The Walking Dead Reveals Why Michonne Leaves For Now

The Walking Dead’s Season 10 midseason finale, “The World Before,” ended with Michonne (Danai Gurira) leaving behind daughter Judith (Cailey Fleming) to undertake a risky mission after striking a deal with mysterious new survivor Virgil (Kevin Carroll). Michonne and Judith departed Hilltop for Oceanside after Michonne answered an emergency radio call from the beachside community in 10x04, “Silence the Whisperers,” and upon meeting with Oceanside representatives Cyndie (Sydney Park) and Rachel (Avianna Mynhier) in 10x08, Michonne learns a snooping Virgil has been interfering with the reclusive community’s security system.

When Jules (Alex Sgambati) reports Virgil was caught attempting to steal a sail and a boat, Virgil begs, “I’m just trying to get home. I don’t wanna cause any trouble. I just wanna get back to my family.” A suspicious Michonne begins to grill the desperate intruder, but he flees when the breached Oceanside is forced to fend off a swarm of walkers.

Virgil is intercepted by a wakizashi-wielding Judith and taken prisoner. Later, budding historian Judith is keeping watch and reading “The World Before,” a book Virgil says is intended for his daughter. Less friendly is Michonne, who begins her interrogation demanding to know how long Virgil has been watching Oceanside.

“I’m not watching you. I don’t want to hurt anybody here,” he answers. “I left home for supplies, and now I’m just trying to get back. I swear.”

When Michonne asks why Virgil put himself at risk to save Luke (Dan Fogler) from walkers in a brief encounter at a library outside Oceanside, Virgil tells her mercy is “in short supply these days.” This gets an emotional response from Michonne, who earlier learned right-hand man Siddiq (Avi Nash) was murdered by a Whisperer spy.

This reminds her of “my mercy prevails over my wrath,” a phrase handed down from Siddiq in his first appearance in The Walking Dead's Season 8 premiere and later adopted by Rick, who recited the phrase after sparing the life of archenemy Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) when ending the war against the Saviors to honor late son Carl (Chandler Riggs).

A softened Michonne recognizes Virgil is trying to get home. All she needs to know is where that is.

“I can’t tell you where I live,” Virgil says. “My family’s there.” When Michonne tells him this is the way he returns to them, Virgil counters, “Or keep them safe.” Virgil finally relents, telling Michonne he lives on Bloodsworth Island in Tangier Sound. It’s “hard to find,” he adds, “and fortified.”

His break-in and the subsequent chaos was an accident. All he’s after is a boat on the Oceanside pier. Good intentions or not, Michonne tells him he’s indebted to Oceanside over damages caused by his intrusion.

Reporting back to Judith, Michonne lays out the deal: “He lives on a naval base. An island about two days from here. There could be weapons big enough to kill a herd. Take out Alpha once and for all.”

The only catch, Michonne adds, “It’ll have to be me, just me, taking that kind of risk. But also… I should get back. With everything happening at home, we should be together, fighting together.” When Judith asks if this means ending the war, Michonne answers, “Maybe. I have to find out.”

“It’s okay, mom,” Judith tells her. “You do. We can’t lose anyone else.”

After a negotiation with Rachel, Michonne tells Virgil the weapons on his island will pay off his debt. Michonne will take Virgil home, reuniting him with his family, before bringing a boat back to retrieve the weapons.

With her daughter's blessing, Michonne readies to set sail. She entrusts Luke, Scott (Kenric Green), Marco (Gustavo Gomez) and Dianne (Kerry Cahill) with escorting Judith back to Alexandria, where the council will be informed of the deal and stand at the ready with wagons when Michonne returns with the haul. Until then, Michonne tells them, “I’m just a walkie call away if you need anything. I’m only a couple days behind you.”

Michonne instructs Judith to check in every day. Or every hour. “I’ll see you soon,” Michonne says with a hug. “Be good for Uncle Daryl.” Virgil and Michonne then set sail, ready to turn the tides of the Whisperer war.

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Before Gurira confirmed Season 10 would be her final season as Michonne at San Diego Comic-Con in July, it was learned Michonne’s “handful” of appearances this year would be woven throughout the season. Episode 10x12, to air when Season 10 resumes in early 2020, is rumored to be Gurira’s fifth and final episode this season.

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