‘The Walking Dead’ fans react to the show’s long-awaited return

Photo via AMC

Warning: This article contains spoilers for The Walking Dead season 11

After being off our screens since last October, The Walking Dead finally returned this weekend to continue its super-sized eleventh — and final — season. The 24-part run of the post-apocalyptic drama kicked off its next batch of eight episodes with midseason premiere “No Other Way”, which saw the survivors’ conflict with the Reapers come to a head. It made for a strong comeback for the show, too, as it featured everything from heartwarming character moments to brutal action to traumatic deaths. And TWD fans are feeling a lot of emotions about it.

On the happy side of things, “Donnie” shippers were overjoyed that Daryl (Norman Reedus) and Connie (Eternals‘ Lauren Ridloff) were finally reunited.

An underrated bit from the same scene saw Maggie (Lauren Cohan) and Carol (Melissa McBride) share a touching moment as well.

But this is The Walking Dead we’re talking about, so it wasn’t all smiles and sunshine this week. Things got extremely tense as Daryl faced off against his twisted ex Leah (Lynn Collins), the current leader of the Reapers. Although the plot can basically be summed up with this…

Elsewhere, Leah’s right-hand man Carver (Alex Meraz) proved himself to be a fearsome opponent.

Though Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) ended up dispatching him with ease:

The Biggest Badass award for this episode, however, has to go to Maggie, who unleashed her inner Negan when she mercilessly wiped out the retreating Reapers single-handed.

What pushed Maggie over the edge was the latest loss she suffered this episode. Yup, another one bit the dust in episode nine as Alden (Callan McAuliffe) perished in Maggie’s arms. Alden’s been around since season eight so his demise hit folks hard.

But it looks like Maggie’s actions had major repercussions. The episode ended with a six-month time jump that revealed a shocking twist. Daryl has joined the Commonwealth (!) and is leading a squad against Maggie and Hilltop!

Things are really heating up as we near the end. The Walking Dead continues Sundays on AMC.