Rick Grimes’ days on The Walking Dead are numbered, as Andrew Lincoln’s hanging up his sheriff’s hat for good after eight and a bit seasons of leading the AMC’s hit zombie drama. The British star completed his work on the upcoming ninth season of the show earlier this summer, but details of the character’s exit have been kept tightly under wraps.
Whatever happens, you can bet it’ll be an emotional farewell and now, just to tease the heartbreak that awaits us, the official Walking Dead Instagram account has shared a touching photo previously posted by TWD star Seth Gilliam (who plays Father Gabriel). It sees Lincoln hugging two of his colleagues, Danai Gurira (Michonne) and Lauren Cohan (Maggie Rhee) and though we can’t see Andy and Danai’s faces, we bet they look just as cut up as Cohan does.
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Of course, these three are some of the longest-running members of the show’s ensemble still left at this late stage, as Gurira and Cohan first appeared on The Walking Dead back in season 2. As the caption says, the TWD team have grown as close as a family, so it must be tough every time they lose someone. Not to undercut any previous exits, but this is clearly the hardest one yet, as Lincoln’s been at the head of the cast for so long.
This image might also take on additional poignancy if those rumors about Lauren Cohan moving on from the series are true. It seems like a fact that Maggie won’t appear as much in season 9, but we not quite sure at this stage whether the actress is escaping the apocalypse for good or if she’s going to juggle work on TWD and her new show, comedy-drama Whiskey Cavalier.
Either way, it looks like fans should be prepared for lots of heartache when The Walking Dead returns to AMC on October 7th.
Source: The Walking Dead/Instagram