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The Walking Dead: Carol's Soup Story Is More Significant Than You Might Realize

Carol and Daryl's standalone episode of The Walking Dead, "Diverged," included Carol serving up a soup story that may be more meaningful than you realized. After their big argument in the previous episode, the friends go their separate ways with Carol and Dog heading back to Alexandria, while Daryl stays in the woods. However, it quickly becomes clear that the show's most fearless fighter is feeling restless, which leads her to volunteer to make soup when she returns home.

What follows is an episode of Chopped, the post-apocalyptic edition with Carol as host, but before she fruitlessly attempts to dodge rats and broken solar panels to serve up something tasty for her fellow survivors, she tells Jerry the Stone Soup Story. In the story, a hungry traveler visits a town in search of food, but he finds everyone in the village is poor and hungry too. His solution is to pick up a rock and claim he can make a magical stone soup, he just needs a few ingredients to make it better. Soon, everyone in the village has chipped in something small — salt, vegetables, broth — in order to make the soup.

The moral of the story is when people work together as a community they're far more likely to survive than when they're on their own. Of course, the people of Alexandria have already internalized this lesson, but the irony is perpetual loner Carol, as well as her fellow lone wolf pal Daryl, haven't quite grasped the message behind the parable of the stone soup just yet.

Carol's kitchen failure on The Walking Dead symbolizes her broken relationship with Daryl

It's telling that Carol's soup journey turns into a total disaster. After all, she's not taking her own advice. Unlike the wise traveler with his magical rock, she's determined to fix the soup all by herself because she wants to feel useful. Throughout the episode, she makes reference to her need to mend or repair something, but let's be real, she's not talking about soup or scarves, no matter what she says.

Likewise, Daryl's stuck out in the woods trying to mend his bike without any assistance or the proper tools. Had he and Carol not had a major falling out and stuck together instead, they both would have had the help they needed to complete their tasks. But, as usual with these two, they just can't seem to fully commit to being a part of a community — even if it's just a community of two.

In the end, Carol and Daryl reconnect, but they don't acknowledge the major fight they had in the woods — which is something they absolutely must do in order to move forward. After all, these two are heading towards their own spinoff, which means it's way past time for them to start setting aside their trust issues and learning how to lean on each other.

Basically, Carol and Daryl are the villagers, and before they ride off into the sunset together they need to make themselves a big, old pot of emotional stone soup if they ever want to live a life that's about more than simple survival.