Review: The Walking Dead 908 – Evolution

Ross Marquand as Aaron – The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 8 – Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

The Walking Dead 908 – Evolution

The divide between former friends is vast if the frosty reception Michonne and her party received from Tara and the Hilltop is any indication. Despite their shared history, the bonds of family are no match for the rigors associated with keeping the different communities safe in a dangerous world. While there are sill some lasting friendships and cooperation between many of the members of each group, the disagreement over the fair remains a stumbling block.

One unifying event though is the rescue mission to find Eugene. Daryl, Jesus and Aaron set out in search of their friend and along the way encounter a horde of walkers acting unusually. Meanwhile back at Hilltop, Michonne and Carol awkwardly try to reconnect but Michonne, still troubled by some unmentioned past event halts any chance of their conversation going any further. Unfulfilled reunions also smack Henry in the face as his delight at seeing Enid again soon turns sour when he realizes her heart belongs to another. Henry’s disappointment throws him into the arms of a group of teens at Hilltop with trouble not far behind.

Rosita coming back to the land of the living sets off some alarm bells. Well aware of the danger Eugene, and now Daryl, Aaron and Jesus are in has her in a panic. Eugene confirms Rosita’s fears when his rescue party discovers him hidden in a barn. His tales of whispering walkers raising eyebrows and skepticism but when they arrive the quartet are forced to run.

Evolution, while at first glace may seem like it refers to the walkers, actually touches on many aspects of The Walking Dead itself. Characters like Henry, Negan and Tara have come a long way since the show’s time jump. Their development combined with the changing dynamics between old friends presents an interesting landscape considering the new threat at their doorstep.

– The Walking Dead _ Season 9, Episode 8 – Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

The Whisperers will no doubt be a unifying force to help jumpstart greater cooperation between Alexandria, Hilltop and the Kingdom. The fallout from the cemetery standoff will reverberate throughout the communities and may even pull Oceanside into the fray once more. Negan’s newfound freedom will also be a wildcard in upcoming events. It’s unlikely he’ll find a world similar to the one he left all those years ago, especially one willing to follow his lead.

Evolution caps a whirlwind first half to Season 9. Major absences punctuate the goings on so far and with the threat facing everyone now out in the open space has been provided for the new big bads to be fleshed out. The Walking Dead is at a crossroads, but if it stays true to the source material and audiences can move past the Grimes family tree not dominating the narrative the remainder of the season has the potential to be a rewarding one.