The Walking Dead is going to bring in some big changes with season 9. Not only is it set to get a new showrunner, with Lauren Cohan also leaving as Maggie, but series lead Andrew Lincoln is bowing out after eight and a bit years as the figurehead of the hit AMC show. That begs the question, then: who’s going to replace him as the leader of the survivors?
Reports say that Norman Reedus is being offered a lucrative new deal in order to convince him to stay onboard and take over from Lincoln as the show’s new protagonist, which would suggest that the intention is for Daryl to step up as the new team leader. This could work, but a more natural choice would surely be Michonne, Rick’s girlfriend who’s proven herself one of, if not the, toughest of the group. What’s more, The Walking Dead itself has even teed her up to replace Rick.
Back in season 7 episode “Say Yes,” Rick and Michonne have a heart-to-heart in which Lincoln’s character broaches the subject of them potentially losing each other in the coming fight against the Saviors. Michonne doesn’t want to think of that, but Rick pushes ahead and asks her to take over from him as leader if anything should happen.
Check out the poignant conversation in the video below:
As it turned out, both Rick and Michonne managed to survive the battle with Negan. Though unfortunately, it looks like Rick will fall prey to an unknown new threat (the Whisperers?) in season 9. But will Danai Gurira’s character have enough strength to do what he asked of her and rally the survivors in his absence?
We’ll just have to wait and see how this series-shattering storyline plays out when The Walking Dead returns to our screens this fall. In the meantime, though, feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments section down below.