The Walking Dead crawls back into our living rooms on Sunday (Feb. 6), with an episode that promises to dig deep into the psychological aftermath of the mid-season finale.
Titled "After," the episode focuses entirely on only three major characters: Rick, Carl and Michonne. Following Hershel's beheading, the prison group was forced from the concrete castle, and our beloved characters are now worse off than they have ever been. Everyone is scattered, and they must not only process a gut-wrenching death, but learn how to survive on their own.
Be warned: Major spoilers are coming next. Please stop reading if you don't want to know!
When the episode opens, Michonne is still at the prison, taking down as many walkers as she can. Unfortunately, if you thought we'd never have to see Hershel's body again, you'd be wrong. The katana-welding warrior does the only thing she can think of...she puts his head down to save anyone else from being bitten. Plus, we get final confirmation that the Governor is really dead. But there is no sign of Lilly, who put the bullet in his head at the end of the winter conclusion.
If that wasn't enough, next comes a chilling flashback, courtesy of Michonne. As has already been teased, she did have a son in her pre-apocalypse life. Set in an extravagant kitchen, we get to see her boyfriend (referenced as "love") and his friend Mike. They are debating whether or not to stay in camp, in a twisted nightmare sequence. After Michonne chops away at her cutting board, her knife morphs into her katana. Fact blends with fiction.
Her absolutely adorable son runs into the room, and we get a peek at how maternal and compassionate Michonne really is. Now, this is where it gets weird. As she turns, her boyfriend loses his arms, hinting at what eventually transpires. Her "pets," as she previously told Andrea in Season 3, were "never human to begin with."
Meanwhile, Carl and a bloodied Rick slowly find their way to an abandoned house. For obvious reasons, Carl is furious with his father and spews out the most obscene hate. At one point, the adolescent kid ventures off on his own, in search of two walkers...maybe to make as pets? Well, things don't go so well for him as he's pushed almost to his breaking point.
At another point, Carl is attempting to draw a walker out, swearing like a sailor.
Once night falls, it's clear exactly how mutilated Rick really is. And you can see the fear on Carls' face.
Don't fret too much, folks: by the episode's end, Rick, Carl and Michonne are indeed reunited.
[Photos via The Walking Dead Brasil]