‘The Walking Dead’: 10 Characters That Should Have Survived Until The End
They were gone too soon!
AMC’s long-standing series The Walking Dead is just about ready to mop up its final stories and tie a knot in the apocalypse, meaning Season 11 will be the last. Of course, having eleven seasons to chew through over a steady twelve-year tenure, has meant we’ve seen our fair share of subplots and guest appearances since its 2010 debut.
The Walking Dead has, unfortunately, killed off more characters than it has introduced them. The sad part is, a lot of them deserved to bear the torch right through to the final moments. Whether it was fighting for a spot in Alexandria, or switching over to walk with the Whisperers, a few roles should have, in all honesty, made it through the thick of it.
It only seems like yesterday we were booting up the very first season of The Walking Dead and getting to know its day-one characters. T-Dog (IronE Singleton), of course, was one of the few that immediately sprung out, mainly due to his vibrant personality and devotion to his fellow survivors.
Unfortunately for the kind-spirited hero, his screen time was cut short, with his death following up in season three. Realizing his time was running out, he used his final moments to close the prison courtyard to prevent more enemies from entering and then threw himself to the walkers to help Carol (Melissa McBride) flee. As a result, he was, of course, devoured, and never to be seen again. His fighting spirit, of course, would have been a valuable asset for many, many future battles.
There were quite a few characters that made an impression from day one, Dale (Jeffrey DeMunn) included. Although possessing a love or hate basket of personality traits, his overall mindset was usually in the right place, and even contributed towards the group at the best of times. Unfortunately for the eagle-eyed scout, his sudden demise stopped him from progressing past season two.
Taking watch of the campsite, Dale managed to stumble upon a partially devoured cow out in some nearby fields. After hearing a sudden noise and turning to investigate, the poor watchman suffered a hit from a passing walker. A little way down the road, it was Daryl (Norman Reedus) that had to put him out of his misery after finding him torn to shreds. Shame, considering he would have been a welcome addition to the Alexandria watchtower.
Merle Dixon (Michael Rooker), Daryl’s tainted sibling with a knack for brewing trouble, was one of the most entertaining characters in The Walking Dead for a while. But while we couldn’t exactly agree with his morals or life choices, we could bring ourselves to understand the brotherly connection that tied the Dixon boys together. Once it fell apart, a hole emerged in the show’s plot.
Merle probably should have died on numerous occasions over the first few seasons of the show. However, the knife-handed combatant had a way of sniffing out danger, only to then overcome it at the last minute. But despite having sheer dumb luck, the sibling ended up succumbing to The Governors’ (David Morrissey) wrath by the end of season three. After having two fingers bitten off and a bullet in the chest, Merle officially left the show, disbanding the Dixon family tree once and for all.
Out of all the season one characters in The Walking Dead, Andrea (Laurie Holden) remains one of the greatest of all time. With a sharp eye for opportunities and a looming hunger to survive, the outspoken fighter proved to be a real asset to the core survivor group. Sadly, that all came to an end in season three when The Governor swept in to introduce himself.
After being bound and left for a walker to devour, Andrea found herself using that signature fighter spirit to break the shackles and counter the walker. However, being a second too late, she, unfortunately, took a bite to the neck. A little further on in the episode, she decided to end her struggle by suicide.
Admittedly, Hershel (Scott Wilson) wasn’t the most likable character on the roster. At least not until season three, when his story arc started to unravel and paint his portrait in a much clearer light. After that, the devoted farmer transformed into not only a local favorite but also Rick’s (Andrew Lincoln) moral compass moving forward.
Then along came The Governor. Captured and used as a bargaining chip, Hershel soon met his end when the twisted gang rival gruesomely hacked his head off out of spite. Being a guide to Rick, we can see how he would have been a valuable asset should he have survived the onslaught.
One death that seems almost impossible to get over is, of course, Abraham’s (Michael Cudlitz). It was something that nobody anticipated in the slightest, which of course made it even harder to digest when it popped out of the blue. The friendly giant, once a prominent figure in the group, reduced to nothing at the touch of Negan’s (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) infamous bat, Lucille.
There are plenty of reasons why Abraham should have progressed in The Walking Dead, his vigor being one of them. But apart from that, the red-headed ally turned out to be one of the most skilled marksmen, as well as one of the most streetwise guys on the map. Combined, his talents would have driven the team right to the end.
There is nobody on the face of the earth that feels happy about Glenn’s (Steven Yeun) outcome. Even after several years since taking place, the earliest ally still crops up at the back of our minds most days. His loss, of course, led to the separation of the survivors and ignited a whole new threat that would later change the fate of the show.
Since day one, the former pizza delivery boy offered genuine advice to Rick and his fellow survivors. His street smarts and vast knowledge of the city played a huge role in their adventures, and to be fair, he wasn’t all that bad in a fight, either. And so, it pains us to know that he never took his place beside Maggie (Lauren Cohan) at The Hilltop, a place where he rightfully deserved to be.
Alongside Andrea, Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green) stood as a one-of-a-kind mind with an arsenal of quality skills and endless pockets of knowledge. Having such qualities meant she probably should have made it much further than she did. Unfortunately, survival was not on the cards for Sasha.
However, before punching her ticket with the afterlife, the devoted weapons expert did make one final sacrifice. By taking a cyanide tablet to reanimate as a walker, the survivor made a last-ditch effort to save her people from the Saviors and, most importantly, Negan.
While we anticipated a lot of the deaths that swamped the show, we never for once expected Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) to fade out the way he did. Of course, it felt right at the time, and his final scenes were almost heartwarming. But the fact his death happened at all just didn’t quite sit right with us.
Admittedly, we thought Carl would be around forever. Like his sister, we assumed his character would pave the way into a brand-new generation and even a potential spin-off series. But it wasn’t meant to be, and the former Sherif’s son unfortunately clocked out by the end of season eight.
Just when you think you know someone, they’re gone. That’s essentially how Henry’s (Matt Lintz) story arc played out, anyway. What was set to blossom and pave the way to a whole new network of stories, eventually hit a dead-end, leaving his future to fall to the power of the Whisperers.
There was so much more to explore with Henry, but unfortunately, his time was cut short in season nine. Being one of Alpha’s (Samantha Morton) many victims, the up-and-coming soldier faded to black before getting the chance to showcase his underlying talents.