Synopsis of 8×10: Allies are few and far between on this episode of The Walking Dead. Rick can’t seem to bring himself to follow Carl’s last wishes and Negan is genuinely upset to hear about his passing.
As they drive away from their smoldering home, Rick and Michonne discuss what they’re supposed to do next. She suggests they could read Carl’s letters, revealing that he also wrote one for Negan, but Rick isn’t ready to do that yet. Instead, he wants to go talk to Jadis and the trash people. They have the numbers and the weapons and Rick thinks that he needs them on their side to fight the Saviors. However, when they get to the dump, Rick and Michonne find it overrun by walkers that look suspiciously like the garbage people themselves.
Elsewhere, Negan is directing people to find Rick while simultaneously voicing his appreciation for Carl. He wants to send Simon to deal with the garbage people, but not before reeling in Simon’s overzealous interest in cleaning house. Negan is convinced that once Rick falls back in line, every other community will also obey once again, but Simon seems skeptical. They’re interrupted by Maggie’s gift from the Hilltop – it’s one of Simon’s men from the outpost turned. Simon explodes in a rage once more, but Negan tells him, again, to do his job.
Aaron and Enid are still captured by the women of Oceanside, with Cyndie being the one to decide their fate since they killed her grandmother Natania. The majority of the women want to kill them, with Enid making an argument that the killing was the punishment. She also warns that if they die, their people will come after Oceanside and obliterate them. Cyndie allows them to live but warns them never to come back. Aaron feels compelled to stay but sends Enid back to give Maggie an update.
Simon takes a group of Saviors to the garbage people and demands an apology from Jadis for her triple crossing. She tells Simon that they delivered Rick to the Saviors, but that only serves to piss him off even more and he disarms all of the garbage people against their wishes. He briefly wonders about the solar panels and the helipad at the dump before demanding a better apology from Jadis.
She doesn’t deliver, so he kills one and then two of her people. Her weird speech pattern cracks when she shouts at him in a full sentence, “There is remorse, you son of a bitch!” and punches him. Simon falls to the ground, but that doesn’t stop him from giving the order for the Saviors to kill all of the trash people except Jadis. He returns to the Sanctuary without telling Negan what happened.
Michonne and Rick scramble up the trash walls, only to find Jadis already up there. She again speaks in full sentences and tells them what happened and how the trash people ended up here. Rick is having none of it and when he and Michonne make a run for it, they leave Jadis behind despite her pleas for help escaping.
Like with Siddiq, he shoots over her head and leaves her behind. By herself, Jadis draws all of her people to her location and starts up a massive trash shredder. Her people all turn into a gruesome mush before her eyes and she’s left alone again. As hinted at by Simon, there’s more to the dump than what can be seen and Jadis reveals a hidden stash of applesauce that she drinks by herself.
In the car, Rick tries to rationalize what he did by telling Michonne he shot above her head and he saw her make it to shelter. Michonne tells him that this might have been the kind of thing Carl was talking about changing, they had a choice. He pulls over and asks for a moment, where he gets out of the car with the letters from Carl and the walkie-talkie.
After reading Negan’s letter, he hails Negan on the walkie-talkie and tells him the bad news. Rick tells Negan that Carl asked them both to stop, but it’s too late for that. Negan is visibly affected by the news and asks if it was because of the Saviors’ attack on Alexandria. Rick tells him that Carl was bit helping someone and Negan says he’s sorry to hear that. He had plans for Carl because he was the future and he asks Rick what exactly he’s doing. Negan makes no apologies in telling Rick that it was his fault that Carl died because he wasn’t there. In Negan’s mind, he’s here to save everyone while Rick is a failure of a leader and a father.
There’s only one option left: for Rick Grimes to give up because he’s already lost.