The first trailer for The Walking Dead season 9 carried extra anticipation at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, as star Andrew Lincoln, a.k.a. Rick Grimes, confirmed that he will indeed be leaving after this season. While there are no explicit hints as to Rick’s fate, it’s clear in this trailer that the core group, along with the new communities they’ve encountered and created over the years, are being drawn in different directions.
“This will be my last season playing the part of Rick Grimes,” Lincoln said during the emotional panel (via AMC’s Twitter). “I love this show. It means everything to me. I love the people who make this show. I’m particularly fond of the people who watch this show.”
Will Rick’s end come at the hands of zombies? Other humans? Will he and Daryl ride off into the sunset? (Kidding about that last, as rumor has it Norman Reedus could take over as series lead.)
Lincoln added that “[m]y relationship with Rick Grimes is far from over,” saying that “I’m really, really excited about this season. No one is bigger than the story, and the story this year is unbelievable.”
And as for the unrest in the trailer, some of it centering around Maggie? “There’s a lot of conflict, but it’s conflict with people who love each other who are working toward a brighter, stronger future,” said Lauren Cohan, who is set to appear in most of the first half of the season, though her character’s fate is uncertain. Another tidbit from the panel:
#TWD this season seems to be about Rick finally getting his perfect world… only for it to cave in on itself. Especially because Rick’s perfect world is not the one Maggie envisioned. #SDCC pic.twitter.com/jWnbnxXKHs
— Lauren Cox (@Iaurencox) July 20, 2018
Watch the trailer:
The Walking Dead returns October 7.