Review: #TheWalkingDead S11x21 OUTPOST 22 #TWD

Previously: Review: S11x20 WHAT’S BEEN LOST

 – S 11 x 21   OUTPOST 22 –

Directed by Tawnia McKiernan

Written by Jim Barnes

Better here than being out there in the wastelands’ . 

Judith’s intro was all about fear, fight and hope this week ~ the story of our heroes’ life since the beginning.  I noticed that she said the words ‘working together’ just as Maggie and Rick hugged in the clip of 708 Hearts Still Beating, which fuelled my own ridiculously optimistic hope that Rick might appear in the finale.  Well, a girl can dream…

And so the true evil of the Commonwealth was exposed, as we were presented with a sinister echo of Europe during World War II ~ the sense of being kept in the dark, not knowing where people are being taken … the transfer of some to the ominous-sounding Designation 2, from which nobody ever returns.

Dark army trucks in the night, overgrown rail tracks, the separation of people into workers and… whatever happens wherever they tried and failed to take Connie.  The enforced use of numbers rather than names, nothing to eat but disgusting grey gruel.  And what about Annie?  I can’t help wondering if she won’t survive; karma for Negan, perhaps?  So that he finally, really understands what he did to Maggie?  I hope this is not the case, but…


Good to see Rosita and Gabriel together.  Nothing like waking up on a bed of dry leaves after a hard night avoiding transportation to a labour camp, only to see a Commonwealth Soldier Walker poised for his breakfast.  I hope R & G will end up together, still – we never saw why or exactly when they broke up.  They’re so good together.  I liked how Gabriel talked her out of blaming herself for Coco being taken – and she took it on board.


Mothers doing what has to be done to find their children was at the forefront this week, what with Rosita and, of course, Maggie’s flashbacks of Hershel being taken from her.  You could just see her thinking ‘what if that was him?’ when she was unable to kill that little boy Walker – and doing so with tenderness when she had no choice.  He’d clearly turned quite recently ~ always more shocking when they still look like who they were, like when those three who tried to escape from the labour camp appeared at the end.
During Maggie and Carol’s highly emotive scene by the truck, Maggie said, about the fate of Hershel, that not knowing was the worst thing; I’m sure we could all feel Carol thinking about those days that turned into weeks when everyone was looking for Sophia – and that both women suffered a chilling reminder of the moment Sophia walked out of the barn.

I loved what Carol said about how living at the Commonwealth life echoed the old world, pre-Walkers.  She said that back there she hardly spoke to Daryl; everyone was just busy doing their own thing.  But the world as it is now has made their bonds so strong; people they would never otherwise have met become as much family as anyone with blood ties.  

Maybe they’ve come too far to go back to life as it was before, however many comforts are offered, even if such a community is benign.  The boss man at the labour camp described the Commonwealth as ‘paradise’ – but our crew have found a different sort, that of total freedom.  They don’t need the sort of structure the Commonwealth offers; they can do just fine on their own.

Another good moment ~ Carol reminding Daryl of Kelly’s words of wisdom back at the cave in 1010 Squeeze: ‘We can’t find her if we’re dead.’  Seems like they’re all learning from their mistakes, and from each other, these days … it was so good to see Maggie, Daryl, Carol, Rosita and Gabriel working together to do the right thing, however dangerous, as they’ve been doing for so many years.  

I’m not quite sure how Daryl and Carol managed to steal that truck off the train without anyone seeing, but never mind; belief suspended!  The bike steal, though, was more feasible – and wasn’t the bike chase fairly awesome?!

You can’t out-bike Daryl Dixon


Meanwhile, back at the labour camp, Negan sitting down with Ezekiel promised to be ‘interesting’ ~ they haven’t interacted for a long, long time.  Unlike Maggie, Daryl and Carol, he has not had a chance to observe Negan 2.0, who, since the beginning of S11, does appear to accept what a monster he was, and is trying so hard to show that he really does have a decent side.  You can understand how Ezekiel felt.  He won’t forget the massacre in 804 Some Guy in a hurry.

And so we discover the fate of Alexandria – now Alexandria Processing Centre.  What with the mention of ‘colonial processing’ by the woman Rosita spoke to on the radio, and the talk of extending the Commonwealth’s reach, it all sounded terrifyingly Third Reich.  

Horrible seeing lovely Alexandria taken over by such darkness.  The place where Deanna once held parties, where fresh bread was baked every day and Michonne and Rick fell in love … as did Carl and Enid, Denise and Tara, Abraham and Sasha.  It’s more than just somewhere they lived.  It’s a symbol of their success in finding a safe and harmonious existence, away from the intrusion of psychos and megalomaniac overlords.  It’s where Glenn lived, and Siddiq, Reg, Jessie, Eric, Tobin, Francine, and all those no longer with us.

‘Milton has underestimated us since day one.  We are going to get our kids, take back our home and make it right.’

Other bits and bobs:
  • When Rosita said something about the Commonwealth feeding the people’s fear by separating them, breaking them down, I felt parallels with today’s world, too.
  • Occurred to me that Designation 2 might be at Hilltop.  But for what?
  • Am wondering how it’s going down at Oceanside, after Aaron, Jerry, Lydia and Elijah set off – and if they’ve come across any more Variants.

Next week…