Contains major spoilers for recent episodes:
I am ashamed to admit it but I have been in denial for a long time when it comes to The Walking Dead.
Just look at my earlier reviews and you will see I have been overpraising the show at times.
I gave the episode The Big Scary U five stars when it was not really worth that.
Looking back, its clear to me the reason I did that was because I was holding The Walking Dead to its own standards.
I was not rating episodes based on how good they were but on how good they were compared to the weaker episodes.
The thing that finally cleared my vision regarding this was the reveal of Carl’s fatal bite in the season 8 mid-season finale, How Its Gotta Be.
Carl was the heart of The Walking Dead.
One of the main themes in both the show and the comic is how a zombie apocalypse would affect the development of a child and the person they would grow up to be because of it.
Now, the show has lost that theme.
To top it all off, Carl was incredibly important in the upcoming Whisperer arc, due to his relationship with Lydia from the comic.
They could still do this storyline in the show but they would have to replace Carl with a minor character, now that he is dead.
In short, I believe that killing off Carl is one of the worst decisions the show has ever made.
They have taken the character who was the representation of the story and killed him off.
That shows how desperate the showrunners are getting.
The mid-season premiere aired on Monday, featuring Carl’s death, and that did not do anything to sway my fears.
Carl’s death was poorly done for two reasons.
Number one, the way he got bit was really idiotic.
Number two, Rick’s reaction to Carl’s death.
Rick acted like he would if Morgan had died, not his own son.
When Lori died in season three, Rick was an emotional wreck and it took him an entire season to recover from it.
However, with Carl, who meant so much more to him than Lori, Rick acts like he lost a friend, instead of his son.
The Walking Dead does not really seem like it knows what it is doing anymore.
However, that being said, it is possible for the show to not only bounce back from this but to come back better than ever.
The first reason it could do this is that The Walking Dead is getting a new showrunner, Angela Kang, who has worked on the show for a while and know how it works.
The second reason it that season nine will deal with The New Beginning story arc.
This arc changed everything in the comic.
The story jumped years ahead and gave us a fresh look at the characters.
It even introduced some of the most frightening villains The Walking Dead has ever given us, with The Whisperers.
So, Carl’s death might not be the end for the show.
The Walking Dead may have lost its heart but it just needs to find it again.
And if it doesn’t… well, at least we still have the comic.