While Go Getters isn’t the episode everyone will be remembering from this season, we got a few strong character moments, one very fun action scene and the return of Carl as a super annoying character in a slightly lengthy episode.
Back at the Hilltop, we see Maggie wake up after losing consciousness. Instantly she asks about her child, which fortunately is okay. Maggie is told she needs to rest. She asks Sasha where Glenn and Abraham are buried. Right there, we have our first strong moment. Maggie and Sasha sit together at the graves. Both character arcs parallel each other so much that this is an interesting constellation: both have lost both family and their partner, both are very strong characters. It is nice to see them find console in one another and Sasha promising Maggie to stay with her, no matter what.
How they handle their grief also bears witness to their mental strength. It is nice to see such strong female figures in a mainstream show like this when we could have seen Sasha losing it after losing three loved ones with Bob, Tyreese and Abraham. Maggie eventually giving away her dad’s/her husband’s pocket watch to Enid wonderfully as she has strong enough memories of Glenn mirrors Glenn burning his photo of Maggie. This welds together the members of our group who are at the Hilltop and also Jesus, who proves to be on “our” side and who was the one who inspired this different way of grief (Maggie(asking why they burn their dead): “What do you have to remember them by?” Jesus: “Us.”).
He stands in for Sasha and Maggie staying although douche-in-charge Gregory is afraid of the consequences if Negan finds out. Jesus sees through Gregory ratting them out when the Saviors arrive, hiding them elsewhere and tricking Gregory into having to give up his beloved scotch (oh did that feel satisfactory).
The real villain in this episode is Gregory as all he worries about is his own skin. The deal with our group to wipe out the saviors in exchange for supplies was a perfect means to liberate the Hilltop but the intel from the Hilltop wasn’t appropriate and that’s why our group underestimated the scale of Negan’s fellowship. An opportunistic coward, Gregory’s only concern is if Negan knows about their deal, all he cares about is avoiding the wrath of Negan. Disgustingly misogynistic on top, he can’t even remember Maggie’s name although he negotiated with her not that long ago and is determined to send a sick, pregnant woman away from their safe place. The show overtly asks the question why this coward is the leader of that community as Jesus, who appears to not want the job, or as of now Maggie are way more capable.
In the night after Gregory’s discussion with Maggie and Sasha, there is a sudden walker attack. Sasha, Maggie and Jesus take charge and shout commands at the few Hilltop residents, who are able to fight. Jesus finishes off some walkers by awesome karate moves and Maggie (you can take a girl off the farm but you can’t take the farm out of a girl) climbs into a tractor and mows down walkers and the car that had the music blasting to attract the walkers. After Maggie and Sasha were crucial in saving the Hilltop, Gregory still refuses to let them stay. Enter the Saviors.
Obviously, they strongly suspect Rick’s group and the Hilltop colluded as they attacked the outpost that was responsible for the Hilltop. We later find out the Saviors opened the gate and installed this attack in order to save them later and prove the Hilltop is dependent of the Saviors.
They are led by Simon (Steven Ogg in a very strong, almost Negan-like performance) who appears similarly psychopathic as Negan and who manages to intimidate Gregory a great deal. Although Simon is officially the antagonist, Gregory is so hateable that it was kind of a pleasure to watch Simon make Gregory his bitch. Gregory even thinks they have made progress during that visit, which makes me sincerely hope that someone, probably Maggie, will take over. I’m inclined to think Maggie after her punching Gregory in the face for stealing the pocket watch off the grave (How could anyone make this vile creep their leader?).
And then there was the teenage action. Enid leaves as she needs to see Maggie is okay. Carl lets her go and then “saves” her by running over walkers with a car and busting it thereby (three-dimensional seeing is slightly more difficult with one eye). They find roller skates and have a little happy moment together. But then Enid realizes Carl wants to kill Negan and begs him not to go. He won’t listen to her but hey, they kiss. I would have appreciated this little moment of joy if Carl would not behave so stupidly. How is he thinking to kill Negan without a weapon (and the worst aiming ever, cf. darts scene at the beginning)? He falls back to season 2/season 3 levels of annoyance. If the writers commit to their foreshadowing with the darts scene, Carl will fail miserably but let’s not forget Jesus, who sneaks into the same truck as Carl on his mission to scout where Negan’s quarter is. (Btw, I get why Sasha doesn’t want Maggie to know but is that really such a great idea with their limited manpower?) I’m certainly not excited to see how Carl’s fate turns out.
Next episode, we see the last remaining characters from our group, Tara and Heath, who are on a supply run and who will encounter a new group. Will that be the Whisperers? News stories are running wild about these guys, I have no clue who they are and I’m pretty curious to find out.
Images taken from imdb.com; © by AMC
Title image: © by AMC (Photo: Gene Page)