This week’s episode of The Walking Dead was another filler episode. Although it was a filler that once again didn’t provide any direct changes or revelations for the story it did however capture how far gone Gabriel is.
The episode centers around Aaron and Gabriel as they follow a map Maggie has gave them with locations she believes could hold vital supplies. All the locations prove useless until they stumble across a warehouse not listed on the map that contains alcohol, a boar and countless supplies. They believe the place to be abandoned and the two exchange in a heart to heart about Gabriel’s faith and about he believes the Lord won’t judge him harshly for who he had to become in order to survive this new world. The pair get drunk and show a fun and humorous dynamic that hasn’t been seen from either character before now.
Gabriel wakes in the morning to see Aaron gone and a man with a shot gun pointed at him asking why they broke into his home. After a short back and forth about why they were there, the man brings Aaron out from one of the rooms battered and bloody, He tells the pair that in this world there is no such thing as faith, community or even family and forces them to play Russian roulette to see if they would be willing to sacrifice themselves to save the other.
After several attempts by Gabriel to appeal to the man’s humanity he reveals his name to be Mays and that he had lost his faith in humanity after his brother betrayed him for a few scraps of food. So Mays decides to murder his brother and his brother’s wife and child. Gabriel says he will return Mayes to Alexandria and he can have a fresh start, but once he frees Gabriel he picks up Aarons mace hand and kills Mayes to the surprise and shock of Aaron.
They search the rest of the warehouse and find the skeletal remains of the wife and child of Mayes’s brother and the brother handcuffed to some pipes. Once freed he kills himself and lies at peace with his family.
Not only does the episode show how ruthless and brutal Gabriel has become but also shows how decayed the walkers are. Skin slips off them with ease now as the walkers’ faces turn from your stereotypical decayed zombie to a loose stumbling vessel of skin and bones. Aaron seems to be visibly scarred by the behavior of Gabriel as both he and the audience aren’t used to Gabe being like this. Overall the episode is largely skippable and isn’t of supreme importance to the overlying story of the show. It did provide some intense moments and some character development but it’s nothing that couldn’t be shown in a story driven main episode. Rating 6/10.