Season 8 episode 10 of AMC’s The Walking Dead reminded us how impactful Carl’s death was to everyone, including Rick, Michonne, and Negan.
A lot happened in The Walking Dead episode 810 between Enid and Aaron’s persistence to get Oceanside to help them defeat The Saviors, Rick and Michonne burying Carl and leaving Alexandria behind and Simon’s power play of killing all of The Scavengers except Jadis going against Negan’s orders.
However, it was Rick and Negan’s conversation via walkie-talkies at the end of the episode that rightfully takes home the Talked About Scene title.
While Michonne looked through the pile of letters Carl left behind as she and Rick traveled to meet The Scavengers she noticed one addressed to Negan. Rick avoided that revelation until after meeting The Scavengers only to find they had all become walkers leaving Jadis trapped amongst them.
Refusing to aid her Rick and Michonne leave forcing Jadis to use her wits resorting to grinding her walker companions into walker meat. The Scavengers were the subject of Simon’s slaughter disobeying Negan.
It’s no surprise that both Simon and Negan have not been seeing eye to eye on how to address the recent unexpected events. Instead of killing one of The Scavengers and sparing the rest as instructed, Simon killed them all leaving one survivor.
Upon his arrival back to The Sanctuary, refusing to admit what he did, Negan receives the call that Rick wanted to speak to him as shown in this video from the official YouTube channel of AMC:
For the first time, Rick admits aloud that Carl is dead leaving Negan stunned and heartbroken. Rick added that Carl had left Negan a letter that he read with his son asking for the killing to end.
Negan’s expression alone could speak for him, however, as expected Negan did not remain silent.
Any question as to how this development would affect both men was answered when Negan stated, “You set this course, Rick. Who’s next?” with Rick responding in rage, “You are!”
Negan refused to continue playing into Rick’s hand, deciding to throw some harsh truths at our main character.
“That garbage. That sticks with you…forever. Just like Carl will. Hell, I’m feeling it. And I’m going to be feeling it for awhile.”
Are we getting a glimpse of Negan’s past? This heartache sounds pretty familiar to him.
Seems audiences are getting treated to more of his backstory as the layers are peeled back slowly. As much as Negan was apologizing for Rick’s loss he was also using this moment to teach Rick a lesson that he had hoped Rick would have caught onto by now.
Negan believes his way of leading is the only way the world was going to survive through rules, a hierarchy and everyone getting on the same page. Even if it means killing to get the message across.
Rick’s methods though at times crossed the line, remained a consistent means of everyone living peacefully as equals and coming together in times when fighting back was done to ensure their survival.
Negan’s home, The Sanctuary, has plenty of unsatisfied residents (did we ever see one person smile, aside from Negan and his top men) that we hadn’t gotten to know aside from Negan’s lieutenants and wives.
We do not know how many people were taken from other communities or were members of the community from the beginning. Rick’s most recent home, Alexandria, was a blend of his group, those who already lived in the community and possibly others on the outside with nowhere to go.
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The only complaint really was from those already living in Alexandria who didn’t agree with Rick but quickly agreed and learned he was right all along. Well except Spencer but Negan took care of that problem.
Both men see themselves as the “good guys” and not the villains. It’s clear that Carl’s letters did not convince Rick just yet and Negan’s words haven’t made any progress in that department either.
Arguably we can’t blame Rick for Carl’s death. Carl’s end was from his decision to save someone and save his community. His dreams of everyone living together harmoniously were foreign thoughts to everyone else.
Maybe that is the only way to save everyone so that everyone wins.
Negan’s last words to Rick are chilling, “Just give up. Give up because you have already lost.”
In a way, yes Rick did lose because he lost his son. But did he lose everything? Not while his heart is still beating and he has others he loves to protect.
What did you think of this scene? Was it Rick’s fault that Carl died?Would you accept Negan’s apology?