The Walking Dead “Swear” Review (Season 7 Episode 6)

When I learned that this week’s episode of The Walking Dead would focus on what happened during Tara and Heath’s scavenging trip, I was admittedly a bit skeptical about the idea. I like Tara and Heath and certainly wanted to know what happened on their trip, but I wasn’t sure that catching up with the two warranted the entire focus of an episode.

Based on my very non-scientific look at social media, it is clear that fans had very mixed reactions to the Tara-centered episode. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Granted, it is not an episode that I’m going to go back and re-watch, but I liked getting to see another community and being left with lingering questions surrounding Tara’s commitment to keeping the Oceanside secret and her loyalty to Team Family.

In a nutshell, Tara and Heath’s scavenging trip lasts longer than expected and the two ventured outside the agreed upon territory. Unfortunately, their efforts did not yield much. The pair arrive at a bridge where a bunch of walkers were buried beneath a large pile of sand. I know it is a minor detail, but I am curious as to how the walkers ended up there. Did they all just wander into a pile of sand? Was it some sort of trap? Did the people who ultimately turned meet some sort of horrible demise?

Faced with the onslaught of bridge walkers, Tara and Heath get separated. Tara went over the bridge and washed ashore near the Oceanside community. We learned that the people of Oceanside once resided elsewhere – until they ran into Negan. Much like our favorite Alexandria residents, the Oceansiders tried to fight back. The punishment they received – the death of every male member of the community over the age of 10 – was much steeper when compared to the losses Alexandria and the Hilltop have suffered. Rather than live under Negan’s rule, the survivors fled and relocated to Oceanside. I always wondered if any communities opted to just relocate and flee, rather than submit to Negan’s demands, so it was nice to see that explored in Swear.

Their experience with the Saviors has left the women of Oceanside in no mood to network with new communities, particularly if those communities are in Negan’s cross-hairs. Thanks to an assist from Cindy, Tara manages to escape the Oceanside women who tried killing her in order to eliminate the risk of being exposed. Heath’s fate remains unknown, as he was not seen among the walkers on the bridge. I’m glad the writers opted not to kill Heath, despite his Corey Hawkins being hired as the new lead on 24 Legacy. Perhaps we will run into him some time in the future. And while the writers are at it, I’m still curious about what happened to Morales from Season 1.

Overall Thoughts
Alanna Masterson was great in this episode. I will never get tired of watching Tara flip the bird at people. I also liked the aspects of the episode that felt realistic. For example, we have watched Daryl and Rick run for miles in hot clothes and uncomfortable shoes. They show signs of fatigue, but it still seems quite fictional. I got a good chuckle at how relatable Tara was as she ran from the Oceanside women and was absolutely winded by the task. I also liked the callbacks to Glenn and Denise in the episode and was okay with the writers decision not to show us the blow by blow of Tara’s reaction to learning what happened after she departed for her trip.

We’re now caught up with our major players – I’m ready to advance the ball in this plot. Here’s hoping that’s what is in store for us on Sunday.

Until Next Week!
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