"Swear" is the sixth episode of the seventh season of AMC's The Walking Dead. It is the eighty-ninth episode of the series overall. It premiered on November 27, 2016, at 9/8c on AMC, and on November 28, 2016, at 9pm on Fox. It was written by David Leslie Johnson and directed by Michael Satrazemis.
A new community is discovered.
A young girl, Rachel, kills a walker on the beach. She spots another body and, assuming it’s a soon-to-be-walker, moves in for the kill. Her older companion, Cyndie, stops Rachel, realizing the person, Tara, is still alive, but just unconscious. Rachel reminds Cyndie that they’re supposed to kill all strangers that they encounter, but Cyndie persuades Rachel to spare Tara’s life. Cyndie drags Tara’s body up the beach.
In a flashback, Heath and Tara eat in the RV at the end of a two-week scavenging mission. Heath proposes they head back to Alexandria, but Tara insists they keep scavenging for ammo and medicine. Heath laments killing the Saviors at the satellite station -- he realizes everyone’s looking out for themselves and “nobody’s in this together.” He reluctantly agrees to scavenge for one more day before heading home.
Cyndie reads in her bedroom and looks at the clock.
Cyndie later returns to the beach and finds Tara asleep in the hiding spot where she left her. She leaves water, a fish wrapped in cloth and a spear next to Tara then walks away. Tara, who had only been pretending to sleep, follows Cyndie into the woods.
Tara follows Cyndie through a secret entrance to a bustling village, which is inhabited by a large group of women. Young girls run around and play as two women chat as they bring laundry inside a house. All of the sudden, as Tara watches from behind a house, several women herd the children indoors. The older girls and adults begin arming themselves and organizing. As Tara looks on, one of the women turns and fires at her.
Tara flees from the gunshots and takes one of the women down, knocking her out. Rachel steps in front of Tara and is about to shoot her when Cyndie again intervenes. More women emerge from the woods, surrounding Tara, holding her at gunpoint. The leader, Natania, orders Cyndie to step away from Tara.
In a flashback, Heath and Tara cautiously move forward on a barricaded bridge blocked with garbage dumpsters, cars, and tarps. They come across a large pile of packed sand. Tara tugs at a duffel bag lodged in the sediment. Heath tries to stop her, but it’s too late: The mound collapses, releasing a herd of walkers that was trapped inside. The sand walkers launch themselves at Tara and Heath. As Tara falls, it seems that Heath abandons her to die.
In the present, Tara sits handcuffed to a radiator. Natania walks into the room, joined by Kathy and Beatrice, and starts interrogating Tara about her background. Tara lies and doesn’t say anything about Alexandria when asked where she’s from. Instead she tells them she was from Atlanta. She says she was traveling with a friend who had worked with her on a fishing boat. She fell off a bridge after they were attacked by walkers and eventually washed up on shore. She offers to leave their settlement, but Natania worries that she knows too much.
That evening, Natania invites Tara to dine with her, Cyndie (her granddaughter), Kathy and Beatrice. They remove Tara’s handcuffs at the dinner table. Over dinner, Natania invites Tara and her friend to reside at their settlement to ensure they never reveal their location to anyone. Tara observes that there are no men in the settlement. Natania explains that the men were all killed in a skirmish with another group, after which the women decided to relocate their home and stay hidden. Tara confesses that she comes from a community that killed a threatening group at an old satellite station, so that they could stay alive. She suggests their groups band together. Natania agrees to send a guide with Tara to find Heath and meet with her community.
The next day, Tara leaves the settlement with Kathy and Beatrice. As she passes a group of women and children at the outdoor tables, Rachel spits at Tara's feet, to which Tara flips her off.
In the woods, Tara catches on to the real plan: Kathy and Beatrice are going to kill her. When a walker appears, Tara volunteers to kill it and seizes her opportunity to flee. Beatrice catches up with Tara. After a struggle, Beatrice has Tara dead to rights, at gunpoint. Tara pleads that she has to get back to her friends, but Beatrice tells her it’s too late, assuring Tara that her people are dead. She reveals to Tara that the Oceanside know about the Saviors; the Saviors at the satellite station were only a fraction of their force, and the satellite station was only one of many Savior outposts.
“You can’t stop them,” Beatrice warns, explaining that her group tried to fight the Saviors too. When the Saviors won, they lined up every man and boy over 10 and shot them in the head. Beatrice explains that rather than work for Negan, they vanished and hid. She tells Tara “we can’t let you lead them back to us,” but before she can pull the trigger, Cyndie tackles Beatrice to the ground.
“Go! Run!” Cyndie yells at Tara.
Cyndie catches up with Tara and makes her swear to keep her settlement a secret, to which Tara agrees. Cyndie gives Tara a backpack with food and water and offers to take her to the bridge where she last saw Heath. Cyndie accompanies Tara to the bridge and refuses to leave until Tara safely crosses. As Tara makes her way across the bridge, a herd of walkers emerges from behind a tarp. Cyndie shoots them down from the top of a car as Tara looks for Heath but is unable to find him.
In a flashback, Tara is surrounded by the sand walkers. It looks like there’s no hope for escape, when Heath suddenly lays down gunfire to save her. He didn’t abandon her after all. Seeing Heath become overrun by walkers as his gun runs out of bullets, Tara tries to make her way over to help him, but she’s caught struggling with walkers. He insists that she go, but she refuses. “We’re in this together!” she yells, before the walkers shove her back and she tumbles over the side of the bridge.
In the present, Tara safely crosses the bridge. She finds Heath’s broken glasses and some tire tracks in the dirt, indicating that he successfully escaped. She picks up a badge that says “PPP” and puts it in her pocket.
Tara makes her way back toward Alexandria on foot. She camps out in a gift shop and eats the food that Cyndie gave her.
Tara reaches Alexandria’s front gate, where Eugene greets her with a broken expression. Tara’s face falls as she realizes something is terribly wrong and soon finds out about the deaths of her friends.
Tara sits in the infirmary, despondent over the news of Denise’s death. Determined to seek revenge on the Saviors, Rosita asks Tara if she has any leads on guns or ammo. Tara keeps her word to Cyndie and tells Rosita that she didn’t find anything during her scouting mission.
- Briana Venskus as Beatrice
- Nicole Barré as Kathy
- Mimi Kirkland as Rachel
- Jacqueline Fleming as Laundry Woman #1
- Lane Carlock as Laundry Woman #2
- Belleamie McMillan as Oceanside Resident.
- Marisol Correa as Oceanside Resident.
- Pilar Ard as Oceanside Resident.
- Keely Mcallister as Oceanside Resident.
- Amber Daley Mahek as Oceanside Resident.
- Gail Everett-Smith, Esther Pittman, Cindy Strickland Ralston, Gina Chapman Cordan as Oceanside Residents.
- Cyndie's mother (Confirmed Fate)
- Cyndie's brother (Confirmed Fate)
- Several female Oceanside Residents (Confirmed Fate)
- All male Oceanside Residents aged 10 and above (Confirmed Fate)
- First appearance of Oceanside.
- In the Comic Series, this community has yet to be seen.
- First appearance of Rachel.
- First appearance of Cyndie.
- First appearance of Natania.
- First appearance of Beatrice.
- First appearance of Kathy.
- Tara's pistol is shown to have Negan's bat "Lucille" carved into it, as it was taken from the satellite outpost that they wiped out in "Not Tomorrow Yet".
- The title of this episode comes from the dialog between Cyndie and Tara. Cyndie tells Tara to "swear" that she wouldn't let anyone know about her community.
- The first walker on the beach had a similar model to the well walker in Season 2.
- This episode marks the return of Alanna Masterson (Tara) and Corey Hawkins (Heath) to the series after a long hiatus since "Not Tomorrow Yet", although Tara briefly appeared in "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be", in a dream sequence.
- This episode is extended to 71 minutes long, with commercials.
- When Heath and Tara are eating in the RV, Tara tries to reassure Heath by saying, "Rule number one of scavenging - There's nothing left in this world that isn't hidden. We just have to find it." This is a quote that Glenn told Tara in "Strangers".
- Not including Fear The Walking Dead, this is the first time the beach and ocean has been seen in The Walking Dead series.
- This is the second episode of the show to not feature any member of the Atlanta Camp, the first being "Live Bait", from season 4.
- Coincidentally, both episodes are the sixth episode of a season and both feature Tara.
- This is the only episode of Season 7 to not feature The Saviors.