‘The Walking Dead’ episode 3 recap: Top 5 moments of ‘The Cell’ include Daryl’s naked torture

Like last week’s installment, Episode 3 of “The Walking Dead’s” seventh season, titled “The Cell,” chose to focus on just a few characters. The hour slowed down the pace to follow Daryl (Norman Reedus) as he is held captive and tortured in the Saviors’ camp by Dwight (Austin Amelio). The overall quiet character study gave fans many moments to think about. Here are the Top 5 most memorable.

Town called malice — The episode opens on a montage backed by The Jam’s song “Town Called Malice.” The opening lyrics read, “Better stop dreaming of the quiet life/cause it’s the one we’ll never know.” The song is smartly juxtaposed against sequences of Dwight watching old TV shows, making gourmet sandwiches, and playing games. These “quiet life” activities have been all but abandoned by most apocalypse survivors, but remain a possibility for the thieving Saviors.

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Dog food and bad music — Clearly Dwight’s healthy sandwiches were not intended for Daryl. The first we see of the fan favorite biker is his naked, disheveled body inside of a cell. Dwight gives him a sandwich made with dog food, which he is forced to eat every single day. Dwight further breaks down his prisoner by forcing him to listen to an annoyingly peppy song called “Easy Street,” ad nauseam. The unending torture lasts for days without end.

The deserter — Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) sends Dwight out to capture a man who deserted the group. Dwight makes the capture, but the man refuses to return to the camp. The deserter questions why no one stands up to Negan, and reveals that Sherry (Christine Evangelista) is no longer Dwight’s wife, but Negan’s. After several gruesome threats, the man eventually relents and begins the walk back to camp. However, a visually distraught and emotionally conflicted Dwight shoots him in the back.

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Polaroid — As part of the episode-long quest to break Daryl and turn him into one of Negan’s men, Dwight leaves a cruel present in the cell. After refusing a dog food sandwich, Dwight chimes, “You got your friend killed” and posts a polaroid on the cell wall. Daryl doesn’t want to look, but flips it over revealing a photograph of Glenn’s bashed-in skull. Despite his best efforts to show strength in the face of torment, Daryl breaks down into tears.

Who are you? — In the climax of the episode, Daryl is brought before Negan after days of torture. Negan has given Daryl a choice: work for him or end up one of the dead. Negan stares him down and asks, “Who are you?” hoping for the response “Negan.” But after a suspenseful pause, Daryl looks the villain in the eye and mutters, “Daryl.” So, while Daryl doesn’t cave and join the Saviors, he ends up back in his cell with his fate up in the air.

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