The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live gives us a foreboding reunion in "Gone"

A reunion years in the making finally goes down...
Danai Gurira as Michonne - The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live _ Season 1, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Danai Gurira as Michonne - The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live _ Season 1, Episode 2 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC /

The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live continues with its second episode tonight. And boy, was it an emotional one. There was no stone left unturned when it came to this action-packed, heartfelt episode. Perhaps its most moving moment was seeing Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and Michonne (Danai Gurira) finally reunite.

This has been literal years in the making, and every Walking Dead fan watching this show was likely wiping away tears at the sight of them together again. However, before we eventually got to that point, there was a lot of story to tell about Michonne's journey.

Just as we learned about Rick's whereabouts and the emotional turmoil he experienced trying to get back home last week, this time we watch Michonne try and track down the love of her life. Unlike Rick, there was never a wavering moment where she gave up or felt like there was no hope. Perhaps that is what makes this character so fearless and bad a**.

I loved seeing Gurira play Michonne once again, and to see a side of the a more comedic character we don't see often. It felt a bit misplaced, but I was here for it, because that world she lives in is grim, and the battles she is facing are nothing short of devastating.

With that said, there is a lot to unpack from the series' second episode, "Gone", so without further ado, let's break down all the major moments. And remember: MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD!

The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live review, "Gone"

The episode kicks off with Michonne's voiceover documenting the major moments that have led to her reunion with Rick. You might recall that back in season 10, Michonne decided to go look for Rick. Along the way, she runs into a couple: Aiden (Breeda Wool) and Bailey (Andrew Bachelor). Obviously, they are frightened by this woman walking with two walkers she is treating like her personal pets. They beg her to help them out of a deadly jam, and Michonne agrees.

Afterwards, Michonne heads back to their community. In exchange for saving their lives, Michonne wants to acquire a horse that will help her pursue Rick, who she now believes to be alive.

There is a bit of push and pull between Michonne and the community's leader, but ultimately Michonne gets the help she needs from Nat (Matthew Jeffers), who is more than pleased to see Aiden and Bailey alive. This part of the episode was mildly entertaining and oddly humorous, with Michonne delivering some comedic one-liners. We don't often see her in this light, but something about it felt right.

With a horse in tow, Michonne heads off into the zombie sunset to find Rick, but comes across a major problem: the migration of zombies coming down from the North. Apparently that is a thing, and it presents a major obstacle until Michonne's new friends show up and save the day by parting the tide of zombies like Moses parting the sea. And these new friends are sticking with Michonne for the ride, always welcome occurrence in the apocalypse.

This episode's slow momentum builds up to a very devastating moment as the group continues to trek forward. All signs seem to be pointing to happiness and cheer, until the CRM appears out of nowhere and sprays mustard gas over a community they are all walking through.

It all happens so fast. We see Aiden succumb to her burns and go full zombie, presumably turning Bailey along. It's heartbreaking; Aiden was also pregnant. Two lives were lost due to the heinous acts of the CRM, which is stressful since we know that Rick is with them and Michonne is tracking him down.

Luckily, she still has Nat by her side, who isn't keen on Michonne continuing her efforts to find Rick. After all, the CRM has been relentless in their killing, and the chances of him surviving are slim.

Little does he know...

The reunion we all have been waiting for

Michonne is not one to back down for anyone or anything, and even though the mustard gas completely obliterated all the strength she had, it did not stop her from thinking about the end goal: find Rick.

Over what appears to be months of healing, Michonne pushes herself to get better and stronger each day, until she feels prepared to get back out there and find Rick. Nat isn't too eager about the plan, but he's there with her until the end, and will support her...whatever that might mean.

Nat and Michonne and developed an unexpected friendship. I loved seeing this part of Michonne as she'd spent years with the same group, and there wasn't really room for making new friends. But against all odds, she formed an alliance with Nat, who is now by her side, even if it means death.

As time goes on, there are clues along the way that all but guarantee that Rick is dead. But again, Michonne keeps pushing forward, even though there is a part of her that understands she may learn something she doesn't want to know.

With the passing of time, Nat and Michonne find themselves once again surrounded by the evil of the CRM. This moment lines up with the final moments of last week's series premiere where Rick's helicopter is shot down. We were not surprised to learn that it was actually because of Nat and Michonne.

That leads to the very epic moment we have been conjuring up in our head since 2018: Rick and Michonne are back together again! And while I understand that this has been a long time coming, something about it still feels mildly rushed. Maybe it was the coincidental nature of it all, or maybe it felt too easy (which it definitely wasn't), but it felt like it all just came together too quickly.

But I had to set that emotion aside because Michonne realizing one of the soldiers is Rick was one of the strongest moments of the show thus far. Gurira's ability to emote in that moment as Michonne sees Rick was gut-wrenching, exciting, and anxiety-inducing all at the same time. I simply couldn't hold back the tears as this was such an epic moment for the fans.

Unfortunately, in the midst of this heartfelt reunion, the series decides that they are going to throw in one more devastating moment: the death of Nat. As he realizes Michonne has found Rick and expresses his joy and shock, Nat is shot by one of the injured soldiers who had one more evil act left in him before dying. I hated to see it, It was absolutely crushing. Why, The Walking Dead, why?!

Ending of The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live Season 1, Episode 2 explained

From this point on, the episode rapidly moves along as Rick realizes the CRM will be hot on their trail. He has no choice but to reassure Michonne that he is "not one of them," but in this moment, he has to be to save their lives. They can't make a run for it yet, and he has to let the CRM believe that Michonne is his prisoner. It's not what we expected upon such a beautiful reunion, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

As the CRM shows up just as expected, the scene switches over to Michonne regurgitating the words Rick has trained her to say. If they want to have any chance of making it out, they have to play the long game. And that is something she is more than willing to do.

It doesn't make it easy or the sting burn any less, however, when Michonne comes to learn that Rick gave up at some point trying to come home. Of course, she has no idea what he was up against in that moment, but the look in her eyes told it all.

But what matters is that they will get away, and they will get back to their family (who Rick very adorably inquires about multiple times). We can only hope this belief is justified, because something about this moment felt foreboding and uncomfortable. Whenever there is a glimmer of hope, we can always assume the worst. And something tells me at the end of this series, it won't be Rick who loses his life, but rather Michonne.

It only make sense, right? I can imagine it all ending with Rick getting back home to the family but without Michonne. There is just no way this story ends with a happily ever after, as much as we would like it to.

The verdict is out on that one, but there is one final major moment that brings everything full circle to the grim and dark reality Rick has been living in. As the episode comes to a close, he returns to his room to find Jadis (Pollyanna McIntosh) sitting there waiting for him.

She knows Michonne is there, and she reminds him that he would do best to remember their "longstanding deal" and not attempt to run away. If he does so, she will kill all his loved ones and won't flinch doing it.

And I think that her feelings about all of this are self-explanatory as the last words from her before the screen cuts to black are, "Rick, what the f**k are you doing?"

Next. twd towl 3. The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live leaves us on the edge of our seats in Episode 3. dark

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