The most heartbreaking moment during “The Walking Dead” season premiere isn’t what you’d expect
In case you were wondering, we’re not going to get over the Season 7 premiere of The Walking Dead any time soon. In fact, it’s probably going to be affecting us for seasons to come – just like the events of this episode will reverberate with the characters. Spoilers ahead, because we just lost two beloved characters, one almost lost an arm, literally everyone almost died, and Darryl was kidnapped by the Saviors. Somehow, though, none of those moments was the most heartbreaking – instead, it was a brief flash of fantasy that nearly destroyed us.
When Negan takes Rick away from the group in the RV, there’s a moment when Rick is laying on the RV’s roof, surrounded by walkers, and Negan’s muffled voice floats up from within the RV: “Bet you thought you were all going to grow old together, sitting around the table at Sunday dinner with a happily ever after.
Rick, processing losses that we, the viewers, hadn’t even seen yet, he can only lie on his back, bereft and clearly shaken to his core.
However, Negan continues, “It doesn’t work like that. Not any more.
At the end of the episode, after the group members have picked up the bodies of Abraham and Glenn, Negan’s words come back to Rick. Only, this time, we get a brief flash of that scene.
It’s the entire group at Alexandria, including Rick, Carl, Michonne, Sasha and Abraham, Morgan and, heartbreakingly, Glenn, Maggie, and their child, a toddler son. This scene is pure fantasy and it takes place sometime roughly a couple of years in the future. The whole group – in fact, the whole family – is there. They’re sitting at a long dinner table, and they look different: Clean, recently showered, with fresh clothes.
It’s not a moment that could ever actually happen – at least, not in this zombie apocalypse. But it’s a moment of the group, as a family, having that Sunday dinner Negan mentioned. They’re happy, and they’re together.
Unfortunately, after this episode, it’s even more impossible than before. In an extremely brutal episode, it’s the moment that actually shattered our hearts.