The Walking Dead Power Rankings: S7 E1 “Right Hand Man”

Each week, we give every episode at least 24 hours to breathe…and for you to get caught up. After that, you’re clicking at your own risk. Spoilers ahead.

After the Season 7 premiere, showrunner Scott Gimple told the live Talking Dead audience that the show was “looking for a way to break the audience”…Judging by social media reaction, they certainly accomplished that.

We spent nearly half a year waiting for the answer to the Season 6’s cliffhanger of Who would meet Lucille first and even that didn’t seem like enough time to brace for impact. We’re talking about a series where zombies and humans alike are mangled, torn to shreds, decapitated, curb-stomped even…and the way our two fallen characters died STIL made fans declare that they are “ex fans”. Yes, the bashing of their heads made Noah’s face-ripping death seem PG-13 but in my opinion…

A) I’m really happy to see this series and Game of Thrones haven’t completely desensitized people.

B) Here’s your reminder that The Walking Dead is a horror series. You’re not supposed to be comfortable.

Before we get to the rankings, a quick moment for the fallen.

Abraham

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The tell for Negan, when he decided to absolutely obliterate Abraham’s head, was when he immediately thought he needed a shave after seeing the ginger handlebar mustache. I think we all knew that Abraham wasn’t going to grow anymore in this story. He also seemed to come to grips with that well before his exit. Sasha and everything were just gravy to his arc.

In his last moment though, telling Negan to “Suck my nuts” was as poetic a way Abraham could go out.

Glenn Rhee

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“Hey, dumbass.”

When Glenn literally dodged his near-death last season, it seemed too obvious because it wasn’t a fitting end for him. I know that he died in the books that way, but THAT was the way a character like him should go. Ironic that Glenn was pardoned for his outburst by Negan, and then killed because of Daryl’s.

Lastly, there’s beauty to the brutal way Glenn left the show. While we could see the dent in his forehead and his eye popping from its socket, the only thing Glenn could do was tell his wife “I will find you.” Maggie and their unborn child were his purpose. Those final words before his last breath could be a theme for what’s to come this season…being there for each other when things look the darkest.

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*wipes tears from cheek*

1. Negan

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The N.W.O (Negan World Order) is off to a hell of a start. Besides shortening this list by 2 characters, Negan broke Rick…and the audience.

How often does a character’s actions force fans to take to Facebook and declare they have quit the show? Not since that time the “Lannisters sent the regards” do I recall a reaction like that. What may be even more messed is the fact that I…kinda love him? What keeps me intrigued is waiting to see how he could possibly be dethroned (It has to happen at some point, right?).

2. Morgan Jones

Morgan

Before you freak out, think about it…Morgan is the key to helping Rick and well, everyone, right now. He’s in control of his situation. He’s capable of killing again (thanks to saving Carol). And he’s heading to a place where people where street hockey pads and ride horseback with spears. To beat an army, you need an army…and Morgan could be aligning with one at The Kingdom.

3. Maggie Greene

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Maggie was the de facto Matriarch of Alexandria after Deanna was killed. She was strong and diplomatic, even when held hostage by some of Negan’s people (the first time). She has lost the most on the show and lost even more, after watching Glenn’s head be smashed to pieces. Even in the most peril, as someone who desperately needs to see a doctor, Maggie still stood tall after Negan left and said “Fight them.”

She feels responsible, but we know there are plenty more reasons why the group is in the situation that they are in.

4. Rick Grimes

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Rick thought he could be like Negan before ever even meeting the man. People who wouldn’t fall in line with his ideas became expendable to him. It was his idea to deal with The Hilltop and poke the Negan bear in the first place. Despite his mistakes that helped get the group to where they are now, Rick as dangerous as anyone on the show and the leader of the group.

You can tell that Negan finds him useful too, otherwise it would like have been Rick’s brains dripping from “Lucille”.

5. Simon

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You would think the 2nd-in-command to Negan would be 2nd on this list, right? While Simon clearly has power in the NWO, it’s only because Negan allows it…and apparently needs a marker handy from time to time. We’ve seen Simon before, and I do mean before the S6 finale…He was there on the hunt for Dwight, who had obviously tried escaping from Negan’s camp. Simon had a machete handy and cut off one of his men’s limbs that had been bitten. At least he cares about preserving manpower, right?

6. Dwight

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Dwight may prove to be the most interesting of Negan’s group. We know he has defied the “supreme leader” and clearly paid for it with the insane scar on his face. He has the upper-hand in his rivalry with Daryl, but perhaps he can be swayed to go against Negan and align with his current mortal nemesis? He’s done it once before…

7. Carl Grimes

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The Carl Haters Club needs to sit down for a little bit. Not once did Carl seem phased by Negan’s barking and the threat of losing his arm. Carl gave Negan that defiant glare that we had seen him give his own father in the past. You also have to give credit where it’s due, as he told Rick to just “do it” when the choice was losing an arm or another member of the group.

8. Jesusscreen-shot-2016-10-26-at-8-17-52-pm

If anyone knows how to adjust and survive in the NWO, it’s Jesus. Rick will not only have to rely on him for advice but also for any chance of keeping the alliance with The Hilltop to stay strong against Rick. As mentioned earlier, in order to beat Negan’s army…Rick and Jesus will have to build one of their own.

9. Michonne

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#Richonne lives on!…for now. Negan doesn’t appreciate people speaking up while he is in the middle of a soliloquy but he did let Michonne speak up when Rick was being told to cut off his son’s arm. Why? In Negan-speak, he did almost compliment her for understanding the gravity of their situation. With Daryl literally in a cage, Michonne is the group’s strongest warrior. How will she be utilized next?

10. Sasha

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Sasha has come a very long way since both Bob and Tyrese were killed. Rather than shutdown while watching Abraham be brutally murdered, she stood up with a purpose to help Maggie. While the premiere was meant to break the group down, I think it has also brought them together more. Initially, it seems Sasha is reacting better than most would with the trauma.

11. Carol

Carol

If you followed along with the Power Rankings last season, then you know there was a love-hate relationship with Carol (much like the one she has with just about everyone outside of her group). Her rivalry with Morgan was such a distraction for everyone involved, but somehow it’s led to their new partnership that is heading to The Kingdom. Carol has saved the group multiple times in the past. Will she come back riding in with the horse guys to do it again?

12. Tara

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As far as we know, Tara and Heath have not been picked up by Negan’s henchmen. The more allies Rick has on the outside, the better. And when she finds out what they did to her girlfriend…OH MAN, IS SHE GOING TO LOOK FOR VENGEANCE. All-caps were necessary.

13. Horse Guy

Horse People

Horse Guy doesn’t have a name yet, but he does have a horse, a spear, and a community that could help the Alexandrians. He also looks ready to kick ass in roller derby.

14. Father Gabriel

Father Gabriel

Father Gabriel has gone from wet blanket to turncoat to protector of Alexandria in a very short time. Among the group that was left behind, I trust him the most to hold his own and protect Baby Judith…as he has sworn to do.

15. Aaron

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I am very unsure how Aaron is going to deal with the trauma of seeing two people he cared about murdered in front of his face. However, he has evolved with Rick’s group, killed for the first time, and remains the most capable of the original Alexandrians. Aaron is almost an adopted member of the group, and seems to be at their level now having experienced the introduction to Negan with them.

16. Heath

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In a better spot than most for being on the outside with Tara. However, he’s replacing Jack Bauer on 24. So how much longer will he be on the show?

17. Doctor Harlan

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Currently the most important person in Maggie and her unborn child’s life.

18. Gregory

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Speaking of 24 alums, you shouldn’t trust Gregory. But at least Gregory knows what it’s like living in the NWO. The bargaining chips may be pushed into his favor when Rick needs to deal with The Hilltop going forward.

19. Enid

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Enid is not going to take the news about Glenn very well, considering the family dynamic she built with him and Maggie. Enid is a survivor though, and seems to have committed to the Alexandrians’ effort to thrive. She won’t be too happy with Carl for locking her into a closet, but you can see them making a formidable team in the long-term.

20. Eugene

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I was so sure Eugene would be killed. He gave up his value by giving Rick the recipe for making bullets, which may still mean his time on The Walking Dead will be cut short. He was also the only one with his face in his hands for most of the episode. Eugene can either fold or step up into Abraham’s role. What do you think will happen?

21. Rosita

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Rosita is partially responsible for this mess, running out and looking for revenge with Daryl. We also know that she isn’t particularly independent (Abraham, Spencer, you get it). I can see her getting close to Negan, like Andrea had with The Governor. That could prove either useful for the group…or just for her.

22. Daryl Dixon

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Daryl was #1 on our list for much of last season’s rankings. Now he’s in the back of a van, and could put chopped into pieces. While the guilt of Glenn’s death may way heavily on him, Daryl always finds a way…

23. Tobin

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Did anyone see the Jack Reacher ads? Tobin was a crooked sherif getting busted by Tom Cruise. It was awesome. For now, he’s one of the few you trust to fall in with what Rick wants in Alexandria…and really misses Carol, I’m sure.

24. Baby Judith

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Being Rick’s baby girl carries more weight than most on this show. You’ve seen #RickRage before, right?

25. Spencer Monroe

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One of the show’s biggest wild cards. Will he hang tough with Rick or align with Negan?

26. Eric Raleigh

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I’m sorry but Eric’s gotta be in the running for people who don’t last much longer on this show. Aaron’s going to be happy to see him when he returns, but he’s not built for NWO.

27. Olivia

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Still counting jars.

28. Andy

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Have to think Negan will be looking for payback, as Andy did help lead the raid on the base last season…

29. Cal

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Remains the least threatening on this list with a spear.

30. Freddie

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Also not built for the NWO.

31. Craig

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Are you still alive, Craig?

 

Coming soon…Ezekiel and Shiva.

ezekiel-twd

Anyone too high or too low in this week’s rankings? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter.

 

<< Last season’s Power Rankings

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TV Character Madness: The Final Four

<< Previously on TV Madness

And then there were 4…

Swanson Don't Care

UPDATE: You chose who is heading to the Championship.

Matchup #61 (Comedy & Sidekicks)

(4) Ron Swanson – Parks and Recreation

vs.

(6) Daryl Dixon – The Walking Dead

 

Matchup #62 (Antiheroes & Heroes)

(2) Walter White – Breaking Bad

vs.

(1) Tyrion Lannister – Game of Thrones

 

Championship Voting begins Thursday, March 24th. 

Follow along for more on Facebook and Twitter.

 

Next on TV Madness >>

The Walking Dead Power Rankings: Dick Move, Eugene

Each week, we’ll give every episode at least 24 hours to breathe…and for you to get caught up. After that, you’re clicking at your own risk. Spoilers ahead. 

It would appear we picked a good time to start these power rankings because it’s been a heck of a ride since the midseason premiere. After successfully completing their attack on Negan’s satellite camp and “safe house”, we saw the Alexandrians in a state of calm. We saw residents in their routines, Carol smoking, new relationships forming…Of course everything couldn’t stay hunky dory for long.

Besides the obvious climax of action toward the end, there was also an interesting parallel of development and focus between two characters specifically, Eugene and Denise. Unfortunately it all came to a halt for one of them…

Goodbye Denise

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This felt inevitable throughout the episode, didn’t it?

The things Denise was doing seemed admirable. She led Daryl and Rosita to a pharmacy to replenish on meds, killed a zombie, and found her orange soda. However, she didn’t have to go on the run. Her selling point was that she could identify all the meds, but Daryl and Rosita ended up taking everything anyway. She’s the community’s only doctor (outside of Dr. Harlan all the way at the Hilltop) and had a responsibility to stay safe for the rest of her people.

We learned a lot about what makes Denise tick in her final episode like her bad relationship with her parents, how Daryl reminds her of her twin brother, and how she cares about Rosita. Some of that counteracts how reckless she was in the episode, but ultimately Alexandria takes a serious hit with her loss.

Now for this week’s Power Rankings:

 

1. Daryl Dixon (Previously 1st)

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Yay! Daryl got his crossbow back! Unfortunately, it came at the expense of someone he was growing closer too. Even with the toughest losses though, Daryl doesn’t seem to waiver in the toughest spots. Always dependable with whatever weapon he can access. The fact he can handle his bow way better than Dwight could says a lot as well.

You can also vote for Daryl in our TV Madness tournament here, as he’s made the Elite 8 and is facing off with ANOTHER Dwight (how about that for irony?).

2. Rick Grimes (Previously 2nd)

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Continued lack of activity from Rick keeps him in second to Daryl, but nobody did anything to unseat him either. There was something to his exchange with Morgan though. First, it was a symbolic to see Morgan in the jail cell he was building while Rick feels free with his philosophy on the outside. He simply asks Morgan “why”, but doesn’t argue with him when the purpose is to have options when captives are taken. With Negan’s group seemingly knocking on the door, Rick’s leadership and decision making are going to be as valuable as ever.

 

3. Negan (Previously 5th)

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It might be weird that someone who hasn’t even shown his face on the show yet is ranked so high, but let’s face it…every episode shows us how much more powerful Negan is. He has a Bond-villain amount of infinite henchmen apparently and Dwight acknowledges that The Saviors know where Alexandria is and have an idea of how nice it is inside. The writing is also on the wall that Denise is just the start for casualties Negan wants to make up for all the Saviors that were killed in the last 2 episodes.

 

4. Maggie Greene (Previously 3rd)

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No face time for Maggie this week, but we know how important she is to the community. While Rick is clearly in charge of defense (and offense), Maggie is the glue and handles all diplomacy outside of Alexandria. Her hands are bloodier now after breaking out of Savior captivity and she seems to have picked up the torch that Carol has left behind.

 

5. Jesus (Previously 7th)

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Alexandria is preparing for battle and that means they will have to rely heavily on their one ally community for help. Like Maggie, Jesus is the glue for The Hilltop and much handier in battle. If it’s all hands on deck, as things appear to be, they’ll need Jesus’s particular set of skills (Liam Neeson voice).

 

6. Michonne (Previously 8th)

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In preparation for what seems to be a serious battle coming up, Alexandria needs it’s best warriors to shine and Michonne is as dangerous as anyone. Being as close as ever to Rick, she’ll have some influence on his decision making too.

 

7. Glenn Rhee (Previously 6th)

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Well, Glenn’s a killer now…so that makes him a little more valuable in the heightened situations. He is also motivated by Maggie having his unborn child and won’t be held back to protect them both. We’ve seen a lot of potential foreshadowing though, and thing’s are going to get scary when Negan comes knocking.

 

8. Rosita Espinosa (Previously 13th)

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Nice jump for Rosita, as she continues to show how capable she is with her scoped out assault rifle. She also saved Abraham’s ass in the latest Savior encounter, even when she has a reason not to. Denise’s speech before her demise may have sparked something in Rosita as well, to take a big step as the badass she can be.

 

9. Eugene Porter (Previously 15th)

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“Welcome to Phase 2” and the Top 10, Eugene.

I like the mullet ponytail. It’s a nice look. I like his idea to mass produce bullets even more. His spat with Abraham was pretty lame and considering his past transgressions, he doesn’t have much of a right to talk down to the ginger-haired beefcake. Taking a chomp out of Dwight’s nether regions and “taking his moment” to distract the saviors was the most capable we’ve ever seen him in any of his skirmishes.

If he gets the bullet idea up and running, his value is going to be huge going forward.

 

10. Father Gabriel (Previously 10th)

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I like this version of Father Gabriel a lot. Rather than hide behind his church doors, he’s protecting his people with a rifle. Sticks to his convictions and he’s ready to fight. Very interested to see how he steps up when trouble rolls in.

11. Abraham (Previously 17th)

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There was a sigh of relief for TV and comic fans alike, as Abraham made it out of the episode unscathed. Eugene echoed some of my feelings about Abraham, saying he’s completed his mission and his arc should soon be over. Abraham showed up when it counted though, as the Saviors seemed to have Daryl, Rosita and Eugene dead to rights…Giving Eugene some respect was a big step, and making his move on Sasha was something we waited for as well.

12. Sasha (Previously 16th)

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The image above was a powerful one to me, showing that Alexandria was preparing for what’s to come. Sasha also has the demeanor that simply says”Bring it”. By inviting Abraham in after he professes his feeling for her, she avoids conflict with him…but that may amplify it with Rosita in the near future.

 

13. Aaron (Previously 9th)

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Aaron’s had the last couple weeks off, but he’s someone you can count on when stuff hits the fan. He proved that in the raid on the Saviors. Right now, you’re going to want to depend on people who are willing to get their hands dirty rather than the alternative. He’s also in lockstep with Rick.

 

14. Morgan Jones (Previously 20th)

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For a while, it didn’t seem like Alexandria was big enough to keep both Morgan and Carol in it. Apparently we got our answer to that this week, but roles seem to have changed between the two. Morgan has been training for a fight and readying a cell for potential prisoners. Carol can’t kill, and we’ll get into that further down the list…

 

15. Carl Grimes (Previously 18th)

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Carl’s played protecter without much airtime during the last month, seemingly, and now the fight is coming to him. I continue to hear animosity for the kid and I don’t think it’s warranted anymore. He’s on Rick’s side, he’s suffered enough, and he’s matured more than most on the show. When The Saviors inevitably show up at the door, I trust him more than anyone ranked after him.

 

16. Heath (Previously 12th)

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I’m not totally sure if Heath will be back from his run in time to help anyone, but he’s better help than most if he does return. Participating in the raid and being forced to kill some of the Saviors helped him grow to be better prepared for those circumstances too.

17. Tara Chambers (Previously 11th)

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Similar to Heath, I don’t know when she’s coming back because they are both on a run. I also don’t know how she is going to react to the death of her girlfriend. Will it be a catalyst for her to get some serious revenge, or will she turtle and lose her dependability that she’s been relied on for as of late?

18. Dwight (Previously 30th)

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Biggest of jumps in the power rankings goes to Dwight for making his return and his presence known. After Daryl found his motorcycle, we had a feeling Dwight had been picked up by Negan. The “Two-Face” look makes me think he was punished for running off, and it’s interesting to see him have some authority among the Saviors after.

“D” still killed someone he wasn’t aiming for, and he failed to take anyone else in after having Daryl, Rosita, Eugene and Abraham completely outnumbered.

 

19. Doctor Harlan (Previously 24th)

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Considering he’s now the only doctor between Alexandria and The Hilltop, I’d say he’s pretty valuable.

20. Enid (Previously 21st)

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I may be in the minority, but I’ve been waiting for Enid’s return to the screen for a long time. How is her relationship with Carl now? Are she, Maggie and Glenn a “unit”? What happens when Negan attacks? I do know she’s a survivor, she’s proven that in this season and the last. You’ll also trust her abilities more than anyone else ranked after her at this point.

 

21. Tobin (Previously 22nd)

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RIP #Carbin (The ship hashtag I made up for these not-so-lovebirds)

At least Tobin is around and has something to contribute by alerting everyone that one of their most valuable pieces has just up and left.

22. Spencer Monroe (Previously 23rd)

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Look at Spencer, offering to cook dinner for Rosita and stuff. She really doesn’t seem cool with that, but I’d be down if he’s making something good.

Spencer is a question mark still. We haven’t seen him in action since putting down his zombie-mom. Is he going to step up when things get scary or is he going to fall apart? We’ll also see if this weird thing with Rosita effects him when it matters most.

23. Olivia (Previously 29th)

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Olivia gets a boost after hanging around the bottom for most of these rankings. Mostly for just getting some face time, but also showing she’s still responsible of inventory and seemingly doing a good job of it.

 

24. Andy (Previously 14th)

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Andy slides for inactivity, but I feel better about him for holding his own against the Saviors.

25. Eric Raleigh (Previously 25th)

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Are Eric and Aaron still together? I don’t even know and if anyone’s going to go, it’s probably Eric, but at least he has stuck around…

 

26. Carol Peletier (Previously 4th)

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Biggest slide of the rankings goes to Carol…

Why? Well, having an existential crisis at the worst possible time certainly doesn’t help. She fought Morgan (also at the worst possible time) over this debate to kill or not. She’s also bailing on her people when they will likely need her most…

People in Alexandria care about her, Rick and Daryl especially. If either choose to chase after her (the teaser for next week suggests Daryl does), that cripples Alexandria’s defenses and the community becomes vulnerable. If disaster strikes because of Carol, she’ll probably drop to last in these rankings. Negan’s forces are everywhere too. One can guess she’ll get caught by a troop and made an example of for it.

Sorry, Carol fans, but it’s hard to argue for her right now.

27. Baby Judith (Previously 26th)

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Keep doing you, Judith.

28. Gregory (Previously 27th)

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Gregory seems like the type to sellout Alexandria if given the opportunity

29. Cal (Previously 28th)

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Still wielding a spear somewhere.

30. Freddie (Previously 32nd)

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Still being just a guy who misses his wife.

31. Craig (Previously 33rd)

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Does Craig have any value after Rick’s group killed dozens to save him? We’ll see but I doubt it.

Anyone too high or too low in this week’s rankings? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter

<< Last Week on the Power Rankings…

 

TV Character Madness: The Elite 8

<< Previously on TV Madness

Things are getting tight…and heated…and a little awkward.

Office Madness

Who are you sending to the Final Four?

Matchup #57 (Comedy)

(4) Ron Swanson – Parks and Recreation

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vs.

(2) Michael Scott – The Office

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Matchup #58 (Sidekicks)

(1) Dwight Schrute – The Office

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vs.

(6) Daryl Dixon – The Walking Dead

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Matchup #59 (Antiheroes)

(13) Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman – Better Call Saul

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vs.

(2) Walter White – Breaking Bad

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Matchup #60 (Heroes)

(1) Tyrion Lannister – Game of Thrones

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vs.

(2) Dr. Gregory House – House M.D.

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Final Four voting starts Wednesday, March 23rd. 

Follow along for more on Facebook and Twitter.

 

Next on TV Madness >>

TV Character Madness – The Sweet 16

<< Previously on TV Madness

After 4 days of voting, we have some GREAT characters in the Sweet 16, and a few who have teamed up in the past…

Walter and Saul

 

Matchup #49 (Sidekicks)

(6) Daryl Dixon – The Walking Dead

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vs.

(2) Josh Lyman – The West Wing

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Matchup #50 (Antiheroes)

(1) Tony Soprano – The Sopranos

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vs.

(13) Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman – Better Call Saul

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Matchup #51 (Heroes)

(6) Buffy – Buffy the Vampire Slayer

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vs.

(2) Gregory House – House M.D. 

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Matchup #52 (Comedy)

(9) Leslie Knope – Parks and Recreation

vs.

(4) Ron Swanson – Parks and Recreation

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Matchup #53 (Sidekicks)

(1) Dwight Schrute – The Office

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vs.

(4) Marshall Eriksen – How I Met Your Mother

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Matchup #54 (Antiheroes)

(3) Dexter Morgan – Dexter

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vs.

(2) Walter White – Breaking Bad

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Matchup #55 (Heroes)

(1) Tyrion Lannister – Game of Thrones

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vs.

(12) Jessica Jones – Jessica Jones

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Matchup #56 (Comedy)

(3) Liz Lemon – 30 Rock

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vs.

(2) Michael Scott – The Office

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Elite 8 voting begins Tuesday, April 22nd. Follow along for more on Facebook and Twitter

 

Next on TV Madness >>

Walking Dead Power Rankings: Stuck in the Middle With You

Each week, we’ll give every episode at least 24 hours to breathe…and for you to get caught up. After that, you’re clicking at your own risk. Spoilers ahead. 

Only a few of the Walking Dead regulars actually appeared in this episode and it primarily focused on two of them. However, it was a big episode for both Maggie and Carol as they overcame some ridiculous odds. We also learned a lot more about The Saviors and Negan, as we saw how they operate in tough spots.

As the title of this edition of the power rankings suggests, there was a lot of Reservoir Dogs to this episode. Themes of captivity, interrogation, deception, someone about to get lit on fire (and then a few people do, on the kill floor)…All this episode was missing was a debate on tipping and Steven Wright playing Stealer Wheel on the radio

Playing the Michael Madsen role, and biting it (see what I did there) were The Saviors.

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And that’s who we say goodbye to before the rankings…

Donnie

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“Donnie, you’re out of your element!”

Donnie was a jerk. Carol shot him. Maggie kicked his ass with her hands tied up. Then he turned into a zombie.

Molly

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Carol called her shot twice in this episode, giving you a good feeling of who she was going to put down herself. It was also the second time she told someone that smoking would kill them…

She also gives away an important detail about The Saviors by saying, “We are ALL Negan.”

Michelle

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I didn’t really have a problem with Michelle. It was just bad circumstances for her and she was on the wrong side of a gun.

Paula

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Pretty strong performance for someone who only got an episode and some change on The Walking Dead. Paula gave you a look at who The Saviors are and their point of view, which is very similar to the group we’ve followed for nearly 6 whole seasons. Carol admits that she sees a lot of herself in Paula, and that terrifies her (more on that later).

Primo

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I think there are going to be some consequences for killing Primo off too soon.

And now for this week’s power rankings:

1. Daryl Dixon (Previously 2nd)

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Daryl reclaims his top spot, even in a limited role. It wasn’t necessarily what he said but the image of him comforting Carol with the wings on his back said it all. Easy to believe his tracking skills got the group to the very unsafe “safehouse”. But it’s what he didn’t do that elevates him over Rick…

Also, Daryl is the lone representative from The Walking Dead in this year’s TV Character Madness tournament. Check out where he’s seeded in the bracket and be sure to vote for him when his number’s called!

2. Rick Grimes (Previously 1st)

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I think given what Rick knew, he did what he had to by eliminating who he thought was Negan. He and the others would probably have been much better off if they held onto Primo to get as much information as they could out of him. Would’ve been a bigger help if either Maggie or Carol stepped in to let him know they are “ALL Negan”.

3. Maggie Greene (Previously 7th)

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Great episode for Maggie. She stuck to her guns all episode and never gave in, even with the pressure of having her child. She also tried to stay diplmotic with Paula recommending that talking to Rick would be in her best interest. And damn was the #MaggieRage real the second she got free.

4. Carol Peletier (Previously 6th)

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We knew Carol was putting on her “defenseless” act from the start of the episode, to garner sympathy and become unsuspecting to the Saviors. Paula did point out though that some of the fear was real in Carol. This was the first time in a while that we had seen some real humanity in her, and I don’t think she wanted to kill Paula. To extent, it was like looking into a mirror when Carol had her gun pointed at her.

Small bit of symbolism to keep an eye one: When Carol tells that smoking will kill them, they die. Then Carol takes a drag herself. Does that spell doom for her?

5. Negan (Previously 10th)

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We know this^ isn’t Negan, but it does show how smart he is to hide his identity throughout everyone in his organization. Considering there’s more Saviors than the massive body count the Alexandrians have stacked up, I’d be scared of his army…that’s looking for revenge now.

6. Glenn Rhee (Previously 3rd)

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Glenn was also limited, like the rest of the others who showed up at the end, but there was a powerful moment for him and Maggie. They both have blood on their hands now, and that may change their approach to everything going forward. I think it’s still important though that they can relate to each other having experienced similar situations now.

7. Jesus (Previously 4th)

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Didn’t see Jesus in this episode but now the deal is complete for his Hilltop community and Alexandria. He’ll be intricate on both ends.

8. Michonne (Previously 5th)

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Quick appearance by Michonne and she only slides for not really having a line in the episode. You get a feeling she’ll be huge when things escalate soon.

From hear on out, everyone stays in the same order since they didn’t make an appearance in the episode. You can see how they earned their rankings last week here.

9. Aaron (Previously 8th)

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10. Father Gabriel (Previously 9th)

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11. Tara Chambers

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12. Heath 

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13. Rosita Espinosa 

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14. Andy (Previously 27th)

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15. Eugene Porter 

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16. Sasha 

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17. Abraham 

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18. Carl Grimes 

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19. Denise Cloyd (Previously 20th)

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20. Morgan Jones (Previously 21st)

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21. Enid (Previously 22nd)

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22. Tobin (Previously 23rd)

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23. Spencer Monroe (Previously 24th)

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24. Doctor Harlan (Previously 25th)

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25. Eric Raleigh (Previously 26th)

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26. Baby Judith (Previously 27th)

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27. Gregory (Previously 28th)

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28. Cal (Previously 29th)

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29. Olivia (Previously 30th)

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30. Dwight (Previously 31st)

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31. Freddie (Previously 32nd)

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32. Craig (Previously 33rd)

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Anyone too high or too low in this week’s rankings? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter

Walking Dead Power Rankings: “The Hilltop”

Each week, we’ll give every episode at least 24 hours to breathe…and for you to get caught up. After that, you’re clicking at your own risk. Spoilers ahead. 

“Your world’s about to get much bigger,” said Jesus when explaining to Rick and the Alexandrians that there are more communities like theirs just beyond the walls.

There was a lot to absorb from this week’s Walking Dead episode, ‘Knots Untie’. First off, Jesus easily exploited the safety within Alexandria by escaping captivity, surveying their inventory, and somehow finding exactly where #Richonne was laying.

He also opened the door for trade from his own community, The Hilltop, where they have southern plantation style “Big House”, called the Barrington House where a pompous white dude resides and calls the shots (to an extent). Personal note: I live next to a town in Northwest Chicago called Barrington, and the irony is hilarious. Walking into the Hilltop, there’s a reminder of Terminus as we see a woman working the grill. We’re told the Hilltoppers use the grill for livestock and vegetables, but it’s tough to forget the image of a human leg on the barbie. It also had a Woodbury feel to it as well, which is hard for Rick’s group to trust.

Some serious STUFF happens at the Hilltop between the true leaders of Rick’s group and Jesus’s, and the everything is set in motion to take the fight to the insanely anticipated Negan! Who’s psyched?!

Just one Goodbye before we get to this week’s rankings:

Ethan – We hardly knew ye…Viewers can safely go back to expecting the unexpected again as Ethan stabbed his community’s leader in the gut (on behalf of Negan) within seconds of us meeting the guy. As Jesus put it, “Ethan was a coward”. 

And now the living…

1. Daryl Dixon (Previously 1st)

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The streak continues for Daryl and Rick (#TrueDetectiveSeason3) as our 1 & 2. Daryl doesn’t lose any footing as he makes the biggest power play of everyone being the catalyst to suggest the group needs to go after Negan and the Saviors. He tells them “The Boogeyman ain’t shit”, which is admirable…but could be a little overzealous. Like the main group after defeating an entire horde of walkers, we’ll just roll with it…for now.

 

2. Rick Grimes (Previously 2nd)

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“What?” was the best reaction Rick could possibly have to people staring at him for stabbing their friend in the throat in front of them. Mind you, Ethan did sneakily stab their leader and tried killing Rick as well. Rick’s hot-headed nature and bloodlust (as they call it in Arrow) makes him a bit of a wild card still, but it’s good he’s aware of it. Delegating the diplomatic role to Maggie seemed like a solid development for the Ricktatorship…

He does propose the trade that would get Alexandria food and supplies as long as they can deliver some dude named Craig from Negan’s captivity. He also back’s Daryl’s suggestion by saying” Confrontation is something we’ve never had trouble with.” Me thinks there’s going to be trouble.

3. Maggie Greene (Previously 5th)

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Maggie made some big moves to boost her stock, especially at the Hilltop. The leader that Deanna saw her as came to fruition as she held her own in negotiating with the Hilltop leader, Gregory. Maggie took zero shit from him as she called him out for hitting on her and calling her honey. Then at the end of the episode, she exploited the Hilltop’s weaknesses and their lack of defense. Asking for half their supplies and food for the Alexandrian’s help was a House of Cards like power move.

Some foreshadowing though comes from Maggie’s discussion with Rick regarding the plan to go after the Saviors. “It’s going to cost something.” We should be nervous about what that is.

4. Michonne (Previously 3rd)

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Michonne’s slight slide isn’t a knock on her at all, but more credit to Maggie. When Rick tell’s Carl “This is different,” I believe it. Michonne is even more capable of defending herself than Rick is, and the choke slam she laid on the angry Hilltop chick during the scuffle between the two sides was badass. Rick’s lucky to have her this invested in him now with her katana sword.

5. Jesus (Previously 11th)

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Big jump to the top 5 in just 2 episodes, but he’s definitely proven his worth. While Gregory may be the leader of the Hilltop by title, you can tell Jesus is pulling the strings in their community. He is currently the glue and ambassador for Alexandria and his group, and come on…he totally schooled everyone with the intel he gathered in the first 5 minutes of the episode. That was impressive.

Still needs to work on getting Daryl to trust him.

6. Negan (Previously 19th)

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Hasn’t even physically been on the show yet, but he’s able to get someone consequence stabbed and another guy killed. That’s power.

Based on the way the Hilltop describes Negan, he runs his outfit like the mafia. The Saviors get kickbacks in return for “protection”, aka not brutally murdering everyone. For the second time this season, we heard a reference to someone being killed “off the bat”. Third time will be the charm, or so to speak.

7. Glenn Rhee (Previously 4th)

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Glenn had an interesting episode. He seemed nervous and reserved about the safety of Maggie and their unborn child. Then he finds a doctor who can help them, and hope with the new Hilltop community aligning with them. His “new dad” moment passing around the ultrasound photo and look of assurance toward Abraham at the end really showed how content he seems at this point…which should make us all nervous.

 

8. Carl Grimes (Previously 6th)

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Carl had an opportunity to pull a #ClassicCarl move and get all bratty when finding out about Rick and Michonne, but he didn’t. Stepping up to stay back and protect Judith was more proof of his maturity. He’s come a long way, for sure, and #PirateCarl is his best version yet.

 

9. Sasha (Previously 8th)

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I’m not totally sure what’s going on here with Sasha and Abraham. She’s definitely in his head. And he has her in mind when getting a gift from Rosita and talking about “settling down” with Glenn. Making the call to split up their shifts definitely puts Sasha in the driver seat between the two. Whatever’s going on with them, it appears she doesn’t think it’s the best idea for either of them.

 

10. Aaron (Previously 9th)

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A little surprised Aaron didn’t go with the group to the Hilltop, but he’s done nothing to rise or drop in the rankings. I imagine he’ll have some thoughts next week when Rick bring’s the decision to go after the Saviors to the Alexandrians.

 

11. Abraham (Previously 7th)

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It was a weird episode for Abraham. He seemed fine until Sasha broke up their guard shift. He seemed happy with Rosita until she gave him a gift, which reminded him of Sasha. He almost killed FREDDIE (I’ll get more into Freddie later) and wasn’t putting up too much of a fight while he was being choked out. Then some epiphany happened after Daryl saved him…Was it some kind of inner struggle decision between Rosita and Sasha? Is he ready to live or die? Will he keep his cool on a shift with Eugene?

TUNE IN NEXT WEEK (TV Cartoon voiceover guy voice)!

12. Denise Cloyd (Previously 12th)

 

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Denise is getting weekly appearances and I enjoy each one. Baking Daryl cookies definitely scored her some points too. Something about her looking out for him seems significant for down the road.

 

13. Enid (Previously 10th)

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No Enid this week means we haven’t seen how she’s grown after little dramatic spat with Carl. I still have high hopes for her to chill out and be a positive contributor to the community. Knowing The Walking Dead, somebody’s gotta bring the drama and conflict. There are a number of characters down the list who can provide that though…

 

14. Carol Peletier (Previously 20th)

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I’ve gotten flack for not having Carol higher in the rankings the past couple weeks, and this isn’t a concession to that. Carol’s choices this season have hurt the group more than helped it and her conflict with Morgan at the worst possible time wasn’t justifiable. However…

The group going after Negan is going to need warriors and if there’s one thing she’s built for, it’s killing.

 

15. Morgan Jones (Previously 17th)

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Where Carol goes in these rankings, Morgan isn’t particularly far. Going into a battle, you need him…but you probably need Carol more because she can pull the trigger. It will be the first time we’ve seen him in weeks on the show and it will be interesting to see how time has changed him and Carol. Hopefully for the better.

 

16. Rosita Espinosa (Previously 18th)

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I’m worried that whatever Abraham thinks he’s going to do after his near death experience will either make or break Rosita. I am hopeful it’s the former but sometimes you really don’t know with complimentary characters on The Walking Dead. I don’t care what Abraham thinks, that neckless was pretty damn sweet.

17. Heath (Previously 13th)

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There are two original Alexandrians I trust on this upcoming rescue mission, Aaron and Heath.

 

18. Tara Chambler (Previously 15th)

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I’m a little surprised we’ve seen more of Denise than Tara in recent episodes, and I do hope she finally gets her pop sooner than later. You can be confident she’ll handle herself alright, whether it’s on a mission or protecting Alexandria. I don’t know how much that will matter when Negan enters the fold.

 

19. Eugene Porter (Previously 16th)

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I think there will be an interesting parallel between Eugene and Abraham’s development. Eugene wants to step up as someone who protects the community and Abraham’s growing more and more passive, even hesitant. Abraham’s demise seems inevitable at this point and I hope to see Eugene take on that role in the group, seeing that he’s training and all.

20. Father Gabriel (Previously 14th)

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Father Gabriel’s slide isn’t necessarily his fault, but more so his importance diminished a little at this current point. Feel better about him being back in Alexandria during Rick’s next raid.

 

21. Spencer Monroe (Previously 21st)

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I feel better about Spencer after he put down Zombie-Deanna. I’m not sure how he’ll fair in the next few weeks, but at least the sentimental stock is high at the moment.

 

22. Doctor Harlan (Newbie)

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YAY! NEW CHARACTERS – Harlan made a pretty good impression to start. He offered his services to Glenn and Maggie, who seemed to desperately need it. Even after watching Rick tear out Ethan’s throat, the doc didn’t waiver in his generosity either. He does seem to be in need of the Alexandrian’s protection though, and that counts for most Hilltoppers other than Jesus.

 

23. Eric Raleigh (Previously 22nd)

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Still alive.

24. Tobin (Previously 23rd)

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Still Tobin.

25. Baby Judith (Previously 24th)

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Still adorable. 

 

26. Gregory (Newbie)

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Enter ‘THIS GUY! Yes, Xander Berkely, who you may remember from 24 and Air Force One, is very good at playing smarmy jerks. That’s exactly what Gregory comes off as, but at least he made a deal at all with Maggie.

 

27. Andy (Newbie)

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While Andy’s going to join the group as a liaison with knowledge of Negan’s camp, he’s probably reluctant because Rick killed his buddy…and his arm is broken.

 

28. Cal (Newbie)

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This guy seems like nothing more than a punk with a spear, but for now he’s on Rick’s side.

 

29. Olivia (Previously 25th)

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Hey, you’re STILL here…for now.

30. Dwight (Previously 26th)

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I get a feeling we’re going to see Dwight again very soon…with Daryl’s crossbow.

 

31. Freddie (Newbie)

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Freddie had a nice touching moment, but I don’t think this poor guy is long for the Walking Dead world much longer.

Anyone too high or too low in this week’s rankings? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter!