But the real test for Rick and the core Walking Dead characters was whether or not he could convince King Ezekiel and his mighty Kingdom to back them in a fight against Negan.
'The Walking Dead' loves to keep it's audience guessing, and on the mid-season premiere they did just that. And since Carol is still hidden near the Kingdom, and Daryl is now living there full time thanks to Ezekiel's offer of sanctuary from Negan, these forces will inevitably soon combine to produce an outcome that will work in Rick's favor.
Meanwhile, Ezekiel's favorite adopted son Benjamin is on a nature walk and runs into everyone's favorite cookie-baking badass, OOOO-OOOOO, THAT'S RIGHT, CAROL'S BACK!
Sunday's mid-season premiere of "The Walking Dead" was a huge return to the television series. But once again, Rick was rejected by Ezekiel. Once upon a time, a king once installed a rock in the middle of a road, one that caused great problems for the people of the kingdom.
"Negan, I need to talk to you about redirect", the man tells a none-too-pleased Negan.
The group made a similar pitch to King Ezekiel during their first trip to the Kingdom.
"It seems that they're following this trail that Gabriel kind of put them on, and suddenly, they meet up with all these people..."
"We own your lives, want to buy them back", she said.
The episode began with Gabriel breaking into Alexandria's storage locker in the middle of the night, snatching up all the food and guns he could get his hands on before driving off in a vehicle to places unknown.
Biggar and North injuries worrying Wales
The defence coach, Paul Gustard, also recently revealed England had been learning mixed martial arts techniques. Hosts Wales wanted to play with the Cardiff venue fully enclosed but it required agreement from the visitors.
In a ideal world, after the Saviors are taken over and Negan is either killed or brought to justice, it would be nice to believe that the only threat left is the walkers. "We are the ones who live", Michonne exclaimed. Furthermore, character-driven storylines will also take center stage, with a particularly "surprising arc" set for Eugene (Josh McDermitt).
Let's face it, Negan and the Saviors are just big bullies. Gregory, as wormy as ever, rebuffs them - but to Rick and company's surprise, Enid has found a band of Hilltop's folks ready to resist the Saviors.
Official answers will have to wait until the next episode, because "Rock in the Road" cut off on a cliffhanger without revealing who the people were or what they wanted.
He does however grant Daryl asylum or safe haven in the Kingdom, to protect Alexandria.
In just the right time, Rick and Michonne start the cars connected by the steel line and annihilate a significant portion of the walker herd, barely escaping with their lives. It certainly does seem likely that Rick can outsmart them on The Walking Dead, in some way.
On the new episode of the hit AMC show, Nicotero featured an iconic zombie from 'Day of The Dead'. Rick and Michonne get in the vehicle with the trip wire cable attached and they start running over zombies.
Sunday night's premiere begins with Fr. Gabriel, who'd found his bravery of late, raiding Alexandria's food stores before stealing gas and a auto, and driving off.
Structurally, it's as paint-by-numbers as ever, with Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) abruptly leaving his post, clearing out the pantry, and sneaking off in a auto - one that sure seemed like it had another passenger in it.