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Recap / The Walking Dead S 08 E 05 The Big Scary U

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Season 8, Episode 5

The Saviors weigh their options during the siege, while Negan and Gabriel have a reckoning.

  • Armor-Piercing Question: When Gregory proposes that he order the Hilltop residents to stand down or be exiled from Hilltop, Negan asks if he still has the power to do that. Gregory assured him that he does, only for Negan to ask if he’s still in charge, how come he didn’t know about the Hilltop militia going to Alexandria. It works, and Gregory is a spluttering mess until Simon calms him down.
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  • Badass Boast: Negan reminding his people who's in charge.
    Negan: I wear a leather jacket, I have Lucille, and my nutsack is made of steel! I am not dying until I am damn good and ready!
  • Bad Boss: This episode reveals that while the workers fear and worship Negan, they have absolutely no respect for his lieutenants. With Negan presumed dead, they disobey orders, almost launch an uprising, and one of them even tries to assassinate Simon before Negan returns and instantly calms them down.
  • Bottle Episode: Unlike the previous four episodes most of the episode takes place inside the Sanctuary, particularly the wagon in which Negan and Gabriel hide and the Sanctuary conference room.
  • The Bus Came Back:
    • Negan, Gabriel, and the Saviors at the Sanctuary all make their first appearances since "Mercy."
    • Saviors Arat, Gary and Laura make their first appearance since Season 7.
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    • The Scavengers return after having been absent since the Season 7 finale.
  • Call-Back:
    • We revisit the Sanctuary in the wake of the attack in the season premiere.
    • Daryl and Rick remark that the Kingdom's forces have been wiped out, as of "Some Guy."
    • After their fight, Rick says to Daryl "choke hold's illegal", which is what Daryl said the first time they fought in "Tell It To The Frogs".
  • Cliffhanger: The episode ends with Gabriel sweating, shivering and in obvious medical distress after being locked in a Savior holding cell, but doesn't make it clear what's wrong with him.
  • Cool Old Guy: The elderly Savior worker who leads the workers during their confrontation with the lieutenants is looking out for the sick, elderly, and young in particular.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Gabriel tells Negan of his cowardly past when he locked his congregation out of his church, as he first told Rick's group back in Season 5's "Four Walls and a Roof."
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    • Gabriel also tells Negan he took part in the raid on the satellite outpost in Season 6's "Not Tomorrow Yet."
    • Negan nonchalantly mentions his murder of Glenn and Abraham back in Season 7's "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be".
    • Negan still finds Gabriel creepy, especially after his first impression of him back in Season 7's "Service."
    • Negan and Gabriel use the Covered in Gunge trick previously used in Season 1's "Guts", Season 5's "No Sanctuary", and Season 6's "Start to Finish" and "No Way Out".
    • Rick sees a helicopter flying overhead towards the end of the episode. He previously saw a helicopter in the pilot episode, and we also saw it in the Season 2 finale, and early Season 3.
    • Eugene recalls how he and Gabriel ate dog together back in Season 5's "Them".
    • Simon instructed Gregory to report any treachery to him back in Season 7's "The Other Side."
    • Negan questions Gregory as to how he didn’t know about Hilltop going to fight the Saviors at Alexandria in “The First Day of the Rest of Your Life”.
  • Cryptic Background Reference: When he feels that Simon is starting to undermine his authority, Negan threatens him and asks if they are "backsliding". Simon is extremely cowed and insists they aren't. We don't learn the significance of this before the episode ends.
  • A Day in the Limelight: For Negan and Gabriel. To a lesser extent, Simon gets some focus as well.
  • Enemy Mine: After confessing their moments of weakness to each other, Negan and Gabriel work together to fight their way through the herd and to safety.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • Simon, Gavin, and Regina all cower when Negan loses his temper in the opening meeting.
    • Negan himself is pretty disgusted by having to use the Covered in Gunge trick.
  • Internal Reveal: Eugene deduces that Dwight is the traitor amongst The Saviors' ranks. (Mainly through luck, he makes a connection between the still wet paint from Dwight's custom chess set that came off on his hand earlier to a mark of that same paint on a weapons bag that was stolen from the armory) He doesn't reveal this to anybody, despite Negan not-so-subtly threatening to murder him if he can't figure it out.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: Daryl advocates using increasingly vicious tactics to win the war against the Saviors.
  • The Mole: Gavin correctly suspects that one of the inner circle of Saviors has been feeding intel to the allied forces. What he doesn't know is that Dwight is the traitor.
  • Mythology Gag: Negan is trapped by a herd inside a small shelter with an enemy, and vents his past with his late wife before teaming up to fight through the walkers. This is adapted from issue #164 of the comic series, albeit in the comic, it was with Rick.
  • Never My Fault: Negan says he might have killed Glenn and Abraham but he didn't "get them killed," that was Rick. Daryl meanwhile says it is the Saviors fault for anyone who dies in the war, no matter which side it is that dies.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Rick and Daryl come to blows over how Yago's cache of weapons and explosives should be used. During the ensuing fisticuffs the cache catches fire and explodes.
  • Only Sane Man: Simon and Regina are Ax-Crazy, Dwight is secretly The Mole, and Eugene is... Eugene, leaving Gavin to come off this way. It's downplayed though in that both Eugene and Dwight also (ironically) end up making some reasonable suggestions.
  • Pet the Dog: Negan rewards Gabriel for working together with him by demanding that his men treat him kindly when he's taken prisoner. True enough, he's given privileges not afforded to Daryl, such as Eugene taking him an ice pack and a blanket.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: Negan does not approve of Simon's plan of wiping out an entire community to send a message, mainly because the people are resources and it goes against what the Saviors are supposed to be.
  • Psycho Supporter: Simon is revealed to be considerably more Ax-Crazy than even Negan, who flies into a rage when Simon suggests massacring everyone at the Hilltop. Regina, who suggests using 40 or so workers as zombie fodder, isn't much better.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Rick and Darryl learn from Yago that all of the Kingdom's fighters were annihilated in the process of defeating him. The dying Savior takes no satisfaction in it, stating in his last moments that "no one won."
  • Slave Liberation: With power and water down, the Sanctuary surrounded by walkers and Negan's fate unknown, the Sanctuary workers come close to revolting against Negan's lieutenants.
  • Villainous Rescue: When the Savior lieutenants nearly have a full-blown worker revolt on their hands, Negan's appearance instantly restores order.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: The reaction of the slave workers to Negan's return implies that they genuinely believe in and respect him despite how they are treated.
  • We Have Reserves: Regina advocates sacrificing some workers to the walkers so the rest can escape.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Rick reacts this way toward Daryl, who wants to use the explosives against the Saviors with no regard for the lives of the civilian population. It escalates into a brawl that results in the destruction of the explosives themselves.
    • Daryl did comment that most of the workers would make it up the stairs and to safety.
  • Worthy Opponent: To an extent. Negan is impressed that Gabriel got the jump on him, and shows that respect... with a quick sock in the nose.
  • You Are in Command Now: Simon is forced to take command of the Saviors with Negan MIA.

Example of: