In ‘The Walking Dead’ recap, Tara and Heath resurface after a two week journey to find supplies…
By Damon Martin — Editor/Lead Writer
‘The Walking Dead’ is one of the biggest shows on television so it’s understandable that AMC would try to stretch every season to the limits, which includes the total number of episodes.
In recent years, ‘The Walking Dead’ has put together a standard 16-episode season but inevitably there always seem to be some “filler” hours tossed into the mix that are almost forgettable when considering how it plays into the larger story as a whole.
Sometimes, the filler episodes end up with some incredible back story — for instance, the revelation about how Morgan went from crazy hermit to stick wielding, peace loving Taoist.
Unfortunately, Sunday night’s episode of ‘The Walking Dead’ titled ‘Swear’ was very much a filler episode that didn’t really reveal anything major except for a fourth community living under Negan’s thumb and potentially a place where Rick and his people could arm up with new weapons at some point in the future.
Otherwise, the episode gave a lot of unnecessary back story to Tara and Heath’s two week journey looking for supplies that ended with one of them back in Alexandria finding out what happened while they were gone while the other disappeared — presumably forever because the actor who plays Heath is the new Jack Bauer on the upcoming ’24’ reboot on FOX.
With that said, let’s recap the latest episode of ‘The Walking Dead’ titled ‘Swear’…
Under the Bridge
Tara and Heath have been scavenging for two weeks and all they have to show for it are some busted up cans of okra and a bottle of asprin. It doesn’t help much that Heath is still reeling from the raid on that compound where they killed dozens of men working for Negan in an attempt to wipe out the Saviors while brokering a bond with the Hilltop.
Heath still isn’t comfortable with the world devolving into this kind of a horrific place, even in the middle of a zombie apocalypse. He’s also utterly frustrated after coming up short without much to show for their trip.
Still, Tara insists on staying out a little while longer to look for supplies because Alexandria is going to need it.
When they come upon a bridge, they find that the road has been blocked by a pair of trucks that dumped two huge piles of sand. Tara and Heath go to investigate when she finds a bag sticking out of the sand. Tara gives it a tug, but when the bag shakes loose, the sand tumbles over like an avalanche and a herd of walkers are revealed to be hiding underneath. The sand was dropped to trap the walkers and now they are free to converge on Tara and Heath.
The two of them fight back as best they can, but Heath is seemingly overwhelmed and Tara gets knocked over the side of the bridge down into the ocean below.
When Tara wakes up, she’s washed ashore out of the ocean near a beach where two girls found her unconscious. One of the girls insists that Tara needs to die while the other says that they can save her and no one will find out about it.
So they drag Tara to the inside the beach, leave her with two bottles of water, a salted fish and a spear to use as a weapon before scurrying back into the woods. It turns out, Tara was awake when they left the supplies and she ends up following the girls back into the woods to find out where they came from and if these people are friends or foes.
Tara eventually discovers the community — with nothing but women — but she’s soon found out and the group sounds the alarm, arms up with guns and goes after her. Tara gets the drop on one of the women but rather than kill her, she only knocks her out before trying to make an escape.
Sadly, Tara is captured by the group but they don’t execute her because she didn’t kill one of them even though she had the perfect opportunity to finish the woman after getting the drop on her.
Inside, the lead woman introduces herself as Natanya, who is the grandmother to Cindy — the girl who tried to save Tara in the first place. The other woman is Beatrice and she’s the one Tara knocked out with the butt of her gun while trying to escape.
Natanya tries to get some information out of Tara, who lies and says she’s survived the apocalypse thus far with just one other friend after previously working on a fishing boat in Atlanta. All she wants to do now is find her friend and get out of their way, but Natanya explains that part of the way this community works is by secrecy.
Once they discovered this Oceanside Motor Lodge hidden in the woods, they’ve used the natural cover of the trees and beach to keep them out of sight and far away from any prying eyes. Releasing Tara means that she could lead someone back to the community and that would be very bad for all of them.
Later, Tara is taken to Natanya’s house where they all sit down to dinner for some fish stew. Tara gobbles up the food like she’s never eaten before and that’s when Natanya offers her solution to the problem. They don’t want to reveal where this community is at so why doesn’t Tara just join them and then she never has to leave?
Finally, Tara comes clean about her real back story living in Alexandria, how she was on a two week hunt with her friend Heath after her group gunned down a pack of psychopaths at an outpost inside a satellite station. Tara explains that while she appreciates the invite to stay, she’s got a girlfriend waiting for her back at Alexandria (she doesn’t know Denise is dead) and that’s where she has to go.
Natanya finally relents on her rules and decides that perhaps sharing with this other community could be beneficial to them so she agrees to send Tara back to Alexandria with Beatrice serving as a guide. If everything is on the up and up, they’ll broker a deal and the two communities can work together.
On the way out of the Oceanside, Tara encounters the brattish girl named Rachel, who has been trying to kill her ever since she washed up on the beach. Rachel spits at her and Tara responds with a middle finger before leaving the community.
Out in the woods, Tara decides to help out by killing a walker before quickly bolting off in another direction as gunshots ring out. It’s clear Tara realized that they weren’t taking her back to Alexandria but instead this was just an execution.
Tara escapes but eventually Beatrice catches up to hers and that’s where she reveals the real back story behind the group staying at Oceanside.
It seems Negan’s Saviors encountered this group some time ago and they tried to fight back with disastrous results. The Saviors ultimately defeated them and killed every man 10 years or older that was in the group. That’s why there are only women left alive now.
Once Tara revealed that her group had attacked the Saviors at that outpost, the leadership at Oceanside knew she had to die or risk Negan’s group finding them again. Before Beatrice could pull the trigger, Cindy shows up out of nowhere and knocks her down while ordering Tara to make a run for it.
Eventually, Cindy catches up to Tara and agrees to lead her back to the bridge where she left Heath behind so long as she swears that she’ll never reveal to anyone that she discovered the Oceanside community. Tara agrees and Cindy even helps her kill the left over walkers on the bridge while she makes her escape.
After getting past the walkers, Tara comes out to the other side and notices that Heath is nowhere to be found and the RV they were driving is gone. She finds Heath’s glasses smashed on the ground and skid marks left behind where the RV apparently took off. Is Heath dead? Did someone take him? Tara finds a card with the letters “PPP” written on it and she hopes that’s Heath’s way of leaving a sign that he’s still alive.
It’s a safer bet that someone from the Saviors found Heath sitting all alone on that bridge.
Following a long walk home, Tara finally arrives at Alexandria and that’s when she’s greeted by Eugene and a lot of terrible news. Denise is dead. Glenn and Abraham have been murdered. And now Alexandria is under the control of the man responsible for the death of all three of them.
Rosita tries to console her but then turns her attention to Tara’s harrowing trip to get back to Alexandria after being overrun by walkers on that bridge. Rosita hopes that Tara could lead them to a store or a home or anywhere that might have some guns so Alexandria can finally fight back against the Saviors.
Instead of telling Rosita about Oceanside and the shed full of guns they have, Tara dummies up and says she didn’t see anything like that out on the road thus fulfilling her promise to Cindy that she would never tell anyone about that place.
‘The Walking Dead’ returns next Sunday night at 9pm ET on AMC.