Let’s jump straight into the episode.
If you skip over all the scattered moments in between characters from both sides in last night’s episode, “Arrow on the Doorpost,” there was only one major revelation to come out of the episode: The Governor said he will agree to leave Rick to his prison if he’ll simply hand over Michonne, with whom The Governor has a major beef on account of Michonne killing his beloved zombie child and because Michonne took his eye.
That revelation, however, puts last week’s stellar episode into an even better perspective: They needed to make Michonne a more likable and thoughtful character so the decision whether to hand Michonne over to The Governor and face certain death, or put the lives of everyone in the prison at risk, would be a more difficult one for Rick.
Ultimately, we know it won’t matter whether Rick hands Michonne over or not. The Governor has made up his mind: He’s going to (try to) “slaughter” the prison gang, but the dilemma he’s posed for Rick is brilliant strategically. If Rick gives up Michonne, not only does The Governor get his revenge, but the prison would be without its strongest fighter, making it all the more easy for his Woodbury army to pick them off. On the other hand, if Rick decides against handing over Michonne, the rest of the prison gang is certain to find out and the risk he posed to all is all on behalf of one is certain to rankle the troops.