A Bitter Fruit to Swallow: Harsh Realities in TWD 615

Screen Shot 2016-03-29 at 4.42.30 PMA Bitter Fruit to Swallow: Harsh Realities in TWD 615

Bicycle Girl shares what she makes of that apple at the beginning of The Walking Dead Episode 615 “East”


What’s up, Deadheads?


The menu at a TWD party could be rather lengthy. You can serve some barbecued tainted meat, applesauce, easy cheese, chocolate pudding, cookies, protein bars and even spaghetti if it’s a Tuesday (or a Wednesday!) After this week’s episode, entitled “East,” a ripe juicy apple can also be added to the buffet table.


But did anybody else think it was a little odd that the very first thing Michonne did when she opened her eyes was take a bite of that apple? Sure, it was a sweet moment, and yeah, maybe after a night of passion with Rick she awoke with an appetite, but I can’t help but think that there was something more going on with that fruit.


So what does two naked people sharing an apple make you think of?


How about the Garden of Eden and good old Adam and Eve? The Walking Dead has used religious symbolism in the past, so it’s no stretch to imagine that they might do it again here.


Alexandria may not be the Garden of Eden, but it is a veritable paradise in the world of The Walking Dead. Just think of how its suburban streets look in comparison to the dusty backwoods paths of The Hilltop or the sterile industrial confines of Negan’s compound.


To refresh your memory of the story from the book of Genesis–Eve is tempted to eat an apple by the devil in the form of a snake. She shares it with Adam and once they’ve eaten the forbidden fruit, they’re aware that they’re naked, become ashamed and are ultimately cast out of the garden. The tree that the apple grew from was called the Tree of Knowledge, and eating it literally made the two aware of the world beyond their garden.


Michonne and Rick aren’t exactly eating forbidden fruit, but they both show signs of not being fully aware of the world in this episode. After they’ve eaten and shared some kisses, Michonne talks about Maggie, saying:

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Rick replies:

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He is completely confident that they can take on Negan and the Saviors, that the others won’t stand a chance against them. Rick believes that the actions they’ve taken against the Saviors–blowing them up on the road, killing them in the compound and slaughtering Paula and the other hostage takers–will have no consequence.


But we know from seeing the ominous preview that promises a price to be paid that’s not going to be the case, and someone in this episode told Rick so in a round about way.


It was Morgan. At the farm the pair discovered, Morgan finally confesses to Rick that he kept a Wolf alive, and he credits him for being the reason why Denise was able to save Carl. He says:

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Maybe saving lives doesn’t always save lives, but in this case with Negan, taking lives is going to cost someone’s life. It’s going to be returned.

Rick doesn’t see it yet.

He is still the First Man of Alexandria, moving through the garden unaware of how naked and vulnerable he really is. But like Adam who tasted the fruit, soon he will have the all too terrible knowledge of the reality of the world.


Michonne also seems to think that they can handle the Saviors. It’s evidenced in her reply to Rick about not losing anything to the Saviors:

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When she, Glenn and Rosita find Daryl, she says:

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Throughout the series, Michonne has proven herself to be a trustworthy and loyal person, and I don’t believe she’d make that promise if she didn’t believe with all of her heart that she would keep it.

Like Rick, Michonne thinks they are stronger than Negan and the Saviors, but by the end of 615, she’s been taken prisoner by his men along with Glenn, and Daryl has been injured–or worse.

Just as Eve ate the apple first, Michonne took the first bite, and she now–bound and gagged at the mercy of Dwight and his men–sees the reality of things. She has acquired the unkind knowledge of the reality of the world.

It’s a bitter fruit to swallow, not just for Rick and Michonne, but for us as well. We reveled in seeing our Survivors reign victorious and kill the Saviors episode after episode, but now, we stand to lose characters that we love.

Everything gets a return.

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Bicycle Girl

Freelance writer from Pittsburgh. May or may not be a walker whose bicycle was stolen by Officer Friendly.

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