Spoilers for The Walking Dead Season 7 Episode 9 follow.
The opening moments of The Walking Dead’s midseason 7 premiere were among the most intriguing looking back at the episode. Father Gabriel calmly walked through the community after leaving his post, only to send supplies crashing down in the pantry before frantically packing them into a car.
As it would turn out, Father Gabriel was not alone in his fleeing of Alexandria. Somebody was with him, likely forcing him to grab the supplies and hit the road.
In a recent chat with EW, executive producer and director of Rock in the Road Greg Nicotero had some interesting perspective to share regarding the mysterious moment which opened the episode.
“There will be more information as you view it more than one time, because, if you notice, there is a moment when he gets in the car, and the car’s driving away, and somebody sits up in the seat next to him,” Nicotero said. “Not alone. So what we like is playing with the idea that it was always intended to be sort of uncertain. Has Gabriel gone a little crazy? What’s going on? Did he come up with or brainstorm some plan and he’s going to take all the supplies? But then, as soon as he drives away, you see somebody sit up in the car next to him.”
As far as what you may have missed when viewing Rock in the Road for the first time, Nicotero is willing to fill you in (and likely send you straight back to episode for a re-watch).
“There’s even a little subtle thing when he’s putting gas in the car,” Nicotero said. “You might see the reflection of somebody in the car. So I think after a couple viewings, it’s sort of apparent — especially even after Rick says Gabriel wouldn’t do that and Gabriel would never leave — that something must have happened. So then they go back to where the boat was, and they find tracks, they realize that they’re following the scent backwards and that Gabriel’s clue sort of leads them to believe that whoever was essentially watching them may have made a move.”