19. This Isn’t a Democracy Anymore
Episode 213, “Beside the Dying Fire”
Original Airdate: 3/18/2012
Submitted By: Sonya Iryna
Season 2 was really Rick’s “coming of age” as a leader. Throughout most of the season he kept trying to please everyone, and ended up pleasing no one. He was reeling from his guilt about Sophia’s death and having to kill Shane, and knowing that Lori’s baby wasn’t his, and trying to form a plan for the group’s survival. Rick had a lot on his plate.
So after the group had to flee the farm and were hunkered down trying to figure out what to do next Rick was not having it when people started questioning his leadership. After listening to Carol tell Daryl that the two of them should go off on their own and listening to Maggie tell Glenn pretty much the same thing Rick was done with people second guessing him.
In no uncertain terms he told the naysayers that if they weren’t happy with his leadership they could leave. When no one actually left he tells them, “If you’re staying, fine, but this isn’t a democracy anymore.”
And The Ricktator was born. Rick finally stepped up and truly become a leader. He’s been the de facto leader ever since, except for a brief time at the prison when there was a leadership council to make decisions for the group. He hasn’t been a perfect leader. He’s made plenty of mistakes. But his motivation is always to keep the people he loves safe and that makes him a great leader.