Warning: This article contains major spoilers for The Walking Dead: Dead City Season 1, Episode 2: “Who’s There?”
The Walking Dead: Dead City Episode 2 Review
This second episode of Dead City does quite a bit to establish the good guys and the bad guys of this show as Negan and Maggie are still searching diligently for this Croat fellow.
The episode starts off with our heroes following the old woman (Esther) from the end of Episode 1 through hallways, former offices, and finally across a zipline between skyscrapers in downtown Manhattan. But when they get to the other side, they’re met with hostility from a small group of people who mistake the duo as enemies.
But later, when the whole group fights against some marauders in spiked motorcycle helmets, we discover that this “village” of survivors is not really doing so well. And the marauders turn out to be a group calling themselves the Burazi, which means brothers or brotherhood, working directly for The Croat.
So while we see quite a bit of the remaining segments of society, and how they are or aren’t coping with the zombie apocalypse in the middle of a large city, this episode also had some really poignant parts for Maggie and Negan themselves.
Negan the Monster
In one important scene, Maggie is explaining to Negan that she can’t really forgive him for what he did to Glenn, but Negan attempts to defend himself by explaining that the monster that came out that day wasn’t really him. He said that it was there for show, to help encourage his men.
But later we see what I consider THE most important scene of the episode where his defense was proven wrong.
Negan has captured one of the Burazi, removed his helmet, and is using him to show the others down below his balcony that he’s a psycho who’s not to be messed with. He proceeds to smash the man’s face against every pane of glass along the way while saying “ding dong” in that special Negan way.
As the punchline for his knock-knock joke, Negan slashes the man’s throat, spilling his blood all over the Burazi below, and eventually throwing his gutted body down at them.
It was a gory scene that showed us that the old Negan isn’t as hidden away as he may have wanted us to believe. So when Negan, completely satisfied with his jokes and massacre, turned around, there stood Maggie. The look on her face showed that she was a fool to ever believe that he would have changed, and the look on his face was more like “Oh shit, secret’s out.”
But I feel like there was also something else in Maggie’s eyes at that moment. Not only was she disappointed that the old Negan was back, but I feel like she was coming to the realization that she’s now on the monster’s side, and that could be helpful.
Who is The Croat?
We also learned quite a bit about The Croat in this episode. We learned that he was one of Negan’s right-hand men as his torturer, but Negan tried to kill him when Negan felt that The Croat made the wrong decision about torturing a drifter. But Negan’s assassination attempt failed and The Croat has vowed payback ever since.
We also see some backstory for the remaining marshal who is still after Negan. He goes to an apartment address that he has written on a scrap of paper for a man named Joel Armstrong. We can only assume that this is his brother or some family member since the marshal’s name is Perlie Armstrong, but that hasn’t been confirmed. Eventually, The Croat’s men capture Perlie, so we can only assume that the two will share their knowledge of Negan and either work together to get him, or (more likely), The Croat will torture Perlie for info, which will turn Perlie to Negan’s side.
One branch of the storyline that escapes me (but I’m sure will be explained later) is that of Ginny, whom I mistakenly called “Jenny” in my last write-up. We see the young girl adapting to life at New Babylon, but I feel like she has some greater plan in mind. I’m always a big fan of the strong, silent types in movies, so I’m excited to see what they do with her character.
Overall, this was another great episode that was heavy on the info, but in a good way. The resurgence of “Old Negan” was exciting (and, frankly, kinda funny), and I can’t wait to see how Maggie finally embraces his madness.
Each new episode releases on Thursdays for AMC+ subscribers, and Sunday nights for everyone else.