March 26, 2023

Going into its final episodes, “The Walking Dead” still has 37 major characters left alive. That’s a lot of people and I doubt they’re all going to survive the series’ final run.
After taking a look at the characters most likely to perish and survive “TWD,” I decided to rank the likelihood of every major character’s survival on the show’s final episodes. 
This list is about who I actually believe “TWD” will kill off — not which characters it should. As much as I want the show to take big swings, I’m not convinced it will so they don’t rattle the fanbase too much. The fates of characters toward the center of this list — Dog, Eugene, Pamela Milton, and Jerry — are the ones I feel most uncertain about.
With that in mind, ranked from safest to absolute goner, here’s who I think is most likely to make it to the end of “TWD” and who will bow out in the final eight episodes.
Negan’s survival was seemingly confirmed in March when AMC announced that Morgan, who plays Negan, will star in a “TWD” spin-off, “Isle of the Dead,” with Lauren Cohan next year.
On the “Rich Eisen Show,” Morgan said he was surprised they announced his upcoming spin-off months ahead of the series finale, suggesting that his character won’t die.
“I guess we know that Negan doesn’t die,” Morgan said, adding, “Spoiler alert, folks. Sorry. I’m still not sure why we announced that already. It was sort of a shocker to me.”
First announced in September 2020, Daryl’s (Norman Reedus) getting his own spin-off next year which is set to take place in France and it doesn’t sound like it will be a prequel series. 
On a recent episode of “Talking Dead,” “TWD” chief Scott M. Gimple confirmed the ending of “The Walking Dead: World Beyond” was “a bit of a tease of some of the things Daryl is going to face.” “World Beyond,” takes place a decade into the apocalypse.
Cohan is currently filming “Isle of the Dead” with Morgan ahead of its debut next year on AMC and AMC+ so I feel confident Maggie will survive the series just like her comic character.
However, I am concerned that Maggie’s son Hershel hasn’t been spotted yet as production for the series is underway.
Melissa McBride’s beloved character was supposed to be on the Daryl show, too, until filming for the series moved overseas. We’re feeling fairly good about Carol.
Additionally, Reedus assured fans that “the Carol/Daryl story isn’t over yet” at San Diego Comic-Con.
Since her birth in the show’s third season, Judith has served as a beacon of light and a driving force for the survivors to carry forward in the apocalypse. A lot of the things Rick’s group did were to make sure they were building a better world for the next generation, including Judith. 
Judith’s death would extinguish that hope, ending the show on a dark note.
In the comics, it’s Judith’s brother, Carl, who makes it to the end. Since he’s no longer on the series, it only feels appropriate that Judith should be the one to make it to the end of the show.
Additionally, it would be extremely weird if the show killed Judith off before she’s able to reunite with her mom and dad in the newly-announced Rick and Michonne spin-off
There’s no way AMC is wasting an opportunity for Rick to be introduced to the son he doesn’t even know exists. It wouldn’t make any sense if R.J. is killed before he meets his father.
Something tells me “TWD” isn’t going to kill a mother of three kids. If this was “Game of Thrones,” absolutely.
But I don’t think “The Walking Dead” is in the business of being this ruthless anymore. I’m not as optimistic about her husband (and fan favorite) Jerry, though. 
You can say that no one is safe, but I think it would look really bad on the show’s part if it killed off Connie. An original character introduced late in the series, she has come to mean so much to so many people as the show’s first deaf character.
Her portrayal by Lauren Ridloff, a deaf actor, inspired other cast members and fans to start learning sign language while showing that anyone could go up against the dead.
The only reason I’m really concerned for Connie is because of the waves her article on exposing the community’s misdeeds is about to make. There may be some backlash and retaliation from inside the Commonwealth militia as a result.
Since Yumiko was basically given a remixed version of Michonne’s comic arc on the show, I’m feeling pretty good about her survival. In the comics, Michonne, who was a lawyer before the apocalypse, winds up making it to the end of the series and becomes a prominent figure and respected judge in the Commonwealth.
I wouldn’t be surprised if Yumiko helps to become the face and future of the Commonwealth by the show’s end.
“TWD” had a huge opportunity to kill off Aaron’s daughter in the last batch of episodes.
Do they really have time to put her in danger again when there are so many other stories to wrap up? Probably not.
Bertie (Karen Ceesay) has low-key been one of the ultimate background characters and survivors of “TWD.” The former Hilltop member stepped up to train alongside Maggie and became integral to her community. 
Introduced on season six, I’m really pulling for Bertie to make it to the end unscathed. We haven’t actually seen Bertie on screen since the season 10 finale, but Ceesay posted some photos on Instagram after the show wrapped noting her time on the show for five seasons, so I feel like we’re going to see her again. 
Conveniently, neither Luke (Dan Fogler) nor Jules could be spotted when all of Oceanside was rounded up by the Commonwealth soldiers at the end of the last batch of episodes.
I largely believe that’s because Fogler was filming the third “Fantastic Beasts” movie. Photos circulating online, that I won’t link to, have shown Luke reunited with our survivors.
This will likely never happen, but I would love if we got a flashback from Luke’s point of view that showed him and Jules trying to outrun the Commonwealth as they rounded up the Oceanside community. In the process, Jules was killed and Luke barely escaped to regroup with Magna and the rest of his original group. 
Will Luke make it to the end of the series? Maybe not, but I’d love to see him meet Princess who also has a love for music and see them run that record shop at the Commonwealth together.
Lydia’s mother, Dee/Alpha, was convinced that her daughter couldn’t survive without her. Lydia’s survival would be a great way to prove her mother was wrong and a beautiful way to show that she can chart her own path, especially after you watch Alpha’s episode of “Tales of TWD.”
I don’t see Milton getting taken down by the dead. I think the series made it a point to show us that she could handle herself against any zombie threat while she was out in the woods with Maggie, a detail that seemed to surprise her.
I do think she could be swayed to believe that things need to change in the Commonwealth if she sees a massive uprising from within. Lance Hornsby made her believe that everyone was happy with the way things work at the community when there’s actually a huge class divide.
She’s told others that she never wanted to go into politics and never felt as suited to be a natural leader in the way that Alexandria’s Deanna took to it. I could see Pamela stepping down and letting someone else, like Yumiko, Mercer, or Aaron (if he survives) lead the Commonwealth instead. 
If anything, maybe she’s placed in jail, but it’s tough for me to see the series killing her off.
I’m nervous that Hershel hasn’t been spotted on the set of “Isle of the Dead,” but I’m holding out hope that the premise of that series is centered around Negan and Maggie teaming up to save Hershel from a kidnapper.
Toward the end of “TWD” comic, a grown-up Hershel becomes an antagonist and bully towards Carl. It’s really a disservice not only to his character, but also the legacy of the grandfather he’s named after and his father, Glenn.
I don’t see a world where showrunner Angela Kang would allow a young Asian American actor to be killed off the series or unnecessarily become a villain. In April, Kang told Insider how much it meant for herself and the show’s crew to be able to see themselves on TV.
“For a lot of us that work on the show, we’ve all talked with each other about watching TV and movies growing up and going, ‘I didn’t see anybody like myself,’ and that sucks,” Kang said. “So let’s try to put more people that might be reflective of communities that don’t get to see a lot of themselves on the screen.”
I’m really pulling for Hershel and Judith (the children of two original show characters) to wind up together in a flash-forward at the show’s end, a nod to Judith’s brother, Carl, winding up with Carol’s daughter, Sophia, at the comic’s end.
I don’t think “TWD” was expecting the fan reaction to Paola Lázaro’s character that they received. When Princess was introduced during the pandemic, so many people related to her character, who lived in isolation for years. Because of that, I don’t think the show may have the heart to kill her off. 
Princess doesn’t feel like the safest bet to survive the series, so she’s closer to the middle of my list.
We’ve seen how much Mercer lifts and how easily he can take down a group of walkers. I can’t think of one person who could overpower Michael James Shaw’s character, Mercer, alone.
It would take an army of the dead or skilled soldiers to take down the leader of the Commonwealth army. Yet, even with his sharp military skills, I don’t feel completely confident about Mercer’s safety since he is turning on his group to aid Daryl and the others in their fight. But I’d be deeply shocked if Mercer is killed.
This is a man who cares deeply about the Commonwealth’s well-being and future. I’d love if he survived to help rule the Commonwealth under a new, better regime with Princess by his side. The way to get to Mercer could be by going after his sister, Max.
When Daryl heads to this spin-off series, is he taking Dog on the road with him? Does Daryl run off to France to search for Rick, a cure to the zombie apocalypse, or because he suffers some huge loss?
I’m nervous because I could see Dog risking his life to save Daryl, Carol, Connie, or one of the other main members of the group. 
Other than Dog, Eugene is a wild card for me so he sits almost right in the middle of this list.
I think about where Eugene started on the show and how far he’s come. I think he would be a great asset in whatever community the group is a part of by the end of the show.
That being said, Eugene has stirred up a lot of trouble at the Commonwealth and someone may think it’s best to silence him.
I wouldn’t be shocked if Rachel doesn’t make it, but I don’t think “TWD” has it in them to kill off a young female leader of a community. That may be too brutal for the series.
In case you don’t remember, Kevin Carroll’s character was the one who kidnapped Michonne and then found Connie in a great horror episode. He’s one of the only people on the series who knows that Michonne went off on an important mission to save Rick Grimes. 
That feels like imperative information that he should be sharing with the rest of the group. Conveniently, Virgil hasn’t been seen since the big storm at Alexandria on season 11, episode eight. We don’t even know if he’s at the Commonwealth.
Maybe he’s been holed up in a medical ward having his injuries looked after, but there’s been little reason to keep his character around when there are so many other stories to wrap up. He shouldn’t have survived the series’ great haunted house episode. Even Carroll told me he couldn’t believe his character made it out alive.
I’m just waiting for Virgil to spill the beans about Michonne going off in search of Rick so he can get the ax.
Kelly and Connie reunions are always some of the most emotional on the series. The only way the show could make us cry harder is if they tear these two sisters apart. 
While I hope that won’t be the case, I’m finding it difficult to imagine that every sibling duo will make it through the final eight episodes. If the show really wants to pull the rug out from under us, they’re going to take Connie or Kelly from us.
Dianne has served as a leader for Ezekiel at the Kingdom before becoming the right-hand of Maggie for years. She recently left her group to live out a more peaceful life at the Commonwealth. 
Diane is one of the few characters I could see going either way. She’s saved so many other characters by being on the frontlines of multiple wars that she deserves to live out the rest of her days. Because of her loyalty to the group, she would definitely lay down her life for any of the survivors. 
If Dianne goes down, she’ll go out swinging with a memorable hero’s death.
Out of the two Mercer siblings, Max feels like she may have a bigger target on her back. Now that Connie’s news story is out, the Milton’s may figure out that Max had a role in sneaking the journalist secret documents. 
We’ve already seen Commonwealth militia take hold of Max in an ominous trailer scene. What are their plans for her? We know there’s a group of people who have mysteriously disappeared from the community, supposedly because of bad behavior.
Mike told his sister that he’s been doing everything in his power to protect them both. I think it would break Mercer if anything happened to Max. 
I absolutely hate the idea of Ezekiel’s best buddy getting killed off “TWD.” Jerry is probably the nicest person left alive in the zombie apocalypse. 
But if the show is looking to break our hearts, Jerry’s death would hit fans incredibly hard. The latest trailer shows Jerry will be on the road with Aaron and Lydia. Will he make it back? 
Yumiko’s brother Tomi already got in trouble for keeping his previous profession as a doctor hidden from the Commonwealth. Once they learn he’s been going behind their back again to aid in an illegal hospital to help the poor, an example may be made of him (and or Ezekiel).
I’m not 100% convinced the Commonwealth army would be dumb enough to kill Tomi. On the one hand, the world needs surgeons. They’re in short supply!
But, let’s be real, doctors notoriously don’t have a great survival rate on “TWD.”
Yumiko and Magna’s relationship has become incredibly strained since they’ve been split up in the Commonwealth. Because the community gives roles according to people’s professions in the old world, Yumiko, a former lawyer, is living like a queen as legal counsel to Pamela Milton and Magna’s living a more humble life as a waiter. 
The two have barely had any screen time to resolve their issues (likely one casualty of the show’s unexpected final season), and with only eight episodes left, I doubt they’ll have time to do so. That’s incredibly sad.
Last September, Nadia Hilker, who has played Magna on the show since season nine, told me she’s fine with getting killed off the show, saying, “I definitely, like a big part of me, wants to get killed off because I think being on the show and not ever turning into a walker, it just doesn’t seem right.”
Hilker added that if she’s killed off, she would hope something good would come of her character’s death. 
Do we really think Negan gets to move on and play house with a new wife and new child? In the last batch of episodes, Annie revealed to Maggie (whose husband was killed by Negan) that not only did she love Negan despite knowing about his full past, but was also carrying his child.
I have a tough time seeing “TWD” killing a pregnant woman, but Annie’s introduction has always felt like it was simply to serve Negan’s continuing redemption arc.
Make Negan seem worthy of love in someone else’s eyes, have that seen by Maggie, and then let her watch as Negan has his future ripped away in front of him, leading to some sort of strange bonding moment. Maggie lost the love of her life in front of Negan (but at his hands). Negan lost his world in front of Maggie. Now they can head out on the road together in a spin-off.
I hope that’s not the case, because it’s gross to fridge Annie just to propel Negan’s arc forward, but it’s tough to feel otherwise.
The other alternative, which I hope occurs, is that Annie is kidnapped along with Hershel and Maggie and Negan need to team up to save them both.
Jules is another one of those characters who was introduced way late on “TWD” in season 10 as a member of the all-female Oceanside community who fell for Luke (Dan Fogler).
Sure, I like seeing Luke happy, but do we really think we’re going to see many happy couples make it to the end of “TWD”? If someone has to go, Jules feels like a low-stakes tertiary character who can be killed off. 
For all we know, Jules is already dead or was killed when the Commonwealth stormed and took over the community at the end of the last batch of episodes. Conveniently, neither Luke nor Jules could be spotted when all of Oceanside was rounded up.
I was wondering why “TWD” decided to bother with setting up a subplot where Zeke was running a secret clinic to help the downtrodden at the Commonwealth. But, in doing so, Ezekiel has not only won over and become an integral member of the community, but he’s also a beloved and respected leader by the original group of survivors.
Because of that, I’ve been worried the Commonwealth army could kill Ezekiel as a punishment for stepping out of line and starting his own hospital.
Ezekiel has outlived his iconic comic death so it wouldn’t be shocking if Zeke doesn’t make it to the end of “TWD”; however, it would be pretty awful to kill off Khary Payton’s character after he just survived cancer.
If this is how Ezekiel goes, it would be one way to do a smart twist on Rick’s comic death. Rick’s murder caused such an outcry at the Commonwealth because he was beloved by all. Currently, Ezekiel’s really the only character who fits that description. 
The trailer teases members of the Commonwealth army carrying Ezekiel at one point. His death could cause an uprising in the community which leads to the ousting of Pamela Milton as the Commonwealth’s leader.
The only problem is that it wouldn’t fit a request from Payton. Last August, the actor told me he asked the showrunners years ago to not have Ezekiel “die with his head hung.”
Fans have been wondering if Father Gabriel will die for years since he’s long out-lived his comic death. I wouldn’t be surprised if these last eight episodes are Gabe’s swan song. 
Gabe has been getting more and more ruthless — and a little reckless — with how he handles situations. (Did he have to kill Mays?) That over-confidence may be his undoing. 
Hornsby’s currently on a rampage against Daryl, Maggie, and more for shooting him in the face and taking out members of his corrupt army. But any time a villain sees red on “TWD,” they usually don’t last too long (the Governor, Beta, Gareth). 
Hornsby may be underestimating who he’s up against. After all, Maggie, Daryl, and Gabriel just slaughtered the Reapers. 
The only way I see Lance surviving the series is if he takes Maggie’s son and Negan’s wife hostage and that leads into their spin-off show. But that sounds like a stretch.
Ideally, I’d love to see Lance have a showdown with Mercer, the leader of the Commonwealth army. 
I’ve been wondering for a while whether or not Aaron may receive Rick’s comic death. After all, Aaron basically looks like a doppelganger of comic Rick at this point with his beard and one arm. That had to be done for a reason other than to just look the part, right?
While Aaron could get a death similar to Rick, that may be too easy. In the comics, Sebastian kills Rick and the two don’t really seem to know one another well on the show at all.
If Aaron doesn’t get some version of Rick’s death, I could see him sacrificing himself to save his daughter or his original home of Alexandria. The latter has been taken over by the Commonwealth. There’s no way Aaron, who lived there since the apocalypse began, is happy about that.
Trailers are meant to throw us off, but the above moment doesn’t look great for Rosita. Even if she does escape all of those walkers, the chances of her getting bit or scratched feel high.
Rosita has also outlived her comic death and it feels like the show really hasn’t known what to do with the character for a while.
I don’t want to see Rosita go, but if there’s a major death that’s going to pull at our heartstrings, it’s going to involve ripping a badass momma bear away from her baby girl, Coco.
“TWD” loves introducing secondary and tertiary characters who will stick around for a bit just so they can die instead of one of the larger, more important characters down the line. 
I’d be shocked if Elijah doesn’t die trying to save Lydia (who he has a crush on). Young love rarely survives in the apocalypse.
You don’t get to break Eugene’s heart and impersonate Max and simply get away with that.
If she goes toe-to-toe with Carol, as is teased in the latest “TWD” trailer (seen above), Stephanie’s going down.
In the comics, Sebastian winds up shooting Rick dead and he rots in jail for his actions. But that seems too kind for TV Sebastian.
The self-absorbed narcissist doesn’t have the respect of Daryl’s group or anyone at the Commonwealth community. On top of that, he has zero survival skills.
We’ve seen him fail over and over again to kill walkers that are supposed to be target practice for him. When the walkers enter the Commonwealth, no one’s risking their life to save Sebastian.
From the trailers, it looks like Sebastian is going to have a run-in with Negan. If Negan doesn’t kill him, I’m expecting some walkers to do him in.

Keep reading


Leave a Reply