Here are the ten best episodes, in my opinion. In chronological order, they are:
This episode is the only time we get anything close to an explanation of what is going on. Edwin Jenner doesn’t know how the zombie plague started, but he does know exactly what it does to the body.
The Killer Within (304)
Lori’s monologue saying goodbye to Carl is worth the price of admission. Makes me cry every time I see it. This episode also has wonderful acting in Rick’s reaction when he learns that his wife has died, and a nod needs to go to Bear McCrary’s beautiful score written for this scene.
On the surface, Beth and Daryl bond over booze. Underneath, Daryl starts to trust someone more than he has anyone else, and he shares with her the truth of his background. One of my top, top favorites.
The Grove (414)
What Happened and What’s Going On (509)
A gorgeous, sad, mystical, ethereal episode. Beautiful monologue.
The excellent season 5 finale. Tightly paced, lots of emotion and movement. And a lot of what made this episode so great were the positive things that happend. Glenn sparing Nick, and Maggie, Sasha and Father Gabriel all praying together, and Tara waking up with Rosita watching her. Lovely.
Here’s Not Here (604)
A terrific two-person show with two excellent actors.
No Way Out (609)
Who can forget the lake of fire! A wonderful story of the group working together to defeat a huge herd invasion.
The Same Boat (613)
Wonderful episode featuring Maggie and Carol, with excellent guest actor performances!
The Day Will Come When You Won’t Be (701)
I know that a lot of people objected to the killing of Abraham and Glenn. But for me, the best parts of this episode were the actor performances–excellent across the board, and especially so for Andrew Lincoln and Lauren Cohan as Rick and Maggie. This was truly an episode about breaking Rick, and Andrew’s depiction of this was fabulous. Lauren, also, was wonderful as she showed us Maggie’s almost incoherent response after Glenn’s death, but also mixed with the show of strength, both from her and from Sasha. Great episode for all the actors, including JDM as Negan.