A Look at The Walking Dead #180- “New World Order: Part 6 of 6”

It may indeed be time for a new world order.

Here we are at the end of the six-part New World Order arc, though if the ending is any indication, we’re only just scratching the surface on the world order. I enjoyed this issue. Aside from the opening, we’re mostly in Alexandria, getting caught up to speed not just with Rick meeting Pamela, but a few other characters as well. But we’ll get to that in a minute.

So we start off in the Commonwealth with Lance Hornsby showing Michonne her new home. No strings attached. Yep, just like that, Michonne’s got herself a nice new setup. How does the old saying go? If something seems too good to be true, that’s because it is. The same is applicable here but from what we’ve seen in the Commonwealth, there doesn’t seem to be a sinister undercurrent beneath the surface.

Sure, there’s the whole class issue, but that’s out in the open. Here, Michonne is presented with a nice looking home right off the bat. More than that, Lance suggests that Elodie quit working at the bakery to help her mother set up her law office, as the rule of law is important.

It’s interesting how fast Michonne is set up in this new community, but we have seen the visitors interviewed and screened by Pamela, so it’s not like they don’t know anything about Michonne. What I find noteworthy is Lance saying that the Commonwealth has lawyers, but none with Michonne’s level of expertise. How could he know that right off the bat?

After all, he hasn’t seen Michonne on the job. It’s possible that Michonne knows some things that Commonwealth’s lawyers don’t, but I’m just perplexed as to why Lance would already think that Michonne is leaps and bounds above the lawyers that Lance already knows. But it’s minor. And hey, at least Michonne and Elodie are not just reunited, but under the same roof.

Now to Alexandria. At last, Dwight and Laura appear to be on good terms again in a somewhat humorous little scene. So Dwight concedes to Laura that he’s been an asshole and finally comes to term with the fact that Sherry, whether from taking charge of the Saviors or confronting Rick, got herself killed. She’s hurt Dwight over and over again, but he always overlooked that.

But, as Laura humorously points out, Sherry was crazy. Bad timing, sure, but Laura’s not wrong here. Sherry was on the warpath and there was only one end for her if she kept going down the path of trying to take down the other communities. But Dwight rightly points out that he focuses on the negative in a way that drives away people, which led to the divide between him and Rick.

Then again, as we’ll see in a bit and as Rick himself points out, Dwight does mean well, and since Dwight intends to apologize, they’ll probably be on good footing again.

So Pamela and the Commonwealth company arrive in Alexandria to meet Rick, and I like how Pamela isn’t fooled by Eugene. When she points out that she knew about Eugene riding ahead, thinking that she wouldn’t notice, she was, in fact, aware of what he was doing. What can Eugene really say besides ‘Thanks?’ It was a clever maneuver, but Pamela still saw through it.

Following this, Rick learns of the impossible when Eugene hands over Michonne’s sword. It’s natural that Rick, at first, would assume the worst. After all, he’s being given a sword, but no Michonne to present it. Even more surprising that Michonne would somehow find her daughter. It’s astronomically impossible or, as Eugene puts it, seemingly a mathematical impossibility, but equally amazing coincidence.

Still, the impossible can indeed happen and the lost can become found again. It doesn’t always happen, and I’m sure there are still many readers questioning the odds of Michonne reuniting with her daughter, but Kirkman made it possible.

Then Rick is introduced properly not just to Pamela, but Princess as well since, hey, she’s just as new to the community as Pamela. And she’s just as full of energy as she was when the others met her on Pittsburgh. Though I’m curious whether she ends up staying in Alexandria, much to Magna’s chagrin, or indeed takes up residence at the Hilltop. She’ll have to take that up with Maggie, though.

So, as mentioned, Dwight means well, but he does go a tad overboard when he brings the army. But it’s an easy mistake. He doesn’t understand the situation or that Pamela means no harm. It’s also to show that the people of Alexandria mean business, but it’s not the best way to make friends of you show up with your army to prove that you’re ready to fight. Especially since the Commonwealth didn’t bring many people with them.

But Rick tells Dwight to stand down for the moment so he and Pamela can talk alone. Mercer is sent off as well and we know he’s capable of handling himself, but keep an eye on Maxwell, since he gives Rick a very distrusting look…

As you can imagine, there was always going to be some awkwardness when Rick learned that Pamela is the Governor of the Commonwealth. When he explains how he lost his hand to someone else called the Governor, there’s brief tension in the air, but not that Rick sees Pamela in the same light as the previous Governor. Just a coincidence.

Also, Pamela diffuses the situation a bit by telling Rick that he can just refer to her as Pamela. That and she neither founded the Commonwealth nor became its Governor, she was just appointed to the position. Her outlook on class notwithstanding, Pamela doesn’t seem like the type to encourage or claim the Governor title. For now, she’s just going along with it.

Rick gives Pamela the grand tour around Alexandria, showing her the windmill, giving her some of the community’s food, it’s a good way to get her familiar with how things work, as well as what separates the Commonwealth from Alexandria. To Pamela, Alexandria seems small by comparison, but the communities between Alexandria, Oceanside, the Hilltop, and Kingdom do cover a lot of space.

And Pamela understands the necessity of thinkers like Eugene. Like Lance, Pamela sees the usefulness in Alexandria’s resources. Michonne’s already taking up residence in the Commonwealth. Pamela could put Eugene’s brain to good use. Who is to say that there aren’t other people from the multiple communities that the Commonwealth could siphon off for their own purposes?

What she doesn’t get is why Rick puts himself on equal footing with everyone else in Alexandria. Rick may be a leader, but even as far back as the New Beginning, he’s never liked being seen as some sort of savior or hero in the eyes of the people. He’s just one of them, trying to make it each day. As he points out, people look up to him because of what he’s done, not because of his status.

To Rick, what people did before the world went to hell doesn’t matter anymore. What matters is what you make of life moving forward. You have to make a new place and living in a new world, after all. Because even though society is capable of rebuilding itself, the world will never be the same, even if you got rid of every single roamer.

But to Pamela, the system at the Commonwealth is part of what keeps life going. Rick doesn’t see it as fair, but Pamela does. You have to build on the foundation of the previous world because people need something to work towards in their life. The working class forms the foundation of the Commonwealth so the world keeps spinning, but Rick sees no need for a foundation at all. Just start anew.

Not for Pamela. To her, this is the world order. And if that’s the case, in Rick’s mind, it may be time for a new world order. Not the best way Kirkman could’ve integrated the name of the story arc into the comic, but it’s fine. This ending is made to seem ominous, but I don’t think this necessarily means Rick and Pamela are about to go to war. They see things in very different ways, but they’re not looking to change each other.

At least, as far as I can tell. For all I know, Pamela could look at Alexandria and decide, based on her talk with Rick, that it’s not worth communicating with or sharing resources with them. That in and of itself isn’t a problem. But Michonne is already at the Commonwealth and Pamela wants to get her hands on Eugene, so Rick might put up some resistance to that, if Pamela does indeed make a move.

We’ll see, though. I enjoyed this issue and looking forward to seeing what becomes of the Rick and Pamela dynamic from here. Hopefully there’s no huge conflict here. Rick certainly doesn’t need to lose his other hand to another Governor.

What did you think of the issue?

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