"For Blood" is the eighth episode of the eleventh season of AMC's The Walking Dead. It is the one-hundred and sixty-first episode of the series overall. It premiered on October 10, 2021, the same night as "Foothold", the second episode of the second season of The Walking Dead: World Beyond. It was written by Erik Mountain and directed by Sharat Raju.
The Reapers defend Meridian from an incoming herd. Pope suspects Maggie is behind the attack, while Daryl treads carefully. Alexandrians scramble to protect themselves when a violent storm leaves them vulnerable to walkers.
Daryl, Leah, Carver, Wells, Boone, and Pope watch the horde from the top of Meridian's perimeter wall. Leah observes the horde is moving in a peculiar pattern. Daryl offers to lead the horde away from Meridian. Pope adopts Daryl's strategy, but sends Wells instead.
Wells leads the horde away from Meridian and radios the Reapers that he's doing fine. Walkers suddenly appear from all directions, and "a walker" stabs him. Injured and surprised by the attack, they overtake him. He screams as walkers devour him.
A storm rages in Alexandria. A group hides out in Aaron's house as the windows and doors rattle. Nabila watches after the babies while Connie tends to an injured Virgil. Rosita sees a piece of the perimeter wall blow down the street.
Leah insists on helping Wells, but Pope says he's already dead. Leah realizes Pope dispatched Wells as bait to confirm his hunch that Maggie is controlling the horde. Leah reminds Pope that Wells was part of their family, but Pope says it was Wells' fate to die.
Back in Alexandria, Aaron holds a meeting in the kitchen of his house and reports that the storm blew a panel off the wall and that a fire in the windmill is drawing walkers. He proposes that they split up into teams to fix the wall and stop the fire. Aaron and Magna volunteer to put out the fire while Carol, Connie, and Kelly head out to fix the wall. Rosita stays behind along with Barbara, Dianne, Lydia, Virgil, and Nabila to defend the house and protect the children.
Pope asks Daryl for intel about Maggie. Daryl says that Maggie is a good shot and advises Pope to look for her in the trees. Carver radios Pope to report that the horde has returned.
Pope looks out at the horde and declares that it will never reach their gate. Explosions start to go off as the horde trips mines that have been planted around the perimeter.
Rosita, Dianne, and Lydia shore up the windows with boards. Judith comforts Gracie and gives her tips on how to be brave. Gracie fights imaginary walkers with a sword. A walker reaches through a window and grabs her. Judith hacks off the walker's arm. Barbara and Virgil shelter the children from the windows. Walkers surround the house after entering through a second breach. Rosita and Lydia lean against the front door with Dianne rushing over to help as walkers pound on the other side.
The horde continues to trip the mines outside Meridian. Leah laments all the people they've lost, but Pope reasons that every war has its sacrifices. Daryl looks through binoculars and sees Maggie's group wearing skin masks.
Maggie and Gabriel separate from the horde, and sneak up to a sentry post guarded by Powell. Daryl joins Powell at his post and offers him a cigarette. He intentionally drops the matches and stabs Powell when he reaches down to pick them up. He shows Maggie and Gabriel where to sneak inside. Daryl breaks the lock on the door of the food shed.
Daryl rejoins Pope, Leah, and Austin. Leah tells him the walkers are scattering, but Daryl points out that they're actually advancing.
Negan and Elijah lead the horde toward the wall.
Pope tells Leah to secure the hwacha.
Maggie and Gabriel sneak into Meridian through a pile of burned trash. Maggie confirms the next step with Gabriel, and tells him to wait for her signal.
In Alexandria, walkers nearly break through the front door of the house. Rosita runs outside and single-handedly slaughters all the walkers in the yard as the other residents wait anxiously inside.
Gabriel sneaks into a building and goes straight to a secret compartment. He reaches inside and finds what he wants.
Daryl, Leah, and Ancheta gather on a rooftop. Ancheta reveals the hwacha – a multiple rocket launcher that he designed. Daryl quietly asks Leah if she still believes in Pope. Leah admits that it's hard to watch Pope hurt the people that she cares about. Daryl reveals that the enemies they're fighting are in fact his friends. He begs Leah not to kill them. Leah reels as she processes his revelation. Pope joins them on the roof.
Maggie hotwires a truck and races toward the front gate. She jumps out of the truck, allowing it to careen straight into the gate. Walkers pour in through the breach.
Pope orders Ancheta to launch the hwacha. Leah says the hwacha will end up killing their own people, but Pope reasons that it's their time to die. Ancheta lights the fuse. Daryl unsheathes his knives to attack Pope. Leah stabs Pope in the neck. Daryl hurls a knife into Ancheta and puts out the fuse.
Maggie fights a Reaper in the courtyard. From a nearby window, Gabriel starts picking off Reapers with a rifle.
Pope crawls on the ground. Leah stabs him once more, killing him. Daryl reaches out his hand to escape with Leah, but she instead radios everyone that Daryl killed Pope and is with the enemy. She tells Daryl that she would do anything to protect her family. Daryl escapes moments before Carver and Boone arrive. Leah instructs them to close the gate and kill everything inside the walls.
In Alexandria, walkers start to break through the front door and windows of the house. Rosita tells everyone to go upstairs. R.J. and Hershel run up the stairs together while Barbara and Nabila grab the babies and follow them up the stairs. An injured Virgil is helped up the stairs by Dianne. Soon after, Lydia orders Rosita to tend to her baby and get upstairs while she holds the door. Meanwhile, Judith looks for Gracie and finds her in the basement, searching for a weapon. Judith finds her a pole and they run upstairs, but walkers have already entered the house. Judith and Gracie race back to the basement and lock the door. Storm water floods into the basement.
Maggie, Daryl, and Negan fight Reapers and walkers in the courtyard. Leah radios the Reapers with orders to pull back. After the courtyard is cleared of Reapers, she launches rockets at Maggie's group below.
- Mandi Christine Kerr as Barbara
- Anabelle Holloway as Gracie
- Antony Azor as R.J. Grimes
- Kien Michael Spiller as Hershel Rhee
- Zac Zedalis as Boone
- Eric LeBlanc as Powell
- Robert Hayes as Paul Wells
- Lex Lauletta as Austin
- Dane Davenport as Ancheta
- Last appearance of Paul Wells.
- Last appearance of Powell.
- Last appearance of Ancheta.
- Last appearance of Deaver.
- Last appearance of Pope.
- The title of the episode, "For Blood", refers to Daryl's and Leah's allegiances to their families.
- This episode was made available for streaming to subscribers of AMC Premiere on October 3, 2021.
- The second episode of Season 2 of The Walking Dead: World Beyond is played directly after this episode.