‘The Walking Dead’ Recap: ‘The Grove’ May Be The Most Depressing Episode Of The Series

Daryl Shows Us His Guns
Norman Reedus Poses For Terry Richardson
Well, that escalated quickly.

All kinds of insanity ensued on the latest episode of AMC’s The Walking Dead. We are used to walkers getting their heads bashed in, people getting killed by evil eye patch wearing psychopaths, and people watching their loved ones get attacked and eaten by zombies, but this episode took things to a whole new level.

We kind of forgot about mental basket cases in the zombie apocalypse. You know, the people with serious issues that should be in constant therapy, be heavily medicated, and possibly holed up in a mental institution somewhere? Some of those crazy people happen to be children.

Audiences have been pretty concerned about Tyreese and a bunch of little white girls trampling around in the forest. So naturally it was a huge blessing that Carol popped up and saved the freaking day. Now the lot of them are trekking to Terminus and following the tracks. But the problem is that Tyreese has been sick lately, running a fever, and having fever dreams. Mika is a wimp who refuses to defend herself in dangerous situations, which Tyreese has told is okay because she can just run away.

Carol doesn’t think that Mika will survive unless she faces the music. She needs to learn to kill, whether it makes her uncomfortable or not. Her older sister Lizzie is an entirely different can of crazy worms. Lizzie believes the walkers are like pets. As it turns out, she was the one feeding them rats at the prison, which may or may not have caused the freaking virus outbreak. She doesn’t like people putting the walkers down and killing them because she believes them to have personalities.

After the group comes across an abandoned pecan orchard and farmhouse in the woods they decide to stay awhile. Tyreese even admits that he is fine staying there and not pursuing Terminus because he doesn’t know anyone there and he trusts Carol and the girls. Carol decides to take Mika out in the grove to see if she can hunt a deer for them to eat, but the girl is afraid. Mika shoots a walker that attacks Lizzie and Judith, but Lizzie is upset that the walker was killed.

Later on, Carol catches Lizzie playing tag with a walker who she believes has a personality. Carol puts the walker down with a knife to the forehead and Lizzie is absolutely furious and distraught. Lizzie then wanders away and Mika finds her feeding a rat to a walker that fell in between the train tracks. Lizzie tells Mika that she wants to allow a walker to bite her to prove that when she comes back to life that she will be herself and then they will all understand. Walkers from a nearby fire smell the girls and pursue them back to the farmhouse where the group takes them all down with guns.

That evening, Carol tries to talk to Lizzie and explain to her that walkers do not have personalities. “I know now what I have to do,” Lizzie says and Carol thinks the girl finally gets it. Tyreese and Carol go for a walk the next day where she almost admits to him that it was she who killed Karen and David back at the prison, to prevent the virus from spreading to others in the prison. She doesn’t have the courage and the two walk back to the farmhouse.

They find Lizzie standing over Mika’s lifeless body, her hands covered in her little sister’s blood, and holding a knife. She pulls a handgun on them to prevent them from killing off Mika’s body when it reanimates. Tyreese is in shock and says nothing. Lizzie explains that she wants to prove to them that Mika will come back to life if they wait until she turns into a walker. Carol stays calm and talks Lizzie into handing over the gun, promising her that if she goes with Tyreese that she won’t kill off Mika-the-walker.

Lizzie states that she was almost going to kill Judith to prove her point even further. Carol reminds her that Judith wouldn’t do well as a walker because she can’t even walk yet and Lizzie nods like, “Oh yeah, I forgot about that. How silly of me!”

After Tyreese takes Judith and leads Lizzie away Carol breaks down crying. It’s a realization that all of her hard work in trying to protect the girls was for naught and that she underestimated Lizzie’s problems, putting the whole group in danger. Mika is also a very real representation of her own daughter Sophia, an innocent that just didn’t have what it takes to survive in this post-apocolyptic world.

Tyreese puts Lizzie in one of the bedrooms of the farmhouse alone while he and Carol talk about what to do. They suggest that Carol leave with Lizzie and make sure she never comes into contact with anyone. But that would leave Tyreese alone with baby Judith, which is a lot for a dude with no experience with babies and very risky to take on alone.

Carol takes Lizzie out to the grove and the little girl apologizes, not for killing her sister, but for pointing the gun at Carol. She is clearly a severe mental case and doesn’t grasp what she has done at all. Carol is sad, but knows what she has to do. She asks Lizzie to look at some flowers and then shoots her from behind, killing her. There is no way that Carol and Tyreese could risk having Lizzie around baby Judith and no way for them to allow her to be trusted by any other group she might come across, because she would most likely kill again.

That evening Carol confesses to killing Karen and David, but Tyreese forgives her because he realizes that Carol is willing to do difficult things to protect vulnerable people like baby Judith.