Thoughts with summary mixed together.
I have this a 65 on Robin's scale. I like the interactions in this episode. Hats off to David Leslie Johnson for some great writing. The best I think in the Season.
Some dialog like Negan's lines to Dwight in the holding cell was concise, funny and conveyed a lot of information as well as facing off Dwight and Negan. The montage with Honey's letter and Dwight's actions at their pre apocalypse house conveyed a lot of emotion and information about Dwight's character and how Honey and the Saviors changed him and Dwight's growing inner conflict.
We leave off where Daryl just escaped due to Dwight/Negan's wife Sherry (aka Honey) letting him out and Eugene arriving shortly later from Alexandria with Negan. Dwight immediately figured out that someone let Daryl out (and had his suspicions it was Sherry (Honey)).
Negan has him beaten up and thrown into Solitary. After that; he has his men go looking for Daryl; coming up empty Negan realizes Sherry is gone and questions Dwight. He realizes Daryl had been let out; possibly by Dwight himself or Sherry. He tells Negan he can find her and so Negan lets him out to go look for her. Eugene gets shown to some nice living accommodations where he can have what he wants.
A female Savior shows Eugene around the main floor of the sanctuary and explains the point system and how he can just take what he wants, he just has to detail and sign for it. (The episode does a great job of showing class distinctions at the Sanctuary; I believe this is the first time we have encountered a group that has some social orders. The Walking Dead is becoming more sophisticated with it's world building. The most we had seen was groups having rules that they live by; to see them used to establish classes of people is interesting and will add more story complexities hopefully.)
Negan tests Eugene's intelligence and buys his lying (about the Human Genome Project).
Negan gives him the problem of deteriorating walkers protecting the fence and Eugene comes up with the solution of encasing their heads in metal and fixing them to the fence. This sells Negan on his brain skills.
Negan sends over three of his wives for non sexual companionship as a token of his gratitude later that night. He plays 'Yars Revenge' on an Atari 2600 with Amber and Frankie and Tina gets drunk and despondent about her personal situation with Negan. They try to quiz him about the Human Genome Project work he did and he uses his 'not at liberty to discuss' lie line on them. He shows them some tricks with yeast, peroxide and dish soap.
Dwight makes it back to his old house he had with Sherry before the apocalypse. He doesn't find her but he does verify the handwriting in the note to Daryl is hers and now he knows she let Daryl out. He finds a goodbye note she leaves for him. She admits in the note that she is responsible for making him into what he has become (which he didn't want to be) and that he took her back to the Saviors because she made him. He left her beer and pretzels to show her that he showed up like she thought he would in her note to him.
She loved who he was and was sorry for having made him what he was now. She even thought he might kill her at this point because he has been converted. (The letter was definitely the best written dialog of the episode and up there for the whole 7th season. It provided a lot of emotion and make up of the characters. We need more David Leslie Johnson dialog on the show.)
Amber and Frankie visit Eugene and trick him into making poison pills for Tina so she can put herself out of her misery. They ask for two pills.
Eugene grows a pair and gets the ingredients on the Sanctuary floor.
He also grabs a stuffed animal and calls it 'Grembly Gunk'
Dwight takes the Goodbye, Honey signature off the note and cuts it off and plants it in the Dr.'s desk.
This frames the doctor for helping Honey escape. He goes back and claims he killed Sherry to Negan. Negan vows if she's ever found then Dwight will end up dead from an iron mark on the other side of his face.
Dwight doesn't even flinch at that this mention.
In front of all his wives, the Saviors and Eugene; Negan shoves the Dr. in the furnace as punishment for helping Honey and Daryl escape.
Amber and Frankie visit Eugene for the pills and he refuses to give those to them since he realizes they are trying to poison Negan and he wants no part of it.
The episode ends with a shared moment between Dwight and Eugene. It reveals they both are individuals, however they are fka Negan.
* Who would have thought you would see Yar's Revenge in the Walking Dead?
* Eugene bopping to 'Easy Street'
* It makes sense that someone who is generally an outcast (nerd) and not good at anything who now has a purpose (making bullets, etc) is being rewarded with a nice place and companionship would convert to the dark side. However, there is a nice blurry line there where I feel Eugene is still an Alexandrian. I like those developments with his character. I also like how they used him quickly in the inner politics between Negan's wives and Negan.
* I like Dwight's development in this episode. Clearly he is maneuvering inside of the Sanctuary and he is stone cold. It appears part of his personality died after being inculcated with Negan and the Saviors. It does look like he is also blurry as a character with regard to being a Savior and not being a Savior. He let Honey go which means the old Dwight is still there. I have nice sense of the duality in his character.
* The exchange at the end of the show with Eugene highlights how they are both in the same place when it comes to their alignment (pretending to be Negan). However they both are coming from different directions (Dwight from the Saviors and Eugene from Alexandria.) It's pretty clear they are both just doing what they need to do. They could become allies in future episodes within the Sanctuary.
* I was kind of surprised Amber and Frankie didn't threaten Eugene they were going to tell Negan they slept with Eugene (if he didn't given them the pills); instead they just call him a coward.
* Is Eugene just playing the fake role like he's one of the Saviors or has he really converted over to being a Savior?
* Will Honey end up at Hilltop with Daryl?
* Does anyone ship Honey with Daryl?
* Will Dwight eventually end back up with Honey and on Rick's side?