Anyone that is hooked on the Walking Dead saw the episode “Twice as Far” last Sunday. What a great episode it was. It wasn’t your typical non-stop action story line that I love to see. This one was more about character development, which is sometimes the most effective type of moment on this show. I appreciated the parallel between Eugene and Denise. The two of them each started out on their own separate journeys, which were both very similar. They each has something to prove. Eugene was proving to Abraham that he was more than capable of taking care of himself, while Denise set out to prove to herself that she was more than capable of moving through the new, apocalyptic world.
Denise is a wonderful, down-to-earth type of person, played by Merritt Weaver, who viewers will recognize from HBO’s “Nurse Jackie”. Viewers especially connect with her because of the way she brings them back to the beginning of the show, when very few understood what was going on around them, or how they needed to react. She brought a purity of knowledge to the show that we don’t normally see any more. At the same time, she knew that she had a skill (medical training) that would be useful to the group and worked to help them where she could.
The great thing about this episode was that Denise not only decided to take herself on this journey, but she also purposely chose her travel companions, Daryl and Rosita, for their individual strengths. It will be interesting to see how Daryl and Rosita each take from this particular journey to continue to remain strong. Rosita, in particular, needed a boost after feeling down about no longer having Abraham close to her. Not that Rosita is a weak woman, but she had just gone through losing someone that she thought would be staying with her, and this is something that would affect anyone.
Strong women seems to be a theme that the Walking Dead has decided to stick with the more involved the story becomes. The strong ones are the ones that continue to survive and are able to adapt to the world around them. Denise’s death in this episode though should not be considered indicative of her inability to be a strong woman. This death had more to do with her purity of heart and her want to help others. She would not have survived due to her trusting nature, which was shown when she tried to help the Wolf leader. Only the ones that have learned that you can no longer trust others have been able to continue to thrive, including Carol, Maggie, and Rosita.
It is sad to see Denise go, given what else she might have been able to bring to the group. She had the potential to help so many of the survivors in many different ways, but in the end she just was not meant to stay in their crazy zombified world