‘The Walking Dead’: Season 8 Episode 4, Playing For Keeps

Season 8 episode 4 titled, “Some Guy,” of The Walking Dead was the second episode in a row that revealed the costs of war. This episode even more. Which depicted it well.

“Some Guy,” was memorable while continuing the early conflicts of Alexandria, Hilltop, and the Kingdom all uniting against the Saviors. A standout episode that had key moments. Before going further, from here on, major spoilers.

Beginning the episode with a flashback scene was a nice touch, while thank God it didn’t begin with a montage of surreal imagery. Such as the first two episodes of season 8. This episode delved right in. Which was good, given how dramatic episode 3 had ended when King Ezekiel, his soldiers, and Carol had all just arrived at a Savior’s outpost.

King Ezekiel of the Kingdom is first seen fixing his dreadlocks and donning for battle within his quarters. All before he meets the Kingdommers, his fighters and their families whom all await his presence. Once outside in the courtyard, Ezekiel first takes a moment to reassure a young boy named Henry before launching into a speech. And what a speech.

Some among faithful viewers of The Walking Dead find Ezekiel’s speeches annoying. First, they easily forget his speeches are a part of his character. While secondly, he’s the kind of leader, who in this case as also shown in previous episodes of season 8, who leads his people while all share in the danger. There’s a memorable scene in Wonder Woman after Diana and Capt. Steve Trevor both arrive in London. While angrily addressing army top brass, Diana says, “Where I come from, generals don’t hide in their offices like cowards. They fight alongside their soldiers. They die with them on the battlefield! You should be ashamed. All of you should be ashamed.”

Given to making speeches, yes. While it seemed a mix of Winston Churchill and Martin Luther King, Jr. as he addressed his Kingdommers, Ezekiel had proven himself to be no office leader. So far, he’s shown himself both a man of words and action since the declaration of war against the Saviors in the season 7 finale, followed by the current first four episodes of season 8.

Then after the flashback scene, we see battlefield carnage. A scene showing most of his fighters who had been gunned down by machine guns before the end of episode 3 went black. Has Ezekiel proven himself to be the kind of leader who leads from the front and not from behind? Yes. Whereas this episode presents a new question. Can he recover from the slaughter of most of his soldiers? For thus far, both the Alexandrian and the Kingdom battle forces have been shown to have suffered losses in a season named, ‘All Out War.’ The Alexandrians Francine and Eric among others who’ve died in episodes 2 and 3 during their attack at the Saviors gun maintenance station, and the slaughter of most of Ezekiel’s forces at the Saviors chemical plant.

The next scene of Ezekiel’s fighters reanimating before closing in on him was ironic. Soldiers who while alive had risked their lives for him, now walkers, seeks to end him. A superb scene.

The sudden appearance of Alvaro (Carlos Navarro), one among Ezekiel’s most loyal soldiers, who helps the injured king to his feet showed all was not lost. As also the whereabouts of Carol (Melissa McBride), who miraculously escaped the deadly carnage by successfully infiltrating the Saviors outpost where the deadly M2 Browning machine guns were kept. Way to go Carol!

Meanwhile outside, Alvaro assists Ezekiel. “Can you walk, your majesty?” Alvaro asks. “With my cane,” Ezekiel replies now with a leg injury. “I got you,” Alvaro says. “You cannot endanger yourself for me,” implored the king. “Yes your majesty, I have to,” replied the soldier firmly. While the whereabouts of Shiva, the king’s tiger, was then unknown.

Whereas Carol while in stealth, overhears walkie-talkie conversations of the group of Saviors ordered to transport the guns to the Saviors HQ. Now knowing they must be stopped though outnumbered, she makes a hit. This scene is just another example of why I’ve always compared Rick’s people as if they’re a tight knit Special Forces group. Think about it. If Rick’s people hadn’t all arrived at the Alexandrian community in season 5 episode 12, the Alexandrians would have been completely slaughtered by the murderous Wolves, if not overrun by the walker herd unleashed from the quarry. Both which Rick and his group stopped from happening in season 6. Also, the Alexandrians would have later faced Negan and his Saviors to contend with. That is, if they had managed to survive both in season 6 without Rick and his group.

After Carol makes her hit to gun down Saviors, meanwhile outside things got ugly. Alvaro is hit. Gunned down by the Savior Gunther (Whitmer Thomas) who was eager to score major points by capturing Ezekiel for Negan. Later, as it looked as if he couldn’t carry Ezekiel to safety as a herd of walkers closed in, Gunther says, “Negan was hoping to have your ass chained to the Sanctuary fence, you, the Widow (meaning Maggie), and Rick. But your head on a pike will do just fine.”

To which quickly after, Jerry (Cooper Andrews) cleaves Gunther in two from behind with his axe. This time Jerry takes up where Alvaro left off, as the situation still looked dire for the two. “Get behind me your majesty,” Jerry calls out. As meanwhile Carol had successfully fought off Saviors during a gun battle, also involving clever thinking by opening a gate as she used another herd of walkers for cover.

Managing to see Ezekiel and Jerry in desperate need of help, while also seeing surviving Saviors about to depart with the guns had involved a huge decision on Carol’s part. Deciding to help Ezekiel and Jerry, Ezekiel states they must get word to Rick as the guns were on their way to the Sanctuary. As Carol hears a motorcycle in the distance, she says confidently, “They’re not getting them to the Sanctuary.”

In the end, both Rick (Andrew Lincoln) while in a jeep and Daryl (Norman Reedus) while on a motorcycle together stop the gun transport. And Shiva reappears to save the day by saving Carol, Ezekiel, and Jerry from a herd of walkers. The tiger died a sacrificial death.

This episode involved the heavy costs of war. That’s significant. One of the main reasons why I liked Rogue One: A Star Wars Story better than The Force Awakens. Jyn Erso, Cassian Andor, Bodhi Rook, Chirrut Imwe, Baze Malbus, Saw Gerrera, and K-2SO, seven heroes all, whom all died to get the plans to the Death Star. The Walking Dead season 8 episode 4 gets five stars.

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