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The Walking Dead went through a major transformation last season. Andrew Lincoln's Rick Grimes was written off the show, with Lauren Cohan's Maggie Rhee following shortly after. But a time jump moved the story forward in new and exciting ways, with Daryl and Michonne becoming even bigger characters during this period. Sadly, Danai Gurira will hang up her sword in Season 10, but what does that mean for Judith Grimes?
Judith Grimes was born after the zombie apocalypse, and grew from a infant to an innocent young girl from Seasons 2-8. But the time jump aged Rick's daughter, allowing the character to become more nuanced and integral to the plot. Although since her mother is departing the role, some fans have been wondering if Judith would be written out as well. Greg Nicotero was recently asked that very question, responding with:
Oh, that would be so sad. Cailey’s such a rock star. I would find that very hard to believe.
12 year-old actress Cailey Fleming took over as Judith after Season 9's time jump, and has been sparring with series favorites like Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Danai Gurira. But how exactly will Michonne's story be wrapped up, and remove her from her daughter?
Greg Nicotero's comments to TV Line might be a relief for Walking Dead fans who were concerned about Judith's standing in the show moving into Season 11. The post-apocalyptic has strong will power, and leads with her heart. While this can sometimes put others in danger (I'm looking at you, blizzard Negan), she's also been shown to be a capable survivor.
Judith's relationship with Negan was one of the character's most fascinating changes in Season 9. Jeffrey Dean Morgan's bat-wielding villain spent over six years in prison after being taken down, and has had the time to reflect on the errors of his Savior ways. Judith was the first one open to giving him a second chance, as she regularly visited him when no one else would. It should be interesting to see how this relationship continues to change, especially with Negan now living outside of his cell.
There's also a war coming in Season 10, following the years of peace among the communities. The Whisperers made a serious entrance last season, rootless outlaws who wear the skin of walkers and walk amongst the zombies. And with Alpha's daughter Lydia living among the other survivors, their conflict is also personal.
The Whisperers marked their territory with a fence, promising to start a war if that border was crossed. They committed a massacre of survivors, including Enid and Tara. The War is going to come to a head, with the communities once again forced to join forces and take down a new insidious forces. Except this time, it'll be hand to hand combat.
The Walking Dead returns for Season 10 October 13th on AMC. In the meantime, check out our fall premiere list to plan your next binge watch.