Can we all just agree that the Walking Dead forest is supposed to be magical? Like, this is the same forest where A Midsummer Night's Dream and The Watcher in the Woods and The Blair Witch Project took place, right? Andrea and Milton caught a zombie, but when another walker attacked, Tyreese suddenly emerged from the forest and bashed the zombie's head in. Now that I think about it, "[Insert Name Here] suddenly emerged from the forest and bashed the zombie's head in" is a plot point in half the episodes this season. Turns out that Tyreese and his crew actually did leave the Prison after Rick's freakout. (When they didn't appear last week, I figured they were just lurking in their locked cell.)
I'm going to just ignore the utter unlikelihood of Tyreese randomly coming across Andrea -- because, again, the forest is magical, and the only really surprising thing is that nobody has come across Puck yet. (Unless Merle is Puck? Shakespeare!) Anyhow, Milton offered to bring Tyreese back to Woodbury. Meanwhile, Laurie took her captured zombie to the prison after a totally, totally, totally gross and awesome curbstomp dental surgery.
Back at the prison, Merle continued his winning streak of Having Fun Interactions With Other Characters. He came across Michonne doing some sit-ups. "Don't leave out the cardio," he joked. But he wanted to get serious with her. Trying to kill her was nothing personal; "I was just carrying out orders." "Like the Gestapo," Michonne snapped. "Exactly!" Merle said happily. He asked her if they could just let bygones be bygones. Michonne regarded him the way that a tiger regards a particularly annoying chipmunk. Yeesh, get a room, you two!
Outside, Carl and Maggie saw something coming out of the forest. It was Andrea. She slowly made her way through the yard. Rick let her in...but then immediately pushed her to the ground, taking away her weapons and asking her if she was alone. Inside, there was a nice moment when Andrea saw everyone again. She hugged Carol. She asked where Shane was, and Lori. Everyone looked at her, and nobody said anything.
On one hand, this was an intriguing interaction, because bringing Andrea back to the Grimes Gang was a nice reminder of just how much the Grimes Gang has changed. Last season, they weren't too far removed from the Woodburyites. They were peaceful people who just wanted to find a home. They welcomed outsiders. They had family dinners. Time has changed. Winter hardened them. Everyone in the Lori Grimes Memorial Prison is a fighter. They've all killed zombies. Many of them have killed the living. Yeesh, if you think about it, even Baby Judith is a killer.
Our sympathy is with the Grimes Gang, because they have been the stars of the show from the beginning, because we have seen them suffer, and because -- unlike the Governor -- they only kill in self-defense. (Although you could argue that the Governor's killing of soldiers was a precaution not dissimilar from Rick killing Tomas. The Governor just eliminates threats before they become threats: Like all good politicians, he's a fan of pre-emptive strikes.) But to Andrea, who's had long lazy days of warm showers and electric lights and smooth bourbon and warm beds, Rick and his crew look like what they are: Human beings reduced to their bare essentials, cavemen with boomsticks.
But if she didn't think much of the Grimes Gang, they definitely didn't think much of her. They dismissed her pleas about diplomacy. "There's nothing to work out," said Rick. "We're gonna kill him. I don't know how, or where, but we will." Daryl was more precise: "Next time you see 'Philip,' you tell him I'm gonna take his other eye." And Glenn sealed the deal: "He wants a war? He's got one."
NEXT: Lost so much already