After we were promised a shock of epic proportions, yesterday’s midseason finale of The Walking Dead did not disappoint. In its final moments, it was revealed that Carl Grimes has been bitten by a walker!
Obviously, we all know what that means: Rick’s son, who has been with the show ever since it began eight years ago, is about to die. While there have been increasing rumours about one of the Grimes boys, in particular Carl, exiting the series this season, it still came as a surprise.
It turns out it was a shock to the system to Carl himself, too. Despite reports that the actor was looking to move on from The Walking Dead, Chandler Riggs has revealed that it was 100% not his decision for Carl to go. In fact, he had just bought a house near the set in Senoia, Georgia when he was informed his character was being written out.
It was previously known that Riggs was starting college, but he announced to The Hollywood Reporter that he’s actually taken a gap year from his studies to focus on his acting. On Carl’s death, he explained:
“Leaving Walking Dead wasn’t my decision. It was all story related. It made sense story-wise for it to happen for Rick and Michonne and all the other characters… I didn’t expect for Carl to ever get killed off. But it serves a good purpose in the story.”
Not that we’ve quite seen the last of Carl yet. Riggs went on to remind us that he’ll stick around for at least episode 9, though he was keen to clarify that Grimes Jr.’s story is definitely “coming to an end.”
“There’s still a little more left in Carl’s story — in episode nine — and that impacts Rick, Michonne and everyone. Although Carl’s story is coming to an end, it’s not over yet.”
If you’re interested to know what the 18-year-old Riggs is doing next, he’s already released his first original song and has just been cast in upcoming crime thriller Inherit The Viper.
Be sure to catch Carl’s final hour when The Walking Dead returns for its midseason premiere in February.