In Season 9 of The Walking Dead, fans said a ‘temporary’ goodbye to their leading man, Rick Grimes, portrayed by Andrew Lincoln. With Lincoln’s departure, Rick’s story from the comics is now in flux and the focus for Rick moves into the films. Stepping up, Daryl should be the character that takes over Rick’s story line.
Content guru, Scott Gimple, made it clear that we aren’t done with Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes and that we will be seeing a Rick Grimes trilogy on the big screen. Gimple has also not been afraid to mix and match different character’s stories from Robert Kirkman’s comic book. Most notably, Carol (Melissa McBride) has long outlived her character in the comics and we’ve seen other characters swap significant deaths, such as the lineup of characters featured on Alpha’s pikes.
Season 10 has already seen some signals that The Walking Dead is headed towards the finish line that was created in the comics.
Euguene’s (Josh McDermitt) communications with another community, most likely the Commonwealth, set in motion the course for the show to move towards the same story that is in the comics. However, Rick’s leadership is an important role in this part of the comics. More importantly, Rick’s ultimate demise is what finally creates real order to the world and ends with grown up, married Carl and Sophia.
The most likely candidate to take over this story is Daryl, portrayed by Norman Reedus. Season 9 and 10 has seen Daryl stepping into more a of a leadership position. Along with leadership, Daryl’s story and dialogue have taken more center stage since Lincoln’s departure and Reedus has shined in this new position on the show. Daryl has always been a fan favorite but the writing for Daryl had been mixed until showrunner Angela Kang took over last season. Kang seems to know exactly how to write for Daryl to help the character to continue to grow and develop.
Knowing that Rick Grimes is alive in the world of The Walking Dead has caused a lot of fuss from fans since he hasn’t come for his family. Fan love Rick Grimes because of what he was willing to do to protect his family but can’t comprehend why seven years later he has not come back for his family. Could they still write Rick’s ending into the films? It is possible.
Yet it is more likely that the television show stays close to the source material and that the films move in a new direction that gets fans excited. As with all great storytelling universes, its best to keep flexibility for its greatest character(s). Keeping Rick alive for years or decades to come will help the world of The Walking Dead go on for a very long time.
This wouldn’t be the first time that Daryl takes on other character’s story lines from the comics. As we are sure you know, Daryl is not in the comics and was written for the television show. Daryl’s character has taken some important comic book arcs from that of Tyreese and Abraham, as at times, for both characters, they were Rick’s wing men.
These past two seasons Reedus has proven he is more than capable of carrying the show as its leading man and Kang has been able to support him with great content and writing. One day, it may be a statue of Daryl sitting in a town square, immortalized as the person who brought the world together.
How would that make the comic book purists feel?
Let us know your thoughts on the future of Daryl and The Walking Dead in the comments below.