'Walking Dead' Recap: Phone Calls From Beyond - Rolling Stone
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‘Walking Dead’ Recap: Phone Calls From Beyond

Rick answers a mysterious string of phone calls, Michonne goes hunting and Andrea snuggles up to The Governor

Merle Dixon as Michael Rooker.Merle Dixon as Michael Rooker.

Merle Dixon as Michael Rooker.

Gene Page/AMC

Where we left off:  The Governor threw a big block party in Woodbury, with a grand finale featuring the compound’s own version of the WWF. Daryl and his serape took Maggie on a run for baby formula to keep L’il Asskicker alive. Michonne set out on her own, leaving Andrea to make googly-boogly eyes at The Gov. Rick took out his rage over Lori’s death by rampaging through the prison, slashing zombies right and left. In a world with no electricity or power or any Wichita linemen, Rick answered a mysterious phone call.

Where we pick up: Ol’ spike-handed Merle and his henchmen Tim and Crowley, along with a new Woodbury Army recruit (“Neil”), hunt Michonne in the woods. She left them the most awesome message in the history of awesome messages: walkers’ arms form the letter “G,” their legs form the letter “O” and then there’s a big zombie torso lying tummy-down. Get it? It says “GO BACK.” Great puzzle solving, “Neil!” Merle is not impressed by this gory rebus. They scan the forest for Michonne and Merle taunts her by calling her katana of glory a pigsticker. Suddenly, Michonne leaps down from a tree, quickly slicing Tim and Crowley to death with her pigsticker. She also disembowels a zombie, covering herself with rotting walker guts. Awesome.

In the prison, Rick talks to his mysterious caller. A lady reveals that she and her group are somewhere safe, and far away from all the zombie business. Rick wants in. He tells her that he has a son and a newborn baby and everyone is dying. The mysterious lady hangs up the phone.

Rick cleans off the blood and zombie guts and rejoins the group, ostensibly to check on Carl. He insists that he has to take out all the zombie corpses himself. Glenn and Maggie found a phonebook and discovered a store they can go raid for ammo and baby formula.

Merle and “Neil” stab their former henchmen in the skulls to prevent their pals from turning into zombies. “Neil” is having some tummy troubles but Merle insists that they need to go find Michonne. She’s not running – she’s hunting.

Andrea tells The Gov that she didn’t like the big Saturday night fight, but she groks it. She wants to get involved in Woodbury, even if she doesn’t like the brutality of the zombie octagon. She asks to work the wall because she’s a good shot.

Rick’s phone rings again. This time it’s a dude. The dude tells him that wherever he is, it is super safe: no one’s gotten bit, no one’s gotten killed, no one’s gone crazy. He asks Rick if he’s killed anyone. Rick admits he’s killed four people: two outsiders who threatened him, one who threw him to a walker, and Shane. The dude on the phone wants to know how Rick lost his wife, because he extrapolates that if Rick has a boy and a baby, he must have lost his wife. Right on, Sherlock. Rick doesn’t want to talk about that and the dude hangs up.

Andrea works the wall with a bow-fighting brunette. Let’s call her Geena Davis, because her dad wanted her to be in the Olympics. Geena Davis reveals that she killed her dad for his bow. Ha ha, she means her dad and her brother turned into zombies and that’s why she slayed them. A walker approaches the wall. Geena Davis shoots her bow and totally whiffs. And then whiffs again. Andrea jumps over the wall (RULE BREAKER) and takes out the zombie with a knife. “That is how it’s done,” she crows triumphantly! Take that, Geena Davis.

Hershel enters Rick’s office and asks to take a seat. Rick is not thrilled to see another person there, but he tells Hershel about the mysterious phone calls. Hershel offers to stick around and hang out until the phone (the dead phone without a dial tone) rings again. Rick only likes to talk on the phone when he’s alone.

Daryl, Oscar and Carl prowl the prison, looking for any zombies they’ve missed. Daryl tells Carl about how his mom loved wine and loved smoking Virginia Slims in bed. She burned their house down to ashes, and there was nothing left of her body at all. It didn’t seem like it was real. Carl counters that he shot his about-to-turn-zombie mom, and it was totally real. Oh, boys. I’m sorry about your moms and I wish there were a group grief therapy meeting you could attend.

The Gov summons Andrea to his lair to chide her for going over the wall. She reveals that she liked the fights. The Gov already knows that, because she didn’t walk away. Andrea makes her patented flirty face. There’s going to be sex in Woodbury tonight and I hope their drugstore still has contraception.

In the woods, Merle informs “Neil” that Michonne is as good as dead, so they’ll just report back to the Gov that she’s a goner. “Neil” wants to go after her, because this is some serious shit and he is not going to lie to The Governor about it. So, naturally, Merle shoots him in the head. 

Michonne, wounded from the fight with Merle, struggles to pull her pack out of its hiding place. A family of zombies approaches, but walk right on by her. The zombie-guy trick works once more! (Why don’t all of you cover yourselves in zombie guts 24/7? It would save you a lot of ammo. Sure, you would reek, but the zombies will ignore you!)

Rick answers the phone again. The lady on the other line insists that he needs to talk about his wife dying. She calls him by his name. And then hangs up the phone. How does she know his name? Who are these people?

Michonne stumbles into a town, looking for safety and shelter. Glenn and Maggie pull up, exchanging a kiss before breaking into an abandoned store to forage for supplies. Maggie urges Glenn to bring a toy duck for L’il Asskicker. Glenn stocks up on baby formula and gear as Michonne hides and watches behind a vehicle. Oh boy, Michonne is going to hook up with the prison gang! Oh fuck, it’s stabbyhanded Merle! He takes Maggie hostage and forces Glenn to drive them all back to Woodbury.

Andrea and The Gov share some good whiskey in his backyard. They engage in verbal foreplay about the joys of fighting zombies and being alive. And then they totally make out, and even though I know he’s theoretically a bad dude, I would eagerly swap places with Andrea because The Gov looks like an awesome kisser. They end up having sexy sexy sexytimes, although their coitus is interruptus by Merle with his two prizes. Merle tells The Gov that he has two people from the old Atlanta group, and they know Andrea. The Gov returns to sexing Andrea but doesn’t tell her this news. Okay then.

Back at the prison, Daryl takes out a walker and recognizes the knife lodged in the zombie’s throat – it was Carol’s!  Is our erstwhile Cherokee Rose still alive and fighting somewhere in the prison?

Rick’s phone rings again. He demands to know how they know his name. The voice says she knows him. This voice sounds awfully familiar. She continues, telling him that he knows all the people he’s talked to today – Amy, Jim, Jackie, and, uh, Lori. Hi, Lori! So Rick is talking to his dead wife on the phone. Rick breaks down and says that he loved her but he just couldn’t get his shit together, between the Shane thing and the pregnancy and all the zombies and death and destruction. There just wasn’t time for him to make things right with Lori, but he loved her. And he should have said it. (Lesson learned: when you love someone, tell him or her, because he or she might die and turn into a zombie at any time.) Lori tells Rick she loves him, and to take care of their children. The phone call breaks up and Rick loses the connection to Walking Dead’s afterlife hotline. He weeps.

Daryl hears a weird noise and moves a zombie corpse that’s blocking a door. He throws it open – and there’s Carol! She’s alive! He scoops her up in his arms to carry her to safety. Rick holds L’il Asskicker and brings her out into the sunlight. It’s about to be a grand family reunion, until Rick spots movement out in the prison yard. Michonne, covered in goop and grime, carrying a basket full of supplies, approaches the prison fence. They lock eyes.

Whoa. So next time, Michonne will have to explain about Woodbury and Merle and how he kidnapped Glenn and Andrea. Does this mean the Prison Gang will invade Woodbury? Will it be a super happy reunion or will The Governor take them out like he massacred the National Guard? And how is our old friend Carol doing? And has Rick recovered from his mental break? And what will L’il Asskicker play with now that Glenn and Maggie and the toy duck are hostages? Until next week, zombiefriends! Stay safe and tell people you love them, just in case. 

In This Article: The Walking Dead


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