Check out our review of this weeks episode “The Cell” of The Walking Dead on AMC.
The Walking Dead – Season 7 episode 03: “The Cell”
Warning: There will be spoilers.
Let’s get into it, not recapping just diving in…
Robert: This is a fantastic, creepy, painful episode that gave Daryl (Norman Reedus) & Dwight (Austin Amelio) a wonderful spotlight. The Ying & Yang of each of these characters in the new Negan world they’re stuck in.
Ian: Yeah, this was a strong insight into the mentality of the survival as a herd. While we had illusions of progress, this is where we get an eyeful of living in the raw and savage place that the world has become.
Robert: I believe that this season, the crew of TWD is going to work hard to make Dwight a central character for good or bad. What a powerful start of the episode showing the power that Dwight has making his fried egg & tomatoes sandwich to the rocking of The Jam’s aptly titled song Town Called Malice (You can here the great song here!) showcases The Sanctuary which is the home base for Negan & his Saviors. Last week we got to see how The Kingdom is setup, this week we get to see how the world lives in Negan’s The Sanctuary.
Ian: I think it’s kinda interesting how Dwight has been presented as character as compared to his comic book origin, there’s only some minor changes. In the comics, the rule of Negan feels more pressing and a grip of authority is felt as the backdrop the audience is given is mutual suffering in steel plant. This actually factors into the part that has been omitted so far as the audience is informed about how Dwight got his burn scar but in the comics, it’s far more graphic.
Ian: The big change in pace is the ironic beats of optimistic as the music (above song and East Street below) set up a similar tone to when everyone thought the Governer was a pretty chill guy. just running a town to protect those that would join the community. We start getting the layers peeled back, from the perspective as Daryl looking roug, locked away in a cell. Again, the cheery music plays as punishment with Dwight even provoking the situation further with a photo, a reminder of Negan’s rules.
Robert: Of course, what everyone really wants to focus on is Daryl all penned up & having the song Easy Street (by a band called Collapsible Hearts Club) on repeat day after day after day. We see how Dwight is trying to break down Daryl but it’s not working. There’s even a point where Daryl notices that Dwight was missing for a day to give him a dog food sandwich and later when a banged up Dwight returns, Daryl has a twitch to a smile. The counter to that is giving the audience a depth of Dwight’s world. What happened to him, his wife, her sister & his friends. Dwight is too much of a coward to stand on his own or against Negan, Dwight broke down, returned after running away, lost his wife to become Negan’s bitch and got half his face burned. Sure Dwight has some “power” in The Sanctuary & some respect from Negan (or assuming he does, I don’t believe Negan has any respect for Dwight). The second moment when Negan has his face-off with Daryl, it’s obvious that Negan respects the strength of Daryl vs Dwight’s cowardliness despite Daryl rejecting Negan’s options for his future.
Ian: Ok so everyone is on the same page as things are pretty terrible for Daryl, everyone seems a bit fearful but they’re willing to comply with the situation but how does Dwight feel about it all? We start to learn more about how he wound up with the Saviours and during his journey back to the camp, he’s leading an escapee by gun point under the guise of this all that’s left to do.
Robert: I like Dwight and the adventure he goes on to find someone who’s run away from The Sanctuary. The bullshit Dwight has to deal with when he comes across a big accident on the road around a highway. He fights through it and it costs his Daryl’s bike but he tracks down the runaway, finding out it’s one of his old friends who can’t deal with living the way they do back in The Sanctuary. Dwight then “frees” his friend by shooting him but also brings his friend back to be a Walker in The Sanctuary’s Walker area (I think it’s a Walker gutter around The Sanctuary to keep others away as well as a sadistic way to show power through fear).
Ian: That was the big turning moment for Dwight as everything is starting to take the toll but he’s still limping on. The bridge scene just alone was interesting as a set piece, the burnt out zombies that are seemingly harmless suddenly become more of a threat as Dwight’s strength starts to wane, it’s kinda poetic in a cheesy way.
Robert: That all said, it was great to see Daryl finally break down when Dwight gives him a Polaroid picture of Glenn’s decimated corpse. It showed the depth and caring that Daryl was fighting to keep buried. Daryl cares, of course he does, he’s always cared that’s why he’s with Rick & Co. and it was another heartbreaking moment of the show. Kudos!
Ian: The Polaroid scene had all kinds of levels to it as at first, it’s a warning to Daryl to not step out of line but also a bit of an angle of sympathy from Dwight to show that he’s been in that same position before which feels more clear when he changes the Easy Street song to Crying” by Roy Orbison.
Robert: This was a very powerful episode and Christine Evangelista (Chicago Fire) is great as Sherry even though I believe he’s playing Daryl & Dwight for Negan. I feel that once Dwight “gave” her over to Negan, he’s ONLY out for herself & do what Negan wants. All that she’s saying to Daryl is Negan playing him.
Ian: While Daryl keeps on defying Negan with every measure left in him, has Dwight found his ticket out of the Saviour’s by working with him to bust out? Will Dwight find some happiness with his former SUPER HOT wife when Dwight/Daryl team up in the most bold prison break featuring zombies of all time?!
Robert: Lastly, the counter of the FEAR mongering of The Sanctuary to last week’s The Kingdom introduction was amazing & well done. Thank-you to all who work on the show. Can’t wait for next week!
Bits & Pieces
- 3 options to live The Sanctuary. 1. Zombie Area. 2. Work for points. 3. Be a Savior for Negan.
- Sandwich making to show off the Saviour lifestyle felt like a sly nod to Romero.
- How much dog food do they have?
- Dwight’s wife is a Hooker for Negan OR is Negan’s girl now? Unclear.
- Obviously there’s a brothel in The Sanctuary for Saviors.
- When to bend knee to Negan? Dwight does it twice then later when he’s alone with Negan, he doesn’t. It is all for show?!
- The highway walker scene was freaking great. Not enough on that, wished for some more.
- R.I.P. Daryl’s bike 🙁
Negan visits Alexandria with Rick & Co. I’m sure it’s NOT going to end well. I expect another death for Negan to make another point to the Alexandrian’s who didn’t see what happened to Glenn and Abraham.
The Walking Dead 7×03 – Season 7 Episode 4 Promo