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Young love can make one do foolish things as Henry, drunk on a single kiss, plays the role of Romeo on The Walking Dead’s latest episode.

Are they truly star-crossed lovers or is the idealistic ‘Juliet’ that Henry imagines in Lydia just an illusion of his own creation? Henry desperately needs his pedestaled iteration of Lydia to match reality, as any divergent path spells agony. His own life teeters on the brink of eternal pitch black every time he opens his eyes if he’s wrong. Sloshed on the fleeting memory of a kiss, a tipsy Henry will venture forth on tonight’s The Walking Dead, risking life and limb. All chasing after the dopamine hit now imprinted on his brain, forever not being able to live without a sequel.

Henry is unable to think rationally about the consequences of playing Romeo, what happened in the original ending, or if Lydia is even a willing Juliet. Fueled by hormones that not long ago had him subtly trying to setup dinner with Enid, he will continue to do their bidding. Even to his own potential detriment and that of others tasked with saving Henry from himself.

In his mind, he is but a hero of Disney lore saving his perceived damsel in distress. Rebelling against the cynical, bureaucratic authority figures whose feet are rigidly stuck in cement from moving to action. It’s those that sit at the thrones of both households that don’t understand wrong from right to Henry. This devoted courtship ends with Lydia’s hand in marriage or Henry without a hand… Or worse.

The Balled of Negan

Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan – The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 – Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

On tonight’s The Walking Dead, Negan tells us all why he decided to step back into purgatory. Why he condemned himself to a future seen through a window and Judith’s ‘visitation’ hours instead of being experienced.

If a leader holds ‘Lucille’ up top the balcony of Sanctuary, and no one is around to hear it, can he truly lead? To Negan, the answer is undoubtedly no, screamed in roaring silence. Even his ‘Lucille’ paled in comparison to the original, reduced to a pipe as homage. A trademark symbol of Negan’s that once held power and respect, now just a story to be lost by the next generation. Forgotten by the sands of time, returning to his home and seeing ruins in its place. Negan chose to voluntarily surrender his one shot at freedom after witnessing what became of Sanctuary.

The reality of the ‘new world order’ ironically hit Negan hard. Slapping him in the face with the truth that time had not stood still while he was away. Negan decided to go back to the inferno he knew, the hades that had tormented him so. A 4-by-4 jail cell and a bed pan back in Alexandria, rather than attempt to rebuild what once was. Acceptance.

Practically Stockholm Syndrome, as he’s become accustomed to his punishment’s inflictors. Alive but not really living, just existing. A public symbol no different than the village pillories and stocks used to punish in medieval times. Is returning all part of a larger scheme, one step ahead of the curve? Or is The Walking Dead’s one time fearsome lead antagonist have us saying, ‘Et Tu, Negan?”

Major Plot Points for tonight’s The Walking Dead:
  • Henry’s lone wolf mission seemingly ends in disaster as he’s caught by Alpha’s group.  Will he feel Lydia’s embrace or her wrath?
  • Will Daryl, Connie, and ‘Dog’ (as Daryl affectionately calls him), be taken as hostages themselves during a haphazard rescue attempt?
  • Did Lydia pull the wool over Henry and Daryl’s eyes? Was her entire tale a sap story, a ruse to gain their trust?
  • Does Lydia feel the same way about Henry that he feels about her?
  • Negan is back in his cell in Alexandria on his own accord after tasting freedom. Why did he choose to return?
  • Michonne is questioned by Gabriel about her isolationist policy.
How to watch The Walking Dead season 9, episode 12 live stream online

The Walking Dead airs on AMC tonight at 9 p.m. ET / 8 p.m. Central. You can catch the episode live online with AMC’s official live stream or with a seven-day free trial at FuboTV.

Date: Sunday, March 3
Start Time: 9:00 p.m. ET
Episode: “Guardians”
TV Channel: AMC
Live Stream: AMC’s official live stream or with a seven-day free trial at FuboTV.

New Cast/Character Spotlight: Ryan Hurst as Beta
Ryan Hurst as Beta, Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Ryan Hurst as Beta, Samantha Morton as Alpha – The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 – Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Actor Ryan Hurst [Sons of Anarchy] will debut on The Walking Dead’s latest chapter tonight as Beta. Hurst will play Alpha’s terrifying second-in-command and in the preview trailer below for this week’s episode, is the one to capture Henry.

The Walking Dead’s newest big-name addition is best known for his role on Sons of Anarchy as Harry ‘Opie’ Winston, Gerry Bertier in Remember the Titans, Tom Clarke in Taken, Chick Hogan in Bates Motel and Sergeant Ernie Savage in We Were Soldiers. It’s not the first time Sons of Anarchy had an alumni in The Walking Dead universe with actor Dayton Callie appearing on Fear the Walking Dead. Not to mention former Fear the Walking Dead showrunner and co-creator Dave Erickson.

The Walking Dead ‘Guardians’ Sneak Peek

In the sneak peek for tonight’s Walking Dead episode Alpha tells her daughter why ‘she trusts animals’ in a subtly threatening manner. “You know why I trust animals? Because they don’t lie.” Alpha appears to be a devout believer in the natural order, the hierarchy of the food chain. As seen when she motioned a crying baby to a potential death sentence at the hands of walkers last episode.

Alpha speaks of the human folly of lying and not to fall into the trap of sweet verbiage from her captors at Hilltop. “Just words. Remember that.”

Official Episode Preview Trailer: Next on ‘Guardians’

This week’s official episode trailer has Henry getting caught and just with his emotions. Beta secures his prey and it looks like Alpha has a sinister plan in mind for the lovestruck Romeo. Alpha throws a sharp-edged knife on the ground in-between Lydia and Henry at 0:26 while Beta holds him back. You can see where this concept is going… There is no door #3 as Negan once said.

Though it’s possible Alpha might just be asserting dominance over Henry to test Lydia’s honesty with her. Will Daryl and Connie be too late or arrive in the nick of time to free Henry from the costliest decision of his life?

Meanwhile, Gabriel looks to discuss Michonne’s isolationist policy much to her openly furious dismay. Gabriel seems to have had enough of the fortified lockdown and wants Alexandria to participate with the greater world. In his own words, “Who are we supposed to turn to when we need help?”

* At the end of this article you’ll find photos of Gabriel and Eugene having a one-on-one conversation… Presumably, it likely means the two will have a man-to-man talk about Rosita. Will the discussion remain civil or become heated if Eugene reveals his feelings toward Gabriel’s girlfriend?

Rosita is pregnant with Siddiq’s baby (they had a fling before she dated Gabriel) while actively dating Gabriel, and having Eugene admit his feelings for her recently.

Impact Moment Last Episode: Alpha reacts to crying baby

Without a doubt, the top impact moment last episode was Alpha motioning for a mother from her group to lay down her crying child. A walker horde had noticed the noise from a distance, attracting it toward the baby, and sealing the youngster’s fate in the eyes of Alpha. “If a mother can’t quiet the child, then the dead will. Natural selection.”

The ruthlessness of the move combined with a lack of noticeable empathy showed everything you needed to know about Alpha. It didn’t appear to be a bluff either, as Negan once did with Maggie and Carl back in the iconic season 6 finale. If it wasn’t for Connie leaping out heroically, the baby would have faced certain doom.

Be sure to check out 10 Details you might have missed on last week’s Walking Dead episode!

Who directed tonight’s Walking Dead episode?
Embed from Getty Images

Tonight’s episode “Guardians” is directed by Michael E. Satrazemis, known for prior directing work on The Walking Dead (15 episodes), Fear the Walking Dead (7 episodes), and Lore (1 episode). This will be the second episode he directs this season with season 9, episode 8 “Evolution” being the first.

Satrazemis was notably a camera operator on Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, Texas Chainsaw 3D, and The Vampire Diaries. He was also the camera second assistant on The Crow.

Who wrote tonight’s Walking Dead episode?
Embed from Getty Images

LaToya Morgan penned the script for “Guardians” and is known for her work on other high profile AMC projects.

Among her credits are AMC’s Into the Badlands (4 episodes written), TURN: Washington’s Spies (4 episodes as writer, 19 as executive story editor), Showtime’s Shameless (12 episodes as a staff writer, 1 story), and NBC’s Parenthood (15 episodes as a staff writer).

Morgan has also been the producer for AMC’s Into the Badlands (10 episodes as supervising producer, 8 episodes as co-executive producer), and TURN: Washington’s Spies (10 episodes as producer, 2 as co-executive producer).

“Guardians” will be Morgan’s first script for The Walking Dead.

The Walking Dead’s latest episode told in Select Photos

  • Samantha Morton as Alpha, Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Samantha Morton as Alpha, Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Cassady McClincy as Lydia, Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Cassady McClincy as Lydia, Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Matt Lintz as Henry - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Matt Lintz as Henry - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  •  - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

     - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Ryan Hurst as Beta, Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Ryan Hurst as Beta, Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Samantha Morton as Alpha, Ryan Hurst as Beta, Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Samantha Morton as Alpha, Ryan Hurst as Beta, Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  •  -The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

     -The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Ryan Hurst as Beta - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Ryan Hurst as Beta - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Seth Gilliam as Father Gabriel Stokes, Josh McDermitt as Dr. Eugene Porter - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Seth Gilliam as Father Gabriel Stokes, Josh McDermitt as Dr. Eugene Porter - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan, Danai Gurira as Michonne - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan, Danai Gurira as Michonne - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Danai Gurira as Michonne, Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Danai Gurira as Michonne, Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Seth Gilliam as Father Gabriel Stokes, Josh McDermitt as Dr. Eugene Porter - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

    Seth Gilliam as Father Gabriel Stokes, Josh McDermitt as Dr. Eugene Porter - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

  • Samantha Morton as Alpha, Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Cassady McClincy as Lydia, Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Matt Lintz as Henry - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  •  - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Ryan Hurst as Beta, Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Samantha Morton as Alpha, Ryan Hurst as Beta, Cassady McClincy as Lydia - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  •  -The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Ryan Hurst as Beta - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Samantha Morton as Alpha - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Seth Gilliam as Father Gabriel Stokes, Josh McDermitt as Dr. Eugene Porter - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan, Danai Gurira as Michonne - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Danai Gurira as Michonne, Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
  • Seth Gilliam as Father Gabriel Stokes, Josh McDermitt as Dr. Eugene Porter - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 12 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Nir Regev is the founder of The Natural Aristocrat. You can directly contact him at nir.regev@thenaturalaristocrat.com for coverage consideration, interview opportunties, or general comments.

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Art

Norman Reedus to have art exhibition featured at Maison Sophie Lacasse

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Norman Reedus -"THANKS" Photography Artwork to be featured at Maison Sophie Lacasse - Photo Credit: Norman Reedus
Photo Credit: Norman Reedus

French art gallery Maison Sophie Lacasse will present a Norman Reedus photography art exhibition from May 29 to June 29, 2019.

Norman Reedus will have his photography artwork featured in a group art show at France’s Maison Sophie Lacasse starting May 29. The art gallery is located at 33 rue de Bellechasse, Paris 7e and open from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Reedus promoted the exhibition on Twitter and mentioned the May 29th date alone, making a first day appearance probable.

The Walking Dead star did an interview over at New York’s Sotheby’s when his photos were featured at the auction house back in 2017… So, it’s a pretty solid bet Reedus will stop by this show as well! Opening night beckons attendance after all. Potentially, the trip could be featured as part of a future Ride with Norman Reedus episode in the works for AMC. Either way, appearance or not, it’s an excellent opportunity for French Walking Dead fans to get acquainted with one of Reedus’ main passions off the set.

The photos at art gallery Maison Sophie Lacasse will be curated by Géraldine Beigbeder (@happen_art) and Laurie Dolphin.

Above: The art exhibition is being titled ‘Photographies – The sun’s coming up like a big bald head’ a spin on Reedus’ own user handle on Twitter. Reedus released a limited edition collector’s volume of his photographs in 2013 titled,
The Sun’s Coming Up … Like a Big Bald Head prior. The 132 page book is currently available for purchase over at Baker & Taylor in hardcover for $45.

Andrew Lincoln (Rick Grimes) on Reedus’ photography:

Every photograph is in some way autobiographical, as its composition and content all depend on the eye and the mind of the taker. But I would suggest not attempting this with these images.

Kim Gordon on Reedus’ photography (Founding Member of band Sonic Youth and Visual Artist):

Norman knows how to use the flat surface. He imbues it with the physicality that he knows as an actor, the spatial sense when you’re moving around in that rectangle.
 
The spontaneity of live action next to the STILLness of death, fake, stuffed…real.

 

Check out a detailed look into Daryl and Ezekiel’s one-on-one conversation about Carol this past Walking Dead season 9 finale.

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The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead #TBT: Nicholas says ‘Thank You’ to Glenn Rhee

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Nicholas (Michael Traynor) and Glenn Rhee (Steven Yeun) in The Walking Dead Season 6 Episode 3 "Thank You" - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

The Walking Dead’s greatest character death scene that ended up not being one, the day Nicholas said ‘Thank You’ to Glenn Rhee.

Breathing slows to a crawl, the mind wants to act but the body won’t obey as death is fingertips away. Picture The Walking Dead’s Nicholas on top of a garbage dumpster, frozen in place. One wrong step and agony is promised from every corner. Walker arms outstretched, reaching for their dinner like a juicy steak being teased in front of a lion. Nicholas realizes his present company has no answer for his fate, no exit door, no rabbit to pull out of a hat. Glenn attempts to reason with him amidst the chaos but it might is well be white noise. The nihilistic, rapid decay of Nicholas’ mind is in full swing.

An ‘impulsive’ decision has already been pre-made, Glenn just doesn’t know it yet. Still hopeful, Glenn pleads with Nicholas to “Look at me!” but the days of bravado are over. All that stares back are lifeless eyes that have seen their destiny. The journey has come to its final stop as Nicholas is in acceptance of his imminent departure. No end to stay the whole movie, he’s leaving this theater on his own.

He politely whispers “Thank You” to the last person he’ll ever see, then shoots himself point blank. All the while, Glenn is powerless to save Nicholas from himself despite being inches away. A crimson mask of misery paints Glenn’s face, stunning him. Before Glenn can fully process and react to what has happened, a forsaken Nicholas falls directly into him. The two take a spill off the dumpster into the abyss. In that moment, it appears Glenn is about to meet his maker as a ravenous horde tears every limb and organ.

“Thank You” in Retrospective

Walking Dead episode, as you watch the dead feast from Glenn’s own viewpoint. Michael Slovis [Breaking Bad] directed the chapter with now-showrunner Angela Kang [Terriers] penning the script. It wasn’t the first time the series has dealt with a character feeling the way Nicholas did, as Andrea experienced similar emotions in season 1 episode 6 [“TS-19”].

It is one of the rare times however, that a character went through with the it despite not having a walker bite. If you recall back in season 4’s premiere, Clara, a destitute woman Rick Grimes meets in the woods, stabs herself to be with her undead husband.

Despite viewers being familiar with the possibility of the dire concept on The Walking Dead… “Thank You” was jaw dropping all the same. The scene was exceptionally powerful, definitely above the call of duty of a regular television episode. From Nicholas’ ominous ‘Thank You,’ to pulling the trigger without warning, to the sudden realization for the viewer that a series original had ‘met their end.’ Although Tyreese’ final episode was brilliant with The Governor’s iconic return, this scene would top it in terms of shock value.

Glenn fans were traumatized from the event to such an extent, they seemingly appeared to will him back on the show through massive social media backlash. Of course, it’s probable Glenn surviving the dumpster horde was always planned. Or at least some kind of audience testing ground. As he was not featured during the ‘In Memoriam’ spot on Talking Dead falling the episode. This all lead to obvious, immediate speculation and theories that Glenn had survived under the dumpster.

The ‘Glenn pulls himself under the dumpster’ theory becomes reality

It was amusing to see photoshops of the theory circulate online, until the show actually went with this exact idea verbatim! Which inevitably damaged the scene’s overall credibility a fair bit. A good portion of fans now remember the scene more for Glenn’s escape rather than the spectacle and picturesque horror.

Nowadays, anytime a major character death is teased on The Walking Dead, you’ll find no end of YouTube one-liners and memes that start off, ‘He slipped under the dumpster!’

No cheating fate for Glenn Rhee

If it was indeed a testing ground for future character deaths, bringing Glenn back did not work out the way fans hoped. As Glenn would again be at the receiving end of a shocking moment in season 7’s premiere. Negan unexpectedly took him out as a second victim post-Abraham, seemingly out of nowhere! The show had been promoting just one person would be chosen by Negan for months after season 6’s cliffhanger.

It stayed true to the comic, as Negan’s Lucille picked Glenn there too. Although season 7’s character death for Glenn Rhee after Abraham was an instant jaw-dropping scene on its own… It’s still second to the perceived dumpster end for him. As TWD creator Robert Kirkman once mentioned, the bigger the character, the more grand and impactful the end scene.

Ironically, in terms of television twists and cinematography… The character end scene that never was, still reigns as what would have been the show’s greatest.

“Thank You” took place in The Walking Dead season 6, episode 3. Purchase “Thank You” digitally on Amazon to relive the whole sequence that led up to Nicholas and Glenn Rhee getting trapped in the first place.

Negan fans, be sure to check out the pros and cons of letting Sanctuary’s former head honcho out of his cell in Alexandria!

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The Walking Dead

Daryl and Ezekiel’s talk felt like a stiff handshake from a girl’s boyfriend

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Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon, Khary Payton as Ezekiel - The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 16 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

Ezekiel pulling Daryl aside to talk Carol was The Walking Dead equivalent of getting a stiff handshake from a girl’s boyfriend.

The Walking Dead’s season 9 finale saw Ezekiel engaging in a icy man-to-man talk with Daryl about his then Queen/fiancee Carol. One that boiled down to ‘Step away from her friend,’ or in Ezekiel’s words, “I don’t want to be the bad guy here.” It was universal, every guy has been on both sides of the equation at one time or another. Usually, it happens on a night out at a bar when a guy converses with a girl at length, and her boyfriend’s eyes dart to his opponent with a fierce unspoken gaze.

There Ezekiel was still reeling from the death of his adopted son, when he spots an unexpected, potential challenger to the Queen’s heart from the corner of his eye. The same individual he inadvertently blames for failing Henry, his faith in him at an all-time low. At first, he makes nothing of the conversation between old friends but Daryl’s mere presence gets to the King.

As Ezekiel senses the Queen’s feelings for him are slowly evaporating, he decides to secretly negotiate an exit with her possible old flame. An ember that never truly stopped fully burning and can reignite at any second. Ezekiel calls forth a seemingly friendly audience with Daryl so they can discuss matters in private.

Dropping pleasantries, Ezekiel tells Daryl, he should probably leave them be when they arrive at Hilltop. No Carol around, no need to pretend, ‘We’re all best of friends here!’ However, the young lion does not accept, roaring back, “Is that what Carol wants?” The elder lion sensing the matter not closed, responds, ‘It’s what we both want!’ with a flash of teeth. Daryl understands the message, there’s nothing more that needs to be said.

However, Queen Carol notices something is amiss during the man-to-man dialogue. Her feelings dwindling further, spiraling into romantic abyss with every extra second of the private conversation. Her fiancee Ezekiel’s charged body language toward her ‘friend’ has a reverse effect. Instead, Carol’s feelings grow even stronger for Daryl subconsciously. Unfinished business, the one who got away, lingering emotions that never saw closure swim up to the surface.

By the conclusion of The Walking Dead’s season 9 finale, Ezekiel’s attempt at a ‘stiff handshake’ with Daryl has backfired tremendously. The move combined with the loss of their son, sends Carol to join Daryl back in Alexandria, miles away physically from the King. Practically another state in these new times. No longer is the situation just emotionally distant for the distraught King.

Queen Carol returns the ring that promised a forever union to the palm of the King’s hand. Now at rock bottom, Ezekiel realizes his last minute attempt to rescue the relationship was wholly unsuccessful. By the time Ezekiel understood the building blocks of marriage were crumbling, it was already too late.

Enjoyed Negan’s redemption story on The Walking Dead’s season 9 finale? Check out The Walking Dead’s take on Prison Reform: Can Negan change? for the pros and cons of letting Negan out of his Alexandria cell permanently!

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