There were fights. There was a Russian satellite sighting. There was a forest fire. There was romance.
And there was the ongoing threat of The Whisperers on The Walking Dead Season 10 Episode 1.
But was there a reason to keep tuning in, after a handful of subpar years for a show that used to dominate the ratings and the discussions at all workplace watercoolers?
Let's find out, shall we?
The premiere opened with a gigantic training montage, depicting nearly all our favorite survivors getting into formation to do battle with a horde of water-logged walkers from a shipwreck at Oceanside.
Aaron was leading the charge -- and they came across like a very well-oiled machine at the outside; everyone had a job and the organization was impressive.
Behind the front line of spiked shields, there were archers, spear throwers, Magna rocking an axe and both Michonne and Judith putting their swords to good use.
Well done all around!
Due to the devastation of the fair massacre, it was evident they wanted to be ready for another attack from either The Whisperers themselves... or the massive horde Alpha and her followers threatened to sent in their direction.
Cut to Judith and RJ playing on the beach, where they discover one of the still-disturbing flesh masks in the sand, sparking significant concern from the adults.
Michonne, of course, didn't want to start a panic, thereby agreeing to send out a group to scout the surrounding area.
As she and Aaron were on their lookout, they went back and forth on whether they were truly "the good guys" or "the villains to someone else's story" -- before he crossed over into Whisper territory to take out a handful of walkers.
Michonne was pissed he defied Alpha's warning, while Aaron was equally angry she obeyed it in the first place.
While these two fought it out, Aaron said he's "god damn sick of being nice," something Michonne said never worked for her either.
"Smart did," she told him. "They have a nuclear weapon and we don't," she added, referring to their horde. "Believe me, I hate this too."
Thinking of all those who have died, Michonne went back to the original question at hand, saying "we have to choose to be the good guys, even when it's hard."
While all this was taking place, fans got caught up with a few other characters as well. To wit:
- Kelly is losing her hearing, a development that was taking an emotional toll on her. For understandable reasons.
- Connie was helping her deal, reassuring her everything will be okay -- and saying being deaf "is not a disability, it's a damn superpower."
- Connie also had some romantic sparks with Daryl, who had been learning sign language to communicate with her better.
As for Carol?
She was been spending her time at sea ... away from Ezekiel, from whom she split in the Season 9 finale after the death of Henry.
They had a very awkward reunion on the dock before she ran off for some one-on-one time with Daryl, who adorably referred to her his "best friend."
They also got into it a little over Alpha and the Whisperers because Carol didn't wanna stick to their boundaries and Daryl was more cautious.
He said he wouldn't join her on the high seas while they cooked up their ideal future together: driving West to New Mexico to "see who's left."
Over in Alexandria, Eugene appeared to have the most interest in Rosita and Siddiq's baby, while she mainly preoccupied herself by, well, working out.
Siddiq, conversely, was grappling with PTSD as the only survivor of the Whisperer attack, prompting him to slip on his duties as a new father.
The love quadrangle between Rosita, Eugene, Siddiq and Gabriel is clearly not over.
Lydia, meanwhile, had bonded a bit with Negan, due to their status as outsiders in the town thanks to their pasts with enemy groups.
She was also in school, learning how to read for the first time with a group of much younger classmates.
Negan -- still in prison but granted time in the garden under watchful eye -- knew he was starting to look pretty good compared to the Whisperers and was down with his reputation as "the guy that picks the vegetables and takes out the trash."
Hence the photo above.
Soon enough, a satellite crashed to earth, throwing almost everyone into chaotic action.
The crash caused a giant fire in the forrest, which Michonne and her people on the beach rushed to put out, despite being over the Whisperer line.
They dug a fire line to stop it from going elsewhere, but the sound of the flames and everything going on attracted a ton of walkers.
Finally, with the fire out at last, Eugene inspected the satellite for some technology, prior to Daryl asking Carol to not leave again -- "otherwise I'm going to have to punch holes in all them boats."
Then, in the show's final moment, Alpha walked into a clearing, looked up and locked angry eyes with Carol, setting a surefire showdown between these two over Henry.
We have a feeling she's not going anywhere.