‘Say Yes’: A side quest that adds depth to ‘The Walking Dead’ story

Danai Gurira as Michonne and Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes - The Walking Dead _ Season 6, Episode 10 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Danai Gurira as Michonne and Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes - The Walking Dead _ Season 6, Episode 10 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC /

“Say Yes” is the twelfth episode of the seventh season of AMC’s The Walking Dead, and it actually has some pretty cool moments with “walkers.” The episode originally aired on March 5, 2017, and was seemingly a necessary component of an expanding story.

In “Say Yes,” the focus is primarily on Rick Grimes (played by Andrew Lincoln) and Michonne (played by Danai Gurira). The episode revolves around their efforts to scavenge supplies for the Scavengers to fight the Saviors, led by the menacing Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan).

So, in a way, it is another side quest episode, similar to Tara’s ( Alanna Masterson)
little side quest
in “Swear.” Rick and Michonne embark on a journey to find guns and other resources, hoping that someday they won’t need to meet Negan’s demands. It is also an excuse to give the two popular characters screen time. In fact, one writer for Harper’s Bazaar suggested “Say Yes” is a “gift for fans of the show’s badass power couple.”

What does “Say Yes” offer for The Walking Dead universe?

Rick and Michonne
Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes, Danai Gurira as Michonne, Chloe Garcia as Judith – The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 1 – Photo Credit: Jackson Lee Davis/AMC /

Throughout the episode, Rick and Michonne face various challenges and obstacles, both in terms of the dangers posed by walkers and the strained emotional climate among these two survivors. Sure, such danger is the general premise of the show, and it’s still a show that never uses the actual word “zombie,” but it’s still refreshing to see walkers as a threat again. At the same time, the episode is significant for exploring the relationship between Rick and Michonne and how they navigate the harsh realities of their world together. What a reality, indeed!


As I watched the episode and Michonne pleaded with Rick to take on more leadership responsibilities, I couldn’t help but think: “They might not be in this situation had Rick just made different decisions.” Plenty of “What ifs” are in the series, and it’s tempting to wonder, “What if they had written it this way instead? So, even though this episode doesn’t involve Rick and Michonne battling living humans, I did mentally compare it to the season 4 episode where Rick bit out a man’s throat. Remember that?

After Daryl (Norman Reedus) pleaded, “These people, you’re gonna let ’em go, these are good people,” Joe (Jeff Kober) countered by noting that Rick had killed a man named Lou (Scott Dale). Then things escalated, and it was largely because of certain decisions made by Rick. Well, obviously, had Rick and crew not executed every Savior they could back at the outpost, they might have conceivably been in a better position.

Granted, characters like Negan would always pose a threat, but sometimes Rick (and others) make choices that are obviously going to escalate tensions and increase rationalization for bad behavior, as well as revenge.

Final thoughts

“Say Yes” is notable for its action sequences, character development, and the tension surrounding the ongoing conflict with the Saviors. As with many episodes of The Walking Dead, it adds layers to the larger narrative and contributes to the season’s overall story arc. Also, as Rick makes a key slip-up, we are reminded once again of what is at stake and that it does involve zombies. That’s right: I called them zombies, and they are still a little bit threatening here.

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