I’m going to admit to everyone here, I hated this episode. I typically watch the episodes when they launch on AMC, sometimes I’ll stay up until midnight. I will then re-watch it in the morning and take notes for my article, oftentimes I’ll watch an episode a third time. I watched the next episode before I re-watched this one for an article because I hated it so much. It’s very apparent in episodes like this what makes The Walking Dead click, and these type of “city” episodes is a big struggle.
In a sort of, same but different aspect like Woodburry, the Commonwealth looks like it’s fully functional and on the up and up but you will see later on that is not the case. In another parallel, the cities use walkers as a form of entertainment. With the Commonwealth they use walkers in a haunted house for the kids, it is also a way for them to try to show how ‘safe’ the place is. When Daryl, Judith, and RJ get out of the haunted house we see that the Commonwealth is having a big festival, sort of how the Kingdom tried to do. It’s also apparent that everyone has jobs now, Ezekiel is overseeing animals, Princess works in some sort of music store, Connie and Kelly are reporters and translators, while Carol bakes. A number of children gather around a stage where Pamela Milton announces the costume winner, a young girl dressed up as Mercer who wins 10 lottery tickets.
In one of the next scenes, we see Rosita passing off Coco to Gabriel, as they try to figure out the pickup schedule for the baby. So my initial reaction is did these two break up? Do they have to stay in different places because of their new jobs? Rosita has the late shift, and Gabriel says he can keep Coco overnight because she will be tired, and she says she will come over early in the morning so he can go to his bible class. Something I will be keeping an eye out for. Speaking of keeping an eye out for, Carol the ever-observant notices that Ezekiel seems to be in bad shape still so she goes snooping to see his file. Yumiko’s brother catches her and goes over his spot in line for surgery, 147, and how with his condition he won’t survive until his number is up unless he jumps the line.
Rosita and Daryl understandably, are working towards being in the infantry. Mercer has them and 6 other recruits go through a test, they have to go through a building killing walkers as a team, getting to the end, with the use of only one knife. Rosita and Daryl are split up, Rosita and her partner work well together, while Daryl gives the other guy the knife and just does Daryl things. He ‘loses’ the challenge because he just did his own thing so he had to go with Mercer. Daryl had to carry some weapons as Rosita caught up and volunteered to go even though she didn’t need to. They were going so Milton’s son, Sebastian can get some “Advanced Military Training”, which involves him getting to use every new weapon that comes into the area and he gets to use them on walkers. He tosses Judith’s sword to the ground like it was worthless trash which upset Daryl, he ended up killing the first walker just fine but struggled on the second until Daryl got his crossbow from the bag and shot the walker, causing Sebastian to freak out, in front of his mom. His mom looked disgusted so Sebastian felt horrible. Mercer told Daryl he shouldn’t have done that, he would have been just fine. He understands that he used to do everything on his own, but he needs to get out of his own way to succeed, and he wants to see Daryl succeed here.
Judith made a new friend during the event, Mei, who showed Judith where to get the good candy and treats, she also bought her a record when she found out that Judith doesn’t get any allowance. Later back at the apartment, Judith asks for an allowance, and Daryl says can they talk about it after his job settles? RJ and Judith want to stay, even after Alexandria is put back together, Daryl doesn’t seem excited but he will for the kids.
Carol, back to being an observant snoop, sees that Hornsby’s wine for the big event was turned down and he needs to come up with something. So she does some research and finds a local wine cellar, or company, I can’t quite figure out for sure. But she goes to this location, kills some walkers inside, and gets some wine for the event. She delivers the wine to Hornbsy, who is impressed that she knows he needed something, and that she figured out how to get out of the city. Carol just smiles and then asks Hornsby her ask, to get Ezekiel up the surgery line. Hornsby says that’s a big ask, but first, they have to see how this wine goes over.
At the Masquerade Ball, we see that Magna is here too and she is a server, which goes in line also with her previous job before the world crumbled. Yumiko, the lawyer, and her brother, the surgeon is at this fancy party. The surgeon doesn’t like these events so he is just pounding down the alcohol. A bunch of people is taking pictures and oohing at the fancy pants people as they go inside the party, this makes me sick in current times and even more so in the show, but Princess stops Mercer after his cheering section died down and ends up inviting her inside because he finds these events boring. She almost was turned down because it was a dress code until the doorman properly diagnosed that Mercer would snap him like a twig.
Pamela Milton and Hornbsy have a quick chat where Milton wants to ask some questions about Alexandria, and Hornsby says he has a pitch, this is something else that we need to look into going forward. Pamela has a quick meeting for the press and she introduces last year’s lottery winner here at the ball, and she quickly excuses herself to go have a speech.
Pamela says that the Commonwealth cares for all citizens, a current server, who was a former soldier slams his tray down and says that this is BS! He says I would have died for this place, but they don’t care about everyone they are disposable. He just wanted to talk but they wouldn’t give him time, he made one mistake and lost everything. He says that they just care about fancy parties and paintings, he destroys a painting and flees. Daryl tracks him down in the funhouse and gives him to Sebastian so he can get the glory. Sebastian marches him into a big cheer, Milton says to dispose of him and he yells it doesn’t matter if they get rid of him, there are thousands like him. Equality for all workers! Milton asks Hornsby if it’s true that there are 1000 people who feel the same as him? Hornsby says no, but she wants him to be sure so some soldiers raid his place, Rosita finds a secret extra room in his place that has tons of posters and such as anti-Commonwealth signs.