Warning: This article contains MAJOR SPOILERS about The Walking Dead season 8 episode 8. You have been warned!
The Walking Dead delivered possibly the biggest twist yet in the series, diverging greatly from the comics source material in the midseason finale.
Negan and the Saviors managed to bust out of the Sanctuary, and the explosive action that unfolded led to one heartbreaking reveal in the final scene.
Carl (Chandler Riggs) has been bit – presumably from when he brought Siddiq back to Alexandria in episode 6.
Rick and Michonne looked at the infected wound in horror, as the Alexandrians retreated to the sewers (thanks to Carl) following a devastating attack from Negan's Saviors. And yes, there is no cure. Carl is 100% a goner.
"The bite is going to play out as we've seen bites play out, and it's very important to Carl's story and the entire story what happens in the next episode," showrunner Scott Gimple said on companion show The Talking Dead, which seemed to all but confirm that Chandler Riggs' final scenes will be in episode 9, the midseason premiere, in February.
Riggs also recorded a few words for the companion show, teasing what's to come.
"Throughout the series, Carl has been in Rick's shadow and learning from him and observing him," he said. "I think every moment throughout the series has led up to that moment with Carl commanding everyone in Alexandria to make this escape plan happen.
"When Carl pulls up his shirt to reveal the bite, it's a huge moment for him, for Rick, for Michonne, for everyone in the group.
"He's definitely happy with how things ended up with him saving all of Alexandria and making sure everyone was alive. It's going to be interesting to see what happens next."
Riggs also posted a short Twitter message for his fans following the episode's shocking ending:
jokes aside,- chandler riggs (@chandlerriggs) December 11, 2017
you’ll hear from me soon.
In the comics, Carl is still alive. So how will his death in the TV series affect Rick and the show as a whole?
The Walking Dead returns for the back half of season eight next year.
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