Warning: The recap for the “Go Getters” episode of The Walking Dead contains storyline and character spoilers.
Maggie and Sasha are OK, relatively speaking, of course; Carl and Enid are restless and vengeance-minded; Jesus is motivated to become a leader; and Gregory is an even bigger coward than we might have imagined … all coming up in this week’s very special Hilltop edition of The Walking Dead.
Maggie, Gleggie, and Sasha
Dr. Carson — the good one, the kind Hilltop doctor, as opposed to the Dr. Carson under Negan’s thumb at the Saviors’ compound — greets an awakening Maggie with good news: She’s going to be OK, and so is her baby. She’s been sleeping for several days since she and Sasha arrived at the Hilltop, when Dr. Carson discovered she was suffering from a separation of the placenta from the uterus. It was a small separation, he tells her, and now the baby’s heart rate is normal. With a lot of rest on her part, she and baby Gleggie will be OK, but he recommends she remain in the community through the baby’s birth, so he can treat any further complications that could arise.
Outside his office, Sasha waits for Maggie and takes her to the graves of Abraham and Glenn. Sasha hands Maggie Hershel’s pocket watch, which she retrieved from Glenn’s pocket. Abraham had nothing but a cigar in his, Sasha reports, chuckling at the thought. As Maggie kisses the watch that meant so much to both of the men in her life, Sasha tells her it feels like “everything is wrong.”
“Not everything,” Maggie says. She says Dr. Carson told her “we” should stay until the baby is born.
“Then we’ll stay,” Sasha says, though Maggie tells her she’s still thinking about it.
“You’re staying,” Sasha decides. “And so am I.”
Jesus joins the women, and he’s brought flowers to put on the graves. Sasha says he’s the one who put a vase of flowers beside Maggie’s bedside, too, and he tells her it’s because he had read that blue flowers inspire strength, calm, and release.
None of those words apply when Hilltop leader Gregory suddenly swoops in, though, as he immediately begins demanding answers from Maggie — who he acknowledges has just woken up — about the Saviors, and how her people said they’d gotten them all.
“We thought we did,” Maggie says. “It was just an outpost.” She says there are actually a lot more of them, maybe hundreds. Gregory, who refers to Maggie as “Marsha,” blathers on about the deal her people “made” him take. Jesus corrects him about Maggie’s name, but Gregory just insists that “Marsha” needs to leave, and that she be sure to tell “Rich” about what “we did for ya” when she gets home. She tells him Dr. Carson advised her to stay put at the Hilltop, and Gregory says he can’t make that call. When Sasha gives him side-eye, he tells her not to look at him like that. “She’s safer with her own people, and we’ll be safer without her.” He tells Sasha to stay away from Maggie, and “focus on your work here” … he thinks Sasha is already a member of his community, so out of touch is he with who does actually live there. He stays hidden in the big house, dressing in suits, and hanging out in his office full of fancy paintings.
He turns his attention to the graves then, angry that anyone has been buried. “We don’t bury our dead, we burn them!” he insists. Jesus tells him Sasha is Maggie’s friend, from Alexandria, but Gregory isn’t embarrassed. “I don’t have time to keep track of everybody!” he shouts. He reminds Jesus he has been recuperating, too, from a stab wound he suffered during the Saviors’ last visit. “Maggie’s people said they could take care of the Saviors,” he tells Jesus. “So far all they’ve done is put our community at risk. If they see them here, they’ll think we colluded.”
Gregory continues to insist the women leave, saying they can stay only until the morning. It’s settled, he says, but Sasha tells him it isn’t. Maggie’s pregnant.
“Well, that’s her mistake,” he says, as a disgusted Jesus walks away. Later, Jesus visits Sasha in the trailer she and Maggie are staying in. He tells her he’s glad she’s there, and she asks him to help change Gregory’s mind. She wonders why Jesus isn’t in charge and asks him to tell Gregory she’ll leave and scavenge for Hilltop if Gregory will let Maggie stay. “I’ll pay her way,” she says. Jesus tells her he’ll pitch that to Gregory, but it’s not what we want, for her to leave.
“What do you want, Jesus?” she asks. “What do you want this place to be?”
“I just try to help,” he says, and Sasha tells him maybe he needs to do more. He pulls something out of his pocket and gives it to her. It’s the necklace Rosita made for Abraham, the one that fell off his neck when he and the rest of Rick’s crew confronted the Saviors who came to the Hilltop when they were there. “I’m sorry. I liked [Abraham],” Jesus tells her. “He was one of the only people I’d ever met who could say things that would make you smile and wince at the same time.” Sasha smiles, holding back tears, and when Maggie comes in, Jesus assures her he’s going to try to talk Gregory into letting them stay at Hilltop and leaves. Sasha suggests they just stay; what can Gregory do, she asks. “He’s in charge,” Maggie says. “He’s an idiot,” Sasha says.
Maggie: “He’s a coward; they’re more dangerous.”
Carl and Enid
In Alexandria, Rick is trying to talk Carl into going on a supply run. Negan will be back soon, he reminds his son. “Is this how it’s gonna be now?” Carl asks, and Rick confirms it is. Carl refuses to go, continuing instead to throw darts at a board … and continuing to miss, by a lot, most of the time.
Michonne is also refusing to go on the run, and a beaten-down Rick goes to give her a kiss goodbye on the cheek. She pulls his face to hers and kisses him on the mouth. As she tells Carl, she doesn’t think Rick is making the right decision about how to deal with Negan, but she doesn’t know he’s wrong, either.
Angry Carl, who can only see the situation as an emotional, immature teen would, looks out the window and watches Enid climbing over the town walls. When he goes outside to confront her, she says she’s going to the Hilltop to find Maggie. He tells her that’s a long walk, and she insists she’ll be fine. “I have better aim than you,” she coldly reminds the one-eyed kid, but then says she didn’t mean it that way. He tells her he’s not saving her anymore; she asks if that’s what he thought he was doing when he locked her in the closet. He says yes, and then she tells him she’s sorry he had to see Glenn and Abe’s deaths. “I’m not,” he says, as Enid keeps going over the wall.
Enid’s riding a bike to Hilltop and pulls into an old gas station. She sees a pool of fresh blood, and suddenly a walker is approaching her. But before she has to react, a car comes speeding at the walker, running it over before crashing into an air pump. The walker survives and stands up, so the driver backs the car up and rams the walker into a concrete island, finally killing it. Enid peers inside and sees Carl’s behind the wheel. “Felt like a drive,” he says, smiling up at her.
The two take off on foot toward the Hilltop, and Enid asks Carl if he’s really not sorry he saw his friends’ deaths. He says he watched them both, not looking away either time, on purpose. “When it was happening, I knew that I needed to remember it, so that when I had a chance to kill ‘em, I wouldn’t have a choice,” he explains. She says she thinks she could avenge their deaths, too, because that’s what you do for the ones you love. Carl points out that revenge isn’t for them, and tells her he’s sorry for locking her in the closet. Along the road, Carl finds a bag with roller skates inside, and the two hold hands and skate down the road, briefly getting to be teens.
Attack of the AMC Gremlin
Maggie and Sasha are awakened that night by the loud sound of music coming from the middle of the Hilltop. They look out their window and see the gates to the community wide open, with walkers starting to stream in, small fires blazing around the yard, and an AMC Gremlin blaring “Finlandia, Opera 26.” Seeing no one else trying to handle the situation, Sasha tells Maggie to stay put and goes outside. Maggie doesn’t stay inside, either, and from the roof of her building, she spots Jesus and tells him to help Sasha. She sees two other Hilltoppians standing around, and yells at them to go close the gate.
Sasha tries to get to the music maker, but the AMC Gremlin is locked up tightly at every opening — with a giant metal hand flipping the middle finger welded to the back — and so all she and Jesus can do is go about slashing the walkers that are now coming through the gates even faster.
Meanwhile, a tractor starts backing up toward the car. Maggie’s driving it, and while Sasha wants to stop her, Jesus tells her to let her do her thing. Maggie, taking out plenty of walkers along the way, backs the giant tractor up and over the Gremlin, smashing it down and finally shutting down the loud music.
Gregory watches the entire scene unfold from the safety of his second-floor bedroom window. But the next morning, despite witnessing the two women lead the charge to save the community from what was obviously an attack planned by the Saviors, he tells Jesus that Maggie and Sasha absolutely need to get out of town, before the Saviors return and find them there. Jesus insists he won’t turn them away, but Gregory tells him it’s not his call to make. He doesn’t bear the responsibilities of leading the town, Gregory says, so he doesn’t get to make decisions. “You’d have to stick around for five minutes. You’d have to be a part of this place,” Gregory says, making a fair point about Jesus’s involvement in Hilltop’s goings on.
Just then, Maggie and Sasha come into Gregory’s office, and he tells them he’s going to present them with some rhubarb jam before they leave. Saving your whole town’s bacon … a jar of rhubarb jam … seems like a proportionate thank-you. With Gregory still trying to kick them out, Sasha offers to leave herself if Maggie can stay. No deal, says Gregory. Sasha asks what she can do to get him to let Maggie stay, and Gregory looks her up and down and implies that a private meeting between the two of them might lead to something.
“Go to hell!” Maggie tells him, and he pretends to be offended by what she’s implying. Before they can continue, the Saviors arrive, and Gregory panics and tells Jesus to hide the women in a closet.
Dozens of Saviors pour into town in trucks, and Negan’s right-hand dude, Simon, asks for a meeting with Gregory in his office. Gregory pretends not to know what happened with Rick’s group and the Saviors, and Simon tells him it’s OK, that those people now work for Negan. “They are real go-getters,” he says, and Gregory nervously continues to suck up to him. Simon senses something is afoot, and asks Gregory if there are “any hitches in the giddyup”? Gregory says there are, and takes Simon outside his office, toward a closet in the hallway. Is he about to give Maggie and Sasha up? It’s moot for the moment, because when he opens the closet, all that’s inside is a case of his favorite scotch. Simon’s tickled; he hates the stuff himself — tastes like ashtray and window cleaner, he says — but Negan loves it. He thanks Gregory, and tells him he’s going to tell Negan it’s from him, not Gregory. “I really want the headline on this one,” Simon says, bumming out Gregory but amusing Jesus. Simon then tells Gregory his men are going to poke around and take half of everything, as well as that office painting that Gregory loves so much. And there’s just one more thing he wants: Gregory to kneel for him. Gregory does, and Simon pats him on the head. “That’s a solid kneel, Gregory,” Simon tells him. “Remember that for next time.”
One Big Happy (?) Hilltop Family
Carl and Enid reach the Hilltop, where they spot the Saviors packing stuff into several trucks. Carl thinks Negan isn’t there, because he doesn’t see the big black truck he arrived in at Alexandria. Enid tells him she knows he wasn’t taking a drive or coming to get her; he came to Hilltop to kill Negan and the Saviors. She reminds him he’s only doing it to soothe himself, and asks how he’d get away if he did do it. “It wouldn’t matter,” he says.
“It would to me,” she says, and they kiss. She asks him to come with her to see Maggie. He says he’s going. “I’ll see you,” he tells her.
“No, you won’t,” she says.
Inside the Hilltop mansion, Gregory finds Maggie and Sasha in his bedroom with Jesus; Jesus had hidden them inside Gregory’s closet. Gregory is ticked off, mostly about his liquor, of course, and Jesus has had enough. He tells Gregory that Sasha and Maggie are staying, and there’s nothing he can do about it, unless he wants to publicly admit all his machinations. “We’re all going to be one big, happy, dysfunctional family,” Jesus says.
“So we will be, and I’ll see us through this,” Gregory says, trying to wrestle back control. “I made progress with them today, you saw it.”
“That’s not what I saw,” Jesus says with a laugh.
“Well, that’s what happened,” Gregory says. “We play nice, they play nice.
“See, dear, Saviors can actually be quite reasonable,” he continues to Maggie, who punches him right in the face. Not because of his ignorant words about the Saviors, but because she spots Glenn’s pocket watch, the one she left on his grave, on Gregory. She yanks it away from him, as he pathetically tells her it’s a fine watch that shouldn’t be left out in the rain.
“This is our home now, so you’ll learn to start calling me by my name,” she tells him. “Not Marsha, not dear, not honey… Maggie! Maggie Rhee.”
Jesus talks with Maggie and Sasha later. “When I first got here, Gregory was already in charge,” he tells them. “I thought people chose him for a reason. Looking at it now, I think it just happened. But I couldn’t imagine anyone else in his place. I can now.”
“Who?” Maggie asks.
Jesus smiles and tells her they’ll talk about it sometime. He apologizes to them for not talking to Gregory sooner, and says he’ll make it up to them. Maggie leaves, and Sasha tells him he can make it up to them by finding out where Negan lives. And she wants to keep this info between the two of them.
Maggie goes to Glenn’s grave, where she spots green balloons and Enid. She’s happy to see Enid, who asks her if she’s OK. “I’m not,” she says. “But I will be.” They hug and go inside Maggie and Sasha — and now Enid’s — home. As Enid ladles soup into bowls, she says she heard something about Maggie running over walkers and a car with a tractor.
“I couldn’t sit by and watch, again,” Maggie says. She also tells Enid it wasn’t her first time tractor-ing a car. “There was this boy in high school … his car … it was a Camaro … and then it wasn’t.”
Sasha comes in and comments on the balloons on Abe’s grave; Enid put them on the wrong one. Maggie says she was going to use the pocket watch to mark Glenn’s grave, but she gives it to Enid instead. “We don’t need anything to remember them by,” Maggie says. “We have us.”
The three hold hands around the meal table, as Maggie quotes Ralph Waldo Emerson’s “We Thank Thee.”
“For this new morning with its light, for rest and shelter of the night, for health and food, for love and friends, for everything that goodness sends. Amen.”
As Sasha later sits outside sharpening a knife, with Abraham’s cigar in her mouth, the Saviors move out with their freshly stolen Hilltop goods. Jesus runs behind them and jumps into the last truck. He opens a bottle of Gregory’s scotch, takes a swig, and pours the rest out.
“Hey,” a voice startles him. It’s Carl, also along for the ride to the Saviors’ home.
* It’s childishly amusing that Gregory calls Maggie “Marsha” and Rick “Rich,” until he refers to one of his own people by the wrong name, too. Is this a hint at a bigger health issue, perhaps, for Gregory, or is his inability or refusal to remember anyone’s name just another indication of his general dickishness?
* Simon, played by the great Steven Ogg, proves to have the gift of gab, and the charm, that Negan does. As bad as they are, here’s hoping we get a scene with the two of them together soon.
OK, Dead-heads, let’s hear your reactions to “Go Getters”: How much damage can Carl and Jesus do when they get to the Saviors’ home? Think they might rescue Daryl? Will Sasha eventually go after Negan herself? How long till Maggie officially becomes Hilltop’s new leader? And Enid’s ominous “No, you won’t” to Carl — do you think that means one of them isn’t making it to the end of the season?
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on AMC.