I can’t help but view the story arcs on the Walking Dead as hopelessly circular. Our main characters try to build a life, confront a foe, and by the end of the season (or mid-season) our main characters are splintered off throughout the world. The following episodes then focus on each of those small groups, letting us know what they’ve been up to and how they are fighting to get back to the main group. They complete that task, or die trying. Rinse and repeat.
So far, Season 7 of The Walking Dead does nothing to break from that mold. Although, this season the repetition is even more tiresome due to how momentous and shocking the events of the premier episode were. To then follow that up with not one, but two episodes that do nothing to further the story of our main group isn’t just frustrating it’s exhausting.
What’s even more frustrating is the fact that these past two episodes, judged on their own merits, are completely fine episodes of television. But the cloak of what the viewers “really want to see” is still there. Watching the Saviors try and break Daryl was interesting and learning more about Dwight’s history with Negan makes him more of a well rounded character. This episode does a good job laying the groundwork for events that you can probably predict unfolding down the line. I just wish these events came a bit later in the season.
But hey, next week looks like the episode we’ve been waiting for. Plus it’s 90 minutes for some reason.