The Walking Dead – Season 8, Episode 11 – Dead Or Alive Or Review

The Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 11

by James White |
Published on

Be warned! This review will cover aspects of the episode. Spoilers will lurk like groaning walkers...

Moving away from being The Rick Show, Dead Or Alive Or continued the show's exploration of separate story strands, as it so often does outside of the bigger event episodes. This week, we were treated to Dwight, Tara and Darryl attempting to find a safe path to Hilltop, Maggie trying to deal with dwindling supplies there, Eugene worrying that Negan will find out that he helped Dr. Carson and Father Gabriel escape, and the seemingly divine-led duo making good their flight from the Saviors... until they don't.

The Maggie story – with small diversions into moments with Carol, Morgan and a bitter, vengeful young Henry – is mostly her weighing what to do about the Savior prisoners at a time when her own people are seeing their rations cut. There's a conversation between our resident pregnant tough nut and a good looking Saviour (Callan McAuliffe) that almost threatens to become the start of a rom-com, but she makes the decision to let the baddies get some exercise (under guard) and not starve. As moral decision storylines go, it's brief and not exactly surprising; Maggie might be able to kill Saviors will abandon, but she was never likely to let all the unarmed prisoners simply die.

The Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 11

Darryl and co. are mostly on the move, and the next moral quandary is Tara's inability to understand why they're letting Dwight live. That she gets a chance to off him and he is then able to prove that he's really on their side was never truly in doubt. The plot is decent enough on this front, though it's mostly entertaining when Darryl's dealing with swamp zombies. Swombies?

Then there's Eugene, typically terrified, but seeming to show a little more backbone around Negan. He's been given his own, bullet-making outpost, which is an awful lot of trust to put in the hands of someone who has long proven himself utterly untrustworthy. He does at least offer up his latest idea to his boss – a psy ops idea drawn from medieval times (the historical period, not the tourist attraction): using catapults to chuck zombie body parts over the walls of Hilltop. Negan stretches that to include bathing weapons in zombie blood and guts with the aim of infecting some of the opposition and having them, in his words, "join the club". Incidentally, if you were playing the Does Negan Say Shit? drinking game, drink.

The Walking Dead Season 8 Episode 11

Finally, we have the Father Gabriel/Dr. Carson road trip. For the record, divinely inspired sickly Gabriel is only roughly 10% less annoying than fearful Gabriel. The coincidences pile up to a frustrating level, so it's to the team's credit that they actually allow for a down ending to this one: with Gabriel re-captured and Dr. Carson shot dead while attempting escape.

A slight tick up in terms of entertainment value this week, Dead Or Alive Or still suffers from moments of utter frustration and plot lines whose conclusion you could guess even if you were only told the setup. At least Dwight got to prove himself, and the story of Gabe and the doc had some twists. Otherwise, it was a lot of plots we've seen tackled before on this show and others, with very little in the way of new spin put on them. We're in the wilderness still, folks, but at least a lot more of the main characters are in a big group again.

In summary

Highlight: Gabe and the Doc in bear trap madness.

Lowlight: Everything at Hilltop.

Kill of the week: Dr. Carson, Physician, heal thyself... Er...

Quote of the week: "He's not fine, Morgan. And you aren't either" – Carol lays down some truth.

Zombie of the week: The swamp dwellers. Gurgling!

MVP: Dr. Carson, mostly for putting up with Gabe.

The big question: Negan and others have gotten blood and guts on them with little impact. So how is his plan supposed to work?

Read this season's previous reviews below...

The Walking Dead* Season 8, Episode 1: *Mercy

[The Walking Dead Season 8, Episode 2: The Damned


The Walking Dead* Season 8, Episode 3: *Monsters

The Walking Dead* Season 8, Episode 9: *Honor

The Walking Dead* Season 8, Episode 10: *The Lost And The Plunderers

The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9pm on AMC in the States and Mondays at 9pm on Fox.

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us