- Warning: There are major spoilers ahead for "The Walking Dead" season 10, episode 14, "Look at the Flowers."
- Sunday's episode brings back a lot of memories from Carol's past going all the way to season one.
- This week, Melissa McBride helps us break down a few tinier moments you may have overlooked and weighs in with some fun commentary.
- While focused on the larger storylines and Negan and Daryl's must-watch moments, you may have missed that Eugene is now in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. You also may have overlooked a nod to the episode's title when Ezekiel is forced to put down a horse.
- Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.
Let's start off with something easy. The title of Sunday's episode, "Look at the Flowers" is a reference to a line Carol says on season four.
On season four, episode 14, Carol and Tyrese are horrified to learn Lizzie killed her own sister Mika under the belief she would reanimate as a member of the dead and still be herself. When the two learn she's about to do the same with then-baby Judith, Carol makes the tough decision to march Lizzie out into a field, tell her to "look at the flowers," and kill her.
When asked if she revisited this episode at all when seeing its title, Melissa McBride told Insider she didn't have to watch it again.
"It's so ingrained in my head," said McBride. "That will always be one of my favorite episodes. But when I saw the title, I was like, 'Oh wait. Uh-oh.'"
By the end of Sunday's episode, Alpha tells Carol to look at the flowers when she finds herself at one of her lowest moments, trapped under a pile of timber.
It's not the only reference to season four, episode 14. There was another subtle nod to the phrase "look at the flowers" late in the episode.
While traveling on the road, the horse Ezekiel is riding falls sick after getting bitten by one of the undead.
"It's OK. It's OK. Nothing's going to hurt anymore," Ezekiel comforts the horse.
When Ezekiel goes to put down the horse the camera pulls back showing a graffiti flower on a pillar. The phrase isn't said aloud, but it's very reminiscent of the moment when Carol had to put Lizzie down.
We get a flashback to earlier in the season when Carol let Negan out of the jail cell and learn why she did it.
The beginning of the episode goes back in time a bit to season 10, episode four. Negan was blamed for the death of someone who attacked Lydia. Negan said it was an accident, but the community council decided to put to a vote whether or not he should be killed.
Before the council could make a decision, Aaron said someone stole the guard's keys. At the start of Sunday's episode, you can hear the keys jingling as Carol enters Negan's cell to pay him a visit to ask for his help.
In return, she promised Negan his freedom, as long as he got the job done fast. (In everyone's eyes on Sunday's episode he didn't.)
"She had a lot of eyes on her," McBride told Insider of why Carol freed Negan. "She was trying to do this on her own, as much as she could, and then I think she just figured, you know, who has the most to gain here that could help me out? And I think freedom is a big deal, and freedom and respect are something that she figures Negan would really want and really need."
Negan tells Carol he's heard she's a certified "bad—."
While being locked up for years on end, Negan has likely heard many stories about Carol, who has done some awesome and some less than stellar things all to protect Rick, Daryl, and her family of survivors.
Among Carol's stand-out moments include the season five premiere when she, literally, blew up Terminus where Rick, Glenn, Daryl, and more were being held captive. She also memorably killed and burned Karen and David in order to help prevent an illness from spreading within the prison on season three.
While Negan says this in passing, honored to work beside someone like Carol, the mention lays the groundwork for the rest of the episode where Carol goes down memory road and revisits some of these moments which made her this "bad—."
Carol, we know, doesn't particularly think of all of these moments as ones to celebrate.
Carol's decision to send a spy to infiltrate the Whisperers is a direct parallel to what Alpha did to the Alexandria community.
You may not have realized it, but around the same time Carol was striking a deal with Negan to take out Alpha, the leader of the Whisperers was doing the same.
In the last half season, we learned that Alpha sent Dante as a spy to infiltrate Alexandria and cause chaos, resulting in Siddiq's eventual death. It was a big twist from the comics.
Here, it's interesting to see Carol and Alpha using a similar tactic during a time of war, suggesting the two may have more in common than they realize. On Sunday's episode, Alpha even refers to Carol as an alpha.
Carol puts Alpha's head on the pike, but finds she isn't satisfied.
Putting Alpha's head on a pike doesn't bring Carol peace. The thought goes back to last Sunday's episode when Michonne suggests that seeking vengeance won't make you feel better. It's why she lets Virgil live. It's why she and Rick allowed Negan to live.
The phrase "my mercy prevails over my wrath" has been significant on "TWD" since season eight, but this season, wrath won over mercy for Carol. As a result, it eats away at her a bit on Sunday's episode as she considers past transgressions throughout the series.
"I think that she realizes that when she puts Alpha's head on the pike," said McBride. "I don't think the moment was what she expected it to be, and all of the damage done comes flooding back."
"A lot of things happened in this quest for vengeance and that's something that she's going to have to come to terms with now," McBride added.
It's actually kind of fitting that King Ezekiel is going on this journey to meet Stephanie with Eugene.
Ezekiel had likely just missed coming into contact with Stephanie on the season nine finale before she and Eugene became radio friends.
After Ezekiel communicated with Judith, there was a mystery woman who came over the radio. Josh McDermitt, who plays Eugene, told Insider back in November 2019 he believes Stephanie was the mystery person who came across the radio on the season nine finale.
"I think when that mystery radio person came on at the end of season nine, in my mind I went… that's the person who he's going to talk to on the radio," said McDermitt. "But that was never clear to me by [showrunner] Angela [Kang] and the writers."
"Maybe it is, and they just didn't want to assume I was an idiot and couldn't put that together myself. Or it might be something else. I can't say with 100% certainty," he added.
McBride doesn't see Carol as Daryl's girlfriend.
On Sunday's episode, Negan refers to Carol as Daryl's girlfriend.
"I was watching that as a viewer, and it's not anything Carol is privy to obviously," said McBride. "But as I was watching Daryl's reaction and he was just barely… He was stoic. I don't know. I was expecting there to be some sort of comeback but there wasn't."
It's revealed that Beta is a country singer named Half Moon. Both "The Walking Dead" and "Fear TWD" have been hinting at this since last year.
Beta plays some of his old tunes on Sunday's episode. If you revisit a few key moments from earlier this season on "TWD," it was hinted that Beta was a musician. We heard him humming on season 10, episode two. Magna was listening to a song that Ryan Hurst was singing on vinyl on episode five of season 10.
We still don't know why Beta is so bothered anytime he's recognized in the zombie apocalypse. Perhaps it hurts to know that his lifestyle was so drastically changed as a result of the world collapsing.
You can see all of the clues you may have missed about Beta's identity on "TWD" and "Fear TWD" here.
Alpha references Carol's children Henry and Sophia.
"[Henry] died out here alone and afraid, just like Sophia," a vision of Alpha taunts Carol.
Sophia died after being lost in the woods on season two of "TWD." Despite extensive search efforts, it was later revealed that a zombified Sophia was being cooped up in a barn on Hershel's farm.
Alpha later references Carol's abusive ex-husband, Ed, who was killed on season one.
Alpha slyly mentions that Carol wrote Maggie a letter about the leader of the Whisperers.
McBride wouldn't elaborate on what the details of the letter included. It's likely that Carol reached out to Maggie (Lauren Cohan) for help.
Currently, we know Maggie is supposed to return to the show as a season 11 series regular. It's possible we could see her before then. The last time we saw Maggie on the show was on Rick's final episode on season nine, episode five.
Cohan's return to "TWD" was announced in October 2019 at New York Comic Con. You can read more about Maggie's return to the show here.
When Carol gets trapped under a bunch of timber, Alpha refers to her as a "stupid cooze."
That's how her ex Ed referred to Andrea on season one, episode three as she was defending Carol. Alpha was using Ed's words against Carol.
Negan calls out Daryl's reckless attempt to go after Alpha on his own.
On season 10, episode 10, Daryl thought it was a great idea to try and find Connie by himself. Instead, he came toe-to-toe with Alpha and decided to try and kill her solo.
That didn't go as planned and Daryl nearly wound up killed. Miraculously, he didn't bleed out. Negan appears to reference that he learned about Daryl's little side quest.
"You didn't kill her. I did," Negan tells Daryl. "It took a minute. I had to get her to trust me because I wasn't on some half-cocked suicide mission."
Some Whisperers kneel down to Negan, accepting him as their new leader. In turn, Negan makes Daryl kneel before him in a throwback to the season six finale.
This whole moment is a surreal one for Negan, who used to ask his Savior followers to kneel before him. In this moment, he doesn't even need to ask the Whisperers to kneel. They just do it. The moment amuses Negan and irritates Daryl.
Negan decides to have some fun and takes Daryl back to one of his darkest moments by making him kneel before him. The last time Daryl really did that was on the season six finale and season seven premiere. When Daryl didn't obey, it resulted in Glenn's death.
Here, Negan gives Daryl a hint that he's just messing with him by saying he's "savoring the moment" and taking his sweet time.
This is one of a few recent callbacks to the show's most controversial moment, which sent many viewers away from "TWD."
Earlier in the episode, Negan makes another mention about kneeling. He says he wasn't going to get on his knees to beg forgiveness to the community for what he did to protect Lydia.
Carol dislocated her shoulder in order to free herself from the timbers and kill the walker that threatened her life.
This one may have been tough to make out, but you can hear a bone-crunching snap before Carol frees herself near the episode's end.
"Yes," said McBride. "The only way to get it out from under the timbers that were on her was to dislocate that shoulder, which she's done before."
Eugene, Ezekiel, and Yumiko are seen on the road approaching, what appears to be, Pittsburgh.
If you weren't sure where the three were heading, they were apparently in Pennsylvania.
The trajectory of their roadtrip doesn't seem to make much sense if they're supposed to be heading toward Charleston, West Virginia. Maybe this is just a nice nod to the comics.
The survivors head to Pittsburgh in the comics in issues No. 170 and 171.
In the comics, it's a different group that heads to Pittsburgh which consists of Michonne, Siddiq, Eugene, Magna, and Yumiko.
In the comics, Michonne yells out to see if anyone is around. Ezekiel, a bit more guarded, does the same on Sunday's episode.
The trio comes across Princess who looks like a spitting image of her comic character.
Juanita Sanchez, also known as the Princess of Pittsburgh in the comics, is first introduced in issue No. 171 of the comics.
She's a bubbly, high-spirited character who's quite the chatterbox. On the TV series, it looks like she may have an interesting sense of humor as it's alluded that she left the walkers chained up in humorous situations around the city.
You can read more about Princess here.
Beta is now wearing Alpha's face as part of his own Whisperer mask.
In case you forgot, Beta's previous mask was made up of the face of his former best friend. Now, it's made up of the two people who Beta was closest to before and during the zombie apocalypse.
In case you forgot, Beta also wears the shirt of his dead best friend.
What about that horde Beta's walking around with?
During the big reveal about Beta's mystery identity, the larger takeaway is that he's kind of going rogue and piling up his own group of walkers.
Negan and Carol seem so satisfied that the Whisperer leader, Alpha, is dead that they somehow forgot about the looming force of Beta. Negan and Daryl should at least know about the potential danger he poses since both of them got into either minor or major scuffles with Frowny McTwoKnives (one of the many nicknames Negan likes to call him).
"It's all just happening in the background and nobody's aware," said McBride.
What could he be doing with that group of Whisperers? I'm sure we'll find out soon, but if the comics tell us anything, it's probably not looking great for Alexandria at the moment.
You can read our full interview with McBride for Sunday's episode here.
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