The Walking Dead Season 5, Episode 11 'The Distance' Recap

Synopsis (The Distance - Air Date: February 22, 2015)

Lasting through a spectacular storm, Rick and the group meet a seemingly friendly person. Can they be trusted or are they just manipulating Rick?

Full Recap (spoilers)

 Maggie and Sasha bring Aaron, the stranger who approached them in the Episode 510, back to the barn where the group is sheltering. Rick and the group draw their weapons. Sasha says Aaron wants them to "audition for membership" at his community. "I think you all would make valuable additions," he explains. In an effort to convince them, Aaron shares photos and promises excellent security. Rick punches Aaron in the face.

Rick's group inspects Aaron's backpack and finds a flare gun. Aaron says he's been following the group, and reveals he was the one who left them the water bottles. At Rick's prodding, Aaron reveals that he came with a single travel companion and tells Rick where they parked their cars. Rick doesn't believe him, but Michonne insists they verify Aaron's story by looking for the vehicles. Glenn, Abraham and Rosita join her. Then Rick instructs everyone else to pair off and leave the barn so they're not sitting ducks.

From a distance, a man watches Michonne, Glenn, Abraham and Rosita set off down the road.

Back at the barn, Judith cries from hunger. When Aaron offers Rick applesauce from his backpack, Rick forces him to eat some to prove it isn't poisoned. Aaron tells Rick that the walls of his camp are so secure that nobody on the outside would ever hear Judith cry.

On the road, Michonne's group locates Aaron's vehicles — a car and camper — parked where Aaron said they would be. Abraham and Rosita check the RV and find canned food inside.

Back at the barn, everyone except Rick is convinced that Aaron is telling the truth. Rick finally agrees to check out Aaron's community, and asks for a map. Aaron refuses to divulge the location, but gives initial directions. Rick declares they'll leave at sundown via an alternate route. Aaron warns that Rick's route has not been cleared of walkers, but Rick is insistent.

Outside, Rick tells Michonne that he still doesn't trust Aaron. He reminds her that Woodbury and Terminus, like Aaron's purported community, were both welcoming places at first glance. "Truth is, I'm not sure anything could convince me to go in there," he says.

That night, the group caravans to Aaron's community. In Rick's car, Michonne asks Aaron how many people he's killed. "Two," Aaron says. "Because they tried to kill me." Then, the car suddenly runs into a giant herd of walkers. Blood soaks the windshield as Glenn plows through the herd. Amid the chaos, they lose sight of the others, who were following in the RV.

Glenn tries to restart the car but the engine fails. In the distance, a flare lights up the sky. Aaron panics. "This is over," he declares and flees into the woods.

In the woods, Glenn finds Aaron fighting off a walker. After a moment of hesitation, Glenn rescues him. They join up with Rick and Michonne, who are busy fighting walkers nearby. When they get back to the road, Rick warns Aaron that he will kill Aaron's people if this diversion turns out to be a trap.

Later, in a nearby town, Aaron whistles. Someone whistles back in response. Carl runs out of a building and hugs Rick, followed by the rest of the group.

Aaron dashes inside and kisses Eric, his boyfriend. Eric explains that he broke his ankle and was surrounded by walkers when he set off the flare. Aaron thanks Rick's group for saving Eric and suggests they head to his community, Alexandria, the next morning. Rick agrees.

The next day, the group caravans to Alexandria. In the RV, Aaron notes Noah's limp and says they have a gifted surgeon who might be able to help.

Abraham notices a "low voltage" sign on the RV's dashboard, shortly after which the vehicle dies. To Abraham's surprise, Glenn points to where a spare battery is stored in the RV and quickly replaces it. Meanwhile, Rick darts into the woods and stashes a gun outside an abandoned house.

When the group finally pulls up to Alexandria's gate, they hear the sounds of people and children on the other side. Michonne smiles at Rick and asks if he's ready. He says he is, and parks the car. As Rick picks up Judith and the group walks toward the gate, Carol tells Rick in passing, "Even though you were wrong, you're still right." Then Rick and Judith join the others at the entrance to Alexandria.

Next Episode: Remember

Molding into a new lifestyle is proving difficult for the group. Has life on the road proven too treacherous to go back to who they once were?

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Bob Suggs

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