This week’s penultimate episode of The Walking Dead, “East,” may have left viewers frustrated with yet another death scare and even more frustrated that Norman Reedus would insult our intelligence, and it may ultimately lead to yet another cliffhanger that’s going to anger the hell out of viewers next week, but believe it or not, there may be more than one cliffhanger in the season finale to frustrate viewers.
That’s because non-comics readers (and many comics readers) may not have picked up the significance of this particular person in this week’s episode.
The man who Rick nearly shot was looking for his horse, wearing armor, and carrying a spear, which squarely puts him in a new settlement called The Kingdom.
In the comics, The Kingdom is the second biggest settlement (other than the Hilltop Colony) and they are housed in a high school for part of the year. The Kingdom is led by an eccentric old man named Ezekiel, who has a pet tiger named Shiva (we don’t know if the Tiger will make an appearance on the series).
Ezekiel and The Kingdom are friends with Jesus/Paul Monroe, and they hate Negan and the Saviors as much as anyone. On down the line, The Kingdom joins forces with the Alexandrians and The Hilltop Colony to do battle with the Saviors.
That’s obviously not all going to happen next week, but there’s a very good chance that we’ll meet some other members of The Kingdom. We know that one of the members of The Saviors whom Carol shot is trailing her, carrying her rosary beads, and we also know that Morgan is trailing Carol (soon to be on horseback). The member of The Kingdom may converse on all three of those people in the season finale.
In the comics, it’s Jesus who leads Rick to the Kingdom, but in the series, it may very well be Morgan and Carol. The fact that Morgan saved The Kingdom guard’s life by not letting Rick shoot him may also play into the storyline. Morgan saved his life, so maybe the Kingdom guard saves Morgan or Carol’s life. It’s Morgan’s circle of life philosophy, again.
At any rate, it’s something else to look forward to in the season finale, because the arrival of Negan may prove to be frustratingly anti-climactic.