Talking About the Fake-Out on Last Night’s Walking Dead

Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) - The Walking Dead
Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) - The Walking Dead Photo: Gene Page/AMC

[Spoilers and speculation about last night’s The Walking Dead from here on out.] The main action of last night’s mid-season finale of TWD was identical to the main action of last season’s finale-finale of TWD: The Governor, et al, storm the prison, and a bloodbath ensues.

This time, the saddest death was poor Hershel’s, who met his end when the Governor decapitated him. (Which was an arduous process that involved a lot of katana-swinging.) But if the show wanted us to cry over the ostensible death of baby Judith, I’m saving my tears. Because there is no way in hell that baby is dead.

Exhibit A: No body. Rick and Carl found Judith’s carseat, but there was no baby in it — just a lot of blood. That is called circumstantial evidence, fellas! There was blood all over the place in general at the end of the siege, and one assumes a bloody person could have bled all over the carseat while rescuing the baby. (Why not just take the whole carseat? Because everyone on TWD is a huge, huge idiot, except for Carol.)

Exhibit B: Robert Kirkman was notably cagey on last night’s Talking Dead. On the follow-up to last night’s finale, TTD put together an “in memoriam” clip of everyone who died in the episode. Guess who wasn’t in the clip? Judith! Host Chris Hardwick said that was because we didn’t actually see Judith die, and then he asked comic-book creator and producer Robert Kirkman if we should assume Judith really was dead. Kirkman hemmed and hawed. “You’ll have to tune in,” he said. That means no.

Exhibit C: Use your head. TWD has never shied away from a gruesome or jarring death, especially a zombie one. If there were an opportunity for a zombie baby, the show would have taken it, gleefully, and made it as gross and disturbing and slurpy-sounding as possible. This is not a subtle show, and this is not a gray-area show. (Zombies: Bad. People: Also mostly bad.) If Judith were dead, she’d be obviously, unambiguously dead.

Prediction: Someone, probably Maggie, rescued Judith and will care for her as everyone scatters; eventually a bedraggled Rick and Carl will reunite with others from the prison, and Judith will be among them, and there will be much rejoicing.

The Fake-Out on Last Night’s Walking Dead