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.

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

 

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The Walking Dead Power Rankings: N.W.O. (Negan’s World Order)

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. 

The biggest theme for The Walking Dead was how much bigger the world actually was than Rick and the Alexandrians knew. As far as we know, there are at least 3 more factions who will have a direct impact on the group we’ve grown to know and love: The Hilltop, the horse people (very likely The Kingdom” led by Ezekiel, for those who read the comics and I don’t think that’s much of a spoiler), and The Saviors. Right now though, this current world is run by Negan.

There is a lot of angst regarding the Season 6 finale. Fans were prepared to say goodbye to one of their favorite characters and now they have to wait till October to find out who it is. To an extent, I agree that Scott Gimple and the show’s writers are taking liberties with the audience’s patience but at the same time…I like it.

We’ve heard so much about Negan since the mid-season finale, how everything you own belongs to him, how all the Saviors are HIM. The Season 6 finale was a 90 minute introduction to just how powerful this man is and goddammit, he’s powerful. It was slow, it was painful, but the point got across. Then when everyone watching braced themselves and thought they knew who would get their brains bashed in at the end, Negan (representing the writers) took that away from you. It’s sick, twisted, and probably dumb, but now you’re going to have to tune in for the Season 7 premiere to find out what happened. It’s the 2nd time this season they “Jon Snow’d” you (for Game of Thrones fans, it’s the mystery of whether or not an important character died).

Now for the last Walking Dead Power Rankings…until Season 7.

1. Negan (Previously 2nd)

Negan

“Pissing our pants yet…It’s gonna be pee pee pants city here real soon?”

As you now know, this is Negan’s World Order. He has a James Bond villain’s amount of henchmen. He’s methodical in getting his message across and having his followers call themselves by his name.  Negan’s this weird mix of mafia don, pirate captain, feudal king and cult leader. He takes control by force, he plunders those he conquers, everything you work for makes it up to him, and his followers seem to believe in him. He would also prefer people work for them than kill them, which is sensible. The crazy thing about it all is that I think…I love him? That’s probably thanks to Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s performance after he climbed out of the camper. He’s a bad dude, for sure, but he was charming, funny, and had this swagger about him that makes some villains too cool to hate entirely.

 

2. Morgan Jones (Previously 4th)

Morgan

Out of everyone among the Alexandrians right now, Morgan is the most in control. Morgan also broke his own rules to save Carol, blasting away Roman with the gun Rick gave him in the previous episode. Morgan gave the man a chance to drop his gun, but didn’t hesitate a second when he saw that look in his eyes. He also might be the key to saving the group from Negan, as he and Carol ride with a pair of equestrian enthusiasts with body armor to wherever they come from (confident it’s The Kingdom). If anyone can be diplomatic for an alliance, Morgan probably has the capacity to broker that kind of deal. He also has a chance to go full Eastman with Carol, who needs to find purpose again.

 

3. Rick Grimes (Previously 1st)

Confident Rick

I don’t fault Rick at all for falling into Negan’s trap. It was going to happen, sooner or later. The goal was to get Maggie to the Hilltop to Dr. Harlan, and Rick doesn’t send his people into harm’s way without going with. He was getting cocky though and he didn’t truly know how big the world was or how dangerous Negan, is until it was too late. You live and you learn though, right? Keyword: Live. But Rick’s now facing the consequences for killing so many Saviors.

Negan kill scale: 0/10 – Negan threatened to feed Carl’s remaining eyeball to Rick, so that cancels them both out

4. Lead Savior (Newbie)

Lead Savior

“Welcome to where you’re going.”

We don’t know his name, yet, but we have seen this the lead savior before. You may recall him in the forest with Daryl and Dwight, before they hated each other, and he cut off another savior’s limb to save him. We didn’t see his face then, but Steve Ogg’s is pretty memorable. He orchestrated the whole elaborate path for Rick to

5. Dwight (Previously 3rd)

Dwight

Dwight hauled in 4 of the 9 captives, and they are some of the more dangerous from the group. He’s going to be an interesting variable going forward, considering he tried fleeing from Negan before. Will someone get through to Dwight to help them get out of this mess? The little bit of hope is in his hands, if so.

6. Eugene (Previously 16th)

Eugene

This is the highest Eugene has ever been ranked and likely ever will. As much as it was probably a fool’s errand, Eugene gave himself up as a decoy to drive the winnebago into the Saviors’ next trap. That says a lot for a character who started out only caring about himself and survival. During his goodbyes to Abraham, Rick, and Maggie, he also passed his instructions for making bullets on. That should come in handy eventually.

Negan kill scale: 9/10 – Eugene had his nice moment to say goodbye and passed on his last bit of usefulness in the bullet instructions. The only thing that makes me hesitate on Eugene’s fate is the lack of heartbreak he garners from dying for effect.

 

7. Jesus (Previously 9th)

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If there’s going to be an uprising against Negan, Jesus is more than likely the man who can bring the other factions together to make it happen. Whatever alliances the Hilltop has, they have them because of him. He also knows better than most what it’s like to deal with Negan, so Rick will need to lean on him for that information.

8. Maggie Greene (Previously 4th)

Maggie

Physically in the worst place possible, with hers and Glenn’s baby at risk, Maggie stayed cool. She’s not really giving up, she’s trying to keep Rick even keeled by saying she believes in him, and when she shouldn’t even be walking…she says she will. It’s likely that she’s going to lose one or two more important people in her life (Glenn and the baby). After losing the most already on the show (her whole family), I’m more confident in her to handle that than most of the characters on the show.

Negan kill scale: 2/10 – There’s a lot of Daenerys Targaryen in Maggie, and there’s too much of her story left to go. It also seems like Negan has a soft spot for women…until someone like Dwight tries running off with them.

9. Carol (Previously 14th)

Carol

I want to rank Carol higher, but her willingness to give up made that tough for me to do. What puts her back in the Top 10 was how badass she was when Roman had her dead to rights. “This world doesn’t choose for you, you do.” After being shot multiple times, she laughed at Roman. I do and don’t get her resistance from Morgan. Ironically, Morgan took the “choice” to die away from Carol. Like he said though, she “can come back from this”. She’ll have to when she finds out her friends are under Negan’s control.

10. Father Gabriel (Previously 12th)

Father Gabriel

Two characters made the biggest leaps in development this past season, Eugene and Father Gabriel. Gabriel’s may be the most significant though, since he was at one point against Rick and those closest to him. Now he’s Judith’s personal bodyguard and more ready to defend Alexandria than anyone currently there.

 

11. Carl Grimes (Previously 15th)

Carl

I think there’s a lot to be said about Carl wanting to go on the mission to help Maggie. As Enid pointed out, he is looking for a fight…but so is everyone on the winnebago. Justifying Carl’s decision is Rick not putting up a fight. Rick also calls him “Son” before they are surrounded, as if the Walking Dead writers are conscious of the “CORAL” joke. I put Carl ahead of the others remaining at Lucille’s mercy because he stayed tough in front of Negan. “Cry a little”, Negan said…Nope. The “future serial killer” made a savvy move locking Enid in the closet to keep her safe. She is definitely his motivation these days.

Negan kill scale: 1/10 – As noted before, Negan’s ready to feed Carl’s other eye to Rick. That suggests he’s keeping Carl alive, but doesn’t necessarily have to grab his eyeball. Just saying.

 

12. Glenn Rhee (Previously 6th)

Glenn

Things aren’t looking great for Glenn, but at least he tried to defend his wife’s honor. His innocence is gone after having to kill for the first time and he may be paying for that soon. The foreshadowing has been there too, shown holding a bat before and seeing photos of Negan’s victims. Losing him would still be especially painful as he had been the group’s moral compass up until this point.

Negan kill scale: 8/10 – As many of you know by now, the comics suggest Glenn is the one at the end of Negan’s bat. Losing him would shake the group to its core. However, he’s cheated death twice already this season. Can he and the writers surprise us again?

 

13. Abraham (Previously 10th)

Abraham

Abraham gave Negan a glare that was just begging to be smacked by Lucille. Part of it is “take me, not them” and another is “do your worst, asshole.” Abraham is ready to have something real with Sasha and he wants to have what Glenn and Maggie have. I don’t think he’s totally willing to lose that, but he’d rather sacrifice himself for any of those 3 first so they have a chance going forward.

Negan Kill Scale: 8/10 – Negan saw Abraham’s fu manchu and his only response was, “I need to shave this.” That could very well mean getting rid of Abraham, but I also think he’d find Abraham to be useful in his militant world. 

 

14. Michonne (Previously 7th)

Michonne

Michonne’s got her whole family kneeling next to her, Rick and Carl. I think people are confident because Rick’s fallen for her, she’s doomed (like Lori and Jessie). I think Rick has suffered enough and that would be too redundant, at least at this point. She’s also way more of a capable killer once shit hits the fan…which it just did.

Negan Kill Scale: 5/10 – all the things listed above, and Negan may find Michonne useful.

 

15. Sasha (Previously 12th)

Sasha

I thought the “packaged deal” thing was pretty sweet, however I think Sasha’s skill set would have been best used for defending Alexandria. That may be more on Rick for not having her stay behind, but none of their warriors are back protecting to their home. That’s not to say she isn’t reliable in either scenario.

Negan Kill Scale: 4/10 – If anyone’s getting killed first between “Sabraham”(is that their ship name?), it’s old Abe. He’s the one who appeared done not too long ago.

 

 16. Horse Guy (Newbie)

Horse People

Here’s your window into the next faction (possibly Kingdom). You get a feeling these guys will get along well with Morgan, because they carry spears. They also may be the key to helping Rick’s group out of this jam.

17. Aaron (Previously 13th)

Aaron

Original Alexandria alum Aaron needed to come on this mission. He grew a bond with Maggie and he probably feels that he owes a lot to Rick for making the community stronger. He’s the strongest of his group and it would knock the hell out the other Alexandrians if they lost him.

Negan Kill Scale: 6/10 – I have to think there’s still more for Aaron’s role and offing him now wouldn’t effect the audience as much as others.

 

18. Enid (Previously 17th)

Enid

Props to Enid for trying to get Carl to focus on what was immediately important, Maggie’s health. You can tell she believes more in the community and she echoes Glenn’s overall point that they are stronger together than apart. Who’s going to let her out of the closet though?

 

19. Daryl Dixon (Previously 8th)

Daryl's Not Dead

I hate having Daryl drop this far but let’s be honest, most of these characters wouldn’t be in this position if it weren’t for him. Yes, Maggie would still have been sick regardless, so likely Glenn, Rick and probably Daryl would have gone to take her to the Hilltop. Probably Aaron too. Who knows about Eugene…

Negan Kill Scale: 7/10 – Killing Daryl would be the biggest blow to the audience (outside of Rick, maybe). I think he and Dwight have serious unfinished business though. My hope is that Daryl letting Dwight live before pays off in the long run. Daryl deserves to go out fighting too, not like Opie from Sons of Anarchy.

 

20. Rosita (Oversight last week, Previously 8th before then)

Rosita

I apologize for forgetting about Rosita last week, but she was sliding then with Daryl too. Daryl would not have put the other members of the group in this position if he didn’t leave. That could have been prevented if Rosita stopped him, or at least tried to get through to him as someone who was grieving the same way. Now she’s stuck on a chopping block with her ex and his new fling. Ouch.

Negan Kill Scale: 5/10 – There’s something about Denise telling Rosita “I don’t think you’ve ever known what it’s like to be alone” and Negan likes his “company” from what it sounds. She was already in a downward spiral. Why not go the way of Andrea with the enemy too?

 

21. Doctor Harlan (Previously 18th)

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Somebody’s gotta help Maggie, right?

22. Heath (Previously 19th)

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So did Heath and Tara get picked up by The Saviors too? Apparently not…

 

23. Tara Chambers (Previously 20th)

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…and if Heath and Tara are still out there, they can either help Rick or team with the horse people and Hilltop.

24. Tobin (Previously 21st)

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Tobes is just Tobin.

25. Spencer Monroe (Previously 22nd)

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Spencer suggesting that Alexandria could make a deal makes me nervous, or maybe what was left of Rick’s swagger rubbed off on him. Still a big question mark.

26. Olivia (Previously 24th)

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Ready your jars, Olivia.

 

27. Andy (Previously 25th)

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Saviors probably STILL want to get some revenge on this dude, right?

28. Eric Raleigh (Previously 26th)

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Your boyfriend’s in danger, Eric. What will you do?

 

29. Baby Judith (Previously 27th)

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Keep doing you, Judith.

30. Gregory (Previously 28th)

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I still don’t trust Gregory helping the Alexandrians against Negan.

 

31. Cal (Previously 29th)

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I like the spear guys on horses better than this one.

32. Freddie (Previously 30th)

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What would you say, you do here?

33. Craig (Previously 31st)

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I seriously thought Craig was the guy hanging from chain with an X painted on him, but that was “just a guy.”

Anyone too high or too low in this week’s rankings? Let me know on Facebook or Twitter. Power Rankings will be back sooner than you think…Game of Thrones returns April 24th and we have the Pre-Season 6 Rankings already done. 

 

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The Walking Dead Power Rankings: “It’s All Over”

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. 

In “East”, the penultimate episode of The Walking Dead’s 6th season, things go awry in a hurry. Johnny Cash’s song playing during the montage following the opening credits told you everything. The relationships, the security, the confidence…”It’s All Over.” It setup some powerful symbolism to Rick and Michonne biting the apple in bed.

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Like Adam and Eve with the forbidden fruit. They thought they had the world to themselves, and it all changed quickly after

It’s a difficult episode to watch as we see some of the strongest characters we’ve come to love make some very foolish choices that put everyone else in danger. You know a fight is coming. You know the vengeful Saviors are knocking at your door. Yet, well..

A quick, “we hardly knew ye” goodbye to Jiro and his Savior posse. 

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Funny how Jiro’s voice sounded very similar to Paula’s when confronting Carol. He knows the community is called “Alexandria” and he knows how close they are to it. Obviously Negan’s men have been doing their homework.

Now for this week’s Power Rankings:

1. Rick Grimes (Previously 2nd)

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What I appreciate about Rick’s leadership is his willingness to go head first on missions. It was smart of him to go with Morgan to find Carol and get intel along the way of how close the Saviors are and what they’re carrying. It was even smarter of him to take Morgan’s advice to head back to Alexandria as soon as possible.

We also see another side to Rick. He’s out looking for Carol because she’s family. Rather than react badly to Morgan’s “Wolf” admission, he wants him back at Alexandria. You wonder how much more Rick can grow, and here’s more evidence.

“Michonne did steal that protein bar” was Rick awesomely trading a confession for Morgan’s. Hopefully it isn’t the last thing he gets to tell him.

2. Negan (Previously 3rd)

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“Hi…I’m Negan.”

I understand that’s from the finale’s teaser, but Negan is holding all the cards right now. He has at least 4 of Rick’s people in his captivity, an infinite number of henchmen (apparently), and a barbedwire bat named Lucille.

Right now, this man holds to keys to your heart as a viewer. There is going to be blood, but who among your favorite characters will be shedding it?

 

3. Dwight (Previously 18th)

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NOBODY MAKES DARYL BLEED HIS OWN BLOOD!

Oh, Dwight did. The rivalry between these two is one of the most compelling aspects of this story. Dwight is in Daryl’s head, has the group reeling after taking out Denise, and has captured 4 of their best warriors. It’s too impressive not to give credit to.

4. Maggie Greene (Previously 4th)

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Michonne mentions at the start of the episode that Maggie has her and Rick on a tight schedule. That suggests Maggie is as much in command of Alexandria as anyone, even as much as Rick. Although she’s in a bad spot toward the end of the episode with her baby, there’s an obvious arc change for her as she asks Enid to cut her hair.

“I don’t want anything to get in my way.” This harkens back to when Shane shaved his head after killing Otis, who pulled on his hair and was weighing him down as they fought off walkers. I don’t think Maggie is turning into a complete asshole like Shane, because she has endured even more than he had to this point and remained strong. With Glenn in danger and apparently her child as well, how does she stay poised?

 

5. Morgan Jones (Previously 14th)

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We’ve been waiting a few episodes now to see what Morgan will do in the next time of crisis. It’s huge that he springs into action to chase after Carol. The woman wanted to kill him not long ago, and here he is chasing after her when there’s apparent danger EVERYWHERE.

There was a lot of references to Morgan’s “standalone” episode with Eastman. Literally, he and Rick were traveling east and the episode was called “East”. Then Morgan explains the “circle of life” process of him saving the Wolf, who kidnapped Denise, then saved Denise, who eventually saved Carl. It was interesting justification of his decision making. Now he’s helped bring back some humanity in Rick in this episode alone, and Carol has all of a sudden found hers again too…just like he did.

 

6. Glenn Rhee (Previously 7th)

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The group’s moral compass is currently in trouble. Glenn knows that the group is significantly stronger when it’s together rather than separated. That’s been proven MULTIPLE times like at Terminus, fighting the horde, and raiding the Saviors camp. It’s amazing that he still has to be the voice of reason to convince characters like Daryl and Rosita in the toughest of times.

 

7. Michonne (Previously 6th)

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Michonne is right there with Glenn, having to play babysitter to other members going rogue but also tied up among Saviors. If there’s anyone you can feel better about getting out of this pickle, it’s Michonne.

There’s also something that Jesus said a few episodes ago that I think motivates Michonne, “You have to know what you’re fighting for.” She’s fighting for Rick, Judith, Carl and their community now. She even says so after taking a bite of the apple in bed toward the beginning.

 

8. Daryl Dixon (Previously 1st)

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I’m sorry, friends, but Daryl was acting a fool in this episode. He’s been regularly at the top of our rankings since we began keeping them, but right now he has put at least 3 other characters and himself in harm’s way.

As Dwight said after shooting Daryl, “You’ll be fine.” Will he be by the end of the season finale?

(He’s booked to be on Talking Dead that night. That makes everyone nervous but I think Daryl has more of a score to settle with Dwight to go out anytime soon)

 

9. Jesus (Previously 5th)

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Jesus doesn’t get any face time, which was why he slips here, but his abilities and intelligence on the Saviors are going to be crucial in the inevitable fight with Negan. He and his Hilltop community are referenced twice in the episode, which leads me to think they have to be a variable in the finale.

 

10. Abraham (Previously 11th)

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I love Abraham’s “Ready to tear the world a brand new asshole” attitude right now. It’s huge considering how he was spiraling not too long ago and things looked bleak for his arc. That isn’t to say we’re being set up for tragedy with him, but Abraham is much more on his game when he’s happy and has something he is invested in…that being Sasha.

 

11. Sasha (Previously 12th)

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I know…where Abraham gets ranked, Sasha isn’t far away. They are a team right now and a pretty good one when they are on point. If we’re talking defense, Sasha is key as a sniper. She has also come a long way since losing Bob and Tyreese. It’s hard not to feel happy for her. It’s also interesting that she maintains her chill when having to stand her post right next to Rosita. I loved the glare she gave after Abraham climbed up to take her place. It silently screamed “Don’t mess with this.”

 

12. Father Gabriel (Previously 10th)

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Speaking of defense, Father Gabriel is definitely someone we can trust more. In a sneak peak to the finale, Gabriel pledges his service to keeping Judith safe when the war comes to them. I think his development has been critical to the narrative that “People can come back.” As someone who tried to sell out Rick and his people not long ago, after giving them shelter a season before, Gabriel is proof of what Morgan has preached this season.

 

13. Aaron (Previously 13th)

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Aaron will be a character Rick needs in the confrontation with the Saviors in the Finale, and probably after. Someone we love is likely going to die, and I would like for Aaron to take on that role that fills their place. He is the most proven out of the original Alexandrians and trusts Rick more than most.

 

14. Carol Peletier (Previously 26th)

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Welp, Carol’s “no kill” policy lasted all but 1 episode.

She’s out of my doghouse though because her leaving didn’t result in Alexandrian loss…yet. This was the first time she seemed really upset about having to kill Saviors, so she’s obviously still very conflicted. Rick and Morgan tracking her reminded me a lot of the group’s search for Sophia in season 2. I’m a little worried that Morgan will find a similar result because of that.

But she still pulled off a ridiculously impressive standoff against Jiro and the Saviors.

15. Carl Grimes (Previously 15th)

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Some serious foreshadowing as Carl checked out the Savior gun with the “Lucille” carving in it. I think we currently have the strongest version of Carl to handle what is to come. His experiences and learning from #Richonne have him more than prepared for a Savior attack.

Also, if we’re keeping score…

Carl – 2

Daryl – 1

…when it comes to being shot.

16. Eugene Porter (Previously 9th)

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“Phase 2” Eugene is also prepared for the worst case scenario. You wonder if his bullet making plan will be beneficial more in the short term or the longterm though.

 

17. Enid (Previously 20th)

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Hey look!…It’s Enid!

And she’s not being a brat! That’s so awesome. Seriously, I was worried for quite a while since her and Carl had their momentary spat in the woods.

What I hoped sort of came true. You could tell that she and Maggie were growing closer, and it’s nice to see her step in to fill in for duties when possible. Right now, she’s  most responsible for keeping Maggie safe while she deals with something going wrong in her belly too.

 

18. Doctor Harlan (Previously 19th)

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Only doctor between Alexandria and The Hilltop. Yeah, he’s kinda important while Maggie has pregnancy problems.

 

19. Heath (Previously 16th)

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In a 90 minute finale, there could be time for a look-in on Heath and Tara on their run. Maybe the come back in time or show up while the 6 characters (Carol, Morgan, Glenn, Michonne, Rosita and Daryl) are on the outside. His presence would certainly be helpful.

20. Tara Chambers (Previously 17th)

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Oh Tara…Like Carol, I have no idea how she’s going to react when she finds out about Denise. Maybe she’ll get some revenge. Maybe she’ll join her lover. I guess we’ll see, but it seems like something that should be resolved by the end of the season.

21. Tobin (Previously 21st)

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Heavy sleeper, that Tobin.

I still think he looks like the love child of Craig T. Nelson and Bill Fagerbakke from the TV show Coach.  He’s going to get a moment to fight, but I still don’t think it’s going to end well for him. PROVE ME WRONG, TOBIN. Your fling with Carol was already shocking enough. Do it again!

22. Spencer Monroe (Previously 22nd)

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So which Spencer are we going to get when shit hits the fan again?

The one who nuts up or the one who shuts up?

23. Roman (Newbie)

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The lone survivor of Jiro’s Savior crew that was blown away by Carol, and he’s on the hunt. I think he’s going to represent a crossroads moment for Morgan and Carol. Will one of them kill him? Will he kill one of them? Now I’m nervous…

24. Olivia (Previously 23rd)

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Ready your jars, Olivia.

 

25. Andy (Previously 24th)

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Saviors probably want to get some revenge on this dude, right?

26. Eric Raleigh (Previously 25th)

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Similar to Spencer, nut up or shut up time is coming for Eric.

 

27. Baby Judith (Previously 27th)

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Keep doing you, Judith.

28. Gregory (Previously 28th)

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You wonder if Gregory will stand in Jesus’s way to help the Alexandrians against Negan. He seems shifty like that.

29. Cal (Previously 29th)

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Sit on it, Potsy.

30. Freddie (Previously 30th)

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What would you say, you do here?

31. Craig (Previously 31st)

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…and you too.

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

 

<< Last week on the Power Rankings

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…

 

Walking Dead Power Rankings: The Killing

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. 

So…that took a dark turn.

A few observations from last weekend’s Walking Dead:

  • Negan’s men are really heavy sleepers
  • Rick’s group are mostly all cold blooded killers now.
  • Potential foreshadowing is being cranked to the max.
  • No way all these couples survive the rest of the season.
  • DID YOU SEE JOHNNY DEPP’S HEAD?!

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Yep, here’s Johnny…on the right. Director Greg Nicotero confirmed in an interview with Entertainment Weekly that it was indeed Depp’s head saying “I think we had sculpted an emaciated version of a dummy head for something and we used Johnny Depp’s head as a basis just for a clay sculpt.”

The “Gregory” head was actually a cast of Nicotero’s head, and apparently Norman Reedus (Daryl) has asked if he could keep all the sculpted heads. *Not* creepy at all.

It was a big episode for most of the characters who went on the raid of Negan’s camp. Jesus continues to remind the group that “this is the world now”, while others, like Aaron, Glenn, and Heath have to justify their actions with “it’s either us or them”…All while they stabbed unsuspecting “Saviors” in the head while they slept.

There weren’t any real losses to the group we’ve all grown to love, but I do have to ask one quesiont…

WHERE DO ALL THESE ALEXANDRIANS KEEP COMING FROM?

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These extras and “new” community members in Alexandria are more persistent than the walkers themselves. By the way, the man circled above is Sonequa Martin-Green’s (Sasha) husband in real life. According to IMDB, he’s been in 5 episodes and his name is Scott. I’m not sure whether or not it’s worth me including him or the randos that Carol handed cookies to in the open, but scroll down to find out…

1. Rick Grimes (Previously 2nd)

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Rick quarterbacked the mostly successful raid on Negan’s camp and that elevates him to 1st in the Power Rankings finally. He also made the Ricktatorship a little more democratic by allowing the Alexandrians to decide if they would move forward with their deal with the Hilltop, while garnering a majority of their support for it.

2. Daryl Dixon (Previously 1st)

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Going from 1st to 2nd isn’t a knock on Daryl. It was just the first time he was taking a bit of a backseat role in a longtime. On the plus side, he did get his motorcycle back at the end of the episode…

3. Glenn Rhee (Previously 7th)

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Big episode for Glenn. It’s amazing that up until now, Glenn was the only one to go this long since the very beginning to NOT kill a living person. He rose the occasion though, and it made him a lot less innocent than we had always viewed him.

The foreshadowing I was eluding to earlier was Glenn getting a good look at a number of Negan’s victims, as he stared at polaroids of people with their heads bashed in. A lot of fans with knowledge of what happens in the comics had their hearts drop a little as they saw that.

4. Jesus (Previously 5th)

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“This is the next world.”

That’s the 3rd episode in a row that Jesus has said that, and it’s an ominous justification for the group’s actions since they found him. This particular scene, where he saves Heath and Glenn from a Savior trying to get one shot off, was an interesting one that featured characters from 3 different groups…Glenn (Rick’s original group), Heath (Alexandria) and Jesus (The Hilltop). We learned more about all 3 in this episode.

5. Michonne (Previously 4th)

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Michonne remained steady and reliable, as always. Using an assault rifle more than her katana was nice changeup though.

6. Carol Peletier (Previously 14th)

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We waited a few weeks to see how Carol would bounce back from the events of the standoff against the horde. Pretty impressive, if you ask me…

She was back to baking cookies for everyone in town, but this time meaning it. She has new love interest in Tobin, #Carbin for those who care about TV ‘ships. And she was the one to suggest Morgan move on from their conflict. That’s a big step for the always suspicious Carol and I feel the group can trust her more. Keeping the incident to herself and not telling Rick also seems more helpful than harmful, as opposed to her behavior in past episodes.

Unfortunately, not following Maggie’s lead to go help everyone in the raid might have costed them being captured. Her intentions were in the right place though.

7. Maggie Greene (Previously 3rd)

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Maggie dropping in rankings is much less on her as it is other characters stepping up. It’s very admirable that she wanted to be accountable for the deal she struck with Gregory and to make sure the plan goes through without a hitch. By going though, she was more of a liability than asset as she and Carol were taken hostage.

8. Aaron (Previously 10th)

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“If it wasn’t us, it was going to be you.”

Great episode for Aaron. He spoke on behalf of the Alexandrians to have Rick’s back for the raid. When held his own against multiple Saviors. He also wasn’t wrong with his mindset of “it’s us vs. you” when you can tell he wasn’t comfortable killing the man.

9. Father Gabriel (Previously 20th)

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Father Gabriel had a sweet combo of Boondock Saints and Machete as he executed the savior trying to flee the compound.

Gabriel GIF

His training has paid off and he’s come the farthest from being more of a coward than the leader that his collar suggests he should be. Gabriel still identifying himself as a priest shows that he hasn’t given up on his spiritual commitment, especially in a world that doesn’t seem to need it.

10. Negan (Previously 6th)

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Two things from this episode made Negan’s presence even scarier than we already knew.

  1. The photos just casually hanging up of victims with their brains bashed in.
  2. His backup that was able to kidnap Carol and Maggie.

His debut is getting closer and closer, and it’s going to suck for quite a people people, I’m sure.

11. Tara Chambers

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Tara makes the most out of her screen time. Quick on her feet, she suggested the Hilltoppers get Craig back to complete their deal. She’s also as dependable as anyone in the group when needed.

12. Heath (Previously 17th)

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We know he was conflicted a little about having to kill living people, but he grew with Glenn when he had to finally do it. He hesitated when he had a knife to a sleeping Savior’s head, but blew quite a few away with a rifle when instinct took over. Continuing on his mission to go on a run with Tara seemed like the best decision after it was all said and done too…although, I’m nervous for the both of them if they run into Negan’s people.

13. Rosita Espinosa (Previously 16th)

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What do you do after someone dumps you? Light some jerks up with bullets. Rosita proved to be way more on top of her game than Abraham while they were taking out Negan’s henchmen. Also don’t blame her for taking out a little frustration to Carol on Morgan questioning Rick’s presentation of the plan.

14. Andy (Previously 27th)

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For a pretty new dude who was fighting Rick and Daryl a week ago, Andy held his own in probably the most crucial part to getting into Negan’s facility. We’ve seen characters in the past pretty much wet themselves in these scenarios, so Andy got a ton of bonus points from me…although I still don’t think he is long for this world.

15. Eugene Porter (Previously 19th)

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Best moment of the entire episode, hands down. Eugene is ALWAYS watching!

16. Sasha (Previously 9th)

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Sasha drops a little because she acted like a football player who tackles an offensive player INTO the end zone. Really nothing else wrong, but c’mon…You’re gonna let a dude get to the alarm like that?

17. Abraham (Previously 11th)

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The unraveling continues for Abraham. I get why he broke up with Rosita, but the reasoning he gave her sucked and he really wasn’t all that helpful against the Saviors. It feels like a slow death march for him, literally.

18. Carl Grimes (Previously 8th)

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Carl had nothing to do with this episode, but he hasn’t done anything to fall out of the Top 20.

19. Lady Savior (Newbie)

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Just from hearing her on the walkie, this chick seems dangerous as hell. And she currently has the upper hand by taking Maggie and Carol hostage.

20. Denise Cloyd (Previously 12th)

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I appreciated Denise being realistic about her role in Alexandria. She IS the only doctor in town and running away with Tara would really leave them at a disadvantage.

21. Morgan Jones (Previously 15th)

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Morgan’s sticking to his figurative guns on Not Killing people, but I think that’s going to change soon if Negan retaliates. He really has to stop being so wishy-washy though. If Carol can move on, so can you.

22. Enid (Previously 13th)

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Every episode we don’t see Enid after her outburst on Carl, the less it helps her case in these rankings. Whatever happens with Glenn or Maggie in the next few episodes is really going to influence her down the road too.

23. Tobin (Previously 24th)

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If you’ve followed these rankings, then you know I’m a BIG Tobin fan…for really no reason. Tobin is like the love child of Craig T. Nelson and Bill Fagerbakke from Coach. And look! He’s getting busy with Carol these days. Good for you, Tobin.

24. Spencer Monroe (Previously 21st)

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Spencer’s sat out the last couple plays after putting down his Zombie mom. I feel better about him being backup in Alexandria than I did before though.

 

25. Doctor Harlan (Previously 22nd)

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Well if Denise was to ever runoff with Tara, at least Doctor Harlan is around.

26. Eric Raleigh (Previously 23rd)

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Still alive.

27. Baby Judith (Previously 25th)

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Still adorable.

 

28. Gregory (Previously 26th)

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Wouldn’t have minded if they used this guy’s real head to get into Negan’s camp.

29. Cal (Previously 28th)

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Still a douche with a spear.

30. Olivia (Previously 29th)

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She really hopes Carol comes back to bake more cookies.

31. Dwight (Previously 30th)

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Seeing that we know Negan had Daryl’s motorcycle, does that mean he has Dwight too?

 

32. Freddie (Previously 31st)

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Freddie’s just waiting to join his wife in heaven. We know.

33. Craig (Newbie)

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Hey Craig! How about a “Thanks!”, jerk? Impressive that he was left alive with a group people who keep polaroids hung up of people with their brains bashed in.

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!

 

 

The Walking Dead Power Rankings: Midseason 6 Premiere

The Walking Dead returns in time to eat your heart out this Valentine’s Day (Sunday, February 14th) at 8 PM CT on AMC.

This is the part where I tell you that spoilers are very likely from here on out. So stop reading if you aren’t caught up…

Stop it.

This is your last warning…

Now it’s on you if things get spoiled. 

Creator and comic book writer Robert Kirkman is on record for saying that there will be blood this Sunday…a lot of blood. Critics who were lucky enough to get early screenings say that the Season 6 midseason premiere is fast, action-packed, and characters will die. There’s common sentiment in early reviews that this episode should have been the midseason finale, instead of the cliffhanger filled showing fans got before the new year.

We know characters come and go on the show. If Game of Thrones taught us anything in the current climate of television, DON’T GET TOO ATTACHED TO ANYONE. And similar to how we’re approaching the new season of Throneswe’ll be keeping a power ranking of the current characters. But if they make Chris Hardwick’s Talking Dead “In Memoriam”, well…

Walking Dead bye

…we’ll say “bye” too.

I know my opinion of each character will likely be very different than yours. Please feel free to air your grievances on Facebook or Twitter.

1. Daryl Dixon

Darryl TWD

Darryl may not be in the comics, but he certainly is one of the best creations from the TV series. He’s the most skilled among the original group and has grown since the early days of brotherly bigotry bonding. In a world where the dead roam looking for blood and the living proves to be even more dangerous, Darryl still looks for the good in others…even to a fault. If he were part of Rick’s conscience, he’d be the small bit of angel left on one shoulder. That might do him in at some point, but you have to think losing Darryl would be the hardest for most fans.

2. Rick Grimes

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The show still evolves around the man who woke up from a coma in a walker infested hospital, as it should. However, Rick has almost evolved entirely into the deputy he hated…Zero trust for others besides his group, killing the living, lusting after someone else’s wife…He hasn’t gone full-Shane, and that may be what has kept he and those closest to him alive. How he reacts after Sunday’s events may change that.

3. Michonne

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 4.16.23 PM There’s an argument that Michonne can be ranked ahead of Rick.

Michonne

There’s your argument.

She’s also the only one I don’t worry about in a massive horde of Walkers.

4. Maggie Greene

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Maggie has probably suffered the most in the group. She lost her home (the farm), cousin (Arnold), step-brother (Shawn), mother (Josephine), step-mother (Annette), father (Herschel) and sister (BETH!). Yet she has remained one of the strongest willed characters on the show, even while her husband was Jon Snowing it for multiple episodes. That’s why Deanna trusted her as a leader in Alexandria.

5. Glenn Rhee

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Glenn cheated some insane and brutal death, but that whole thing didn’t seem like the way he should go. If Glenn’s going to die, his loved ones should see it and it should haunt our dreams for weeks. Only he can get away with calling Rick “dumbass” and he is still the group’s moral compass…while also being Maggie’s last shred of sanity.

6. Negan

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We haven’t even seen Negan yet he’s one of the most hyped characters in the history of television. That intrigue makes him more interesting, as does the suggestion by one of his cronies that EVERYTHING BELONGS TO HIM.

7. Carl Grimes

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Carl’s come a long way. There was a time I wanted him to be in same place as Sophia -like between him getting shot and then Rick saving him from God-knows-what with the Scavengers…Since then, the kid has stepped up and become quite the badass and way less of a brat.

8. Morgan Jones

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Morgan’s whole “development” episode with Eastman still feels like time I can’t get back, but it’s nice knowing how exactly he became a Jedi. Don’t know if the “no kill” rule is going to last for him or if he’ll last sticking to it. It does, however, bring some much needed humility to members of the group that are on the brink of becoming no better than the Wolves.

9. Carol Peletier

Carol TWD

I know quite a few folks are on Carol’s side in the #CarolvsMorgan fight and I don’t blame them. Her instincts have saved the group on multiple occasions. Her development is as vast as anyone. She’s also the devil to Darryl’s angel on Rick’s shoulders. That’s ironic when you think about how similar and close she and Darryl were at one point.

10. Aaron 

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Aaron is the most capable of all the Alexandrian citizens. Unlike the rest of his group, he actually knew what the outside world was like after spending long periods scouting potential members for the community to make it stronger. Had Aaron been around when the Alexandrians were turning on Rick, he probably would have helped convince them to adapt to the Ricktatorship.

11. Abraham Ford

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I love Abraham. When he’s got a mission, he’s more focused and and scarier than anyone. Unfortunately he’s been a little broken since Eugene’s admission. I’m worried he’s reached the end of his arc wearing the officers uniform he found, but the method in his madness has practically resurrected Sasha…no Walking Dead pun intended.

12. Sasha Williams

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Sasha’s been the closest to the point of no return, among the group that’s survived since Woodbury. Losing Bob and her brother Tyreese certainly pushed her there. Abraham seems to have shown her just about how far gone she was though, mimicking her manic episode. Still not sure if he was doing that on purpose or not, but she’s as capable as anyone when she’s right.

13. Jessie Anderson

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Jessie is Rick’s moral center now, outside of Carl and Judith. She will also go full Mama Bear from The Revenant on anyone who threatens her children. That’s going to get really interesting if Carl is forced to come off of Ron, or if the zombies get F’ing Sam while he’s whining during their stealthy walk among the horde. At least we have this ‘Love Actually’ inspired gif…

Jessie Love Actually

Just in time for Valentine’s Day.

14. Enid

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Enid’s awesome but pretty wishy washy too. She seems ready to turn on the group at any moment because she doesn’t believe they’re built to survive…even though they’ve made it this far. One thinks she’s better off and more helpful on Carl’s side than the alternative.

15. Tara Chambler

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It’s pretty amazing how accepting the group is of Tara, considering she was aligned with the Governor when he decapitated Herschel. Her guilt being involved in that incident seems to have made up for it, and that’s mirrored with helping Eugene get to a point where he can redeem his own faults as well.

16. Rosita Espinosa

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We know almost nothing about Rosita besides her catching up with Abraham and the two keeping each other company. She’s handy with a gun though and meshes well with the group. Either we’ll get to know her better after this weekend, or we’ll just simply say “see ya” without really being too invested.

17. Baby Judith

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Come on. She’s Judith. Everybody loves Judith.

18. Tobin 

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Tobin is really just one of those “That Guy” characters from the Alexandria group, but he’s one of the few to go along with Rick’s plans. That ranks him a lot higher than most of the town…unless the Walkers got him. We really didn’t see him after they breached the wall.

19. Eugene Porter

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Eugene is working his way back to trust and redemption. His awkwardness and deadpan delivery kinda helps that, at least with the audience. Something tells me he’s got some developing to go and some lives to save before the show is done with him.

20. Denise Cloyd

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Denise is in a tough spot, being captive (we think) to the Alpha Wolf. She has Tara’s attention (and probably motivation) though after kissing her and she’s probably the only one qualified to save anyone medically.

21. Eric Raleigh

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No idea how Eric faired during the breach from the horde. Whatever has happened to him might make or break Aaron though.

22. Olivia

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Olivia runs inventory at Alexandria. That counts for something. And I THINK she’s still alive…?

23. Dwight

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A few things we know about Dwight.

  1. Dwight used to work for Negan.
  2. Dwight stole something from Negan (likely Honey).
  3. Dwight then betrayed Darryl who was trying to help him.
  4. Dwight also has Darryl’s crossbow.

Austin Nichols, who plays Dwight, tweeted about coming back for the finale. Not sure how happy we’re going to be about that.

24. Honey

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Honey is in the same boat as Dwight, when it comes to betraying both Negan and Darryl. I’m sure she’s going to wish she didn’t burn the latter.

25. Spencer Monroe

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Spencer’s in a weird spot. On the one hand, he’s Deanna’s son and has room to grow in her image. On the other hand, he’s reckless and stealing food from inventory. Why you gotta do Olivia like that, Spence?!

26. Father Gabriel

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I have a soft spot for Father Gabriel because Seth Gilliam is one of my favorites from The Wire. His character hasn’t been much help at all since he met the group, even turned on them at one point while he was debating his relationship with God…I have to think there’s a reason he asked for fighting pointers from Carl though and that somehow that will payoff.

27. Wade 

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Dude gives off a Dean Ambrose vibe but until we officially meet Negan, you get the feeling he’s going to be a royal pain in the ass. I’m also worried one of the 3 out of Abraham, Sasha and Darryl is going to be departing because of him.

28. Mikey

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You remember Mikey, right? No idea if this kid is still alive, but at least he’s not Ron.

29. Sam Anderson

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SHUT THE FUCK UP, SAM!

30. Ron Anderson

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Ron has a gun and zero backbone. He’s basically everything that was wrong with Carl during that time we all wanted him dead. Yes, I hope his little brother gets him killed on Sunday.

31. Alpha (Wolf)

Screen Shot 2016-02-10 at 6.19.48 PM Right now, zombies are more likable than this guy. That’s how bad he sucks.

 

We’ll update the rankings each week for the rest of the season. Hope your favorites stay alive…Unless your favorite is Ron. For more, follow along on Facebook or Twitter

 

And check out the first 4 minutes of Sunday’s midseason premiere now!