By: Heather Seebach
**Warning: The following contains spoilers about S6E6**
It's a testament to just how bad last week's episode was that I consider this very-Daryl episode to be a significant improvement. The last thing I wanted was more focus on characters I don't particularly care about - Daryl, Sasha, Abraham - but this one was entertaining enough and teased some elements from Kirkman's comics (always the easy way to my heart).
As the aforementioned trio are luring the herd away, they are ambushed by unknown assailants in vehicles. Daryl becomes separated in the forest (a burnt forest full of crispy zombies, specifically) where he is taken prisoner by a nameless blonde fellow, a woman named Sherry, and a diabetic girl, Tina. Meanwhile, Abraham and Sasha wait out in an abandoned insurance office.
If you are a fan of the comics, the name Sherry ought to ring a bell. She was married to Dwight, who is presumably this blonde guy. His appearance and introduction on the show is very different but it's interesting that he is paired up with Daryl this episode as fans often remarked on the similarities between Dwight and Daryl (who was never in the comics). See for yourself:
As you can see, Dwight sported not only the leather vest but wielded a crossbow. Interestingly enough, Dwight steals Daryl's crossbow (twice) in this episode. One thing that is missing is Dwight's burnt face, and considering the recent forest fire and all the references to AA Pattrick Fuel Company, I'm surprised he did not show up burnt already. They may be saving that for a choice scene with Negan when he finally arrives. In any case, Dwight's entrance means that Negan & the Saviors cannot be far off. Seemingly, those guys who show up in the woods are Negan's men. Like in the comics, they force an arrangement on people that they must give them a portion of their food.
If you listen carefully to Wade after he chops off the guy's arm, he says, "He only wanted to take this so far, and he only wants ass that's willing, you know?" In the comics, Negan was anti-rape but had many wives. Eeeeee, our first legit reference to Negan! Interesting how the director chose not to show Wade's face - I wonder if that's a casting thing, or if they want us to think these might be Wolves?
Daryl helps Dwight & friends escape the bad guys and offers them a place at Alexandria. I like how he used Rick's 3 questions. Attack-dog Daryl no doubt misses his master. Ultimately, Dixon's bleeding heart gets him betrayed by the people he helped, who will presumably run back to Wade (and probably Negan). I forsee an electric iron in Dwight's near future.
"You're gonna be."
Meanwhile, back at the insurance office: While I find Abraham and Sasha's discussions pretty boring usually (one or the other always has a death wish, we get it), I mostly enjoyed their time together this episode. Abraham got the line of the episode as he often does: "Loose ends make my ass itch!" Plus he found cigars and RPGs! I am looking forward to when he gets the use the latter! Hopefully this episode can put to rest this pair's sub-plot. Was it implied they're gonna hook up? Ugh, come on. Can we PLEASE give Abraham something worthwhile to do with his time? It's bad enough this show wasted two of the comics' greatest bad-asses, Andrea and Tyreese, can we try to salvage Abraham? Yes, he has the occasional one-liner but he needs a good storyline, perhaps paired with Rick.
Lingering Questions from this Episode:
1) When Daryl was forced to abandon his motocycle in the mud, did anyone else envision a Neverending Story/Artax moment?
2) Who was the voice on the walkie talkie at the end? The obvious answer is Glenn but I think it's another red herring. Perhaps it's Jesus, a forthcoming character from the comic?