Friday 4 November 2022

Review: #TheWalkingDead S11x23 FAMILY #TWD

 Previously: Review 11x22 FAITH

'The day everything changed forever'

The Penultimate Episode!

- S 11 x 23   FAMILY -

Directed by Sharat Raju

Written by Magali Lozano, Eric Mountain and Kevin Deiboldt

I refuse to believe that Judith will die!  No way!!  Highly unlikely, because presumably she said the memorable sentence above at some point in the future.  What will change?  Does this bring more hope for news about Rick and where he is, in the finale? 


Is anyone else finding it really nerve-wracking watching these last episodes, like you're scared to see what's going to happen??
That ending ... terrifying.  TWD has to go out as it came in, with the Walkers as the biggest danger.

Those last scenes carried the same sinister 1940s Europe vibe as 11x21 Outpost 22.  As they realised they were being penned in, the horror and panic had a ghastly echo of anything I've ever read or watched about the  sealing of the ghettos - and also of when the wall went up to divide East and West Berlin, in the early 60s.  I don't know if this was intentional or not, but it was masterfully done, anyway.

Of course Judith wanted to go and fight - she's a Grimes.  At least she had the forethought to give the hat to RJ for safe-keeping.


So Pamela is shown once again to be not the reasonable person who had such a nice chat with Maggie, back before they took Hilltop over, but nothing more than your average despot: create the problem (B17), in order to get the public to do as you wish (lockdown).  Of course, it didn't go quite according to plan; when her jeeps were leading the herd to the city walls, she did not know that Aaron, Lydia and co were probably more in control of the Walkers than her soldiers were, or about the wall-climbing Variant Walkers.  Whoops.  

Notably, most of the people who actually put their own lives on the line knew nothing about the plan; it was clear that Vickers had no idea that the onslaught of Walkers heading their was orchestrated by Ms Milton. 

Had Pamela been out in the world instead of hiding behind city walls for the last 12 years, though, she would have known how schemes that involve herding huge numbers of Walkers usually go tits up, somewhere along the line.  All it took was a climbing Variant or two, and an arm that accidentally touched the 'open gates' lever....

Behind you!

As for Pamela shooting Judith ... I'd say she can look forward to Daryl giving her a particularly savage death.  It seemed sadly fitting that Judith got shot saving Maggie, without whom she would never have lived at all.  Also that (I think) she was shot in the same place on her body as Rick.

Of course Pamela also showed her true colours when she told Vickers to provide added protection for her own house and the surrounding area, and guide the swarm to the 'lower wards' ... but presumably there are many residents in those streets, obeying lockdown procedures, who can come out and fight, too?  


Poor Lydia ~ to have been through so much in her short life and then join the Metal Arm club.  I was thinking at the time, though, when Luke, Jules and Elijah got swallowed back into the herd rather than making it into the RV, that surely the best way would be to keep walking and whispering, and slide off again at a later point.  I hope Elijah makes it ... and what of Jerry?

'It's a piece of cobbler.  See you on the other side'. 
Cross fingers.  Jerry can't die either!

Not for the first time, Lydia's former Whisperer lifestyle saved the day.  Must have taken a few false starts before Alpha & co discovered that whispering was the way to communicate when walking with the Guardians.  I assume the person/Walker who picked up the knife that she dropped last week was the same person who dragged Aaron into the RV - one of Lydia's Whisperer friends?  I watched it three times to make sure I was seeing right.


Some beautiful scenes in the rail cars; brought a few tears to my eyes.
  • Rosita and Gabriel: still looking quite hopeful for a reunion!

  • Negan and Ezekiel:  And yet he smiles.  Ezekiel is truly a king amongst men; a great choice, not wanting to waste the rest of his life in anger.  I'm glad that Maggie heard all Negan said about every single one of them being better than him.  Good to see, especially after he had the brass neck to suggest, earlier, that just the two of them should go off together and finish it; Maggie wasn't too pleased.  Setting things up for Isle of the Dead?

  • Princess and Mercer, showing that it's still on...

  • ...and then there was Daryl, Judith and Carol.  If only we could be there when Daryl tells Judith all those stories about everyone who's ever cared for her ... Judith mentioning not having heard from Michonne for a long time gives more fuel to my theory that we will have some sort of Richonne sighting at the end.  Or is the Daryl spin-off going to be about him looking for them?  In Europe?

Family, by blood or otherwise: a great theme to be threaded through this penultimate episode.  And something that hasn't happened for a long, long time - Judith's 'real' mum was mentioned.  I've often wondered why we don't see more evidence of Carol talking to Judith about Lori; they were close, after all.

Let us hope the spirits of Glenn, Abraham, Sasha, Jesus, Tara, Alden and Carl walk with Elijah and Jerry, and everyone else.  That bit near the end, while the others were holding back the herd so that Daryl could run up the alley with Judith, and she woke up, said 'Daddy?' then looked back and saw the Walkers closing in on Negan and Rosita... 

Losing another one of our people now, after all this time, would be like someone getting shot on the last day of war. 

★ Big Question! ★

What was that thing mentioned by Judith at the start, that Rick and Michonne used to say to each other?  Was it 'We're the ones who live?'  She never said what it was, but it has to have been brought up for a reason!  Maybe just as a memory, though. 

I hate spoilers (which is why I am not going on Twitter on the day of the finale until I've watched it), but I saw a couple of photos from this episode online months ago, and at last I can post them!  When I saw them I wondered why Eugene was wearing a suit, but I thought Daryl was carrying Lydia.

Next week, then.  
Please please let it be everything we need it to be!


  1. Just when I had became complacent about all of our "heroes" being safe as Series 11 marched on they suddenly throw in Lydia being bitten & everyone in real danger again!! Edge of the seat stuff like the old days.

    1. I know, right? Darkest hour before the dawn, we hope!!!