After seven seasons, it feels like it’s easy to predict what will happen on The Walking Dead. We’ve seen it all at this point, from the forging of new friendships and uneasy alliances to unexpected romantic relationships, and on the list goes until we arrive at shocking or incredibly emotional deaths. When the Grim Reaper comes knocking on TWD, it’s always bad, but considering death isn’t exactly the end for these characters (remember that they turn into zombies once they die no matter how they die), their deaths can be especially emotional. We’ve said goodbye to many beloved characters over the years. From Laurie to Herschel to the most recent victims, Glenn and Abraham, TWD has often pulled the rug out from under its viewership when it comes to offing a beloved character.
As we move on into Season 8, it’s clear that something big is brewing: war. TWD Season 8 will in fact draw from the “All Out War” storyline from the TWD comics. Like the title of this storyline suggests, a massive war between the Hilltop and Kingdom survivors against the Saviors is going to be the focus of this season. War means casualties, and with at least one major death being teased, it’s only fair to wonder who could meet an untimely end.
Here are our best guesses for TWD‘s next major death.
Eugene is a slippery fish on TWD. Skilled in engineering, obtaining information and obtaining supplies, he has completely switched loyalties and now works with the Saviors. As a traitor to Rick and his team, Eugene could very certainly meet an untimely end as a kind of revenge killing from one of Rick’s team members.
The last we saw of Rosita, she was laid up in a bed at Hilltop recovering from the Season 7 finale shootout between the Hilltop and Kingdom survivors and the Saviors. Rosita has been with us since Season 4. Losing a character of her veteran status would be a blow to us, the viewers, and it would be a blow to the characters on the show. However, it’s not entirely out of the realm of possibility that she could meet her end, either from the injury sustained in that firefight or from a wartime attack.
As the leader of the Kingdom, Ezekiel is a leader with a target on his back. Having officially teamed up with Rick in order to defeat Negan, Ezekiel’s survival is not guaranteed, no matter how skilled a fighter he is or considering the fact that he has his tiger, Shiva. His death would have a serious impact on the show and the characters in this world, but it’s not out of the question to think he could die this season.
From the Season 8 trailer, things aren’t looking too good for Gabriel right now. It appears he will be taken prisoner by Negan at some point in the season, which is rarely ever a good thing (remember what happened to Sasha at the end of Season 7?). As a supporting character and as a man who is most likely going to be trapped in Negan’s clutches, now’s the time to start wringing your hands about Gabriel’s fate.
Like Rick (see below), Negan’s death isn’t guaranteed in Season 8, but damn if his chances of being offed aren’t incredibly high. He’s a prime target for the Hilltop survivors as well as Rick’s close friends; killing Negan would be a major, major victory. Going into a wartime situation means that someone major is going to have to go, and that could very well be TWD‘s biggest villain to date.
As a formerly high-ranking Savior who has betrayed Negan, Dwight might be a prime target for the Saviors in Season 8. Killing him would mean other Saviors get to prove their loyalty to Negan, and it would mean that Rick’s team loses a key source of intel. At this point, going into a new season, Dwight’s chances are decently split in regard to whether or not he’ll survive.
As one of Negan’s top Saviors and a high-ranking and skilled fighter, he could logically be killed in a wartime scenario. If Rick’s group got ahold of Simon, there’s plenty they could do to glean information from him before killing him. It would certainly be a surprise to see Simon go, but his chances of survival are a bit lower than the more prominent characters on TWD.
Michonne is a solid lead character who has endured her fair share of hardship. At the end of Season 7, she literally fought for her life against one of the survivors in Negan’s ranks, enduring serious injuries that left her laid up in bed. While we know she’ll be OK (she’s always been a fighter), considering that affectionate relationship she has with Rick as well as her prominence as a skilled fighter, there’s a chance she could be a surprise kill in Season 8; the loss of Michonne would be a serious and surprising blow to the team.
When it comes to love and war, anything is possible. Considering Rick will find himself embroiled in a massive war that will likely take more lives than prisoners, it’s only fair to prepare for the worst where he’s concerned. It would be a huge victory, symbolically or otherwise, for Negan to kill Rick in Season 8. As the leader of his group, Rick’s life has always been in danger, but with the stakes so high this season, we should be extra worried about his well-being.
Only time will tell who will become the next casualty of TWD. For now, all we as viewers can do is prepare for the intensity of the war that’s about to happen and hope that the good guys live to see another season.