"The Well" is the second episode of the seventh season of AMC's The Walking Dead. It is the eighty-fifth episode of the series overall. It premiered on October 30, 2016. It was written by Matt Negrete and directed by Greg Nicotero.
Carol regains consciousness in the bed of a horse drawn wagon. Her wounds are fresh; it's only been a couple hours since she was shot repeatedly by Roman. The men on horseback, who previously offered to get Carol medical assistance, lead the way. Morgan walks alongside the wagon. Carol falls back asleep.
She awakens, disoriented; she sees Morgan fighting walkers with help from the men on horseback. She confuses walkers for humans in her hallucinatory state. Weak and distraught, she sneaks away. She comes across a cemetery and approaches the caretaker's abandoned cottage. An old woman beckons her through the window until Carol suddenly realizes the old woman is actually a decrepit walker. Several people ride in on horseback, just in time to kill the walkers swarming Carol. Morgan and Carol join their group. Morgan raises the flag on the mailbox.
Carol wakes up in a bed. Morgan tells her she's been asleep for two days. Outside, Morgan pushes Carol in a wheelchair and tells her they're in a community called "The Kingdom". Carol takes in her surroundings: kids play in the streets, residents water the gardens.
Morgan predicts she'll need a week to recuperate from her injuries, at which point they can return to Alexandria. He tells her the Kingdom is run by a man who calls himself King Ezekiel, but hedges on any more specifics.
Morgan wheels Carol into a theater auditorium. Ezekiel sits on a throne with his tiger, Shiva, chained at his side. Ezekiel dramatically introduces himself to Carol and welcomes her to the Kingdom. Carol, in the meek persona she used with the Alexandrians, pretends to be in awe of the Kingdom. Ezekiel detects scepticism in Carol and describes the Kingdom's many offerings and offers her sanction. He offers her fruit, suggesting she at least take the pomegranate; Carol politely declines and thanks Ezekiel.
As they leave, Carol criticizes the Kingdom as make-believe and a joke, and vows to leave once she recovers. Morgan refuses to let her leave, as he feels responsibility for her.
Morgan, Ezekiel and a small team leave the Kingdom in two trucks. They chase several pigs into a room with a tied up walker, where they begin to eat the walker. Ezekiel turns to one of his men, Richard, and tells him it's a job well done. Morgan asks why they bait the pigs with walkers. Richard says that he wants their bellies "full of rot."
A small herd of walkers begins to approach Ezekiel's group. Richard instructs Benjamin, a teenage boy, to kill a nearby walker with a machete. Benjamin struggles with the walker; Ezekiel unsheathes his sword and stabs it in the head. Richard tells Morgan to keep the pig hunt a secret from the Kingdommers.
Back at the Kingdom, Ezekiel praises Morgan's skill with the fighting stick and asks him to train Benjamin. Although sceptical about if Benjamin could learn, he eventually decides to agree to teaching Benjamin, much to Ezekiel's delight.
Carol sits in bed and stares at her wheelchair. A nearby choir performs an a capella rendition of "Don't Think Twice It's All Right" by Bob Dylan. Morgan trains Benjamin in a gazebo. Morgan expresses he was too fast in his moves and slows them down. Carol wheels herself around the Kingdom and quietly steals a hunting knife and a bar of chocolate from a table. She distracts a man who's folding laundry and steals some clothes from the table. Morgan and Benjamin are practicing, with Ezekiel watching impressed by what he sees.
Morgan and Benjamin take a break from training. Benjamin asks Morgan to loan him his book, The Art of Peace, as he has read every book in the Kingdom, and wants something new to read. Morgan agrees to loan him the book. Ezekiel approaches and asks them to join him. Richard tells Morgan to bring his gun.
Morgan, Ezekiel and a small team wait in a parking lot with a shipment of slaughtered pigs. A group of Saviors arrives. Gavin, the leader, counts the pigs and is pleased to find that they're bigger than the last shipment. Richard remarks that they fed the pigs well. When Dianne, a Kingdommer, starts explaining to Morgan who the Saviors are, he interjects with a hint of anger in his voice that he knows who they are.
As they load up the trucks, a Savior Jared picks a fight with Richard. Ezekiel orders his people to lower their weapons and Gavin tells Jared to stop punching Richard and reminds him on how good Ezekiel has been to them. Gavin reminds Ezekiel that the following week is a produce week. He warns Ezekiel that Richard will be the first to die if they deliver less than requested.
Back at the Kingdom, Morgan eats in the cafeteria with Benjamin and Henry, Benjamin's younger brother. Benjamin tells Morgan that Ezekiel was close friends with his father, a strong fighter who died while clearing walkers from a building. He explains that Ezekiel is keeping the deal with the Saviors a secret because he's worried that residents would want to fight, despite being outmatched. He asks if Morgan is against killing, having read the pacifist inscription in The Art of Peace. Morgan tells him sometimes he changes his mind. Later, Morgan brings food to Carol's room and finds it empty.
That night, Ezekiel catches Carol picking fruit from the garden as she prepares to leave the Kingdom. She adopts her demure persona until Ezekiel gently tells her not to bullshit a bullshitter. She drops her persona and says she thinks he is a joke. Ezekiel sits by Carol, and in his normal voice, tells him it is human nature for people to follow another as a leader in order to feel safe. He adopted the King Ezekiel persona in order to ensure people in the Kingdom feels safe, using his experience as an amateur performer in theater to further this persona. He further reveals that despite the heroic tales, he used to be a zookeeper before the apocalypse, and Shiva was an exhibit in the zoo. He saved her after she suffered a traumatic injury on her leg. Carol still wishes to leave the Kingdom, so Ezekiel comes with a plan so she can "go and not go".
The next day, Morgan escorts Carol to the cemetery. At the caretaker's cottage, Morgan lowers the flag on the mailbox and rides back to town. Carol enters the cottage and kills the old woman walker. She buries her outside, amidst the tombstones. As Carol stokes a fire in the fireplace in her new home, there's a knock at the door; it's Ezekiel and Shiva. He offers her a pomegranate, telling her how good they are. She smiles.
- Daniel Newman as Daniel
- Cooper Andrews as Jerry
- Kerry Cahill as Dianne
- Joshua Mikel as Jared
- Jayson Warner Smith as Gavin
- Jason Burkey as Kevin
- Macsen Lintz as Henry
- Carlos Navarro as Alvaro
- Jule Culotta as Kingdom Choir
- Jelani Watkins as Kingdom Choir
- Stephen Pepper as Kingdom Choir
- Erin Barksdale as Kingdom Choir
- Madalyn Hardwick as Kingdom Choir
- Devon Higgins as Kingdom Choir
- Taylor Conley as Kingdom Choir
- Will Nichols as Kingdom Choir
- Henry and Benjamin's Father (Confirmed Fate)
- 7 unnamed Kingdom survivors (Confirmed Fate)
- 1 horse
- 8 pigs
- First appearance of the Kingdom.
- First appearance of Ezekiel Sutton.
- First appearance of Shiva.
- First appearance of Benjamin.
- First appearance of Richard.
- First appearance of Jerry.
- First appearance of Dianne.
- First appearance of Jared.
- First appearance of Gavin.
- First appearance of Kevin.
- First appearance of Henry.
- First appearance of Alvaro.
- First appearance of Joshua.
- First appearance of Theresa.
- Last appearance of Colton.
- The title of the episode, "The Well", comes from Ezekiel's rule of the realm, "You drink from the well; you replenish the well", so everyone is expected to contribute.
- As of this episode, Alanna Masterson (Tara Chambler), Josh McDermitt (Eugene Porter), and Christian Serratos (Rosita Espinosa) have been added to the opening credits. Masterson is now billed before McDermitt and Serratos.
- Also, as of this episode, Steven Yeun (Glenn Rhee) and Michael Cudlitz (Abraham Ford) have been removed from the opening credits.
- Seth Gilliam (Gabriel Stokes), Ross Marquand (Aaron) and Austin Nichols (Spencer Monroe) are still listed under "Also Starring" despite being regulars in previous seasons.
- This is the first episode featuring Tom Payne (Jesus) and Xander Berkeley (Gregory) as series regulars. They are listed under "Also Starring".
- This episode was filmed as the 3rd episode of the season, and "The Cell" was being filmed as the 2nd. The two episodes were switched.
- Also, the plots in both episodes are self contained events happening at around the same time and therefore could be watched in either order without affecting a first time viewer's knowledge of the TV show story timeline.
- This episode was originally going to be 76 minutes (with commercials) but AMC edited their schedule and changed it to 66 minutes, the same length as the previous episode. The reasoning behind their sudden change is unknown.
- If you missed the episode, you can watch it here. This is the first time AMC has allowed fans to watch the episode with no login required that isn't a season premiere.
- In the Carol hallucination sequence, twin actors were used to represent the walker and human during each kill.
- The city skyline visible at the beginning of the episode is Rosslyn, VA.
- The choir credited in "The Well" is actually a choir from Georgia State University's School of Music. The choir members were only brought in for one episode and have not filmed for the rest of Season 7.
- The song the choir is heard singing during the montage is "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right" by Bob Dylan.
- The words Ezekiel told Carol: "Where there's life, there's hope, heroism, grace and love. Where there's life, there's life." are similar to Morgan's words: "Where there's life, there's possibility." They are also similar to Eastman's words: "Where there's life, there's potential."
- This is the fourth episode to feature only two main cast members, after "Still", "The Grove" and "Slabtown".
- Ezekiel introducing himself to Carol and Morgan is adapted from a similar scene in Issue 108, where he introduces himself to Rick instead.
- Carol being shocked to see Shiva is adapted from a similar scene in Issue 108, where Rick is shocked instead.
- Ezekiel telling Carol to "Not to bullshit a bullshitter" is adapted from a similar scene in Issue 110, where Ezekiel tells this to Michonne instead.
- Ezekiel talks with Carol about how he is just playing the part of King is adapted from a similar scene in Issue 110, where Ezekiel talks with Michonne instead.
- Carol smiling to Ezekiel when he visits her at the cabin is a slight nod to Michonne smiling while thinking about Ezekiel in Issue 110.