Most of all, I enjoyed Morgan’s speech to Rick.
After Rick led the massacre of a bunch of sleeping human beings, and is now borderline Shane/The Governor in his behavior, he needed to hear this, and he needed to hear it on a long walking journey from an incredibly thoughtful person who’s been through several personal transformations himself. Even more powerful is that this is someone who knows Rick: from the very beginning to somewhere in the middle of Rick’s personal odyssey (when Rick ironically tried to convince Morgan of almost exactly what Morgan is trying to convince Rick), to the merciless mercenary manager he has now become.
I do think the point about how “in the circle,” Carl’s life was ultimately saved by Morgan’s philosophy (his philosophy in action), and this fact will stay with Rick. And Rick, on his long walk back (off screen) to the car, and his long drive back to Alexandria, had nothing but Morgan’s spiel to ponder, debate, and dissect. It was either that or worry, and Rick isn’t the type to spend that many hours worrying. So he probably mentally debated that, eventually coming up with a comeback (and several other comeback arguments), a comeback that he was clearly unable to verbally parry back at Morgan given Rick’s silence after Morgan’s speech.
Otherwise, yeah, a combination of hubris, emotion, and dumbassery drew a bunch of the most important characters, and most skilled fighters, out into stupid land, where they stupidly got captured (or at least were strategically out of their posts). When Dwight captured the first two, and then the second two, I thought: “WTF are these idiots doing? This guy has totally ‘Robin Hooded’ the exact place you’re going! You walked into a damn trap right there like two days ago! So you’re walking into the damn trap again? Again? In the same place?” This was definitely written to move forward the plot more than staying in character even with the “We’re so bad-ass” ethos that everyone in the group is exhibiting.
And so the point I’m avoiding... especially because of how the character actions were driven by plot necessity... is that I am reticently dreading the season finale. Because the plot forced these characters to be captured as opposed to the characters organically ending up there, I have a hollow feeling and dread in my chest. (Why couldn’t they have been checking out the machinery that Eugene plans to use to make bullets? Why couldn’t they have been on an everyday run and just got jumped anywhere else as the Saviors clearly know where Alexandria is?)
And, so yeah, one, or two, or three, or all of the captured are going to get killed. It bothers me that it was so forced just to get there when it could have been written a dozen different ways to get to the same point with the same result.
Given that, I’m curious exactly how explicit the language and the violence will be in the finale. This show works best when it’s the suspense, the unspoken ideas of horror and terrifying mise en scene surrounding our protagonists, driving us viewers to squirm in our seats and not the outright shock gore. When the moments of fatal violence arrives, I hope that they’re earned. TWD has earned these moments in the past. I hope they do so in the finale.
All that said, I think this has been a fantastic season overall. This one above-mentioned problem is my only contention with Season Six. I’m incredibly happy with how the writers have slowly built up the plot to show that this ragtag group finally got established but became provincial, ignoring the larger world around them. They have done a pretty fantastic job world-building all around Alexandria in a low-key, surreptitious manner.
The lesson of hubris and a narrow-minded world view arising from the fact that these characters have spent six seasons driven purely by survival is incredibly well done. The fact that these flaws that they developed as a small society is well earned. And when these most basic of social flaws (no longer just a collection of individual character flaws, but the flaws of their shared Alexandrian society at large) come back to bite them in their collective hubristic ass, that devastation is absolutely well-earned due to the excellent writing, directing, and acting.