It turns out, the makers at AMC haven’t turned a deaf ear to our pleas after all. The penultimate episode of The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon quells our longing and finally grants us more than a sneak peek into the past. Not only do we get to be treated to exactly what sort of bad decisions led to Daryl’s arrival in France, but it also comes with a side order of the old, scruffy, vicious man that we know and love.Is Daryl any closer to hopping on a home-bound boat? Let’s find out.
How Long Till We Reach The Nest?
Isn’t it amazing how a mood can be communicated without a word being said? The foggy stream leading Daryl and Laurent to the place Azlan believes is home for the soul could’ve foretold a grueling journey. But no. The journey that these three are undertaking—two believers and one estranged child of God—can only lead to a place that’s better than where they are now. If the rest of the people at the Nest are anything like the man of Allah who picks just the right Biblical metaphor for Daryl, Laurent will be amidst kindred spirits. He’s soft, as is expected from someone of his upbringing. But there’s no place in the wretched world that they’ve found themselves in where Laurent could catch a fish and not gut it for survival. It’s a world that ignites a spark of hope in a grieving man, only to put an unfair end to his life. At least, it couldn’t rob Azlan of his endearing spirit or his adorable sense of humor, even as he was losing his life to a telephone pole.
Did Daryl Catch Walkers For Genet’s Experiment?
Well, you can’t say that I didn’t warn you this was coming. But even I wouldn’t say no to the complete experience of seeing the unfortunate chain of events that led to Daryl’s current circumstance. Who wouldn’t take one look at our unkempt mess of a hero and think, Yeah, that looks like someone who’d be good at hoarding zombies? Daryl’s never been one to ask too many questions. He’s not there to make friends. Yet that doesn’t mean that he’d restrain his protective instincts and watch a bunch of nasty bullies tormenting a kid. You can’t help but wonder where he’d be if he had shown the slightest curiosity regarding a bunch of shady people stuffing the undead into shipping containers. Did we just catch a glimpse of the doctor who, on behalf of Genet, conducts freaky experiments on the walkers? Daryl wasn’t bothered by the whats and whys. All he needed was enough fuel to get back to Carol. Something that he didn’t get to do as his righteousness stood in his path when he thrashed the people for murdering that poor kid for a quart of ethanol. He does manage to speak to Carol and soothe his anxiety. But wait. The lousy radio connectivity might’ve just held back the one thing we’ve been dying to hear. Was Carol talking about Rick Grimes being back? Time to brace ourselves for another spin-off, perhaps?
How’s Isabelle Faring In Quinn’s Mansion?
All the comfort, the big room, the lavish breakfast, and the designer clothes can’t fill the Laurent-shaped hole in Isabelle’s heart. But since when has Quinn ever understood Isabelle, or any woman, for that matter? The vile narcissistic exuberance knows only to believe that anything in the world can be bought. But even with her makeshift knife and sexual manipulation, Isabelle doesn’t have the edge to defy the vows of kindness she’s taken. She’s, however, smart enough to know exactly which strings to pull with someone as conceited as Quinn. If he’s stuck up enough to truly believe he can win her love back, there’d be no shortage of weapons at Isabelle’s disposal. But from the looks of the secret note passed on by a mole who I can only assume is a covert agent of the Union of Hope, Isabelle has no shortage of helpful friends either.
Will Daryl Be Able To Kill The New Zombie Variant?
Even though I’d go as far as to call The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon a near-perfect version of what it is, which inevitably implies the show has been doing most things right, there’s one thing it’s particularly excelling at. It’s no fun rooting for a hero who’s the epitome of all things good—so far above the ground that he’s barely even human. That isn’t a flaw that Daryl’s portrayal can be accused of. What’s even more impressive about AMC’s Daryl is that his imperfections are far from sugarcoated. Take his horrid reaction to Laurent’s mistake, for instance. For a man who’s grown up in the painful clutches of abuse and has since mostly known a cruel world, it’s only normal that some unhealed darkness would remain in his heart.
While there’s no excuse for the absolutely nasty way he lashes out at a little kid, it only makes Daryl that much more convincing as a human being. And yet, he’s the same man who’d be ready to sacrifice an eye to Guerrier’s knife if it meant that Laurent could be safe. It only goes to show just how much love Laurent is capable of, even at such a young age, that he’d surrender himself to the enemies for the man he holds dear to his heart. But Daryl’s not the only character that The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon has granted a grounded and splendidly authentic portrayal to. The fact that Quinn isn’t the least bit suspicious about Genet’s sudden interest in hosting him at her den proves just how desperate he is to believe in the power that he holds in France.
Luckily, the same desperation for validation has also helped Isabelle convince him to take her along. For once, though, Genet’s motives don’t seem to be born out of aimless rage. She’s a dictator through and through, and a smart one at that. She knows that to have the entirety of France in the palm of her hand, she’d need to persuade the chunk of the population that believes in Laurent and the Union of Hope. And to achieve that, she’d need Laurent to speak in her favor. Daryl’s life moves in a circle. The journey that started with him being yanked onto a ship to become zombie food had a hopeful stop in the middle when he valiantly fought off Genet’s goons and took to the sea.
What the ending sequence morosely brings to us is the final stop to that very journey. Faced with a super-zombie fueled by the wicked experiments of Genet and the doctor, Daryl isn’t likely to cower, but he also has no clue as to how he’d get out of the vicious cage fight alive. Knowing Daryl, he’ll find a way to kill the rabid undead despite the flared veins and blood-curdling growls. But how many more does Genet have in her stock? Will France survive if it dares to stand against the dictator and her super-horde?