‘The Walking Dead’ Recap: Carol and Daryl Reunite, and Rick Meets the Garbage People

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Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon Gene Page/AMC

From a new community of oddball survivors to a zombie decked out like an undead porcupine to an epic hug that single-handedly relaunched the HMS Caryl for despondent shippers everywhere, the Sunday, February 19, episode of The Walking Dead was an ante-upping, tantalizing glimpse of a future in which Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and his gang of survivors might actually emerge victorious from their conflict with The Saviors … if they don’t get screwed on their end of a deal that they just made with a bunch of evidently crazy people.

After ending last week’s episode surrounded by a gang of eerily silent antagonists, Rick went out on a limb this time to forge an alliance with the unknown (and slightly unhinged) citizens of a junkyard community led by a weirdo named Jadis (Pollyanna Macintosh). Meanwhile, unrest continued to brew in the Kingdom and Daryl (Norman Reedus) told a big lie for love (or something like it). Here are the biggest moments from the episode “New Best Friends.”

The Kingdom’s Tricky Dick
It was no surprise to see Richard (Karl Makinen) taking steps to force a war with the Saviors after Ezekiel (Khary Payton) said “nope” to Rick’s plea for an alliance, or that he enlisted Daryl to be his partner in crime. But while his plan to lay a trap for the Saviors was a good one, his choice of Carol as bait was not. When Daryl realized that the woman Richard planned to sacrifice was none other than his absent friend, there would be no more partnership — and a whole lotta punching. And when Richard pleaded with Daryl, “I would die for the Kingdom!” Daryl’s response was a deadpan, “Why don’t you?” (That sound you hear is Richard’s odds of survival plummeting to rock bottom.)

A Tearful Reunion
Now seems a good time to reminisce about that moment back in season 4 when Carol (Melissa McBride), having been exiled from the group, was reunited with Daryl in the woods outside Terminus and the two shared a passionate hug that spawned a thousand filthy fan fics.

It was one of the greatest moments in The Walking Dead‘s history — and now we’ve gotten to experience it twice, as Daryl found his way to Carol’s little house on the outskirts of the Kingdom. But as heart-melting as their embrace was, what happened next was even more poignant. Carol told Daryl she left because if she’d had to kill anyone else, it would destroy her … and hey, on that note, was everyone OK back home?

This would have been Daryl’s cue to deliver the
bad news about Glenn and Abraham; instead, he lied, telling Carol that everyone
was fine. Although let’s be honest: He debated for such a long time beforehand
that Carol, who is nothing if not savvy, has to know it was baloney.

The Trash Brigade
While Daryl was reuniting with Carol and then abandoning the Kingdom to return to the Hilltop, Rick was striking a bargain with the strangers who’d kidnapped Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam). The Garbage Pail Kids (as fans are calling ’em) were and are a group of oddballs who make their home in a junkyard and speak in monosyllabic sentence fragments that make them sound like toddlers. After forcing Rick to prove himself by throwing him into a pit with an armored walker, the Garbage Queen, Jadis, agreed to help him fight the Saviors in exchange for guns. And with that, Rick had something that’s at least beginning to look like an army, not to mention a nifty cat sculpture from the junk heap. Hooray!

The Walking Dead airs on AMC Sundays at 9 p.m. ET.

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