Please do not read this post if you haven’t seen The Walking Dead Season Six, Episode Four: He’s Not Here which aired Sunday– November 1st, 2015. There are spoilers in this post as it’s a recap.
I was super stoked to see this week’s episode of The Walking Dead would be 90 minutes long. I knew we’d get no answers about what happened to Rick or Glenn. I was pleasantly surprised to see we got 90 minutes of Morgan. It begins with Now and Morgan talking to one of the Wolves who attacked him in the woods prior to last season’s finale. Morgan has him in a house and begins to tell his story.
Backtracking to a crazy Morgan spouting the words he did when Michonne and Rick last saw him, “I need to Clear, Pointless Acts, You are not Here…” Morgan is seen attacking humans and walkers in the woods where he spends his time ‘clearing’ the area, killing anything that gets in his way.
The worst scene is when Morgan comes upon two travelers, a father, and a boy. They are running through the woods away from walkers when Morgan spears the father in the throat and then strangles the boy to death. No motivation behind his kills other than Morgan is killing everyone. He has to ‘clear’ the area and that is his goal.
That is until he comes upon a cabin in the woods with solar panels, a cute goat in a small fenced yard, nicely set up dining room table. Morgan tries to shoot the man who lives in the cabin, pleading with him over and over to put his gun away and just talk. Morgan is beyond talking. The man disarms Morgan using a stick, knocking him out.
Locked up in a cell inside the cabin, Morgan begs the man to kill him over and over. Here we think Morgan is ‘clearing’ the forest because he has to when really, Morgan just wanted something to take him from this life. A life without his wife and his son. But he ends up meeting the one man who refuses to kill anything.
The story unfolds as we learn that Mr. Eastman was a forensic psychologist who dealt with PTSD in criminals in prison, those capable of crimes he tells Morgan you can’t fathom. ‘I clear everything. People, walkers, anything that gets near me. I clear’ — Morgan says to Eastman. ‘It’s why I’m still here.’
Eastman gives Morgan two choices. Stay or leave. One or the other. I will not allow you to kill me, he says. Morgan, of course, tries to kill Eastman because it’s all Mogan knows.
There are lots of not so hidden treasures in the writing of this episode, such as a jail cell with a door unlocked. Morgan is a prisoner to his own device. Even when he realizes the door is open, Morgan chooses to stay inside the cell, locked away. That’s when Eastman gets rid of Morgans sharp-pointed edged stick and turns it into the blunt stick we see Morgan carry back at Alexandria.
Eastman slowly brings Morgan out of his shell as Morgan defends Tabitha, Eastman’s goat from walkers. Eastman teaches Morgan Aikido, a form of stick fighting martial arts and gives him a book – The Art of Peace. Aikido is about redirecting your enemy, not killing. Using non-lethal force because Eastman believes “All life is precious.” Eastman buries each zombie instead of burning them. He reclaims their humanity and treats them like people, showcasing how Morgan gets his philosophy we see in Alexandria.
Morgan asks Eastman after their bonding, training, talking sessions why he has a jail in his cabin. That’s when Eastman tells him he’s interviewed many people in his life who’ve done horrible things. One of them being a man named Creighton Dallas. Creighton up for parole doesn’t get it at first and tries killing Eastman because he sees right through him, knowing he’s not reformed and still a cold-blooded killer.
Creighton does get out on parole. He goes to Eastman’s house and kills his wife, daughter and son. Then covered in their blood turns himself in. Eastman’s plan was to take Dallas, hold him in the jail cell and starve him to death until he learned all life is precious.
Later on after the chat, Morgan and Eastman go to the place Morgan was staying in the woods. A zombie comes out of the trees. It’s the boy Morgan killed and he freezes. Eastman steps in and gets bitten. Morgan freaks. “That wasn’t for you to do. I said not here. I said not here. Kill me!” Morgan goes on, pain filling him up at the fact of losing another person he cares about.
‘Everything’s About People’
Morgan pulls himself together and heads back to the cabin. He comes upon a zombie chewing on Tabitha the goat. He brings her to where Eastman is burying the kid turned zombie Morgan killed. That’s when Morgan sees all the graves and names and one sticks out — Creighton Dallas.
Eastman continues his story. He waited for Creighton, kidnapping him and he put him in the jail in his cabin to starve him to death. It took 47 days to do it. When he was done, Eastman admits he went back to Atlanta to turn himself in and that’s when he learned the world had ended. Killing Dallas gave Eastman no peace, he tells Morgan. ‘Everything is about people,” Eastman says. “Everything in this life worth a damn is about people.”
The story shifts back to Morgan telling one of the Wolves how he came to be. The Wolf listens and then says “Do you think it can be like that for me?” Then he shows Morgan he was bitten in Alexandria. He tells him if he lives he will kill Morgan, kill everyone, including the children. It’s just how it has to be.
At the end of the episode, Morgan locks the Wolf inside the basement just as he thought he’d been locked up. I think Morgan thinks the wolf can be rehabilitated like he was, into believing that killing isn’t necessary. Morgan is wrong in my mind.
Mogan’s ideals are not realistic to me. You can’t save everyone. Not in this world of The Dead. You can’t rehabilitate those who don’t want it. Morgan wanted to be saved by Eastman, whether in death or in life, he still wanted to be saved by something.