Editors React: Is the Negan arc upon us?

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Jan 25, 2016, 4:21 PM EST (Updated)

Spoiler Alert: The following discusses plot points from Sunday Night's The Walking Dead Season 6 episode, "Always Accountable."

What's been going on with Daryl, Abraham and Sasha? Aside from their mission to divert the horde of walkers 20 miles away from Alexandria, we find out that another group of violent survivors (sans forehead "W" imprints) are out there when they open fire on the trio. Separated in the attack, an injured Daryl has to revert to survival mode when he's ambushed by strangers, while Abraham and Sasha takeout their attackers and then hole up in a small town waiting for Daryl to find them.

Editor at Large Aaron Sagers and Contributing Editor Tara Bennett give their reactions to this episode, written by Heather Bellson, and directed by Jeff January.


Aaron: Fans of Norman Reedus should consider this entire episode to be a highlight since there is so much of Daryl after a couple week break for the character. While this isn't a fast-paced installment, it is interesting watching Daryl act in the interests of others, in spite of his instincts, and carry on as a would-be recruiter for Alexandria even though he is a prisoner. But this is not the season's best episode. 

For what it's worth, the Abraham-ism of "Loose ends make my ass itch" was pretty funny. I like the philosophical Abe, and think his Sasha "play" was a bold move. Still, I'm not ready for romance between these two. I like solo badass Sasha.

Tara: It's definitely an episode that doesn't ratchet up the tension as expected. However, it's been a strong season for unexpected characters getting paired together in character heavy scenes. I appreciated seeing Abraham and Sasha get one-on-one time in light of how both of them are deeply wrestling with loss and subsequent PTSD. Abraham's moment with the soldier walker was a strong callback to who he used to be. And while I was a bit surprised by Abraham's interest in Sasha, I can also see how he'd be attracted to her fierceness and ability to call him on his crap.  He does have some Rosita business to tend to so hopefully, their dance will be a slow burn.


Tara:  Daryl's connection with a trio of seeming escapees from a bunch of local toughs was murky in its execution. They alluded to being held by awful people subjugating them maliciously in exchange for protection but they didn't seem as traumatized as they should considering the escalating human threats in this world. And their last second betrayal of Daryl seemed more of a plot device than an organic move. 

Aaron: Yes. The death of the diabetic girl was pretty ridiculous. It did not feel earned, it didn't make sense, and it just was a laughably bad death. Also, it just seemed like a way to get rid of a problem storyline. Keep her around, and there is a constant pursuit of more insulin.

And death-wish Abraham was feeling tired because the character is so much more than that. I hope we're past that now. 

"Oh S--t!" Moment

Tara: This week, I'll reframe this as the "Oh, There It Is" moment when we finally hear what sounds like Glenn's voice saying "Help" coming over the walkie. While Glenn was certainly Maggie's focus last week with her mission to find him, that crackly plea for help on the radio is the first tangible evidence that Glenn is indeed alive. Because it took another three hours of narrative to get there, it's certainly not a surprising moment and it better be a plausible situation reveal to make the delayed storyline worth it in the end. 

Aaron: I suppose Daryl being betrayed by the people he just saved was mildly surprising. And I certainly hope those RPGs that Abraham found will lead to some "Oh S--t" moments. But if that IS Glenn on the radio, that is a big moment. Though it did not sound like him to me. 


Aaron: Still no Glenn news. Not to harp on this, but really? Scott Gimple and the writers know this is the thread everyone cares the most about right now, so the delay is getting frustrating. Despite that this may be the introduction of the much-anticipated Negan-led Survivors, this was just a very slow episode. 

Tara:  The jeopardy was really lacking this week for all of the characters. Maybe because Daryl's captors seemed so focused on their mission, it became clear quickly that he would have no problem getting the upper hand over them. And the people they were running from seemed pretty lackluster as adversaries especially in the wake of the Wolves. I'm sure they'll assert themselves better in the future (in the assumed Negan arc), but in this episode it made for a lot of talk and not much else except more delays (until the last second) regarding the Glenn question. Delays, delays...not my favorite kind of storytelling.

What did you think of “Always Accountable”? Were you worried for Daryl and do you think that voice on the walkie-talkie is Glenn's?