It’s a mid-season ender tradition of killing off characters, The Walking Dead went for a renewed body count with its Season 8 winter finale- kind of. No one was expecting them to pull the plug on Carl.
Revealing a horrific walker bite, Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) was the delayed sacrifice of the season on Sunday in the extended 90-minute and much anticipated “How It’s Gonna Be” episode. “It will play out as bites play out on the show,” EP and showrunner Scott M. Gimple said afterward on follow up show Talking Dead. “Carl right now is alive and he has some business to attend to,” he bluntly added. “That is a one-way ticket but I’d like to think that the things that we see in the next episode are so important to his life and the other character’s lives.” Long story short, this is no dream sequence.
To be finally killed off in one way or another in the February 25, 2018 mid-season premiere.
Here’s why it’s time to start wondering about Andrew Lincoln’s future with AMC’s The Walking Dead zombie drama series.
[Warning: This story contains spoilers for the midseason eight finale of AMC’s The Walking Dead, “How It’s Gotta Be,” as well as major spoilers from the comics on which the show is based.]
Are we about to reach the end of the Grimes line?
Given what’s happening with Carl (Chandler Riggs), Up until now, most Walking Dead fans viewed Carl as an untouchable figure, someone both the comics and the show would never kill, at least not until the endgame. That thinking still holds as far as Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard’s comic book series, but the show? Not so much. And as a result, it’s worth wondering about the other shoe that could drop, the other untouchable figure who could potentially be in for a fall soon: Rick Grimes. Considering that Lincoln’s contract is up with season 8.
This week, in conversation with The Hollywood Reporter about the death of Carl, Lincoln made it clear that his own departure from the show is only a matter of when, not if.
“Yeah, I think so,” the actor said when asked if he sees an end in sight for his time in the Walking Dead universe. “I’ve said to you before and I really feel that the fans — and also for my own satisfaction — that there deserves to be an end point. There needs to be an endgame and that is something that is definitely being talked about.”
What Lincoln once described as a faraway inevitability should now be viewed as a potentially looming threat: that an endgame — which “is definitely being talked about,” he says — could come for Rick as soon as the end of season eight.
“That’s a question I’m not at liberty to answer,” Lincoln said when asked if his Rick’s journey would end sooner rather than later. “It’s such an extraordinary story and in my heart, it deserves some resolution.”
We should question whether Rick’s future is as it seems, then. Is it possible that what we saw in the premiere was nothing more than one possible future, an idyllic life that sadly won’t come to pass for Rick?