Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) teaches Maggie (Lauren Cohan) a new survival tactic as war with The Reapers looms on The Walking Dead. In Season 11 Episode 7, "Promises Broken," Maggie's Meridian-bound group of Elijah (Okea Eme-Akwari) and Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) continue their mission with a strategy learned from the Whisperers, and Daryl (Norman Reedus) hunts with Leah (Lynn Collins). At a new civilization, Yumiko (Eleanor Matsuura) interviews for an upper-class job while Eugene (Josh McDermitt) and his crew — Stephanie (Chelle Ramos), Princess (Paola Lazaro), and Ezekiel (Khary Payton) — clear walkers to pay their fines for violating the Commonwealth criminal code.
Maggie, Negan, Elijah, and Father Gabriel hurry through the woods. They pause for a breather about three miles out. Negan wants to head home, going off Daryl's secret tip. "How're you gonna keep going, Maggie? With what army?"
Gabriel stands with Maggie. There's no going back. Alexandria is about to starve. "If you're more interested in saving yourself, than protecting the people back home," Maggie says, "you can go. We don't need you."
"We both know that's not true." Negan wants a promise with a priest as his witness. If she promises, he sticks around. "I do this for you, and we are even. We are good. I don't have to keep looking over my shoulder."
"We will never be even," Maggie tells him.
"Then you're going to be down a soldier that you desperately need. Your call."
She's incredulous. "You'd take a promise from me? Really?"
Negan believes she's a woman of her word. He's always been a man of his. Negan sticks out his hand, and Maggie begrudgingly shakes it — and not for a second longer than she has to.prevnext
Maggie kills a shambling walker that Elijah recognizes: his sister's best friend. Teresa. A victim of the Reapers.
"We have to get them," Maggie snarls. "All of them."
A small pack of walkers creeps out of the woods. Maggie stops Elijah from taking them out. She has an idea. An army. "Think we can find more?"
Outside of the Commonwealth, a blood-stained Stephanie and Eugene clear walkers. It's a job for the military, but they're assigned to clear the dead from buildings marked for future development. Thanks to "fixer" Lance Hornsby (Josh Hamilton), the hard labor is punishment — and the only thing keeping them inside the Commonwealth's walls.
Eugene asks if Hornsby is capable of taking care of their "transgressions." Stephanie believes he will. Nearby, Princess and Ezekiel take out walkers. He clutches his throat and forces out a wet cough — it's his cancer.
Princess pushes Ezekiel to see a doctor, but the king doesn't want them saddled with another debt to pay off. General Mercer (Michael James Shaw) escorts a snotty Sebastian (Teo Rapp-Olsson), who whines to his pampered date about the revolting smell of the rotting "nasties" nearby.prevnext
Every Last One of Them
Elsewhere, Yumiko meets with sharply-dressed case supervisor Marcus (Jason Turner). She impressed the Commonwealth Auditors and should have no trouble finding a position in the administration of the community's leader: Governor Pamela Milton (Laila Robins). Yumiko reasserts she's there to find aid for her community and won't be staying permanently. If Yumiko is going to provide legal services to Ms. Milton and her cabinet, she wants to speak to Governor Milton right away.
At Meridian, Daryl and Dog walk the perimeter and spot Powell (Eric LeBlanc) locking up well-stocked food storage. Daryl offers him a smoke just as Pope's (Ritchie Coster) patrol returns.
In the woods, Father Gabriel says a prayer over a fresh grave. Maggie and Elijah's friend laid to rest. If Elijah's sister is wandering around out there, Maggie promises, "We'll find her. And every last one of these murderers. All of them."
Elijah only wants one. "He's mine."prevnext
Maggie warns Gabriel to keep an eye out for scouts. If he comes across one alone and he has the advantage… he knows what to do. Gabriel understands.
Walkers tied to trees watch on as Negan teaches Maggie a lesson. "I'm not cutting up anyone I know," she says. "You're gonna have to find me four strangers."
Negan says they'll only need three. He kept his fleshy mask made of walker skin for "practical and sentimental reasons."
Washington (Ethan McDowell) and Ancheta (Dane Davenport) report to Pope: they did three different sweeps, and all turned out no signs of tracks. The buildings by the lake? Yes, sir. Along the train tracks? Yes, sir. Freeway underpasses? Sir, yes, sir. A wrathful Pope sends Leah and Daryl out to hunt down his enemies.prevnext
Got Us This Far
Daryl talks to Leah about sticking up for her brothers in arms who took over Meridian. "We needed a place," she says. "We found one. You can fill in the rest."
It's got walls, it's got food. They won. Why keep hunting down these people?
"We have to make sure they don't come back," answers Leah, telling lone wolf Daryl it's easy for him out there on his own. "We have a whole community to protect. And we have a structure. And a leader who got us this far." She doesn't understand how these people can be so hard to find.
Pope's riled up and pissed, but he's like a father to her. "He believed in me when no one else would. He made me strong."
Daryl scoffs. "I doubt you ever needed anyone to make you strong."prevnext
Someone Else's Face
Through the carved-out eyeholes of a mask made from someone else's face, Maggie's labored breathing as she lurches like the dead. Negan coaches her. Lower your shoulders. Arms limp. He unties a walker that sniffs Maggie out before wandering away. It works: she passes as not-fresh meat.
Finally, she tears the piece-of-shit disguise from her face. "It's not going to fit you perfectly," Negan chuckles. "It was someone else's face."
He believes this plan can work if she can learn to walk like a Whisperer. He's going to fix up the mask and they'll try again. "You did good, Maggie."
Gabriel stakes out Meridian and watches their priest, Mancea (Dikran Tulaine), from afar. The Reaper mutters a prayer as he walks alone, silently stalked by Gabriel. Mancea unsheathes a blade and looks into the woods. "Tell me, Father."
Our priest grips his weapon. "You have guided me through the darkest of times," says Mancea, talking to and hearing God. Gabriel does not smite him.prevnext
At the Commonwealth, Yumiko and Tomi (Ian Anthony Dale) talk about the world before and his high-pressure job as a thoracic surgeon. It's a life he doesn't miss. That was before. This is after, and he's happy baking cakes.
He wants his sister to promise she won't reveal what — or who — he used to be in the world before. She asks if he has advice for her meeting with Ms. Milton. "Someone like me would never meet Ms. Milton. You have to know your place." Suddenly, white-armored soldier cops drag Tomi away.
A masked Maggie walks with the dead. She's got it down, making Negan proud. Elijah asks if her old enemy has changed. "We can't know that. He's helpful. He would be, long as there's something in it for him." Her promise? "I hope I can keep it."prevnext
Yumiko tracks down Hornsby and demands to know the location of her brother. He'll be home tonight. "Your people need help, right? And you want your friends who broke the law to go free. Those are big asks. I can deliver for you."
"There must be something in it for you."
"A friend in high places," Hornsby admits. "Some day I might need a favor, and you might be favorably inclined." He asks her to sit tight a few more hours. It's a deal.
Daryl and Leah are on a cold trail when they come across a dwelling. A man (Burke Brown) begs for his life. His wife is hurt and his family needs him. Leah radios Pope. He responds with an order: "Kill them."prevnext
Only If We're Honest
In the woods, Maggie and Negan sit over food. He feels for her. It sounds like bullshit, but it's true.
"It sucks to see your friends as walkers. And that would be enough. But you are about to do some crazy shit and break into a community that you built and lost. I get it."
"Your community and mine," she says of the Sanctuary and Meridian, "were lost in very different ways."
He understands the losing side of a massacre.
"There were no children at the satellite station," she says. "No families."
"Then where did Aaron get Gracie? You think I don't know about that?"
All Negan knows is his home was invaded and his people were killed.
"Those men, they had friends. They had girlfriends. People that felt a loss that I couldn't heal. And I had to explain to them why their leader failed to protect them."
"You killed people who had families," Maggie says back through tears. "And you did it in front of their families."
He did. "But the world is different now, Maggie. Fewer people to fight for, fight with. Hell, there's fewer things to fight over."
"Are you saying you'd do things differently?" she asks.
A regretful sigh. "Yeah. Yeah, if I could do it all over again… I'd have killed every single one of you."
She's taken aback. "Why would you say that?"
"It's the truth. We gotta do whatever we can to protect our people, right? I mean, that's why we're here. That's why we're doing this."
"Why would you say that to me?"
The answer is because this only works if they're honest, Negan says simply.prevnext
Either Gratitude or an Apology
At the Commonwealth, Eugene's crew stacks bodies. A jovial Ezekiel returns from the doctor — and he brings lollipops. He's feeling good as new after receiving a king's ransom of antibiotics, painkillers, IV fluids. All courtesy of Hornsby.
The Deputy Governor of the Commonwealth has a new assignment for Stephanie and Eugene, clearing the area up along the north fence line. Ezekiel and Princess are needed elsewhere.
Gabriel reports back to Maggie: Meridian is still there. "You run into any of them?" He lies: No.
Eugene spots walkers closing in on the fancy couple from earlier and races to save them. His heroism is rewarded with a snotty comment from Sebastian for disrupting their date. "We just saved your life," Eugene says, matter-of-factly.
Sebastian tells him they have private security for that, and he's not used to talking to "plebeians." As Eugene tells Sebastian what's what, Stephanie splatters his girlfriend with blood from an approaching walker.
"You stupid bitch! Look what you just did!" Sebastian screams. Eugene punches him in the face. Stephanie freaks out as Hornsby and Mercer hurry over, trailed by more armed guards. Sebastian chews Mercer out for failing to keep the rotters away — and his attacker.prevnext
Up to You
Yumiko arrives for her meeting with Ms. Milton. A secretary (Margot Bingham) reports their visit has been canceled. Someone just attacked her son.
Hornsby visits Eugene in a jail cell. "A situation like that, you're supposed to save him. Protect the governor's son. You'd have been a hero. You could have asked for anything."
To get out now, the price is higher: Hornsby needs the name of Eugene's town and how to get there. It's out of Eugene's purview. "Your friends can keep killing walkers. Your people, wherever they are, can figure things out on their own."
If Eugene were to disclose those coordinates, what guarantee could he provide for his community's safety?
Hornsby tells him to look around at the Commonwealth and all the chances they've given his people. "Up to you."
Eugene's ready to talk.prevnext
Walk With Us
Elsewhere, Maggie's masked group herds a walker horde, leading their army towards Meridian. Daryl and Leah follow the man in the woods to a basement where he's hid his family: his wounded wife (Liz McGeever) and their young son. "You need to take your son and run," Leah tells them. "Don't ever come back here." It hits too close to home.
Mom won't make the trip. She sends her husband and child away and asks for a mercy kill. Leah aims her shotgun but can't pull the trigger. Daryl does it for her, firing a bolt from his crossbow. Leah will report to Pope that Daryl killed them. "It'll be good for you."
There's something he needs to tell her. A radio call interrupts, and they head back to base.
Walking with Maggie's herd is Elijah's sister. He finally found her. Elijah cries as Maggie takes his hand. They'll avenge her. Together. Their walker horde heads for Meridian.0comments
End of episode.
The Walking Dead Final Season Part 1 finale, "For Blood," is streaming now on AMC+. The final episode of 2021 premieres Sunday, October 10, at 9/8c on AMC. Follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter for all things TWD and stay tuned to ComicBook for coverage all season long.prev