As part of its "11 Weeks of The Walking Dead" promotional campaign ahead of Season 11's extended wrap-up, AMC dropped a new mood-driven teaser on fans that offers a lot of hero shots of the ensemble cast members as their respective heroic characters. Plus Eugene. (Burn.) Considering it doesn't appear to feature any actual episodic footage, one might think it's merely a hype-building filler promo, but one particular visual within the video seemingly confirms that the TV show will offer a twisted take on a huge Michonne twist from Robert Kirkman's Walking Dead comic book series.
While re-celebrating the full-blown return of Lauren Cohan's Maggie, and anticipating the awkwardness to come with Jeffrey Dean Morgan's Negan, fans no doubt see lots of background details that will presumably become important once context enters into it. But comic fans already have all the context needed to get extremely excited by the brick wall covered with pictures and messages. (Comic spoilers ahead.)
In the source material, that quasi-collage of photos is located within The Commonwealth, the heavily populated community that some of The Walking Dead's live-action characters were heading to in the back half of Season 10. There's admittedly a tragic explanation behind it, as the photos are all of Commonwealth residents' lost friends and family members. Less tragically, this is where Comic Michonne discovered a photo of herself, leading to the shocking realization that the daughter she believed was dead, Elodie, was actually still alive and thriving.
Considering Danai Gurira bowed out of The Walking Dead in Season 9, the TV show could have easily sidestepped using this plot device without having Michonne around. Plus, the show's writers did provide a semi-nod to that storyline by having Michonne reunite with her old friend Jocelyn, as portrayed by Rutina Wesley. But it definitely looks like showrunner Angela Kang has ideas in mind about how to remix the reunion angle for one of the remaining survivors who makes the trip to the Commonwealth.
Since Eugene has his arc with Stephanie on the way, he likely won't be reconnecting with a lost brother or anything. Princess is still too new to the TV show for a big reunion to mean as much to viewers. And I'm not even sure if Ezekiel's tumor situation is still a thing we should be worried about. So that possibly leaves Yumiko, although she hasn't exactly been around for all that long herself. I'd have to think the TV show would flip that arc to one of the mainstay characters like Daryl or Carol, or maybe even Father Gabriel.
Granted, The Walking Dead could technically still introduce a live-action version of Elodie through one of the main protagonists recognizing Michonne's picture amidst the group. After all, that could easily provide a way to keep Danai Gurira's beloved character connected to the story as the franchise creeps toward Andrew Lincoln's standalone Rick Grimes-centric features. It's not known if she'll appear in those, but considering the character's exit was written specifically so she could seek him out, it seems inevitable, despite her increasingly stacked slate of upcoming projects, including a potential MCU show on Disney+. So the TV show could definitely set up Elodie's introduction here, only to have her also take part in the films to reunite with her mom, presumably with Judith and RJ along for the trip.
Even though there's only one season left to go, The Walking Dead still has a lot of comic story left to tell in its double-stuffed final stretch, and I can't wait to see how all the storylines shake out. Get set for the drama's return to AMC when Season 11 joins the 2021 Summer TV season on Sunday, August 22.