It may be the Zombie Apocalypse, the survivors may slowly becoming worse than the undead, there's death and despair everywhere... but yes, The Walking Dead absolutely has the power to melt your heart.
- The "In Memoriam" montage segment that the Talking Dead does for each episode's death count, including walkers and characters who were not so nice.
- As of 2014, one of the biggest hashtags trending with the show is "#TWDFamily" for the cast and crew. Expect to see it in pretty much any Instagram, Twitter or Facebook post that the cast makes. It's especially heartwarming when an actor departs the show after their character is killed.
- When Scott Wilson was killed off, Robert Kirkman profusely apologized, admitting that the decision was a surprisingly hard one for him. Kirkman said that it was very hard for him to come to terms with the fact that Wilson wouldn't be on set with the gang anymore, and admitted he kind of wished he didn't have to kill anyone else, having grown to love the cast bringing his characters he'd been killing for years to life.
- Wilson was in fact slated to be killed off as early as season 2, but his warm, strong performance convinced the crew to spare him again and again. Eventually, he became one of the show's most beloved characters who is still mourned years after his death.
- An Instagram post by Christian Serratos (Rosita) featuring her, Alanna Masterson (Tara), Josh McDermitt (Eugene), and Danai Gurira (Michonne) jamming out to TLC's "Creep" while getting ready for a shoot. The camaraderie between these actors really does prove why they use the hashtag #TWDFamily.
- The sheer joy in the fandom at Glenn being alive in Season 6's "Heads Up." Steven Yeun even recorded a special message thanking all the fans for their kind words and support for the character. No wonder the backlash of his actual death in Season 7 was unprecedented.
- In "Killer Within", Carol was slated to be killed off in the episode alongside Lori. However, Sarah Wayne Callies successfully convinced the show runners to spare her, not even trying to save herself. The cast also elaborates that they often band together to save someone who they think shouldn't die on the show.
- It's always wonderful to see how close knit each member of the group eventually gets. Take Abraham, Eugene and Rosita; they're relatively new additions to the series, and Glenn has to reassure Rick that they're good friends when the boss meets them. Daryl immediately says that it makes them their friends too. By the end of Season 6, there's no doubting Rick and Abraham's brotherhood, and it's really sweet to see the big guy tenderly helping an ailing Maggie around like she was his own.
- Andrew Lincoln honouring his TV son after his death by singing his own rendition of "Havana".
- The death of Carl and the sheer rage it unleashed amongst the fandom is this in a way. Carl has always been known as the kid who wouldn't stay in the house, or the moody teenager, even after his Character Development and much better attitude from Season 5 onward. Yet the sheer amount of fan rage at his death proves that in the end, the fandom for the most part did grow to love him.
- Rick reuniting with his family.
- The Mexican 'gangsters' turning a retirement home into a fortress to protect the patients.
- Moresoever, the reveal that leader of the Vatos and his seemingly brutal right-hand Felipe were the only two caretakers whom stayed behind to take care of the patients when the rest of the original staff had left, adds a whole new depth perception to the two, showing that the Vatos are no different from Rick's group.
- A small one, but the Vatos leader openly showing the loyalty he has to his men, particularly when he's upset at hearing that Daryl planned on cutting off the feet of one of his youngest members.
- Shane doing Rick one last favour after he thinks his friend has died, by blocking his hospital room's door with a gurney so that walkers can't devour his body. Before this Shane tried to find a way to move Rick out of an overrun hospital. This act of decency when Shane was in danger from walkers and ruthless soldiers allowed the whole series' plot.
- Rick and Shane's friendship in general before the affair with Lori unbalanced Shane. Watching the first episode, it's clear that things would have been very different if Rick had woken up before that went too far.
- When Rick is asked by Daryl whether he thinks it's worth rescuing Glenn from the Vatos "gang", Rick tells him that when he needed help the most in the tank, Glenn saved his life. "What life I have I owe to him (Glenn)".
- Later, when Rick realizes the Vatos "gang" are actually caretakers for elderly patients whom were abandoned by their previous caretakers, he decides to give the Vatos half the guns and ammo that he, Daryl, Glenn, and T-Dog had risked their lives to recover earlier.
- Dale consoling Andrea over her sister's death by telling his story of how he lost his wife to cancer, and how it left him angry and lost.
- Jenner and Jacqui's final moments right before the explosion. Jacqui takes Jenner's hand, and Jenner looks somewhat comforted at not having to die alone.
- Cherokee Rose: Daryl gives Carol a flower of the same name as the episode. He tells her a story of what the flower means, surprisingly sweet coming from a guy like him.Daryl: "I'm not fool enough to believe that there are any flowers blooming for my brother, but I believe that this one bloomed for your little girl."
- Daryl's absolute determination to find Sophia, even after he nearly dies in the search.
- Carol telling Daryl he's a valuable member of the team and a good man, after Daryl had been hallucinating his brother telling him no one appreciated him."Today, you did more for my little girl than her own daddy ever did for her in her whole life."
- Branching off of that, later when Daryl tries to push her away after discovering Sophia is dead, yelling how Sophia isn't his problem, and outright blaming Carol for her getting lost in the first place, she quickly understands it's his way of coping with the grief, and then basically tells him to go right ahead and vent at her if he needs to. But she refuses to let him pry himself from the group out of any guilt that he has.
- Especially since Daryl's violent rant had to bring back some uncomfortable flashbacks for Carol of Ed in one of his "moods."
- Branching off of that, later when Daryl tries to push her away after discovering Sophia is dead, yelling how Sophia isn't his problem, and outright blaming Carol for her getting lost in the first place, she quickly understands it's his way of coping with the grief, and then basically tells him to go right ahead and vent at her if he needs to. But she refuses to let him pry himself from the group out of any guilt that he has.
- Maggie and Glenn's hooking up in "Cherokee Rose" feels so genuine that it quickly became the most popular Official Couple of the entire series, only rivaled by Rick and Michonne in Season 6. As IGN's Eric Goldman put it:Goldman: And hey, good for Glenn! He's a nice guy, she seems like a cool gal, and it felt genuine when she noted she felt plenty lonely too and ready for some companionship (of the sex-having kind).
- A mixture of heartwarming and tearjerker, but Shane and Rick's conversation in the woods about their high school love lives can count. It's one of the few scenes where the two of them act like real friends, and can make you see how the two of them used to be before everything went to hell. Then you see how it ends between the two of them...
- Rick seems to abandon Shane to certain death after they have a brutal fight. Then it turns out he was just going to get a car to save him, and tells Shane that whatever has happened between them, they need to work together now.
- When Glenn returns to the farm in "Triggerfinger", he goes to Maggie and confesses that he froze up during the earlier battle, and says it was because he started thinking about her. Though it's Subverted a moment later when Glenn tries to distance himself from her, Maggie is just beaming and nearly on the verge of tears, and outright grabs his face to try to pull him in for some smooching.
- Hershel giving Glenn his watch, which has been passed down from father to father in his generation, after reassuring him that he's a good enough man for his daughter. Especially heartwarming given that Hershel was VERY uncomfortable with Glenn's relationship with Maggie at first. He even remarks that "immigrants built this country" when Glenn says his family is from Korea, having had it implied earlier that Glenn's race was an issue.
- Maggie angrily tells Glenn that she's lost so many of the most important people in her life, and that she can't take him becoming "one of them" (a walker), not wanting to lose him, either. She also tells him that he's smart, brave, and a leader - and that he just doesn't see it yet, and that the group takes advantage of him.
- Maggie confronts Glenn over telling his group about the barn, but Glenn says: "I'd rather have you pissed off at me and alive than liking me and dead." Glenn walks away a distance, and Maggie stops him, and comes to him to give him a Big Damn Kiss.
- Dale trying to convince Daryl to vote to save Randall, telling him that he's a respected member of the group and a good man.
- With Dale arguing as the sole voice for saving not just their prisoner's life, but their own humanity, he is able to win over Andrea, who to this point had seemed the most solidly in Shane's camp, and the person Dale cared about most in the group. And later, when Rick is unable to carry out the execution, she looks elated at being able to give Dale the news. Unfortunately, by that point it was too late.
"Ain't no reason you should have to do all the heavy lifting."
- AMC was holding a live vote as to what to do with Randall, and over the course of the episode Dale actually won a lot of real life viewers over.
- Rick asking Daryl why he shot Dale: so that Rick wouldn't have to.
- Lori apologizing to Shane for the pain she's caused him, and thanking him for helping her and Carl in the early days. Of course this backfired, but it's the thought that counts.
- Andrea and Glenn's moment in Dale's RV, with Andrea tossing the keys to Glenn and consoling Glenn as he thinks he let Dale down.
- Rick giving Carl back the gun he stole, telling him that he trusts him and showing that he wants to help make him a man.
- Everyone reuniting at the highway after the farm is overrun.
- Daryl insisting that that they look for Andrea. He doesn't give up on anyone.
- Glenn and Maggie are fleeing into the countryside, and Maggie is driving but panicking from their ordeal with the herd. Glenn eventually gets her to pull over, and they switch seats so she can rest a little. Finally, Glenn tells Maggie he loves her. He says he should've told her a long time ago because it's been true for a long time. Maggie finally snaps out of her Heroic BSoD and slowly, sweetly beams at him through her tears. Awkward but sweet.
- In the midst of the rest of the group openly doubting Rick's leadership, Daryl's quiet "Rick's done right by me". Doubles back into tearjerker territory when you realize that based on what we know of Daryl's backstory, Rick is probably just about the only person who ever has.
- In the same discussion, while Carol doubting Rick does not qualify, her saying that she wants "a man of honor" in charge while looking at Daryl certainly does.
- Michonne refusing to abandon the very ill Andrea.
- Although it doubles as a massive Tear Jerker, Lori telling Carl how much she loves him, how proud she is, and imparting some final advice before she dies in childbirth.Lori: You're gonna be fine. You are gonna beat this world. I know you will. You are smart, and you are strong, and you are so brave, and I love you. You gotta do what's right, baby. You promise me, you'll always do what's right. It's so easy to do the wrong thing in this world. So, if it feels wrong, don't do it, all right? If it feels easy, don't do it. Don't let the world spoil you. You're so good. You're my sweet boy. The best thing I ever did.
- A meta example: it seems that whenever a character is killed off, the rest of the cast treat his/her actor to dinner and give them a personal prop from the show as a token of remembrance. You don't see that kind of dedication with most shows.
- Daryl and "Little Asskicker".
- More specifically: Daryl is the first to wonder how they're going to feed the new baby. He immediately heads out on a baby formula scavenging mission with Maggie. While scavenging baby supplies from a daycare, he grabs a stuffed toy for the baby. Finally, when they get back, Daryl promptly scoops up the baby to be the one to feed it. The baby's big brother, the group's "doctor," Maggie, and Beth are all standing there, but Daryl doesn't seem to have a shadow of a doubt that he is the best guy for this job. Awwwww.
- Also, when he picks up the hungry baby, she starts crying more quietly. Bless.
- And that smile◊ when she does quiet down. After all he's been through and all the abuse he took growing up, it's sweet how kids affect him.
- Glenn telling Hershel that T-Dog went around in his car looking for elderly people who needed help when the outbreak started, and how he was a good guy who saved his life on several occasions and how he's gonna miss him. Hershel thanks T-Dog for closing the gate (which is when he was bitten).
- Hershel offering to stay with Rick when he clearly thinks correctly that Rick is imagining the phone calls he's been getting
- Daryl telling Carl about his mothers death in an attempt to connect with Carl about Lori's death. It doesn't entirely work but it's still a look at the hard man's soft side.
- Rick starts coming out of his Heroic BSoD following Lori's death, and holds his newborn daughter for the first time. You start to see a bit of the old Rick coming out when he smiles down at her. And then he sees Michonne...
- Daryl discovers the noise he's assumed to be a trapped walker is actually Carol, still very much alive. No words are needed as he gently picks her up and takes her to safety.
- In the final scene of "Hounded", Michonne finally arrives at the prison, carrying the baby formula that Glenn and Maggie had found before being kidnapped by Merle.
- Carol's reunion with Rick in "When the Dead Come Knocking".
- The little things that Glenn does for Maggie in "Made to Suffer", such as giving her his shirt to cover up with and handing her a bone from a Walker first to use as a weapon, before getting one for himself. Conversely, before that there's the fact that neither of them are willing to crack, no matter what horrors they're threatened with, but each time the Governer threatens one of them in front of the other, they start cooperating.
- In a bizarrely heartwarming way, the scene where Michonne kills Penny, the Governor's Walker daughter. While the relationship he has with her is rather creepy, it's one of the very few humanizing moments we have of the Governor, begging Michonne to kill him instead of hurting her. It's one of the few glimpses we get of the family man he once was, and shows how much the last year has broken him, and turned him into the monster he is. But with all the buildup of how important he views himself and how much he sees himself like a god, he cares about his daughter so much that he's willing to sacrifice everything for the closest thing he still has to his family.
- Daryl saying goodbye to Rick, telling him to look after L'il Asskicker and Carl, saying the latter's a good kid.
- Hershel comforting Glenn and Maggie, telling Glenn thank you for looking after Maggie, and that he considers him like a son.
- Hershel telling Rick to reconsider his choice to send away Tyreese, that although the group has obediently followed his orders and is grateful, that he is wrong on this one. And Rick actually seems to change his mind. Then however Lori appears...
- Daryl has come a long way, as shown by a nice call-back in "Home" to Season 1.Merle: I damn near killed that Chinese kid.Daryl: He's Korean.
- Hershel hobbles all the way through the prison field to ask Rick what's going on. He then patiently tries to help Rick through his mental episode.
- Andrea and Carol hugging at their reunion at the prison, as Carol thanks Andrea for saving her life in the Season 2 finale.
- The episode "Clear" is full of these with Michonne.
- Firstly she acts very protective of Carl, repeatedly stopping from getting into danger.
- Carl and Michonne risk their lives in order to get Judith the last photo in existence of her mother.
- Then Michonne tops that by picking up a rainbow-coloured stuffed animal, and she shares a goofy smile with Carl.
- At the start of the episode Carl and Rick talk about how Michonne is only a very temporary ally of the group. At the end, Carl tells Rick to let Michonne into the group, surprising him. Michonne then admits that to Rick that she sees and talks to her ex-boyfriend, sympathizing with his situation with Lori.
- There's something oddly pleasant about watching the members of both the prison and Woodbury crews bonding with each other while Rick and the Governor attempt to reach a truce. Hershel and Milton's conversation was both kind and amusing (thanks to Milton's awkwardness, mostly), and seeing Daryl and Martinez kill zombies together was one of the most badass instances of male bonding ever put on film, which is cemented when they share cigarettes found on a dead zombie. All in all, both sides act very human.
Daryl: That sucks.Martinez: Thanks.
- Martinez revealing that he enjoys killing walkers so much because that they killed his wife and kids, and Daryl being honestly sympathetic.
- Glenn and Maggie making up in "Arrow on the Doorpost" after he admits that he hasn't been caring enough to her. Passionate make-up sex ensues.
- Andrea trying to convince Milton to flee to the prison with her, then kissing him on the cheek and wishing him luck when she leaves.
- Glenn asks Hershel for his permission to marry Maggie, now knowing the importance of the pocket watch he was given and what it means to really love and care for Maggie. Hershel, who'd in the past regarded him as "the Asian boy" with disdain, has no hesitation when he happily gives Glenn his blessing.
- Glenn going through the trouble of getting Maggie an engagement ring to propose to her with, and then quietly proposing to Maggie later, and her accepting.
- Rick admitting that he's been wrong to leave the rest of the group in the dark about important decisions, and declaring the end of the Ricktatorship.
- Rick picks up wire to bind Michonne's hands with when he hands her over to the Governor for torture and death, when he hallucinates Lori watching him. Disgusted with what he's planning to do, he throws it away, calls off the plan and does the above meeting with the group.
- Merle's Heel Realization prompting him to release Michonne, and causing him to become Death Seeker.
- Later after his Heroic Sacrifice, Carol comforts Daryl and said Merle has done good thing by preventing another prison attack. Also, Carl mentions his death to be partly as Rick's fault, because Rick didn't kill The Governor, who killed Merle, when they first met.
- Not just this, but throughout the whole season, Merle's determination to find and reunite with his brother. It has been established that Merle is more than a little of a Big Brother Bully, but it proves that he has quite a bit of Big Brother Instinct as well.
- In the Season 3 finale, a bitten Andrea's final moments. Her calm acceptance of her fate and what she must do, a call-back to one of her lines in Season 1, Michonne breaking down into tears and offering to stay with Andrea until the end.
- At the end of the Season 3 finale, Rick's crew allows the remaining Woodbury survivors (who are mostly elderly and children) into the prison, showing that his problem was with the Governor, and not them. This act of goodness helps set Rick on the path to redemption for his callous actions sin the season, and as proof, his vision of Lori, who had previously appeared when he was doing something questionable, finally disappears for good, letting Rick move on from the loss of his wife for good.
- It appears as though the Governor is turning over a new leaf. He opens up to a little girl named Meghan who doesn't speak much due to her father abandoning her family and is able to get her smiling when he tells her he's a pirate and also shares how he lost his eye for which she comforts him. He starts teaching her how to play chess and she labels an eye patch on the king piece.
- After becoming distant because Meghan became upset witnessing the Governor kill her zombified grandfather, he earns her trust once again running into his arms to carry her away from danger. Then brutally kills three walkers to protect her and promises to never let anything happen to her.
- "Cross my heart."
Too Far Gone
- Maggie is spending a moment with her recovering husband, who notes that their anniversary is coming up. It's a sweet moment before everything goes to hell.
- Hershel smiling with pride at Rick's impassioned speech on how they and the Governor's group can live in peace. Even if the speech fails and Hershel dies.
- In the end, Rick and Carl make up after their arguments, and Michonne almost bursts into tears after finding them after the prison attack.
- The revelation that Judith is alive thanks to Tyreese saving her.
- Tyreese, Lizzie, and Mika reuniting with Carol.
- Carl reassures Michonne that her son Andre and Judith, who he still believes to be dead, are in a better place together. This is especially important when you remember his reaction to Carol trying to tell him the same thing about Sophia in Season 2.
- Beth and Daryl have a heart-to-heart, with the former telling the latter that what he was shouldn't reflect who is now, and that he's a good man. They burn down a redneck shack together and flip its burning frame off as a way to symbolize him shedding his past.
- Bob reveals why he's had the dissonant smile plastered over his face since the mid-season finale. Before whenever one of his groups fell apart, he was the last person left alive. Now he's no longer alone, as he's got Sasha and Maggie.
- Sasha and Maggie hugging Bob when they find him at the end of the episode is one of the most heartwarming parts of the season.
- Beth serenading Daryl on a funeral home piano while he dozes in a coffin.
- Later, Beth asks Daryl what changed his mind about there being good people left after the apocalypse. He just stares right at her face until she realizes.
- Mika refusing to kill and saying that she feels sorry for those people that were trying to kill them at the prison because they probably weren't like that before.
- Tyreese telling Carol that he forgives her when she tearfully admits to killing Karen and David. Particularly noteworthy as Karen's death has haunted him for several episodes up until that point, including his particularly violent anger towards whoever was responsible.
- Glenn and Maggie's reunion. He later sighs and softly tells her she's beautiful, causing her to grin and blush.
- Before that, the sheer joy and relief on Glenn's face when he finds one of Maggie's notes. Leave it to The Walking Dead to make a message scrawled in blood on the wall into something happy and heartwarming.
- Rick calls Daryl his brother. Knowing where they started off when they first met, this makes it especially heartwarming.
- Michonne holding Carl close and stroking his hair while he sleeps in her lap. This scene really shows how far she's come since arriving at the prison, effectively stepping into the role of surrogate mother to Carl and Judith.
- The massive reunion at the end of the episode: Daryl and Rick with Carol, Tyreese with Sasha, and Rick and Carl with Judith.
- When Rick suggests to go back to massacre the residents of Terminus, Glenn tells him not to, affirming his belief in doing the right thing.
- In a similar vein, Glenn convincing Rick to free the other victims trapped in the boxcars. Not that it does anyone much good.
- Rick asking Carol to rejoin them, telling her he owes her everything.
- Rick accepting Tara as one of his own with a smile, acknowledging she didn't want to be at the prison battle. They share a fist bump, with a genuine smile from Rick.
- Carl ignoring his dad and immediately going to help Father Gabriel, a man he's never even met, and even offering him food.
- Rick and Tyreese playing with Judith, especially when Rick lets Judith feed him.
Four Walls and a Roof
- Abraham's message to Rick on the map to Washington: "Sorry I was an asshole. Come to Washington. The new world's gonna need Rick Grimes."
- Before this, Bob Stookey saying goodbye to everyone, maintaining hope and optimism throughout.
- Beth smiling, and being genuinely happy that Noah was able to get away when they tried to escape the hospital, even though she was captured and he had to leave her behind.
- Before that, Noah putting a sucker in the shirt he laid out for Beth. It was the first bit of kindness she was shown since she'd woken up.
- Noah offering to stay at Grady with Dawn, and Rick and Beth refusing to allow that to happen. Beth is close to Noah, but Rick shows a remarkable amount of protectiveness for a man he's known for only a couple of days.
What Happened and What's Going On
- Michonne's expression when Rick says they should go to Washington was a truly heart-warming moment,the way her eyes glimmer with hope is just amazing.
- The dying Tyreese hallucinates Lizzie and Mika appearing to him to help shepherd him to the afterlife. Their presence along with Beth and Bob implies that Tyreese never held any ill will towards Lizzie even after what she did and the fact that she poised a serious threat to his own life.
- Tyreese's last scene in the car, as his deceased friends all ask if he's ready to join them, and they smile at him to reassure him.
- Gabriel respectfully presides over Tyreese's funeral. We also see Abraham, Eugene, and Rosita taking part in the funeral, which is sweet since they likely never got to know him that well.
- Everything to do with the music box.
- That Carl would think of Maggie and bring it back for her.
- That Daryl would fix it so that it would play again. They have a moment where they comment on Tyreese's death, noting he was tough. Daryl affirms, "so was she. She didn't know it, but she was." And there's nothing but the warmest, most wry smile we've ever had from Daryl Dixon.
- Maggie takes Sasha outside to watch the sunrise and assures her that they'll make it, after believing they wouldn't at the beginning of the episode.
- When Rule of Symbolism kicks in and it plays at the end of the episode for Maggie and Sasha, representing hope returning.
- Carol's speech to Daryl about his needing to let himself feel something after Beth's death and constantly offering to go to the woods with him so that he doesn't slip back into his loner habits.
- Plus her Anywhere but Their Lips kiss on his forehead.
- Doubles as a Tearjerker, but Carol giving Beth's knife to Daryl. The fact that she gave it to Daryl, not to Maggie, signifies that Carol and the group know how precious Beth was to him.
- Glenn being the best darn husband he can be and getting Maggie to open up about Beth and Hershel. Maggie smiles and finally takes a drink of water. A quiet, but sweet moment between the two lovers.
- Eugene stepping up to test the possibly poisoned water on the road, followed by Abraham slapping the bottle out of his hand, is equal parts Tear Jerker and heartwarming. Eugene feels such guilt for lying that he'd risk his life to be helpful in any way. Abraham, despite taking Eugene's lies the hardest, still won't let him risk it.
- The climax of the episode where the entire group stands together against the barn doors to keep out a horde of walkers. If that doesn't spell out True Companions...
- After a frosty few episodes, Rosita saves Abraham from a walker and he asks her, almost fearfully, if she thought he was going to hurt her back in Self-Help, and she very confidently says no. It's a far cry from Abraham's own wife, who abandoned him out of fear.
- The reunion of the two mysterious newcomers, Aaron and Eric, who it turns out are in a relationship.
- Michonne's constant attempts to be the optimistic voice in the group, showing truly how far she's come since season 3.
- Rosita pointing out to Abraham that they finally reached their goal of DC. Abraham smiles, despite the RV being down to half a tank or so, and warmly declares that they'll make it in time.
- Glenn restarting the group's new RV when its battery dies. When Abraham asks him how he knew how to do it, Glenn just gives a small nostalgic smile.
- Rick's eyes finally relaxing, him smiling and then Michonne holding his hand when they hear children playing inside Alexandra. Unlike Woodbury or Terminus, this is clearly a wholesome place.
- Deanna remarking with delight on the group all staying together in the same house, noting how Rick called them family earlier.Deanna: Absolutely amazing to me how people with completely different backgrounds and nothing in common can become that.
- In a strange sort of way, Daryl's violent reaction to Aiden trying to hit Glenn is one. The episode's focus on the group as a family really shines through in that moment. It takes all of Rick's strength to restrain Daryl from annihilating Aiden for attacking Glenn.
- Deanna doesn't believe her son's story, knowing he can be a real asshole and needs to get some decency beat into him. She thanks Glenn for hitting her son. Deanna certainly gets points for proving she does not engage in favoritism.
- When Noah goes to leave the party, Glenn and Maggie stop him and tell him they're all in this together, and that he's "here with family".
- Aaron convincing Daryl that he can fit in in Alexandria, and then inviting him over for spaghetti dinner when Daryl clearly doesn't feel comfortable going to the party. Aaron later gifts Daryl with a new bike and a job as a recruiter so that he can still be on his own while still being a part of the town. Daryl is genuinely touched and thanks Aaron for understanding him.
- It's also heartwarming to see Daryl become good friends with Aaron and Eric, a gay couple, considering how racist and undoubtedly homophobic he was at the start of the series.
- The episode is peppered with these. Sometimes between members of Rick's group, sometimes between members of the group and members of Alexandria. And it's all slightly subverted by the fact that Rick, Daryl, and Carol are busy plotting a take-over of the quiet little suburb.
- Even the takeover plot, while having obvious Oh, Crap! overtones, is done less because Rick's group want to hurt the Alexandrians, and more because they want everyone in the town to be safe. Themselves included, of course. A far cry from, say, the people who hit Terminus and turned it into cannibal-town.
- Rick proves he has fully moved on from the death of Lori to be interested in a relationship with Jessie.
- Confirming that Morgan has overcome losing his wife and son and becoming a Zen Survivor keen on preserving human life.
- Eugene has been by Tara's side pretty much 24/7 while waiting for her to recover.
- Eugene and Abraham apologising to each other, with Eugene sincerely calling his friend a hero. Rosita also helps provide the final push to get the two men to reconcile.
- Maggie and Glenn have a moment before they part ways in the episode, where Maggie asks her husband if something is wrong, and Glenn only replies by telling her he loves her.
- Despite Deanna being on the verge of exiling Rick, Reg is more than willing to hear Maggie out and help her.
- Morgan turns down a spot in Alexandria as he wants to find Rick. Luckily he gets the best of both worlds.
- Michonne telling Rick that even if they can't find a way to stay in Alexandria, she's still with him no matter what. She also makes it clear that she punched Rick for his own good, not out of any loyalty to Deanna or the other Alexandrians.
- Rick admits that the reason he didn't tell Michonne about Carol and him taking guns from the armory is because he knew she'd try to talk him out of it, and that he'd listen to her.
- Carl sitting at home with Judith, quietly watching the ballerina music box that he'd earlier given to a grieving Maggie and Sasha in "Them". It's a very peaceful moment between brother and sister, and all the more significant since they're the last sibling-pair left in the group at this point.
- Maggie, Sasha, and Father Gabriel praying together at the end of the episodes, conquering the inner demons that have been plaguing them.
- Instead of going to the meeting about Rick, Rosita chooses to stay and watch over Tara, who wakes up and smiles at her while Rosita happily smiles back.
- Maggie and Tara spend a scene absolutely gushing over what a good man Glenn is, having forgiven Nicholas for trying to kill him and actually getting Noah killed. They reflect on how he tries to bring out the good in everyone and how it encourages them to do the same.
- In the same scene, Maggie telling Tara that she is one of the most important people in her life.
- Eugene and Tara's reunion after Tara wakes up.
- Rick offering Morgan a place in the house he's sharing with Michonne, to which Morgan is so touched that he assures Rick he is still the same good man who he met at King County, the man who tells those utterly lost that it isn't over yet and Rick allows him to hold Judith.
- The man who wrote a goodbye note to his newlywed wife despite the fact that she never got it.
- When Daryl realizes the people in Alexandria are in trouble, he actually abandons his role in the mission to return. Then, when he realizes that he can't abandon Sasha and Abraham, he goes back, despite clearly wanting to to help back at home. Both instincts qualify as heartwarming.
- There's also the fact that what made Daryl stop on the way back to Alexandria was hearing the gunfire over the walkie talkie from Rick's end. He was worried about his brother.
- Glenn's message to Rick over the walkie talkie. Rick is unable to respond due to an encounter with a few walkers and all Glenn does is update him on the situation his group is in, but he ends the message with "Good luck, dumbass". It's a derogatory term, but the heartwarming comes in when you remember that this is the same thing he called Rick back in Season 1 when they first met (over a walkie-talkie) and Rick had accidentally screwed up the supply run of the team Glenn was leading at the time.
- In his final moments, Nicholas sincerely thanks Glenn for giving him a second chance.
Here's Not Here
- The scene in which Eastman and Morgan peacefully train together.
- Hell, the whole damn episode. Eastman went out of his way to save Morgan's life. Not just by not killing him, but by healing him.
- Its a minor note, but Daryls concern for Sasha and Abraham in particular, who he hasnt ever had much interaction with.
- When Daryl realizes he also accidentally stole Tinas insulin, he doubles back with little hesitation.
- Abraham walking out in his dress blue uniform, clearly feeling like a soldier who does more than kill again, and then him staring into the clear rearview mirror on the ride home, leaving his past behind him.
- The writers attempting to save Nicholas from the scrappy heap by showing that his suicide actually saved Glenn's life by accident. The episode shows that Glenn doesn't bear a grudge against him for his mistake either.
- When Morgan finds Denise, she has written a big "cheat sheet" on a chalkboard with dozens of problems and their symptoms. When Morgan is asking her about the Wolf's injury, she is trying not to look at her sheet to remember the signs of infection. As she hesitates at the end, Morgan covers the last symptom, encourages her, and she gets it right without looking.
- Rick saving Spencer from walkers after he attempted a stupid, poorly thought out plan to save Alexandria. Deanna points out that Rick could've left her son for dead in order to attempt a smarter plan with his death as a distraction, but he didn't. It's a clear sign that his humanity is shining through him again.
- Also on Spencer's part, despite his efforts, his attempt to save Alexandria shows that he really does care about the town's safety. This was after the fact that he Took a Level in Jerkass, too.
- When Rick continues to refer to the Alexandrians as outsiders, Michonne gently scolds him and says that all of them are a family now and they need to work together in order to survive. After ignoring everyone else's suggestions so far, Rick barely hesitates in accepting Michonne's advice and promises to include the Alexandrians in his decision-making from now on. This shows that despite how ruthless Rick has become in recent episodes, he still values and implicitly trusts Michonne to keep him from becoming a He Who Fights Monsters dictator like The Governor, something that has been an intense fear of his since Season 4.
- When Rick starts fortifying Alexandria's walls to make up for his mistakes, the first person to forgive him and help him rebuild is Tobin. Tobin reveals that he initially feared Rick when he first arrived in town, but admits that he trusts him now, knowing that behind Rick's hardass demeanor lies a good man. Rick finally accepts that the people of Alexandria are a part of his family now and begins his new connection to them by forming a friendship with Tobin.
- Rick may be furious at Tara for the wrong reason, but it's touching to see him so angry at Tara for risking her life. You'd think she was his own daughter.
- Maggie seeing the green balloons, knowing they were sent from Glenn. The whole town sees it, and they seem to take it as a form of hope... and then the church tower falls and crushes one of Alexandria's walls.
No Way Out
- The team work that went into saving Alexandria from the walkers.
- Seeing one group of scared Alexandrians after another mustering the nerve to come outside and fight the herd, inspired by Rick's example. Many of them have only been seen in the background of group shots, and have no names or histories, yet they still get their moment of glory, finding the courage to stand and fight for their town.
- Rick's final speech to Carl, in which he tells his son that he finally realized what their group and the Alexandrians are capable of if they work together towards a goal. It showed that even after so much pain and heartache, there's still hope for the future. Also counts as a Tear Jerker.
- Becomes heartwarming at the end, when Carl's fingers close around Rick's hand like he agrees with Rick's hopes for a better world, showing that he is alive from his coma after losing his eye, which even provides the page image.
- Michonne kissing Carl's forehead before going outside to help Rick.
- Maggie finally gets to see Glenn alive again. Despite her horror as Glenn is being surrounded by the herd, you can definitely hear the desperate elation and joy in Maggie's voice when she screams Glenn's name for the first time. There's also Glenn taking on the herd by himself to give Maggie a window to escape.
- Shortly after, Glenn is saved by Abraham and Sasha gunning down the walkers surrounding him. Abraham just calls for Glenn to open the gate for them with a smile and calling him "pal". A small moment that also counts as a funny moment, but its nice to see the friendship between Glenn and Abraham is still strong, despite the struggles they had with each other in the previous two seasons.
- Father Gabriel offering to keep Judith safe and Rick actually trusting him to do so. Specially when you remember how coldly Rick refused his offer to help them in the season premiere.
- In a weird way, the Alpha Wolf saving Denise.
- Especially as he saves her twice. The second time, he is shot by Carol, and a group of walkers close in oh him and Denise. Instead of trying to run away, he holds them off and tells her to run, essentially sacrificing himself so she can escape. It's also heartwarming to see Denise vowing to save him after he's bitten.
The Next World
- The opening, with the picture of Carl and Judith, to Michonne walking out in a bathrobe and casually bantering with Rick. This entire episode really cemented them as a family. Carl rocking Judith at the end was adorable, as was Michonne and Rick watching her on the monitor.
- After getting a good talking to for sneaking out of the house, Carl tells Michonne that she's become his second mother and that he loves her, to the point where he'd never allow her to remain or reanimate as a walker. It stops her dead in her tracks and they embrace tearfully.
- Also, listen closely when Michonne comes to talk to Carl. It sounds like baby Judith is trying to say "Michonne". Apparently Carl isn't the only one who see's her as family.
- Carl refuses to leave a walker in the woods because he knows that Michonne is out there, too. And then, after realizing that the walker is actually an undead Deanna, he leads the walker back to Spencer so he can finally Mercy Kill his mother.
- Rick and Daryl's friendship was nice to see, especially after them being apart the entire first half of the season. Little things, like them sharing a soda or Daryl handing Rick half a candy bar, just show that these two are family as well.
- Rick and Michonne unwinding at the end of the day. They playfully banter about their long day, and Rick gives her the mints she'd been asking for. They hold hands. They look into each other's eyes. Then they kiss. And kiss more, and start giggling as they begin making out and eventually have sex. Richonne is canon!
- It's even more heartwarming when you look back and notice all the Ship Tease since at least Season 4 if not 3. When Abe and Deanna asked Michonne what she wanted, she refused to answer. Now it's clear what, or rather, who, she wanted.
- Denise makes Daryl some sort of cake creation for the trip. At first he refuses to take it but she continues to insist, saying that it's better than roadkill. When he asks if this is because he tried to get her pop, she says it is, but there's more to it. (And Daryl takes the cake.)Denise: You remind me of someone I used to know.
- Who we later find out is her brother.
- Carl being completely onboard with Rick and Michonne's new relationship.
- Michonne and Rick holding hands in the RV on the way to the Hilltop Colony.
- Abraham opening up to both Glenn and Daryl; with Abe asking Glenn about conceiving a child, and asking Daryl if hes ever considered settling down. This is the episode where Abraham really decides he wants a happy future away from fighting.
- The quiet moment on the way back to Alexandria from the Hilltop with the core group passing around the picture from Maggie's ultrasound.
The Same Boat
- The way Daryl immediately comforts Carol after she escapes the Saviors. She's traumatized and he sees that and when she honestly and vulnerably tells him she's not good, he just holds her.
- Glenn also does the same, as Maggie tearfully tells him she cant do this anymore (and shes no doubt terrified at having nearly lost their baby several times).
- Carol and Maggie look out for each other all through their captivity. When they're finally reunited, they don't hesitate to hug and make sure their friend hasn't been hurt by the Saviors. And more than anything, Carol goes into full Mama Bear mode to protect Maggie and her unborn child, killing every single one of the Saviors after they fall for her Obfuscating Stupidity act.
Twice as Far
- Abe praises Eugene for his plan to manufacture bullets, calling it good "thinking outside [his] cabeza."
- The things that Denise says to Daryl and Rosita just before she is killed are very sweet. She tells Daryl that she wanted him to come with her because he makes her feel safe, and that's he's brave and good. She tells Rosita that she wanted her to come because Denise didn't want Rosita to be alone right now, but also to show Rosita that she was strong enough not to need someone else.
- At the end of the episode, Abraham apologizes to Sasha for feeling Entitled to Have You towards her and assures her that it's her choice. But he makes it clear that hes not too worried about their constant state of danger; they could have three days or thirty years together, and it still wouldn't be enough for him. Sasha is so moved that she asks him to come inside.
- Glenn and Maggie enjoy a shower together, and are giggling and playing with each other the entire time. Maggie personally washes Glenn's hair and Glenn slowly embraces her when he notices several bruises on her back. It's a very tender, steamy and happy moment showing just how in love these two soon-to-be parents are.
- Tobin may not have been the man fans shipped with Carol, but she does look genuinely happy with him.
- We get a scene of Rick and Michonne in bed sharing an apple, thankful that the Hilltop came through for them. When Michonne tries to leave to get the day started, Rick tries to get her to stay with a flurry of kisses that causes her to giggle.
- Abraham notices Rick waiting at the gate for Michonne to return and the two bond over the fact that they're a bit afraid to let someone in close again. For two men who were butting heads when they met, it's heartwarming to see how much Abraham loves and respects Rick and vice versa these days. They may not have a bromance on the level of Rick and Daryl's, but they've got a great one nonetheless (especially given we haven't seen them interact too much as of late). Abe then assures Rick that Michonne will be back soon.Abraham: Any second now.
Last Day On Earth
- Rick leaves Gabriel in charge of Alexandria while he's away.
- Morgan refuses to let Carol die, no matter how much she begs him to leave her alone.
- Abraham, Sasha, Aaron, and Eugene vow to join the mission to Hilltop to help Maggie even when they're needed to help defend Alexandria from the coming battle. Aaron declares he owes her, Abe and Sasha offer their muscle, and Eugene declares he wants to contribute.
- The sheer dedication the group has to defending Maggie has them driving through every single neck of the woods to try to get past the Saviors' blockade. During this, Rick frequently goes to Maggie to comfort her, stroking her hair and assuring her they'll make it to Hilltop. He treats her like she's his own daughter, showing one of the warmest sides of him in quite a while.
- When the group is finally cornered and forced to their knees, and forced to get Maggie down from the stretcher, Rick, Abraham, and Aaron help her out as gently as possible. When Simon demands they get on their knees, while Rick, Sasha, and Carl hesitate, Abraham never got up off the ground and is still supporting the ailing Maggie. Later, when Glenn is beaten into submission by Dwight for leaving the lineup, Abraham immediately grabs Maggie to support her.
- Eugene prepares to sacrifice himself for the group by driving the RV while the rest of them carry Maggie to Hilltop on foot, and everyone says goodbye and thanks him, but none of it is more heartwarming than his goodbye with Abraham, which ends with Abraham acknowledging that Eugene is strong and the two embracing like brothers. Michael Cudlitz and Josh McDermitt would affirm at Comic-Con that after years of fans asking what their favorite moment to film was, this was it.
- During the quest to Hilltop, Abe remarks once again about Maggie having a child, and more or less says to Sasha that she's the woman he'd want to start a family with someday, if ever she's ready and willing. The big guy's come a long way from the one-track hothead he was when we met him.
- Simon, Negan's Dragon, shows a shred of decency when he calls off the Saviors and allows the gang to get the ailing Maggie down from the stretcher themselves.
- Abraham nobly stands up to Negan and silently demands that he be the one who is killed to spare the others. Even Negan looks pretty impressed at Big Red's bravery. For most of his tenure on the show, Abe's demonstrated his willingness to die just to get an adrenaline rush, but here, he's putting himself out there specifically to save the others from this horrible fate.
- Though it's also a massive tearjerker, the moment it looks like Negan is considering killing Maggie, Glenn rushes forward and desperately sobs for her to be spared. It takes Dwight pointing Daryl's crossbow at his forehead and quite a bit of effort to put him back down.
- In a fucked up way, Negan gushing over his bat, Lucille. And though he has killed several people and walkers with her, when he shows her to the others, she's clean of any trace of blood and looks almost brand new. This implies that Negan takes good care of her.
- In another fucked up way, Negan seems genuinely unhappy that Rick's group have been killing members of the Saviors. Say what you will about Negan, he is 100 different flavors of shit, but he does seem to actually care about his followers.
- Even when he's dying, in his final moments, Glenn still thinks about others and doesn't even worry about himself.
- Same applies to Abraham, who immediately offered himself up as a Heroic Sacrifice to protect the group. He even tried to egg on Negan so he'd bypass the others, literally taking his death "like a champ" and remaining a dedicated soldier and protector to the very end.
- Before getting beaten to death, Abe quietly gave Sasha the two-fingered salute they'd shared in earlier episodes. And then in typical Abe one-liner fashion, he told Negan to "suck [his] nuts".
- Daryl getting up and clocking Negan after he starts to almost literally rub Abe's blood in Rosita's face. Too bad it gets Glenn killed. The sheer despair and horror on his face as he watches Glenn die for his actions is also sweet in a heartbreaking way, as he's come so far from the guy who would make racist jokes about the kid to now being as devastated by his death as he was about Hershel and maybe even Beth.
- After his actions got Glenn killed, one could forgive Maggie for feeling any number of negative feelings towards Daryl. But when the Saviors haul him away and throw him in the back of their van, who does the camera cut to? Maggie. And she's somehow even more distressed that she already is at the sight. Sure, he made a mistake and it cost her her husband, but Daryl is her friend nonetheless, and his capture and confinement hurt.
- At the end of the episode, Maggie finally breaks down, and accepts a hug from Carl and the aid of the others.
- After his mother's death back in Season 3, Maggie was the first person to comfort and hug Carl. This time, after her husband's murder, it's Carl who comforts and hugs Maggie.
- Morgan continues to go way out of his way to help care for the healing Carol, whether it's pushing her around in a wheelchair or just providing support.
- Ezekiel's loving relationship with his pet tiger Shiva is sweet, as he's clearly a devoted pet owner. Their backstory is sweet too, as back in the day, Ezekiel saved her life when she fell into a moat around her enclosure at a zoo. When the undead began to rise, Ezekiel went and rescued her from the overrun zoo and Shiva has been loyal to him ever since.
- The montage of the peaceful life the Kingdom leads, especially the scene depicting the choir being directed by a heavily pregnant woman. The choir's performance is absolutely beautiful as well.
- Ezekiel asks Morgan to teach aikido to Benjamin, as he's not good with a knife or a gun. Morgan eventually agrees, and Ezekiel remarks that Eastman would be proud of him today.
- Ezekiel sees through Carol's usual charade, and opens up to her about how he found Shiva and created his king persona in order to give his people something to admire and believe in. He ultimately convinces Carol to live on the fringes of his territory.
- In another dark episode, there's a shred of humanity and light in the form of Sherry, who remembers Daryl from their encounter last season, is obviously concerned to see him in the Sanctuary (and in the condition he is in), tries to warn him from running away to spare him any more pain, and talks to him while he's locked in his cell. Daryl himself, though unwilling to heed her advice, clearly softens, grateful for her kindness.
- When Rick is frantically searching for the missing guns, Gabriel tells him that he has faith in him and that everything is going to be okay. Gabriel offers evidence in the form of the fact that they were once far from friends. Rick is moved, and thanks Gabriel for his part in faking Maggie's death, and gives him a warm pat on the shoulder.
- Rick opens up to Michonne about Shane and Lori, and the questionable circumstances of Judith's conception. He concludes by saying that he knows that she is Shane's daughter, not his, but he loves her anyway and wants to stay alive so he can raise her and teach her to survive.
- Additionally, the way Rick talks about Shane shows that even after all that's happened, Rick still remembers Shane, as his friend.
- Maggie declares herself Maggie Rhee, taking Glenn's surname for the first time in the series.
- The fact that hers and Glenn's baby survived, meaning that she has Someone to Remember Him By.
- Before leaving to go on a run with Aaron, Rick leans in to give Michonne a kiss in the cheek, she stops him, however, to give him a real goodbye kiss in the lips. It's specially heartwarming considering the tension between them in the previous episode.
- Cyndie trying her absolute hardest to save Tara's life throughout the episode even though she'd just met her. And at the end of the episode Tara proves her swear to her by not revealing the community.
- Tara grabbing a doctor bobblehead for Denise, sadly not knowing that her girlfriend is dead.
Sing Me a Song
- Father Gabriel, despite Rick's constant bullying during Season 6A, fully supports Rick and says he inspired him to be a better man and tells Spencer off for being a "tremendous shit."
- Despite all outward appearances of being broken, Daryl snaps back to himself when he sees Carl with Negan, and even goes so far as to initiate a threat to Negan should Carl be harmed that lands him back in solitary.
- Despite being the most dangerous Big Bad of the series to this point and his dictator-like tendencies, Negan really does show sympathy to Carl and apologizes sincerely to him when he starts crying over Negan making him take off his bandages and saying how gross and cool his missing eye looks. Negan realizes he went too far and it's easy to forget Carl is still just a kid and apologizes to him.
Heart Still Beating
- Maggie's appetite is really gaining steam, and she's seen eating for the majority of her screentime in the episode. Thankfully, Hilltop seems to have rather plentiful food, especially fruits and veggies, so Maggie will be able to gain the proper amount of weight during her pregnancy and not suffer from malnutrition as Lori did, which undoubtedly played a part in what happened to her.
- Gabriel's talk with Rosita, urging her not to commit suicide by going off to kill Negan on her own, telling her that she is not expendable while stating with confidence that the time will come when they will fight the Saviors, and that they will win together.
- The speech Michonne gave Rick about the importance of fighting and fighting together.Michonne: I wanted to go with you and Aaron, but I couldn't. I had to go my way, but when I found it, I realized that I didnt want it to be my way. I wanted it to be ours. Me and you. Were still here, the two of us, were still standing.
- Followed by him agreeing to fight and passionately kissing her.
- The group's reunion at Hilltop was full of these. Highlights include:
- Daryl and Rick's big damn hug.
- Followed by Daryl hugging Tara and getting a kiss on the cheek from Michonne.
- Maggie's joy at seeing the group approaching Hilltop, and her hug with Rick, plus his affirmation that she was right in the premiere and they should — and will — fight.
- Enid and Carl's stolen glance.
- Sasha and Rosita, two women mourning the same man, acknowledging the other with a simple nod.
- Daryl and Rick's big damn hug.
Rock in the Road
- The Hilltop residents being rallied by Enid, and declaring they wish to train to fight after Gregory insisted they're just farmers.
- The group reunites with Morgan, and the members who were previously not seen to be that close to him like Tara and Sasha are still overjoyed to see him again.
- Ezekiel tucking Benjamin's younger brother into bed, while reciting "I have a dream" by Martin Luther King Jr..
- Benjamin nearly convinced Ezekiel to join the rebellion, and Ezekiel hugging him and telling him that his father would be proud - and that he is proud.
- Despite being unwilling to join the rebellion, Ezekiel allows Daryl to live in the Kingdom for as long as needed, since he's a fugitive and Saviors never enter the Kingdom grounds.
- Rick and Michonne holding each other, and Michonne reassuring Rick that they're alive and he can smile after they escaped the herd.
- Eric telling Aaron that he doesn't want Aaron to be hurt or killed after he was beaten by the Saviors. Aaron asks Eric if he wants to just run away together, with a genuine smile on his face that says that if it really came down to it, he would do so. But Aaron shows how much he has stepped up, and goes to join the mission to rescue Gabriel.
- When the group questions if Gabriel has betrayed them and ran away, Rosita and Michonne begin to get angry, but Rick refuses to believe it, saying that this isn't what Gabriel would do. It goes to show how far he and Gabriel have come in their friendship since the beginning.
New Best Friends
- Carol and Daryl's reunion. Carol has been turning everyone away from her house, but when she sees Daryl on her porch, she breaks down and hugs him.
- After seeing her so emotionally compromised, Daryl chooses not to tell Carol about the deaths of Glenn and Abraham, after previously indicating that he would.
- Gabriel telling the scavengers what Rick is capable of doing. It's sweet seeing how much he's changed from that cowardly priest, to someone who believes in Rick wholeheartedly.
- Rick giving Michonne a cat statue to replace the one she lost in Season 4 during the prison attack.
- Daryl spends a moment watching Shiva in her cage. While he's talking with Morgan later, Shiva brushes against Daryl's fingers through her cage. Clearly Shiva can tell who her friends are.
- Throughout the entire episode, it becomes incredibly clear how much Rick and Michonne love each other. Considering how many dark things have happened to them, it's refreshing to see them smiling and laughing together in bliss.
- It's also heartwarming to see how much their relationship has grown. They started off as enemies with a common interest, and became two people who'd do anything for one another.
Bury Me Here
- At the end of the episode, Carol arrives at Kingdom to tell Ezekiel that she is finally ready to fight. He understands, but tells her it's not the time to start avenging those killed by the Saviors today, because they have the late Benjamin's little brother Henry —an orphaned boy — to think about. The episode ends on Carol and Ezekiel tending the garden with Henry.
The Other Side
- Daryl is still upset over Glenn's death and finally apologizes to Maggie for what happened. Maggie tells him it wasn't his fault and that Daryl is one of the few good things left in the world, and she knows that Glenn would think the same thing.
- Sasha and Rosita are able to put their differences aside and have a civil conversation with each other and talk about how they cared about Abraham.
- Rosita says that despite how Abraham cruelly dumped her for Sasha, she forgave him for it and is upset she never got a chance to tell him she was happy for him before his death.
- Sasha also says that Abraham would have wanted to die fighting, not like how Negan crushed his head, and says he was taken before his time. Later when they break into The Sanctuary, Sasha locks out Rosita and tells her to go, saying it isn't her time yet either.
Something They Need
- In a rare moment of peace, Natania expresses pride at the large fish Rachel was able to catch on her own. Rachel swears, and Natania gently chides her for it like any loving grandmother would.
- The Oceansiders agree to help fight the Saviors when presented with a large, capable group who are leading the fight. Cyndie comes to Tara's defense, knowing that this is the way out.
- It's also a Tearjerker, but Eugene gives Sasha the cyanide pills he made, agreeing with Sasha's declaration that Negan will use her to hurt their friends and wanting to give her a quick, painless death.
The First Day Of The Rest Of Your Life
- Sasha tells Eugene that he's better than this, and won't give up on him even if he already has. They're also her last words to him or any member of the group.
- Flashbacks reveal that while the relationship was brief, Abraham and Sasha really did mean the world to each other. Abraham shows his gentler side as he comforts Sasha, who is afraid of losing him after a nightmare about him drowning. The flashbacks also reveal why she's so dedicated to protecting Maggie in Season 7 - it's to make up for a selfish comment she made about Maggie needing to worry about herself that Abraham even chided her for. She spent the rest of her life making up for what she said, even though Abe knows she didn't mean it.
- Sasha dies a rather peaceful, comfortable death listening to a rare treat in the form of an MP3 player from Eugene. She spends her last moments remembering her brief time with Abraham and her moment watching the sunrise with Maggie back in Season 5's "Them".
- Jesus is happy that Maggie has become the leader of Hilltop.
- Enid takes Judith, who's been left at Hilltop in preparation for the coming battle, and plays with her a little. Listening to Judith's babble makes it clear she's getting close to her first words.
- Ezekiel finds the lone Morgan, and talks him through his current issues, and convinces him to rejoin his group and accompany them to Alexandria to join the rebellion.
- Eugene is able to convince Negan to give him a chance to talk Alexandria into surrendering. It doesn't work, but it shows Eugene likely will never show Alexandria any malice despite having joined the Saviors.
- Negan has a Pet the Dog moment with Sasha as he's genuinely sincere and gentle as he thanks her for cooperating with him and his mission, and even tries to ask her not to be transported in the coffin.
- The culmination of the season - after so long of humiliation, submission, torture, and death, the heroes of the various communities finally take a stand and rise up against Negan. They come together in one great push to defend each other, Ezekiel even roaring that he will not let Alexandria fall today.
- During the battle, Morgan covers Rick by killing a Savior with his staff, and earns a grateful nod from his old friend who he's so often come into conflict with over the years.
- Rick finding Michonne barely conscious but alive, after believing she fell from a railing during a struggle with a Scavenger. Michonne tries to recite her Survival Mantra to Rick ("We're the ones who live"), but cannot due to her beat-up state. Rick's response?"I know. I know. We are. We will."
- After the battle ends, the various warriors are seen recuperating and planning their next move. We get little moments like Aaron giving Jerry some fruit to eat, Morgan and Carol sharing a moment of peace, and Rick and Maggie expressing gratitude for Sasha's sacrifice.
- One of the last scenes has Ezekiel, Rick, and Maggie addressing their assembled constituents - the rebellion has officially been formed at last.
- Maggie's speech that ends the episode, season, and pays tribute to our beloved Glenn, proves why he was so important to the group, and why he will always be important to the group for as long as they live. The season ends on a shot of the iconic pocket watch, now a symbol of all the good in our heroes forevermore. In a way, it shows that even after his death Glenn is still helping his friends, and he's still saving Rick the dumbass.Maggie: The decision [for Maggie to lead Hilltop to aid Rick] was made a long time ago. Before any of us knew each other. When we were all strangers who would just pass each other on the street before the world ended. And now we mean everything to each other. You were in trouble, you were trapped. Glenn didn't know you, but he helped you. He put himself in danger for you. And that started it all. From Atlanta, to my daddy's farm, to the prison, to here, to this moment now. Not as strangers, as family. Because Glenn chose to be there for you that day a long time ago - that was the decision that changed everything. It started with both of you and it just grew, all of us. To sacrifice for each other, to suffer, to stand, to grieve, to give, to love, to live, to fight for each other. Glenn made the decision, Rick. I was just following his lead.
- The big three give a Rousing Speech to their followers. Particularly noteworthy is when Ezekiel quotes Shakespeare - he today who sheds his blood with me shall be my brother, she today my sister, as he puts his hands on both Rick and Maggies shoulders.
- It's heartwarming that Aaron fought like hell to protect Eric during the standoff with the Saviors and even though Eric gets shot in the abdomen, Aaron drops everything and drags Eric away from the fight to get help.
- Rick trying to reason with Morales while he's holding him at gunpoint. Unfortunately Daryl wasted no time in killing him.
- Rick cries out "No!" when Daryl kills him showing that he still cared about Morales all along.
- Eric encouraging Aaron to go back and fight the Saviors after getting shot in the abdomen.
- Scott comforting Aaron after he finds out that Eric died.
- Rick bringing out the baby Gracie from the other episode showed that he didn't forget about her.
- Aaron volunteers to escort her back to Hilltop and as he's cradling Gracie he gently says her name.
- The second the Saviors' heavy machine-guns open up, three or four members of The Kingdom hurl themselves on top of Ezekiel. They are that dedicated to him, he is that beloved by his people, that they give their lives gladly in an instant to keep him safe.
- Alvaro and later Jerry and Carol helping a wounded Ezekiel escape to safety. Jerry, Carol and Ezekiel make it but sadly Alvaro doesn't.Ezekiel: Just leave me!Carol: No. You don't get to do that.
- Despite Ezekiel demanding that Jerry stop calling him His Majesty, Jerry refuses, and says that no matter what, Ezekiel will always be his hero.
- Shiva sacrificing herself to walkers to save Ezekiel, Carol and Jerry. She tracked her master down from who knows where, and gave her life trying to fight them off to save him. Sure, real tigers do not form emotional bonds with their owners like dogs, but who really gives a shit with this show of bravery and love between a pet and her owner?
- Carl helping out Siddiq in the woods. He later decides to bring him to Alexandria. We later learn that in the end, this is what got Carl killed, as he was bitten by a walker during a confrontation trying to get Siddiq back home.
- Michonne saying goodbye to Judith before she leaves; a sweet moment between mother and daughter.
- Eugene helping Gabriel and Dr. Carson escape from the Sanctuary. It's the first sign that perhaps he's not completely beyond redemption as he claims.
- Carl steps up as the leader of Alexandria when it comes under attack. Not only is he able to completely evacuate all of his people, he's shown respect and obedience by people generations older than him, like Tobin (who is likely almost old enough to be his grandfather) and his own mother Michonne. Carl has come so far from the little kid who was sheltered by his mother and forced to do homework with crayons in the apocalypse. He has followed in his father's footsteps, and as we learn at the end, is doing this all while dying of a walker bite, which he got going against Rick's orders and helping Siddiq. The act that got him killed is ultimately the act that his mother asked him to do when she was dying: doing the right thing, even if it's difficult.
- Ezekiel returns from his funk when his people come under attack, and is able to cause a distraction to get them all to safety. At the last moment, he asks Carol to save them as she saved him.
- Daryl and Tara forgiving Dwight enough to bring him back to Alexandria after he's outed as a spy by Laura. Furthermore, when Rick later returns to Alexandria and sees Dwight among the refugees, he doesn't argue why he's there.
- Rick and Michonne's entire conversation to a dying Carl.
- Siddiq deciding to carry on Carl's legacy after Carl saved his life meaning that he'll fight and help Carl's family and friends. The fact that Rick and Michonne don't bother to question or attack him throughout the episode makes this even better.
- Daryl volunteers to make sure Judith is safe as they flee to Hilltop and supports Rick as best he can. In his last goodbye to Carl, he praised him for singlehandedly saving everyone in Alexandria.
- The various flashfowards throughout the episode (revealed to be from a dying Carl) show Jerry happily greeting Judith with Siddiq working nearby, Eugene giving her an apple with Rick thanking him, and perhaps the most surprising one, Judith greeting a reformed Negan who is tending to crops and happily greets her.
- This also proves that Carl genuinely wants to make amends with Eugene and Negan someday.
- Gabriel and Dr. Carson getting along with each other while on their journey to Hilltop. Sadly, it doesn't last.
- Maggie comforting Enid after she learns of Carl's death.
- Siddiq sincerely thanking Maggie for her hospitality after he and Alexandrians arrive at Hilltop.
- Michonne referring to Siddiq as a friend when talking to Enid.
- Georgie, despite her ambiguous alliance, telling Maggie that she believes in her before giving her plans to create a much better colony.
- Alden and a few other Saviors deciding to help defend Hilltop after the rest of the Saviors (and Gregory) escape the Savior pen.
- Alden also saves Siddiq's life while he was killing walkers on his way to said Savior pen and offers Alden no ill will.
- Dianne and a random Hilltop denizen both praise Maggie and thank her for being a good, selfless leader.
- The Saviors bar Jared agree to join the group, largely so they can get their wounded to safety. They watch Rick and Morgans back during the ensuing fight with the herd. And it all goes to hell when Rick and Morgan almost gleefully slaughter them anyway.
- Carol finally manages to find Henry and after a tearful hug brings him back to Hilltop where he greets Ezekiel and eventually Morgan.
- There is a greater significance in that moment. Henry is hiding behind tree roots in a creek, which was the same place where Rick left Sophia in when the two were pursued by walkers, unfortunately leading her to become bitten and zombifiednote . Seeing Carol take down the walkers surrounding Henry's hiding place makes one realize that Carol stopped history from repeating itself, and was able to prevent the same thing from happening to him.
- Even better, the actor who plays Henry happens to be the younger brother of the actress who played Sophia, further solidifying the similarities.
- Jerry, Kal and the other Hilltop guards' reactions when seeing Carol bringing back Henry.
- Rick and Michonne saying I love you for the first time- showing that even though theyre both in pain, they still have each other.
- Carol opening up to Ezekiel about losing Sophia and letting him comfort her by holding her hand.
- Rick watching Michonne playing with Judith while reading Carl's letter. She later looks up at him with a smile that he half returns.
- Jerry holding baby Gracie.
- Alden refusing to leave Tara behind to fend off the Saviors by herself.
- Rick ultimately deciding to honor Carl's dying wish by letting Negan live.
- Also, Rick's letter to Carl at the end of the episode.Dear Carl.
I forgot who I was. You made me remember. I remember that feeling, walking with you that day. Like I finally knew who I was for the first time in my life.
Thing is, we were walking side by side, but you were bringing me somewhere. Bringing me here. Bringing all of us to the new world, Carl. You showed me the new world. You made it real. I see it. I remember.
- Also, Rick's letter to Carl at the end of the episode.
- Rick and Michonne holding hands while marching to battle.
- Rick putting a blanket over baby Gracie.
- Rosita forgiving Eugene for betraying the group.
- Tara and Rosita going to the Sanctuary to help rebuild it.
- Henry asking Carol if she's going back to the Kingdom once war is over and promising not to run again. Carol answers with a maybe and a smile on her face.
- By the end of the episode we see her, Jerry, Ezekiel and Henry arriving at the gates of the Kingdom and Carol smiles again.
- Jerry and Ezekiel's fist bump before leaving to the final battle.
- Jadis drawing Gabriel's choir teacher, which leads to them bonding over having similar close friends before the Zombie Apocalypse and their religious faiths.
- During the scenes at Maggie's home, a Freeze-Frame Bonus implies that Jadis also drew the pictures for Beth, Glenn, Hershel, and several of Maggie's other family members.
- Rick talking to several of his dead friends. Each of them encouraging him to move forward and that what happened to them wasn't his fault.
- Rick is even civil with Shane, despite what they went through. Shane expresses pride that Rick hardened up and basically put his mentality to much greater effect, and praises him for killing Joe and Gareth in particular (which makes Shane a posthumous Papa Wolf since Gareth was threatening to eat Judith).
- Rick's conversation with Hershel is especially touching given how close they were. Rick quickly goes in to hug Hershel and sob like a child, and outright says he misses him. Considering all the horrors Rick has gone through, including losing his own child, it's safe to say he has desperately needed this sort of fatherly comfort for years. Rick sincerely apologizes to Hershel for failing to save Beth and Glenn, but Hershel shows nothing but pride for the man he came to see as his son and protector of his family. Hershel thanks Rick for helping make Maggie so much stronger - and declares that his grandson, who he never lived to see, also helped make her stronger too.
- On a meta level, this was also the last scene Scott Wilson ever shot for the series and one of his last appearances as an actor, as he died in October 2018. His last scene is fittingly in heaven, which takes the form of the farm his character loved so much.
- Before Rick fires at dynamite to blow up a bridge and prevent a walker herd from approaching, he whispers three heart-melting words, "I found them". That's right, this man, who started his journey into the zombie apocalypse looking for his wife and son, only to eventually lose them, has realized (In what may be the last minutes of his life) that in this search, he found a new sense of family in the form of his group of survivors. From Atlanta to the group of communities started by Alexandria, that single line brought everything full circle for Rick Grimes.
- It is shown that Rick survived the explosion at the bridge, and Anne gets whoever is in the helicopter to help him, saying he is her friend.
- It's shown that Rick managed to sneak one past the goalpost: it turns out that Michonne became pregnant before his disappearance, and she named their son Rick Jr.
- After the fall of the Sanctuary, its' populace are shown to have been accepted into to the other communities. Laura and DJ, two former Saviors who previously had Undying Loyalty to Negan, are shown to have become trusted members of Alexandria. Laura isn't too surprising since she previously had shown traits of being a Punch-Clock Villain, but DJ is a pleasant surprise since previously his only trait had been his Undying Loyalty to Negan.
- Aaron gets some heartwarming moments: when they found Judith whom they thought to be separated from them, the first thing he did is kneeling down on her level to see if she's okay. When they return to Alexandria, a little girl cheerfully greets and calls him "Daddy!"note When Michonne demanded to know why they bring a group of strangers to Alexandria, he attempted to cover for Judith and take the blame. During the council meeting, he's the most ready to accept Magna's group, even after he learned that Magna was a convict.
- Carol and Ezekiel got married during the Time Skip, and Henry refers to both of them as his mom and dad. Both Jerry and Ezekiel call her "my queen".
- Judith's kindness towards Magna's group. Even the steely Magna nearly cracks a smile when Judith personally walks her into Alexandria.
- Magna shows her softer side when Yumiko rests her head in her lap, and warmly smiles down at her girlfriend.
- Daryl is shown to have found a canine companion, Dog.
- Henry observes that Daryl is Carol's best friend, and someone she still cares about deeply.
- At Hilltop, Daryl warmly reunites with Jesus and Aaron, even giving the latter a good hug.
- If you're a young doctor or attending medical school, the way Luke affectionaly calls Siddiq "doc" is pretty sweet, considering they've only just met.
- Jerry excitedly announces that he and Nabila are expecting a child in the flashback. A few year later in the present time, we see the two with three young children.
- Carol and Kelly seeing Henry and Connie arrive at the gates, respectively. Both are extremely relieved after having been worried for their safety, and Lydia watches Henry embracing Ezekiel and Carol with longing in her eyes, since her mother never really showed her that kind of affection and her father died when the outbreak began.
- Carol seeing Judith for the first time since the timeskip. She's amazed at how much she's grown and asks Judith if she remembers her. Judith tells her that she's drawn pictures of her and calls her Queen Carol and Ezekiel "the King".
- Judith at the fair. We see Eugene in a dunk tank taunting her until she hits a bulls-eye and drops him into the water. We see her playing in the grass with Jerry and his children and she's roaring and pretending to be a lion. When the movie is about to start, she claps her hands together in excitement with a big smile on her face. After seeing her be a Little Miss Badass, it's easy to forget that at the end of the day she's just a young child.
- Carol and Ezekiel see Henry and Lydia together and both seem genuinely happy that the two of them obviously like each other.
- The movie at the fair. Everyone in the audience is delighted and even Lydia eventually starts to smile. It's been more than 6 years since the apocalypse began, but seeing an audience of people laughing and having a good time is probably the most normal thing that's happened since the show began. It leads into a Mood Whiplash when Alpha reveals herself to Lydia, however, but at least the audience seems to be unaware and continues having a good time.
- While it leads to a HUGE tearjerker, watching a horrified Michonne, Daryl, Carol and Yumiko free a tied up and injured Siddiq is nice to see.
- When eulogizing the fallen characters at the fair, Siddiq tells everyone that none of them died without a fight, and that they all protected each other: Addy and Frankie work together to take down a Whisperer, Tammy Rose grabs a shovel and protects Rodney, Tara and Enid jump into the fray, and Ozzy, D.J., and Alek all try to fight to protect Siddiq before any of this happens. It even looks like Henry was going to fight Alpha, had he not been outnumbered and forced to stand down.
- Negan, the same psychotic Jerkass who brutally murdered Abraham and Glenn, goes through a terrible blizzard to look for Judith after she ran off to find Daryl's dog. When he does find her, he carries her on his shoulders to a shack, asks her if she's okay, and takes off his coat and places it on her like a blanket so that she can get warm.
- Goes to show that despite all the terrible things Negan has done, he does have a soft spot for Judith.
- Daryl having become protective of Lydia and telling Alden to lay off her when he speaks to her aggressively.
- The Snowball fight scene, just seeing Daryl and Lydia having fun and playing with the kids with smiles and laughs on their faces is enough to give you comfort, especially Lydia after spending a whole episode being broken and suicidal.