(Spoilers ahead for the Oct. 29 episode of AMC’s “The Walking Dead.”)
In “The Damned,” the second episode of Season 8 of “The Walking Dead,” all out war raged on as the residents of Alexandria, the Hilltop and the Kingdom continued their attacks on Savior strongholds. And it was in one of these strongholds that Rick (Andrew Lincoln) encountered one hell of a surprise: an old pal from his group of survivors named Morales (Juan Gabriel Pareja).
You’ll be forgiven if you don’t remember him — Morales hasn’t been on “The Walking Dead” since the first season. He’s notable as a rare character who was in Rick’s group and left (as opposed to being killed). And not only did he manage to survive all this time, but he also somehow made it to Virginia and joined the Saviors at some point.
So, for those of you who need a refresher on what went on with Morales back in the day, let’s take a look at some ancient history.
Back in Season 1, Morales had a family: his wife Miranda, his son Louis and his daughter Eliza. His family is not shown or referenced in “The Damned,” but Rick and Morales encounter each other shortly after Rick finds what appears to be a picture of Morales’ family. It’s too soon to make a guess as to whether they’re still around — but if Morales is with the Saviors now, then chances aren’t good that they’re still around. But who knows!
Rick first encountered Morales in Season 1 in Atlanta, after Glenn (Steven Yeun) saved him from beneath the tank in Episode 2. Morales was among the survivors Rick and Glenn met up with in the department store as they searched for supplies. Some of the other people there included Andrea, T-Dog and Merle Dixon.
Morales was a pretty capable member of the group and helped fight off walkers upon returning to the quarry camp where Rick would later meet up with Lori, Carl and Shane. He was also the kind of guy who has a fairly stringent moral code. When the group returned from Atlanta after Rick left Merle handcuffed to the roof, it was Morales who insisted Rick should tell Daryl, Merle’s brother, the truth about what happened.
Soon after walkers attack the quarry camp, the survivors decide they need to leave for a safer location. Rick and the others head for the CDC, but Morales and his family don’t go with them. Instead, they take some provisions and make for Birmingham, Alabama, in hopes of finding other members of their family.
That was the last we saw of any of them. Until this week, that is.