**WARNING! SPOILERS FOR THE WALKING DEAD SEASON 7, EPISODE 2 BELOW!**
Last warning. Spoilers ahead…..
Robert Kirkman and AMC must have known that their viewers would need a break after last week’s episode. In episode 2, titled “The Well”, the pace of the show did a complete 180 this week. In “The Well” viewers finally got to meet the ultra-bombastic King Ezekiel and were also introduced to his Kingdom.
Khary Payton is amazing in the role of King Ezekiel. AMC is 2 for 2 on casting main characters this season with the other home run being Jeffery Dean Morgan as Negan. Ezekiel’s style of leadership is going to be jarring for most casual fans of the series as he acts almost like a dedicated LARPer, a larger than life king that rules his people from a throne. People that have read the comic books know that this is all a facade and it’s not long before Carol knows it too.
Khary did a terrific job flipping the switch between King Ezekiel and Ezekiel the man. It was pretty nice to see two people sitting down and just having a real conversation on the show for once. It seems like anytime two people are talking these days, there’s the looming threat of death in the air.
Carol and Morgan’s story-line from last season continues in this episode as well. Morgan is coming to grips with the fact he’s killed someone after vowing to never kill again, when he went against everything he stands for by using a gun to kill that Savior last season. I believe this is going to spark a huge step forward for Morgan’s character development as he is no longer going to be preaching change to everyone. I have felt like his character has really been lacking a true direction since last season, but it looks like that’s finally going to change now that he’s found a home in The Kingdom.
Carol’s mental breakdown hits an all-time low in this episode. She has begun hallucinating in moments of high stress (like seeing pre-zombie people when looking at the dead). Viewers who have read the comics know that her character has a similar meltdown before she’s killed, although I don’t think her death is imminent. I actually think Morgan is going to die and that will set Carol on a path to honor his memory by adopting some of his sensibilities. She had a great conversation with Zeke that really seemed to balance her out mentally, but she doesn’t know about Glenn and Abraham yet, so only time will tell how she’s going to deal with the deaths of two prominent members of the group.
This episode was decent, but not great. It definitely had some pacing issues and I really wasn’t a fan of them killing all of the momentum the premiere built. I think it’s terrific that Morgan and Carol have more defined roles in their respective stories, but I question the decision to air this episode right after what happened last week. The introduction of Ezekiel was definitely a much-needed injection of humor and lightheartedness, I just question the timing of the decision to bring him in. Khary Payton is going to continue to steal the show as the larger than life King Ezekiel, but I’m ready for them to join up with the main group, even after just one episode. Anyone that wanted to see what happened after last week, fear not, it looks like Negan and the gang are back next week. Check out the teaser below!
What did you guys think of the episode? Do you have any predictions about what we’ll be seeing in the episodes to come? Join in on the conversation in the comments below!