Look alive, people: The Walking Dead is finally emerging from its midseason hibernation on Sunday. And there are many questions (well, six) that we've been thinking about since the cliffhanging mid-season finale.
That finale was something. We finally got rid of the Governor, but not before he split up our beloved prison group, sent poor Hershel to his grave, and ran his own group into doom. In these next few episodes, we, along with Rick and company, are going to be picking up the pieces and getting accustomed to our new situations. Ahead of Sunday's premiere, we have a few nagging questions:
1. Did Judith Make It?
In the flurry of the Governor's assault on the prison, we watched as different members of the group were split up. It's unclear if anyone bothered to pick up Rick's daughter when Carol's little murderers decided to drop the infant and defend the prison.
There are theories out there that say Tyreese saved her, though Andrew Lincoln has stated that she is dead ... or at least Rick and Carl think she's dead. "She’s gone. I think, as you’ve seen in the episode, she’s gone. That’s it. That’s the feeling for Rick and Carl," he told Entertainment Weekly. The caveat with that spoiler, like all Walking Dead spoilers, is that these cast members have been known to embellish the truth or give us the half-truths in order to keep us guessing and avoid spoiling the show.
2. Who Is Going to Be the Next Big Bad?
What made the previous season so good was that Rick and friends were going up against the Governor, who is possibly one of the most annoying villains in the history of television. That element was absent at the start of the season, as we trudged through stories about the characters getting the flu and dying. Watching people dry heave and wheeze was not as compelling as a character to actively hate, as we did with the Governor.
Then when they did bring the Governor back, they tried to give him some character development and a backstory, to show us that he is still not over the loss of his daughter. That was almost as bad as the flu.
That said, we're looking forward to who the next villain will be. The Hunters? Will it be The Hunters?
3. Which Group Is Going to Be Our Favorite?
Hold on. Let me back up, the big question will probably be: did the Prison group, like a good family, work out an emergency evacuation plan? Was there a designated meeting point? There probably is one, since there was some semblance of a plan to board a bus and whatnot.
That said, the group is now splintered, and Carol, for all we know, is still driving that station wagon into the sunset. How is Tyreese going to interact with Carol's child murderers who saved his life? Maggie and Sasha are going to be carrying Bob, right? Glen and that bus full of people are pretty much screwed, we think? What's going to be fun is that there will be certain characters and pairings that we're going to be drawn to. I'm going to be looking forward to each Sunday, because I'll be interested to see if Daryl becomes Beth's new father figure. On the other hand, I can already see myself fast forwarding my DVR between Carl and Rick's bonding adventure.
4. Carol's Coming Back, Right?
Carol was a fan favorite and a woman of mystery. While the men of The Walking Dead were growing ponytails and aggressive facial hair, Carol's Mia Farrow 'do remained well-maintained with no explanation why (no one ever explained who mowed the lawns either). Maybe the rules of The Walking Dead hair don't apply to a goddess? And Carol was blossoming into such a badass before Rick told her to leave as a punishment for killing people, including Tyreese's showmance, even though her ultimate goal was to keep the group healthy and safe from whatever that contagion was. Never mind that Rick killed a bunch of people for the betterment of the group, too.
Carol has to come back. The show is teasing her return. I, for one am hoping, Carol and her child soldiers are reunited.
5. Who's Going to Be the New Andrea?
Andrea had the legacy of being the most obnoxious character on the show. She was just full of bad ideas and had the worst gut instinct ever displayed on television: sleeping with the Governor, not listening to Michonne (if someone saves your life, you listen to them), shooting Daryl, sleeping with Shane. On a deeper level, there's the question of whether or not The Walking Dead's knows how to write well-balanced female characters (with Lori and Andrea being the most glaring examples).
Superficially, though, with Andrea and Herschel's departures, we're in desperate need of a main character who we wouldn't mind seeing turned into zombie chum. Current top contender: Bob.
6. Will the Mystery Car Cleaner Reveal Himself or Herself?
It wouldn't be The Walking Dead without an abnormally clean car.