Did the 'Walking Dead' crew cross a line in 'Not Tomorrow Yet' with the ambush?

By RODNEY HO/ rho@ajc.com, originally filed Sunday, March 6, 2016

This seemingly reckless attack on the Saviors will not go smoothly. How could it?

It seems as brazen and nasty a move as Rick has ever conjured up.

They kill dozens of men in cold blood, many in their sleep.

The result: Maggie and Carol get kidnapped. What was Maggie even doing there waiting to be captured? The whole idea of her coming along because she negotiated the deal seems like weak gruel. But it was clearly an excuse so she becomes a plot point.

That's how the second half of the season has played. Lots of moves to propel plot that may or may not make any sense in the  bright light of day.

Sure, Alexandria is desperate for food but this seems like a rather desperate, Mafia-like way to get it. They have no idea who this Negan really is. Their intel has been sketchy at best.

They were ultimately able to overtake the bunker with the big two satellite dishes with guns ablazin'. But at what cost?

Clearly, this locale was not home base for the Saviors, merely an outpost, something the Hilltop folks did not know.

Miraculously, the attack resulted in zero deaths for Rick's groupo. I think Abraham may have been injured but otherwise, they managed to get away with it despite the fact one dude pulled the alarm. Unfortunately, that alarm clearly alarmed the Saviors at their home base.

With four more episodes left, this mess will certainly get messier.

So let's pick up a few of the other plot strands:

-->  A resourceful Carol can make a mean acorn-and-beet cookie. She's tormented by all her murders to date (18). But she finds solace with Tobin, who kisses her after complimenting her as everyone's mom. (Just not his!) Unfortunately, this means the long-awaited Carol-Daryl romance isn't happening any time soon.

--> Abraham breaks up with Rosita in a cruel cruel way, saying he hooked up with her when he thought she was the only woman left on earth. Ouch. But the writers did throw in a funny moment with Eugene commenting about the cookies moments after Rosita gets nixed. And she closes the door on him. Great timing, Eugene! (Abraham clearly wants Sasha.)

--> Tara hearts Denise. They have a tender moment before Tara leaves for the battle. (She says in "Talking Dead" that she was pregnant during the shoot but they hid it well. I was noticing her looking a bit heavy so that answers that question.)

--> Glenn is no longer a virgin in terms of murder. He finally knifes a couple sleeping Saviors. It's painful for him.

--> Even Gabriel is now a killer - and a priest. Really! I guess he figures he's going to hell anyway.

--> Morgan does not agree with this move. Shockingly, he's the only person who thinks this ambush is a terrible idea. So he stays behind.

--> Rick comes up with a tricky way to get into the compound by doing a fake "exchange" for the hostage by finding a walker who looks enough like Gregory, the Hilltop leader. To make the fake head, they find a walker who looks enough like him. When Andy notes that the walker's nose isn't quite right, Rick punches the head in the nose to make the walker look more like Gregory. This kind of freaks out Hilltop man Andy. Yup, Rick goes there without flinching.

--> Ross Marquand, who plays Aaron, said on "Talking Dead" that everyone at Alexandria was still burned by the Wolves ambush so they felt a pre-emptive strike was better than getting attacked again.

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