Warning: Review may contain spoilers!
The Walking Dead: World Beyond 106: Shadow Puppets
The man across the water, the individual the gang encountered at the end of last episode, turns out to be a dude named Percy. According to the new kid on the block he’s a got a score to settle with some people that robbed him and while he recounts his life story he begins to settle in with Iris and her crew. Hope’s BS detector is on full alert however and Percy’s stories are soon revealed to be lies.
Percy’s stolen bounty is a truck loaded with barrels of refined fuel. Iris offers to help him retrieve the truck if he does something in return – let them use of it to help them reach New York. That plan sets off all sorts of alarms for Felix but his protestations are soon squelched.
On the way to find Percy’s truck Elton and Hope bond a little bit. They talk about Elton’s mother, how he got his name and why the book he keeps with her picture in it is so significant to him. Perhaps out of curiosity but probably more so out of guilt, Hope offers to help him collect things to put into the book. Meanwhile Percy attempts to ingratiate himself with the group and while some of them take to him, Silas isn’t as welcoming.
Once in town, Percy’s truck is located but when he attempts to retrieve it the dead body of one of the men who stole it from him is found in the front seat. Shadow Puppets is loaded with all sorts of bad decisions. Percy is all kinds of sketchy and the reasons why the group, despite some of its member’s reservations, continue to follow him are dubious at best.
Iris is uncharacteristically reckless and impatient in Shadow Puppets. Her blind trust in Percy really isn’t warranted and it only leads to trouble. Felix is skeptical of things but he isn’t as forceful as one would expect. In fact it’s Silas who is the constant voice of reason, but his warnings are continually ignored.
There are a lot of head scratching moments in the episode and one of them leads to its highpoint of action evoking an iconic scene from Star Wars: A New Hope. Once Percy’s gambit is revealed Iris is forced to reassess her judgment skills. Her efforts aren’t a total loss though. The truck has ties to the CRM and Percy’s uncle confides in Felix that there is a nearby refuelling station.
Shadow Puppets introduces a couple of new players and works in some character development for members of the main group. What’s missing however is more of the CRM. The kids’ journey and their coming of age story needs to be contrasted against what is going on with Elizabeth and her organization. Even a scene or two focusing on her and the CRM per episode would do a lot to not only advance the narrative but also add some foreboding to what might be out there for the kids, Felix and Huck to overcome. Perhaps with the introduction of Percy and his uncle that will happen and it couldn’t come soon enough.