Oh, sweet Rick.
The Walking Dead‘s ninth season will have the final appearance for the beloved Rick Grimes, which Andrew Lincoln confirmed once more at Comic-Con International: San Diego. It’s undoubtedly the biggest deviation from Robert Kirkman’s comic book series, seeing as that Grimes (and his son Carl) are still kicking ass and taking names in the zombie-verse.
AMC’s marketing for season nine is officially in full swing with the debut of new photos and artwork.
Rick is front and center in the new image, bathed in red, and leading his friends amongst the ruins. Eagle-eyed fans may also notice the White House in the background, possibly indicating a trip to Washington in the upcoming season. While I don’t particularly like seeing bearded Rick covered in what I would assume is a symbolism for blood and death, it is nice to see him sporting his sheriff’s cap, something that he gave to his late-son Carl a few seasons back.
In addition to the promotional image of Rick, AMC also released additional artwork featuring other series regulars, which provide clear hints at the time jump—confirmed as being a year-and-a-half—that occurs between seasons eight and nine.
If that’s not enough to satisfy you, AMC also released an official season 9 synopsis, which reads:
Last season brought the culmination of “All Out War,” which pitted Rick Grimes and his group of survivors against the Saviors and their cunning leader, Negan. With Negan’s life in his hands, Rick had a character-defining choice in front of him. By making the unilateral decision to spare Negan, Rick upheld the values his late son, Carl, championed in order to build for the future, but created conflict within his group.
Now, we see our survivors a year and a half after the end of the war, rebuilding civilization under Rick’s steadfast leadership. It is a time of relative peace among the communities as they work together, looking to the past to forge the future, but the world they knew is rapidly changing as man-made structures continue to degrade, and nature takes over, changing the landscape and creating new challenges for our survivors.
As time passes, the communities confront unexpected obstacles, danger, and of course, walkers, but nothing quite prepares them for the formidable force they are about to encounter, which threatens the very idea of civilization that our survivors have worked so hard to build.
Based on the comic book series written by Robert Kirkman and published by Image Comics, “The Walking Dead” reigns the number one drama on television among adults 18-49 for the last six seasons. The series is executive produced by chief content officer Scott M. Gimple, showrunner Angela Kang, Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert, Greg Nicotero, Tom Luse and Denise Huth.
Here’s to hoping they do right by our fearless leader. We will miss thee.