Warning: This article contains major spoilers for The Walking Dead #167, as well as speculation for the AMC series.
Spare a thought for Rick Grimes, as he has suffered yet another devastating loss in the comics.
Hardcore fans of the comics will know that Andrea was bitten on the neck in Issue 165. In this month's issue (#167), she succumbs to her wound, reanimates as a zombie and is killed by Rick.
Andrea may not mean much to TV viewers, as she was killed off a few years ago – in the season three finale.
But it's highly likely that her death (if the show makes it that far) will be transferred to another character... and that could spell bad news for Michonne.
In the comics, Andrea is a highly popular character who survives far beyond her TV counterpart, ending up in a serious relationship with Rick after the Alexandrians fight off that massive horde seen in the middle of season 6.
(Incidentally, TV Carol – who is dead in the comics at this point – has inherited parts of Michonne's storyline from the comics.)
Comic Andrea's death shakes Rick up significantly. She is the love of Rick's life.
"I can't do this," Rick says, defeated and devastated. Crying proper tears.
"I can't go on... not without you. I'm scared. I'm tired. I'm weak. I can't do this anymore."
Andrea refuses to let Rick give up, though, and with her last words orders him to remain strong.
"You've made it possible for people to work together... to be a community... to be stronger... That makes you stronger," she says.
"You'll keep going. You have to. That's what these people need. That's what the world needs. And that's... that's just what you do."
After Andrea's death, Rick takes inspiration from her words and continues to lead his community.
Given the pair's emotional final conversation (Rick also tells Andrea he loves her as she passes away), Michonne seems to be the natural TV character who would take over that death, sad as it may be.
It's not a done deal, however. To make things more confusing, Danai Gurira's character is indeed still alive in the comics.
If the show writers wanted to keep TV Michonne around beyond those scenes (which would probably happen during season 10 or later), Carl, Carol, Daryl, and Maggie are the only other major and long-standing characters who could affect Rick on a similar level.
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