A few zombie heads smashed against rocks, Dale homages, and the show’s first homosexual character serve as the only entertaining elements to an otherwise bland episode.
After Maggie and Sasha are confronted by a man who knows Rick’s name because he is spying on them, they bring him to Rick to be dealt with. After a good 30 seconds of questioning, Rick jacks the spy, Aaron, and Michonne scolds him for not trusting him. After the events of the prison, losing Bob, and losing Beth, Rick no longer takes chances on people.
Later on in the episode, Judith begins to cry and Rick has the option to feed her with Aaron’s food, but he has Aaron taste some first to make sure it is safe for her to eat. Rick being cautious is not an unusual thing for him to do given his background, but it is such an obvious story to follow. Of course Rick isn’t going to trust him. Of course the group will tell Rick to stop being a hard ass. Of course everything will seem okay at first, but shit will eventually hit the fan, and Rick will become even more overly cautious as a result. If the show would have had Rick and the group meet Aaron’s group in any way other than the “you’re just gonna have to trust me” fashion, it would have made the turnout less predictable.
As the show progresses, Rick does what everyone knows he is going to do, and trusts Aaron enough to visit his group. However, Rick demands they take a different route from the one that Aaron recommended. This does not end well as Glenn crashes the car carrying himself, Rick, Michonne, and Aaron into a herd of zombies. The group gets away unscathed, but a flare gun in the distance causes concern as Aaron charges toward its source. Rick, Michonne, and Glenn follow him, and are reunited with the rest of the group. Along with the rest of the group is Aaron’s boyfriend, who was saved by Rick’s group.
Introducing the show’s first homosexual character was meant to provide shock value. However, introducing Aaron has been discussed since he was first seene in last week’s episode, so fans who surf their Facebook feeds most likely heard about Aaron before the episode aired, thus eliminating the shock value. The writers’ hope for the reaction was probably something the lines of, ” Wow! I did not see that coming,” turned into “Oh yeah, that guy is gay… cool”
After reuniting with the rest of the group and taking refuge in Aaron’s RV, the group heads toward DC. The RV breaks down due to a faulty battery. Abraham believes all is lost, but Glenn shows where the extra batteries are kept paying homage back to Dale. It’s nice to see the show go back to its roots by talking about the previous cast, and showing that the events of the past are still in the minds of the characters today.
“The Distance” is not going to blow anyone’s mind, or put viewers’ at the edge of their seats. It’s as basic as “The Walking Dead” episodes go, but it keeps the charm with zombie kills, and Rick being a badass by being a dick to everyone that’s not Carl.