Despite fan theories that Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) could have survived the events from the midseason finale last December, cast members and producers have confirmed that character will be dead and gone. Meanwhile, there are clues that the all-out war could be ending when the season concludes.
In a recent interview with TVLine, showrunner Scott Gimple said that they were confident in embarking on a story that involves Carl's death but admitted that it was "very difficult to face."
"Looking at where the show is and where we wanted the story to go, Carl is trying to change the world even as he's leaving it," Gimple added.
Many fans were surprised when they learned of Carl's fate and cast member Danai Gurira shared the same sentiment, adding that Carl's death made her feel depressed. The actress told HuffPost: "You're in the story. You're in it, and you're also in a family. It was hard."
Gurira plays the role of Michonne and has been a regular cast member since season 3. She also explained how important Carl was to her character and called him "her healer." Since the character's addition to the story, Guriran recalled, she and Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) have always been trying to protect the boy.
Since the beginning of season 8, "The Walking Dead" focused on the story of the all-out war between the alliance composed of Rick's Alexandria Safe-Zone, Maggie Rhee's (Lauren Cohan) Hilltop Colony, and Ezekiel's (Khary Payton) The Kingdom against the powerful and vicious group of Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), the Saviors.
The midseason finale last December ended with the Saviors effectively ambushing the alliance of the protagonist groups. So far, season 8 has shown the power struggle between the opposing groups of survivors in the post-apocalyptic zombie world of "The Walking Dead."
However, the synopses for the remaining episodes hint that the disruption will further escalate and could be coming to a conclusion.
As reported by Digital Spy, episode 16's synopsis says the communities led by Rick, Maggie, and Ezekiel will once again come together against the Saviors as the "all-out war unfolds."
The second half of "The Walking Dead" season 8 airs on Sunday, Feb. 25, at 9 p.m. EST on AMC.