The hits just keep on coming for Rick Grimes, don’t they? In the Season 7 premiere of The Walking Dead, he lost both of his right-hand men when Negan smashed in the skulls of Glenn and Abraham (ouch, it will never not hurt to say that). Then, on this week’s episode, he revealed the answer to a question we’ve all been curious about — and, well, it proved dismally depressing for him.
So, yeah, spoiler alert! I’m about to clue you into Rick’s truth bomb. If you haven’t seen this week’s episode of TWD, don’t say I didn’t warn you about what’s to come.
Now, let’s discuss.
It shouldn’t have come as any great surprise that this season would be bleak. Everyone — and I mean everyone — involved with the production promised life for the survivors would drastically change for the worse. They warned us to watch the premiere with a loved one and box of Kleenex.
We knew coming in that Negan was a sadistic asshole. We also knew, although we tried to convince ourselves it wasn’t true, that we would lose at least one of our favorite characters within the first few episodes to the barbed wire-covered side of Negan’s beloved bat, Lucille.
Yes, we knew all of that prior to the start of Season 7. Yet, here we are — it still sucks. Seeing Rick and the crew suffer has been horrible, and we won’t even talk about the emotional scarring inflicted by witnessing Glenn and Abe get beaten to death.
But what sucks just as much, if not more, is when this season throws something at us we truly aren’t expecting. I mean, shit, at this point we’re still trying to process all of the damage Negan has done. We haven’t had any additional time (or emotional energy) to invest in safeguarding ourselves from the painful little blows to the psyche this show is so fond of delivering.
That’s precisely what happened on this week’s episode of TWD, when Rick finally put to rest the question that has been on all of our minds: Is Judith his baby or Shane’s?
From the very beginning, we’ve all kind of suspected it could be Shane’s, right? Lori told Shane otherwise, but it seemed like she was saying that more for her benefit than anything else — and that she was sending the clear message to Shane that it was Rick’s baby, even if it wasn’t.
Now, we know for sure. In a heart-rending scene between Rick and Michonne, Rick admits to Michonne that he knows Judith isn’t his baby… but he loves her all the same. The reason he is complying with Negan’s orders is because he needs to be there to raise Judith.
For all intents and purposes, Judith is his daughter. Always was and always will be if you ask Rick.
And man, that stings. After all this time and everything Rick has been through, he finally has to say those words out loud now — when the rest of his world is falling apart. Or, to be more accurate, being ripped apart by Negan.
Of course, the knowledge that Judith is actually Shane’s baby changes absolutely nothing. It was never going to; we all knew that. We just wanted to know to satisfy our own selfish curiosity. Now we do, and we feel none the better for it. Nice.
This entire week (along with this entire season of TWD) should have come with a disclaimer that it was gonna kick us all in the balls… or, you know, wherever.