The penultimate episode of the first half of Walking Dead season five jumped right into the thick of things with Daryl and Noah already back at the church. In fact, we apparently completely skipped everyone meeting Noah and any sort of discussion about how they were going to get Beth and Carol back. Considering how much jumping around has happened since we saw Rick and the others, I’m not sure that brushing any and all of that to the side was the best decision…but then, “Crossed” had quite a few moments that left me questioning what the episode was really supposed to accomplish.
The further separation of the group, leaving Michonne and Carl at the church with Judith and the Reverend, definitely didn’t bode well. Perhaps Gabriel clawing at the floor of the church – a sound far too close to nails on a chalkboard, for my liking – was almost a sign of things to come. Because to be honest, a lot of what happened in “Crossed” grated on me just like that sound did.
While I’m happy that we finally got to see the group from the church, the crew that had been traveling to Washington, and Beth and Carol in the hospital, unfortunately it was a bit jarring to jump between so many locations for an entire episode. (It also didn’t help that the group at the church split, as I already mentioned, and then the road trip group split too.) The scenes featuring Glenn, Tara, and Rosita felt entirely out of place, and I think that it would have been better to save their story for next week’s midseason finale.
Back in Atlanta, in between Sasha and Tyreese having brother-sister talks, Tyreese also convinced everyone (or at least Daryl, and by extension a begrudging Rick) to follow his plan to trade captives rather than sneak into the hospital as Rick suggested. And I agree that Tyreese’s plan was a good one, but at the same time it seemed pretty obvious that it was meant to go wrong.
Again, maybe it was just the fact that this entire episode made me feel uneasy, but I didn’t trust most people or their decisions throughout. The Reverend was half-crazy from the start, I absolutely don’t believe that Dawn gave Beth the key to the medication locker for any positive reason, and I wasn’t fooled by Sergeant Lamson for a moment.
In the end, though, the only one of those questions left hanging is whether or not Dawn was actually doing something decent when she gave that key to Beth. I’d like to believe she was, but after everything else that happened in “Crossed”, I’m not sure that would be a safe bet. After all, the Reverend has ‘escaped’ from the church, but is unarmed and injured – and who knows what Michonne and Carl are going to do if they discover he’s gone. (I shudder to think that there will be yet another split next week, if one of them decides to go after Gabriel.)
And as for Sasha falling for Lamson’s sob story, I kept hoping that it wasn’t actually going to happen, but wasn’t shocked when it did. That said, it was still quite a one-eighty from the way she was behaving just at the beginning of the episode, which made it a more disappointing mistake than I think it would have been if they’d used another character or spent more time having her soften up before just believing everything this stranger was saying to her.
Weirdly enough, the grossest part of this episode – the napalmed walkers – was definitely the high point for me. This was definitely one of the show’s better makeup jobs (especially compared to recent episodes), and the nail-biting fight between Daryl and Licari featured some great close-ups of these zombies…not to mention one hell of a gross zombie kill. Leave it to Daryl to latch his fingers into a zombie’s eye sockets, pull its head off, and use that head to get the upper hand on an attacker!
What did you think of “Crossed”? Did you think it was messy, too, or did you like seeing everyone? And most importantly, how long do *you* think it will be before Tara has to use that yo-yo to kill a zombie?
Author: Tara Lynne
Tara Lynne is an author, fandom and geek culture expert, and public speaker. She founded Ice & Fire Con, the first ever Game of Thrones convention in the US, and now runs its parent company Saga Event Planning.
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