Spoilers below for anyone who hasn't yet watched the latest episode of The Walking Dead.
Beyond all of its straightforward and in-our-face plotlines, The Walking Dead is dependable for stringing fans along with some overarching mysteries whose clues and answers are randomly scattered throughout the seasons. One rather large and potentially game-changing example involves the helicopter inexplicably flying above and around the TV series' known communities, and Season 8 appears destined to provide an eventual solution. Case in point: "Still Gotta Mean Something" not only showed audiences the helicopter once again in its natural skybound state -- Skybound Entertainment shoutout -- but it also possibly showed us what it's being used for.
The episode opened by showing us how Jadis managed to survive the junkyard massacre that Simon ordered, and she kind of displayed her artistic skills once more in doing so. (In a really gross and uncomfortable way, too.) Without anyone else to spend her time with, Jadis retreated to her wood-paneled, makeshift home, complete with a bed, bench and stool. Since the concept of time is so rarely focused on within The Walking Dead, our antennae went right up when Jadis started looking at her watch, which came just before a suitcase was shown. The only reason someone would need a suitcase at this point is if he or she was planning on taking a trip, right? So Jadis was totally set up to get rescued (or some loose version of that word) by whatever selectively attentive person is flying that helicopter.
At this point, I'm pretty sure the helicopter pilot won't be a character we know, but rather someone representative of a larger entity. And someone possibly related to the recently introduced Georgie, and/or the early implementation of the comic book's currently ongoing New World Order story arc. After all, there aren't a lot of familiar people out there who would have access to a helicopter, the proper amount of fuel, and the know-how to use it all. Especially when we consider that the pilot would have been communicating with Jadis and planning on making this pick-up at the exact time she was having her confrontation with Negan.
To be sure, there's no reason that helicopter should have flown away without noticing SOMETHING within the junkyard. That first flare had been burning in Negan's hand for quite a while, creating a very obvious indicator for anyone flying overhead. The flare only got snuffed out in the seconds before the helicopter was in Negan's eyeline, so anyone inside should have already been on high alert with all that smoke in the air, and that person probably would have also noticed the smoke from Jadis' second flare in the following minutes. In the scheme of things, all Jadis really had to do was just not jump on Negan, since he was already doing exactly what she would have done with the flare, just lower to the ground.
For now, we still have several questions about the helicopter and where it's been flying. Is it flying around the junkyard on a regular schedule, or was this the only chance Jadis had to be found by others? (Considering Jadis unpacked her suitcase at the end of the episode, that answer seems apparent.) What other communities is it flying around? What location does that pilot call home? And was the pilot's mind blown whenever he or she realized all of the junkyard survivors were seemingly gone, or is that just something they're used to?
The Walking Dead only has two more Season 8 episodes to potentially provide answers for its helicopter mystery, so be sure to tune into AMC on Sunday nights at 9:00 p.m. ET. Check out who we think Negan came across on the side of the road, and why Rick is basically a monster now. To see what other new and returning shows are on the way in the coming weeks, such as Fear the Walking Dead Season 4, head to our midseason premieres schedule and our summer premiere schedule.
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Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper. Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.