be left alone. The Kingdom guy is trying to manipulate Morgan. He storms out. Carol tells Morgan to not let anyone else know where she is.

Seriousl y Episode 8 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Seriously just leave me alone with this terrible artwork and my BOOK.    Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

I assume they will both find out about Glenn and Abraham any time now and change their minds. Probably in February when the season resumes and Rick… well. I’m getting ahead of my spoilers. Hang on.

Ads. I like the Xfinity ads where the grandparents see their granddaughters status on Facebook or whatever about how lame their house is so they get cable and wifi and then the whole family has a super happy Christmas watching tv and playing video games together. My husband Evil Rob is all, “Grandma and Grandpa will be eating cat food for the rest of their days to pay their Comcast bill, not to mention what Paul Ryan has in store for their Social Security checks, but enjoy your WiFi, Paige!” 

Fair point.

Horrifying looking movie called Split comes out on Inauguration Day. Never has a thing felt so appropriate.

Back to the show. Spencer is in his house acting all batshit, talking to himself in the mirror.

The Kingdom guy who wants to start a war is in the forest. And then he goes into a camper and cries? I don’t get this.

Spencer and Rosita have words. He wants to know why she ended their fling. She refuses to tell him how creepy he is, and makes dinner plans with him. “No strings attached.” Ew. 

Finally Daryl is outside. Fat Joseph appears and sees Daryl and looks scared and tells him how to get out. Daryl smashes him with the steel bar as Jesus comes running over from… wherever he was hiding.

Didn’t I call the death of Fat Joseph last week?

Another installment of Passage. The women are in the tunnel. One runs and sets off a trigger and an explosion happens. You know, I could really use a full minute of this instead these 30-second tidbits.

Ooh, AMC network puts up a graphic violence warning before the next scene begins! This can’t be good for someone. 

Back to Michonne and Bad Dye Lady. They come over the crest of a hill and there is a whole lot of stuff happening down in a valley and the lady says that is the Negan place. And that Michonne can’t do what she wants to do. But still has options, like killing Bad Dye Lady using the silencer in the glove compartment and sinking the truck in the lake or something.

I assume Michonne chooses at least one option that does involve her killing someone today.

Rick and Aaron show up in their truck and Negan’s people at the gate find all the stuff they found. Please tell me they had the sense to hide some of it somewhere. Then they beat up Aaron, just for fun.

Meanwhile Spencer and Negan are drinking whiskey and playing pool while everyone else watches. Spencer wants Negan to make him in charge of Alexandria.

Rick picks Aaron up to help him walk home.

Negan isn’t impressed with Spencer’s proposal. And says Spencer has no guts. And then stabs him in the gut. And it turns out Spencer did have guts.

Then Negan is all, someone better clean this up. No one comes forward. Then he holds up Lucille and asks who wants to finish the game of pool, which he was winning.

Check out this nice close shave, guys!

Check out this nice close shave, guys!

Rosita pulls out a gun and shoots.

Ads! Rogue One!

Rick still dragging Aaron. They hear the gunshot.

Rosita’s bullet hit Lucille. Negan is all, tell me who made this bullet. Rosita insists it was her. Negan tells the one woman (Farat?? Wtf is her name??) to kill someone. She shoots Olivia.

Arat, Evil Rob tells me. That is Negan’s henchwoman’s name.

Rick and Aaron finally run up. Negan is all, I killed Spencer as a public service. Blah blah blah.

Finally Eugene cops to making the bullet.  So Negan takes him with them. I doubt this means certain death for Eugene. Instead he will be forced to make bullets for Negan. And stuff.

Rick is left standing alone by the pool table and Dead Spencer. Spencer is already turning into a zombie and Rick probably takes some pleasure in stabbing the shit out of his face.

Ads. War for the Planet of the Apes! These movies are so good. This one looks tense and scary. Evil Rob and I vote for the apes.

Here is what I don’t get about this show, and shows in general: I feel like people communicate more than this. Like, not perfectly, but we all manage to figure out when every last one of us is on the same page. So all these people want to take Negan out but are all acting independently because they don’t communicate. And it’s dumb. So dumb.

Also, Better Call Saul is coming back soon! Yay!

Back to the show. Rick is kneeling in a basement. Michonne shows up. She tells him how outnumbered they are, but that it doesn’t change how she feels. They are still alive. They survived so much. Their hearts are still beating. So what do they do with that? How do they make it mean something?

Basically she is giving him a pep talk. They have to fight. For Judith and Carl and everyone else. But he has to get his head out of his ass. (She says that with her eyes, mostly.) It is times like this that this show is so good. When people get to say things about making things mean things. 

Rick’s all, “I know.”

And then they make out.

Back to Maggie at Glenn’s grave again. She climbs up the watch tower.

 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

She sees something that makes her smile. And yells for Sasha and Enid to come. And they open the gates. 

It’s Rick and Michonne and Carl and Tara and Rosita.

And then Daryl and Jesus come around a corner and I cry.

I ain’t lying.

Rick and Daryl hug it out hard.

There wasnt a photo of the epic hug

There wasn’t a photo of the epic hug anywhere but I did find some random beautiful fan art on a listicle (uncredited, of course, so if anyone knows who it belongs to, tell us). This is actually not a terrible representation of how the hug went even though this predates tonight’s episode by years. Thanks, fandom!  

And Daryl gives Rick the gun he took off Fat Joseph. The sheriff is back in town, you guys. 

Everyone smiles but Jesus. He just looks upset and worried. Whatever, Jesus. Stop being so serious all the damn time.

Night shot of Alexandria ends the show. Father Gabriel is on the watch bridge and the spy in the boots is watching.

Dun dun dunnnn!

This was a good episode. Finally.

That’s a wrap till February. The second half of the season HAS to be better, what with Rick and Co having all kinds of fight in them once again. And we see scenes of Rick appealing to Ezekiel to team up. Wonder how that’ll go. 

twitter negan 

I will miss the adorable Ann Mahoney though. So unfair. 

Sexy Librarian Ann would let Carol sit and read undisturbed.

Sexy Librarian Ann would let Carol sit and read undisturbed.

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