The Walking Dead season 8 finale at last saw Team Rick defeat the Saviors and place Negan under their heel, allowing them to finally get their communities on track again and start a new age of peace. However, a possible new threat to Rick’s leadership is about to come from within.
Inspired by the late Carl’s call for hope and forgiveness, Rick decided to spare Negan’s life, which didn’t go down well with Daryl, Maggie and even Jesus, who were shown to form a secret group with the aim of challenging Rick’s decision and dish out the justice that the evil tyrant surely deserves.
Fans are wondering how far this conflict between some of the most long-running characters, who’ve been through so much together, will go in the upcoming season 9. And while we still don’t know just yet, EW attempted to pick new showrunner Angela Kang’s brain over how the storyline will be explored in the next run. She was careful not to go into too much detail, but did promise that this civil war will be explored a bit more and there’ll be “some surprises” in the tale.
“There will definitely be story about Maggie and Daryl and Rick and where they are at with each other. I don’t want to spoil too much about that storyline, but there will be some surprises along the way with it. It’s definitely something that we will be exploring this season.”
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What we do know for sure about season 9 is that it won’t pick up directly after the events of the last finale and will instead jump forward a currently-unknown amount of time. This move’s inspired by the comic book arc “A New Beginning,” which follows the “All-Out War” storyline and explores how Rick has led Alexandria into a prospering community.
Of course, there might not be much time for the aforementioned conflict to play out very much anyways, as it’s believed that Andrew Lincoln will bow out of The Walking Dead after only about six episodes. What’s more, Lauren Cohan also appears to be leaving. There’s some confusion about both of these events at present, but we’ll hopefully find out more during this weekend’s San Diego Comic-Con panel.