Is Andrew Lincoln Hinting At An Exit From The Walking Dead?

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The Walking Dead has seen what feels like an endless amount of beloved characters die over the past eight (well, 7 and a half) seasons. However, one person we’ve always felt was safe is Rick Grimes. Andrew Lincoln’s former deputy sheriff has remained at the core of the show throughout, so it would be near-impossible to continue on without him. Right? Right? 

Well, maybe not. ComicBook.com is speculating that the actor might be looking for the exit door, as recent comments of his make it sound like he’s not as enthusiastic about the show’s future as he once was. Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter in a recent interview, Lincoln said:

“I’ve said to you before and I really feel that the fans — and also for my own satisfaction — that there deserves to be an end point. There needs to be an end game and that is something that is definitely being talked about. I can’t get into all of that. But all of that will be answered. As I’ve said to you before — and I will continue to say — my relationship with Rick Grimes is far from over.”

What comes next is a bit more interesting, as in a separate interview with EW, Lincoln was asked if he feels The Walking Dead should be making more bold moves – like it did with killing Carl – and here was his reply.

“I think, well, why not? Loosening and untethering us from a lot of the story in the comic is one really interesting way of moving the story forward, and perhaps we can look at a bigger story outside of the one that we’ve been focusing on for eight years — which could be incredibly satisfying for Rick’s journey, and the characters that are around Rick, but also for the audience.”

Though Lincoln doesn’t explicitly say to either outlet that his time on the show is almost up, this isn’t the first occasion that he’s seemed to almost champion the idea of Rick kicking the bucket. Recently, the actor even said that The Walking Dead was “beautifully set up” for another character to take over his role as protagonist. We’re not saying that Lincoln’s actively looking to wave goodbye to the part he’s played for eight seasons now, but we think it’s clear that he’d be open to the idea of exiting AMC’s hit series at some point in the near future.

That being said, if the show is set to continue following the comic books as closely as it has recently, then we should have at least several seasons left of Rick Grimes, as the comics character is still alive and, uh, not exactly well, but at least he’s not dead. Who knows what will happen, though? It’s painfully obvious that The Walking Dead isn’t afraid to kill off major characters – even if the cast aren’t totally on board with it – and it really does seem like no one’s safe at this point. Not even Rick.

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