Last time we saw Rick and his crew they had successfully rescued Glenn and Maggie from the Governor, but in doing so the Governor had taken Daryl and he was being held at Woodbury along with his brother, Merle, who the Governor had labeled as a traitor. We were also left with Andrea seeing Daryl’s face for the first time in months, and back in the prison, Carl had just welcomed a new group of survivors.
In the opening to “The Suicide King” we return to Daryl and Merle who are in the middle of a very hostile Woodbury crowd and in front of the Governor who forces Merle to show his loyalty to his people, and fight with his brother, Daryl, to the death, much to the disagreement of Andrea who has finally become useful. Merle, wanting to badly show his loyalty to the Governor, doesn’t hesitate and takes down Daryl. The fight ensues. Daryl and Merle swap punches and kicks, and one of the Governor’s cronies brings in a Walker on a leash to “entertain” the crowd even more. Just when things seem dire for Daryl, the Walker is taken down by a gunshot. Various Woodbury people are taken down by shots as well. The ones behind the gunshots are revealed to be Maggie and Rick. All hell breaks loose as people scramble. In the chaos, Rick rescues Daryl and the rest of his crew follows him out of Woodbury, but Merle tags up with them as well and leaves Woodbury too.
Rick and company regroup in the middle of the woods, along with Merle, Michonne, and Glenn. Glenn and Michonne are livid at the sight of Merle and guns (and a Sword) are drawn. After many words and insults are thrown back and forth, Rick finally ends it by knocking Merle out cold.
Back at the prison, Hershel, Carl, and the others are doing their best to learn about their new guests. Tyreese, the leader of the group, thanks Hershel and the others for welcoming them, but Hershel is quick to remind Tyreese and his group that it isn’t up to him to decide whether they stay or not. After Tyreese asks him who it is up to, Hershel does not answer him. Carl quickly locks Tyreese and his group up again in their part of the jail.
While Merle waits, Rick, Daryl and the others try to figure out what to do with Merle. Glenn insists they cut Merle loose, while Daryl reminds him that Merle is his blood. Daryl forces the group to choose between allowing Merle into their group or he will leave the group and go off with Merle alone. After much more talk, the others ultimately decide to cut Merle loose, and in doing so, Daryl decides to leave the group. Glenn, Maggie, and Rick try to plead for Daryl to stay, but Daryl quickly says his goodbyes and makes the worst decision he could make, obviously, and goes off with Merle.