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SYFY WIRE The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead returns with a season finale and 'A Certain Doom'

By Alyse Wax

Six months after the last episode, we have a season finale for Season 10 of The Walking Dead. Well, kind of. This certainly felt a lot more season finale-ish than episode fifteen… but there are going to be an additional six episodes tacked on to this season, which won’t premiere until 2021. Is it because they couldn’t do a full season because of Covid, so they are doing what they can and tacking them on to this season? I don’t know, but let’s focus on “A Certain Doom” for now: some random little storylines thrown in for almost no reason, and an insane amount of zombies.


In This Episode…

Most of our characters are hunkered down in the abandoned hospital, with the enormous horde of Beta’s zombies clamoring at the gates. This isn’t just a regular-sized horde; this might be the biggest horde ever seen on the show, with hundreds of thousands of zombies surrounding the hospital.

The plan, led by Gabriel, is simple: Luke has set up a sound system on a wagon, and they will blast music to lead the horde away from the hospital. A team of archers, led by Diane, is keeping an eye from the top floor of the hospital, taking out Whisperers from the herd. A big group, including Carol, Kelly, Jerry, Beatrice, and Daryl, douse themselves in zombie goo in order to move smoothly amongst the horde. Beatrice gets sliced by a Whisperer and falls prey to the zombies in a most gruesome way. The rest of them walk alongside the wagon, protecting it from zombies who get a little out of control.

The Walking Dead episode 1016 - Wagon pied pipering the zombies

The group makes it to night before Whisperers attack. Best efforts are made to protect the horse and the wagon, but ultimately it is all left to the zombies as our heroes evacuate. With the stereo now silent, the herd is moving back towards Gabriel and the group at the hospital. Daryl has one plan left. It’s not a good one: turn around and hunt the Whisperers one by one. Lydia volunteers to lead the horde over the edge like they planned. Her mom taught her how to do it. Luke worries that it is a suicide mission without the wagon, but Lydia is insistent.

Daryl leads his crew back to killing Whisperers. Beta – still crazy and thinking the zombies are talking to him – is distracted by one zombie whispering “Alpha” and then hears a non-zombie talk to him. “Hey shithead.” It’s Negan. Despite having ditched out of the hospital early, he ends up helping. He and Beta fight, and Daryl comes in with the save, plunging two knives into Beta’s eye sockets. Zombies tear the mask from Beta’s face, revealing him to Negan, who recognizes him in his former life as a famous country musician.

It is daylight before Lydia finally manages to lead the horde of walkers to the cliff’s edge. Carol whispers to her, “My choice. I finish it” and leads the zombies away. Carol gets to the edge of the cliff, staring down into the abyss, and is about to step off when Lydia grabs her, and the two hide behind a boulder, hugging each other tightly. The zombies throw themselves off the ledge anyway, and Lydia takes off her mask – her mother’s mask – and throws it over the cliff.

The Waking Dead episode 1016 - Carol at the edge of a cliff


The big surprise in tonight’s episode was not that there was a shocking death, but there was a semi-shocking return: Maggie. She appears in two scenes, speaks no dialogue, and makes no mention – not even any hint – of where she has been. Her child is not with her, but a crazy ninja-dude is, and he saves Gabriel when the Whisperers get into the hospital and are ready to kill him.


I have vague memories that when we last saw Connie, she was caught in the tunnel collapse and presumed dead. Well, she’s not. Randomly, she pops up out of the ground, seemingly broken mentally, but apparently still human. She runs a few steps, then collapses. A man on a horse approaches – I think this is Virgil. This was one scene, tacked on to the end of the episode, almost as an afterthought.


Eugene, Yumiko, Princess, and Ezekiel are still trying to make it to Eugene’s date with Stephanie. It doesn’t go well, and they arrive at the meeting place late, and Stephanie is not there. But someone else is: storm troopers. A big group of guys who legitimately look like Star Wars storm troopers, in white hard-shelled armor, surround the group with heavy artillery. There is nothing leading up to this; no further explanation. I am guessing this will be explained in the mysterious six episodes that will come at some future date…?

The Walking Dead episode 1016 - Beta


When Beta finally loses his mask, Negan recognizes him. “Do you know who that asshole is?” he asks Daryl incredulously. “Yeah,” Daryl responds. “Nobody.” I feel like that maybe would have had more power had we not been so far removed from the episode where we find out that Beta is (or was) famous. It is something that is mentioned almost in passing, so it doesn’t feel like it has any effect.