The Walking Dead‘s “What Comes Next” was SUPPOSED to be everything I was dreading. It was to be the end of a legend and possibly the end of me watching this amazing drama by AMC. Color me surprised when the “death” of Rick Grimes ended up being one of the best episode of The Walking Dead.
After this episode, I don’t want to give up on this show. If anything, it’s made me more invested! Rick Grimes is out there somewhere and his family, including us, will do anything that we have to, to get back Rick Grimes!
Coming into “What Comes Next” I had my tissues and blanket ready. They were safety measures for my feels because I knew that whatever was coming would tear me apart. And in a way it did. I cried throughout this ENTIRE episode. Not heart-wrenching sobs, but the kind of tears that just keep silently coming and coming.
Rick Grimes and the journey that we’ve seen him go through the past nine years, has been something very dear for me. Every Sunday, like clockwork, I was there. I yelled, cheered, flipped out, and every other emotion you could think of. I was committed. I still am. But the point of this all, is that Rick Grimes has been my companion for 9 years.
The Walking Dead and Rick Grimes has been with me through loss, anger, renewal, happiness, and everything that comes with trying to get your life together. Rick Grimes was there just like I was there for him and the rest of The Walking Dead family. And this ending, temporary ending if we’re being honest, is everything that Rick Grimes, The Walking Dead, and myself deserved.
Rick Grimes got a chance to understand how much of the bigger picture he was part of. What he did for the apocalypse and the people in it, will forever mark this world, even if he’s not there. They gave him the strength to keep on going and he gave them the hope, love, and power to keep living. No one does it alone and it hurts to realize that his family, and myself, will keep fighting and growing without truly knowing Rick Grimes fate.
I would like to thank Andrew Lincoln for the 9 amazing years that he gave us as Rick Grimes. Your departure…it was a masterclass of storytelling that made me understand and accept that you will always be a part of this story, a part of my story. We’ve lost so much along the way, and the pain isn’t going to stop anytime soon, but your light as Rick Grimes, will shine upon these people just like Carl’s, Hershels, and Glenn’s shined on you. Just like it shined on us.
Look, technically I know we got a Richonne scene. And it was beautiful, and it was heartbreaking, and it was everything and more that I’ve come to love and expect from these two. But you know what else it was? It wasn’t real! It was a beautiful hallucination that Rick had because no matter where he goes or how much blood he’s lost, he knows that Michonne would come for him.
If I had one wish, I would have had a final Rick & Michonne moment together where it’s ACTUALLY them. “Oh but it would’ve thrown off the story telling!” you yell and scream while wiping your Rick Grimes tears away. Would it? Would it really have been that bad to have Rick and Michonne lock eyes and for him to shake his head “no”?
This is not to say that I didn’t love the final moments when Michonne was running to him. It was beautifully filmed and Danai Gurira has broken my soul. I practically shattered when she yelled his name and Carol and Maggie had to hold her back. Every argument/discussion or whatever the hell was between them all, disappeared because Carol & Maggie had to help their grieving friend from “dying” just like Rick.
I just wanted more. Rick and Michonne have been my all-stars when it comes to OTP’s and it hurts to know that I won’t be getting more of them for ages to come. Until then, I’m going to hold onto the fact that Rick found his family and managed to save them one last time. I’m going to hold onto Michonne’s words in the preview for next week’s episode. No matter how much time has passed, Michonne hasn’t given up.
For Rick. For Judith. For herself, Michonne will find Rick. She will reunite their family, even after all this time of being surrounded by darkness and separated by time and distance. Michonne will find Rick.
Honestly, The Walking Dead has blown my damn mind. When I heard that this was to be Rick Grimes final episode I was fucking angry. I didn’t want to face the fact that THIS was to be his last episode. I thought I would have more time with him and that the pain of his loss would happen down the road.
I honestly didn’t think that I’d want to watch The Walking Dead after Rick’s loss. But that time jump….HOLY SHIT, AM I EXCITED! The Walking Dead is taking a huge ass fucking risk with it and I think it’s going to pay off so much! A time jump is going to enable them to piece together a new story with the same people we know and love. Yes, it will jump over the initial pain of Rick’s death, but I’m ok with it because that kind of loss is going to mold all of them and there’s no way our boo Michonne would ever get over that pain.
Sidenote: Michonne is looking fine AF in the future, had no doubt about it, and is leading her people and raising a daughter at the same time. Judith, taking after her mother and father, has Rick’s hat and a sword of her own strapped to her back. In the brief moment we saw her, you already know she’s a kind trouble maker that gets into crazy situations just like her father, brother, and mother.
Oh, and Carol. She is looking like a badass mama with long hair. She’s top tier The Walking Dead and I’m so glad that she’s still around AND FLOURISHING! She is a survivor, a leader, and it’ll be interesting to see how her relationship with her husband and her surrogate son is going. P.S. Girl looks like apocalypse Laurie Strode from Halloween had a baby with Legolas from Lord of the Rings. The result is BEAUTIFUL!
Basically, I’m down. I’m down for all of this when it comes to the time jump. I’m down for watching this story unfold. And I’m down to stick with Angela Kang’s vision for whatever is next for The Walking Dead. Because no matter what, and no matter how long it takes, Rick Grimes is still around in the people left behind. He’s not gone. Plus there’s going to be a reunion somewhere down the line now that we know Andrew Lincoln is doing 3 The Walking Dead movies. THE STORY OF RICK GRIMES IS FAR FROM OVER!
Favorite Scene from The Walking Dead‘s “What Comes Next”:
The recent passing of Scott Wilson, and the conversation Hershel had with Rick, turned me into a blubbering mess. Hershel was a key factor in guiding Rick to be the man he is today. He gave Rick perspective about what was truly important in this world and how he needed to live, instead of just merely surviving.
Random Notes from “What Comes Next”:
- The song that plays at the end of “What Comes Next” is the same song that played at the end of Rick Grimes first episode when he was safe in the tank. Now he’s safe on a helicopter. It’s called “Space Junk” or “Welcome to My World” by Wang Chung. LISTEN HERE.
- They have been planning this season 4. Remember the helicopter that crashed? No explanation then and it’s not until now that we’ve realized that The Walking Dead has been playing the long game with Rick Grimes death.
- Everyone is looking fantastic in those flash forwards. Long hair, thick beards, and hopefully new relationships are ready for us to explore! Well, maybe not Daryl. Is he living by himself as a hermit? No booooooo! You have family! And they care for you! Here’s hoping that Carol is still tight with him and trying to bring him home.
Check out the trailer & sneak peeks for next week’s all-new The Walking Dead titled “Who Are We Now?”:
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.