Walking Dead fans have been on the edge of their seats since last December; during the The Walking Dead Season 8 mid-season finale, teen zombie-hunter Carl (played by Chandler Riggs) revealed he had been bit by a walker. But tonight, during the Season 8 mid-season premiere, we finally got some closure.
Fans and Walking Dead actors alike expressed their outrage with this plot point but the results were inevitable. Tonight’s episode of The Walking Dead, “Honor,” revealed if Carl survived the bite. **Spoilers ahead!**
In the end, Carl died because of his injury. Carl was bit by a zombie — and not in a place that could be amputated. A walker bit his stomach, and everyone knew Carl was a goner. Instead of becoming a zombie, just like how everyone does after they die, Carl chose to shoot himself. This is done off-screen, and we’re honestly glad TWD show-runners learned from Glenn’s gratuitous death. Sometimes, a character’s death is even more powerful when we don’t see every detail.
But we got more than just death out of Carl’s last appearance. The episode opened with a devastating montage of how Carl spent his final moments. Between writing to his family, making memories with little sister Judith, and securing a safe space to hide the citizens of Alexandria, Carl couldn’t have lived a more meaningful last day.
Besides the bittersweet recap of Carl’s final day, we also discovered something significant. We found out the meaning behind the weird future dream sequence featuring Old Man Rick that opened last year’s season premiere. The idealistic vision was actually Carl’s hope for his family’s future. And they were very likely his last thoughts before the end. How effing sad is that?
If that doesn’t make you cry, then nothing else will!
We’re going to miss Carl but we can’t help but wonder what this death means for the war between Rick and Negan. And how many other major death’s this season has planned.