HOLLYWOOD—Last week we got an update on Maggie, Sasha, Jesus and The Hilltop, but this week episode of “The Walking Dead,” titled ‘Swear’ introduced the audience to more madness involving Heath and Tara and the Oceanside community who feared Negan’s dictatorship. The episode opened on the outskirts of a beach, with a young girl and a teen girl dismantling of walkers in their presence, and stumbled across Tara. The youngster was ready to take out Tara, but her ally wanted to rescue Tara. Hmm, can’t help, but wonder how Tara ended up on that beach?

Of course, how about a long flashback to explain the situation! Heath and Tara found themselves deserted and at a crossroads. Heath spoke a truth that did not resonate with Tara, but I’ll be honest, he was indeed speaking the truth. Be patient people because the episode did a bit of time jumping from the past to the present. Our teen left Tara with water, weaponry and the supplies need to survive, as she took off, unaware that Tara was watching from a distance. It led Tara to follow the teen, and she stumbled upon a community hidden in the woods, off the beach. They have guns, they have weapons, indeed a suitable ally to help Rick and the others combat against Negan.

When it became clear a threat was in their presence, the community took aim at Tara who got the upper hand on the ‘enemy,’ but not before Rachel pulled a gun on her. Cindy came to Tara’s defense in this world that looks to be promoting female power. It became apparent that Heath and Tara came to a bridge that was closed off to outsiders. Tara’s eagerness, unleashed a sand surprise as tons of walkers attacked, and Heath retreated to save himself.

We soon meet Tanya, Katherine and Beatrice, as Tara told her story of falling off the bridge and landing onto the beach, where Cindy and Rachel came to her aid. Tanya and her allies were debating just what actions to take with Tara: to kill or not to kill? Tara found herself invited to a late supper courtesy of Cindy, Tanya, Beatrice and Katherine. Tara asked the big question of the hour: where are all the men? Looks like a battle royal led to the extinction of all the men who were formerly a part of the community. Tanya wanted Tara to stay at their camp, and was forced to divulge the secrets of Alexandria. When Tara started to talk about Negan, it became apparent (from my perspective) that Tanya and the others may have been aware of Negan.

Tanya agreed to allow Tara to leave their camp in search of Heath and to journey back to Alexandria. Man that scene with Rachel and Tara, was just hilarious to say the least. Beatrice and Katherine accompanied Tara on their mission, but ran into walker trouble along the way, which served as the perfect distraction. Tara fled and Beatrice and Katherine pursued chase with guns in tow. Tara begged to be let free, but Beatrice confirmed what the audience already knew about The Saviors and their massive army. It became clear The Saviors took out every men and child at Tanya’s camp, but they refused to be minions to an evil army. Cindy once again, came to Tara’s rescue allowing escape, but not before Cindy pulled a gun on her. Back at the bridge, Cindy and Tara debated on the best plan to ensure her survival to the other side. I mean this girl is a sharp-shooter, so let her do what she does best. The walker infestation was unleashed and things did not look too bright for Tara and Cindy people. Tara managed to get to the other side, and the flashback revealed that Heath did not desert her as she suspected.

During the final moments it was revealed that Heath or someone that looked like him became a walker. So a glimmer of Hope was given to the audience with those tire tracks people. Eugene was ecstatic to see Tara make her way back to Alexandria, but Tara had no idea of the chaos that had erupted while she was away from camp, Denise, Abraham, Glenn, just some of the lives lost, not to mention Negan’s rule. Rosita was determined to seek vengeance, but Tara seemed closed off to the idea, at least for now.

Looks like next week, the penultimate episode before the mid-season finale sets the stage for more revolt to begin in the midst of a fight against the villain whose dictatorship spreads much farther than many expected. Until next Sunday “Walking Dead” die-hards!