The season 8 finale of The Walking Dead put Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and Rick (Andrew Lincoln) on a collision course as The Hilltop and Saviors finally went to war. Carl’s (Chandler Riggs) death may have paved the way for some epic action-packed episodes this season, but his wish for peace and prosperity fueled both men as they went to battle. When the dust settled, Morgan’s (Lennie James) time with Rick, Carol (Melissa McBride), and the rest of The Hilltop had ended, leading him on a new path: a trip to the equally dismal world of AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead. While it seems a new world is on the horizon for The Walking Dead crew, the battle between mercy and wrath is only just beginning for the stick-wielding hero.
SPOILER ALERT: THIS ARTICLE REVEALS DETAILS OF EPISODE 16 OF SEASON 8 OF THE WALKING DEAD.
As with any war, the one on display in “Wrath” featured a lot of moving parts. In the end, though, most lingering loose ends were tied up rather nicely: Daryl (Norman Reedus) gave Dwight (Austin Amelio) closure and freedom, Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) tapped into a surprising semblance of bravery and attempted a futile escape from Negan and Eugene (Josh McDermitt), and Aaron (Ross Marquand) finally came through with the fiery assistance of The Oceanside crew. And since it’s The Walking Dead, Sunday’s episode once again showed just how quickly an audience’s perspective of a character can shift. Seriously, Eugene, you had us all fooled!
Fans took to Twitter to share their thoughts on the biggest moments from Sunday’s big finale episode.
Me, 2 weeks ago: Dammit, I can't STAND that traitor Eugene!
Me, last week: Eugene is the WORST! He has to go!
Eugene, all along: pic.twitter.com/mwT5azS1IQ
— BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@mmpadellan) April 16, 2018
— kzbuzinker (@kzbuzinker) April 16, 2018
— Rusty Lewis (@relewis2011) April 16, 2018
Since season 6, The Walking Dead has been steadily building to this moment. Rick and Negan, both wounded and battle worn, were finally fighting it out. If Negan’s death match with Simon (Steven Ogg) was any hint, this scene was sure to be as visceral as it was cathartic — for Rick, Maggie (Lauren Cohan), The Hilltop, and fans everywhere. Using Carl’s memory as a tool to take Negan off-guard, Rick swooped in for the kill and slashed the man’s throat. As harsh as it was, it was a move pulled straight out of Robert Kirkman’s comics.
— Haley (@MrsVisionzz) April 16, 2018
— x (@tearsdontxfall) April 16, 2018
— Julia Vaughn (@VaughnJulia) April 16, 2018
Negan has been the best and worst thing to happen to The Walking Dead. The hype behind the big bad not only drowned the series in expectations, but the scenery-chewing villain overshadowed every character. That said, it looks like the leather-clad baddie will be hanging around a while. Viewers may not have been pleased with this choice, but Rick’s move to pick mercy over wrath was something straight out of the comics, as well. And while it’s hard not to wonder just how he knew such a throat injury wouldn’t be life threatening, keeping Negan alive will surely inspire the conflict the gang will face when The Walking Dead returns next season.
*Rick slits Negan's throat*
Rick: "Save Him"
— VizualKillah (@wesmarshall5) April 16, 2018
— THERESA (@theresakost13) April 16, 2018
— lola larue (@La_Lola_Larue) April 16, 2018
— The Walking Dead (@Walkerfanboy) April 16, 2018
— Mmm’Baku (@EvaDuForMe) April 16, 2018
— Anna (@Dreaming_Always) April 16, 2018
— Mellie (@MellieePoo) April 16, 2018
— David Aris Vuong (@vuongadavidufc) April 16, 2018
— Destiny💄 (@ItsYovrDestiny) April 16, 2018
Did you watch the crossover? What did you think? Will you watch Fear the Walking Dead to find out how Morgan’s story unfolds from here? Tell us in the comments.