"Bonds" is the sixth episode of the tenth season of AMC's The Walking Dead. It is the one-hundred and thirty-seventh episode of the series overall. It premiered on November 10, 2019. It was written by Kevin Deiboldt and directed by Dan Liu.
Carol wakes up in her room. She rinses her face, gets dressed, makes some tea, packs a bag, and heads out. Before leaving, she ponders her gun in a drawer. Daryl sees her heading out and catches up to ask where she's going. Carol says she will go search for Negan and Daryl offers to accompany her. While traveling, they discuss the possibility of Negan crossing the border and joining the Whisperers. They stop in a clearing near the border and Carol pulls out binoculars. Daryl questions what they're really looking for. "Alpha's horde. We're going to find it and we're going to destroy it," Carol reveals.
In Alexandria, Dante does a check-up on Cheryl in the infirmary and jokes with her about acting sick so that she could spend more time with him. Siddiq arrives and Dante informs more residents have come down with the sickness but he believes to be nothing serious. He then tells Siddiq to spend the day off with Coco and makes an inappropriate joke about checking in on Rosita but Siddiq reminds him about boundaries.
Back in the woods, Carol explains to Daryl how she has been tracking the movements of the small group of walkers in the clearing with the hope that it would lead her to the horde's location. Daryl cautions that they won't be able to follow them without starting a war, but Carol claims they will only watch them and report to the council. He then asks her why she wasn't honest with him earlier and she admits she didn't want him to worry. Daryl understands and says he'll stay to help her.
Elsewhere, Beta and the Whisperers escort a blindfolded Negan through the woods. He jokes about their lifestyle and says he wants to join them. Beta puts his knives to Negan's throat and demands that he is too loud. Negan apologizes and introduces himself, before explaining he has been a prisoner of Alexandria for eight years and is willing to reveal their secrets. Beta relents and gags Negan as they continue their walk.
At Hilltop, Eugene finishes improving the radio set up with parts of the fallen satellite while Nabila brings him supplies. He then tests it and is contacted by Rosita Espinosa back from Alexandria. They catch up and she admits to missing talking to him. Suddenly, a part of the radio malfunctions and they agree to talk later.
In the woods, Daryl and Carol are sitting throwing rocks at a can to pass the time. Carol finds a double-capped acorn and gives it to Daryl, telling him it's good luck and might improve his aim. She then asks him about Connie but he says there is nothing between them. "You don't have to be alone," Carol advises him. They share a piece of bread and suddenly notice a group of walkers being herded by a Whisperer in the field.
At the Whisperer camp, Alpha and Beta argue over what to do with Negan. Alpha wants to test him while Beta wants to kill him. Alpha notes that Beta has been questioning her rather often lately and asks if he is finally challenging her. Beta kneels in submission and vows that he will never challenge her. Alpha forgives him as Negan smiles nearby. Later, Negan mocks Beta's relationship with Alpha and jokes that he is attracted by her baldness.
Back in Alexandria, Siddiq arrives at Rosita's house and finds her sick lying on the couch. He decides to take her to the infirmary despite her objections. In Hilltop, Eugene decides to radio open channels to find anybody. Meanwhile, Daryl and Carol debate how they're going to handle Alpha's horde. She walks off to use the bathroom and Daryl looks through her bag. She returns and asks if he found what he was looking for. He questions her about her gun but she insists she didn't bring it.
In the woods, Beta forces Negan to do a series of tasks, like digging graves, skinning walkers, and help hunt a boar to prove his worthiness. Back in Alexandria, Siddiq arrives at the infirmary to find it full of sick people and berates Dante for letting things get out of hand. He is calmed down by Rosita and rushes to prepare more herbal medications.
That night, Carol and Daryl approach the border to observe the herd. Back in their camp, Beta tells Negan that he has not earned the right to eat with them and throws him to the ground. Negan collects himself and sits with another Whisperer who shares some food with him. At Hilltop, Eugene keeps calling out over the radio and after a while, a woman responds. He is left speechless.
In the woods, Daryl and Carol observe the herd from some shrubbery. When Daryl signals Carol to retreat, she accidentally steps on a twig and attracts the walkers to their location. Meanwhile, Eugene asks the woman about her community and she says she's not comfortable sharing that information yet but agrees on talking about their pasts. Eugene says he grew up in Dallas, Texas while she grew up in Strasburg, Pennsylvania. He admits to having visited the town for a train fair and to have gone to an ice cream shop. She joyfully reveals to be a big fan of the shop too.
Back in the woods, Daryl holds a walker, slices its guts open, and rubs its blood on his face to blend in. At the infirmary, Siddiq comforts a bedridden Cheryl and apologizes to Dante for his outburst earlier but he says he understands his concerns and they laugh off the incident. A while later, Siddiq holds Coco and falls sleep. He starts to dream of the harrowing night at the barn and wakes up to find himself holding Coco on the windmill to his confusion.
Elsewhere, Beta and Negan walk among one of their herds in the woods as his final task. When Negan starts making jokes again, Beta tells him he'll never be one of them because he's too loud and egotistical. "I'm not here for you, I'm here for Alpha," Negan says. Beta kills a Whisperer in response and walks away, leaving Negan to fend for himself with a pocket knife.
Meanwhile, Daryl finds Carol holding a Whisperer hostage. He's pissed but she tells him she didn't plan for that but now they have to take him back for questioning. Back at Hilltop, Eugene tells the woman he trusts her enough to share his full name and suggests they continue their conversations. She agrees but wants to keep them a secret between them and if she hears anyone else she will stop answering. Eugene accepts and they sign off.
The next morning, Beta returns to the camp and tells Alpha that Negan died because he was weak. Suddenly, a blood-covered Negan arrives demanding a skinsuit for himself with an extra measure because of his humungous balls. He kneels and introduces himself to Alpha. "I'm all in, whatever you want, whatever I got, it's yours", Negan tells her. Alpha leans down to sniff him and shushes him to signal she approves.
- Seven as Dog
- Marvin Lee as Kyle
- Unknown as Socorro Espinosa
- Mario Williams as Alexandria Resident
- Jon Arthur as Alexandria Resident
- Chris Hodge as Alexandria Resident
- Tonya Lee as Alexandria Resident
- Chuck Hollywood as Alexandria Resident
- Laura L. Anderson Weber as Alexandria Resident
- Dani Lyman as Alexandria Resident
- Shellane Demarest as Alexandria Resident
- Jack Orrell as Alexandria Resident
- Kristen DeSantis as Alexandria Resident
- Anthony Porrey as Alexandria Resident
- Bruce Greene as Highwayman
- 1 unnamed Whisperer
- 1 boar
- First appearance of Cheryl.
- This episode was made available for streaming to subscribers of AMC Premiere on November 8, 2019.
- Eugene reveals his middle name to be "Hermann" to the radio woman.
- Daryl uses the walker guts trick to avoid detection when surrounded by a herd.
- The bug that Rosita caught is revealed to be spreading, as there are more than a dozen sick Alexandrians now, lending further credence to the theory that the infection is a result of the Whisperers contaminating Alexandria's water supply.
- Siddiq's PTSD appears to be getting worse, as he is shown to blacking out during his episodes and waking up in completely different locations.
- Carol captures a Whisperer that she plans on interrogating.
- Negan attempts to prove himself to the Whisperers in order to join them. While Beta does his best to hinder him, even attempting to get him killed, Negan survives and seemingly impresses Alpha.
- This episode marks the first time in The Walking Dead that two characters classified as major recurring primary antagonists have interacted with each other; Negan and "Alpha".
- The method that the Whisperers and Negan used to cook the boar is called "pachamanca", a method used in Peru that dates back to the Inca Empire. "Pacha" means "Earth" and "manka" means "pot".
- Eugene making contact with the radio woman is adapted from Issue 151.
- Eugene and the radio woman agreeing to keep their conversations a secret is adapted from Issue 152.
- Negan wanting to join the Whisperers is adapted from Issue 154.
- Beta telling Negan he is too loud is adapted from Issue 154.
- Beta saying that he finds Alpha attractive is adapted from similar scenes in Issue 155, where he flirts with her.
- Beta kneeling to Alpha after being asked if he is finally challenging her is adapted from Issue 156.
- Negan doing various chores around the Whisperer camp to prove himself is adapted from Issue 156.
- Beta carrying two walker corpses is a nod to a similar scene in Issue 156, where Negan does the same thing.
- Negan being attacked by walkers and surviving while attempting to prove himself is adapted from a similar scene in Issue 156.
- Negan kneeling to Alpha is adapted from Issue 156.