Perhaps no character on The Walking Dead has gone through as much change over the years as Carol, who started out as a battered wife and has evolved into a zombie apocalypse badass who takes no crap from anybody. Her transformation really got into gear back in Season 2 with the disappearance, death, and zombification of her daughter Sophia. The latest episode featured a major callback to Sophia when Carol yelled at a kid for wandering in the woods in words that very much recalled what happened to her daughter. Actress Madison Lintz, who played Sophia in the first two seasons of The Walking Dead, had this to say about the big callback:
I was just really touched that they're still tying back to my character who was all the way back in Season 2. I thought it was really, really cool that Macsen, my brother, got to be in that scene and be a part of it. I think it's so weird, and I love hearing about everything he's doing on set. I'm super proud of him.
It was no coincidence that the young boy playing Henry in the latest episode looked an awful lot like a boy version of Sophia. Madison Lintz's brother Macsen was cast in the role, and the resemblance really sells why Sophia would be on Carol's mind when she meets up with the young boy in the forest. Carol has very deliberately tried not to dwell on Sophia over the years, which really makes her outburst at Henry in the forest all the more poignant. She hasn't forgotten her daughter, even if Sophia's death feels like a lifetime ago in zombie apocalypse years.
We can only hope that Henry doesn't come to a similar end as what happened to Sophia. Carol can still be traumatized by events, despite how hardened she has become, and watching the child who can pass for Sophia's male doppelganger die a horrible death is more than she deserves. Of course, Henry doesn't deserve to die either. His survival instincts aren't all that sharp, given how he was wandering around the forest all by his lonesome until Carol found him.
Madison Lintz went on in her chat with Huffington Post to explain what it was like for her brother when he landed the role on The Walking Dead:
He had a little fanboy moment when he booked the series, and I was like, 'Whoa,' because first of all, he booked the series at the same age when I booked the series, so I felt like it was [an] out-of-body experience ... so that's weird, and he's having the same experience I have. He's shooting in the summer, he's having the time of his life, [and] he's working with Melissa McBride.
It's too soon to say if Henry's dynamic with Carol brings out more of the loving mother she was while Sophia was alive, but it does sound like Henry has more of a role on the show than simply tagging after Carol for half an episode before becoming zombie chow. We'll have to wait and see.
You can catch new episodes of The Walking Dead on Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on AMC. There's plenty of action still to come, as trouble is brewing at Hilltop, Rick is in a rough spot, and Negan undoubtedly has big plans for revenge. Check out our 2018 midseason guide for when your favorite shows will be back in the new year, and don't forget to take a peek at our rundown of 2017 TV cancellations.