by Sherry Lipp
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD
Just when I thought Carol (Melissa McBride) had crossed lines that she would never come back from, this episode, “The Same Boat,” changes my mind about everything. I last week I mentioned that she had left a cookie on Sam’s grave, but that small gesture wasn’t anything to what we saw this week. I love episodes like this, which deal with the souls of the characters, rather than just a bunch of fights and kills – not that there was any lack of bloodshed here.
What I also liked about this episode is that they added some depth to Maggie and Carol’s captors. At I was thinking that we had just another bunch of one-dimensional bad guys are mean for meanness sake, but I was pleasantly surprised to find out I was wrong. Ringleader Paula (Alicia Witt) used to be secretary and mother of four and ‘Chelle (Jeananne Goosen) had been planning to name her baby after her father. At one point Paula was just a regular person working a boring job and taking care of her kids. So how did she become the cold-hearted person we see in this episode?
That’s clearly what Carol was also wondering. Though her breakdown was a ruse, it wasn’t totally false. Unlike Rick (Andrew Lincoln), who shot Primo (Jimmy Gonzales) without a second thought, Carol wanted to give Paula a chance to escape. Though she did what she had to do to escape, the regret showed on her face. It was a look we haven’t seen in a long time. It seems as though Maggie’s pregnancy has brought out a side of Carol she has been suppressing for a long time.
The cool and not so cool this week:
”We are all Negan”: That’s what Paula tells Carol and then Primo claims to be Negan. What does it all mean? Loyalty? Or is Negan also a philosophy?
Carol missed her calling: She should have been an actress. Normally I might have said she was too good to believe in the context of this show, but Carol was drawing on some real emotions so it worked. Plus she’s been pretending to be the happy housewife in Alexandria for months (or however long they’ve been there).
”You’re not the good guys you know”: ‘Chelle tells this to Maggie and it’s hard not to wonder if it’s true. We know Morgan is building what looks like a jail cell in Alexandria. It could be for Rick. It could be for Negan. Or it could be for whoever needs it most.
The not so cool:
I pretty much liked everything about this episode, however this one thing did stick out in my mind:
Molly was a little over the top: While I liked the depth they gave to Paula and ‘Chelle, I thought Molly (Jill Jane Clements) was one-dimensional and over the top. I know they don’t have the time to give a back story to everyone, but this character just seemed like a caricature to me.