For those who don’t know, I’m a bit of a The Walking Dead buff, and over the last eleven seasons (which are finally coming to an end in 2022), I’ve seen so many damn characters come and go. They’ve stolen the show in some of the best episodes of the series, they’ve won me over when they started off as terrible characters and became amazing ones, and I've seen some awesome villains, too.
But when do we get the chance to talk about the characters that could have had much longer tenures?
Today, I’m going to go over some of The Walking Dead characters that I feel didn’t get enough screen time, staring off with a personal favorite of mine. And, obviously, big spoilers for all of The Walking Dead if you aren’t caught up!
Seriously. Her death in the show was one of the worst in my opinion and so heartbreaking it took me a full two weeks to properly recover. I was so, so, so sad after what happened to her.
I was rooting for Beth so much. As someone who has gone through her own series of mental health issues in the past and has reached a point where I was at my darkest, much like her, I was supporting her character growth so much in The Walking Dead. She changed from a scared teenager to a genuine survivor and I was really liking the dynamic she was forming with othr characters, especially the strange partnership between her and Daryl when they were out in the woods.
Which made her death all the more sad as she made that stupid decision to stab Dawn, and then got shot in the head. She could have been so used. I would have liked for her to at least stay through when Negan showed up, but it didn't happen. A part of me is still on Team Delusional (a tag on many fansites back then) all these years later because I can’t believe she was killed off like that.
Alright, rant over for Beth. Let’s look at another person – Axel, a prisoner in the BA times (Before Apocalypse) and one that ended up gaining the trust of Rick’s group and working with them for a time during Season 3.
Axel was a little bit of a creep at first (just because he hadn’t seen a woman in God knows how long and was hitting on Beth a bit; pretty gross), but he started to turn around when Carol gave him a talking to and those two started to get closer. We could see his genuine personality come out before he was unfortunately shot in the head – right in front of Carol in Season 3.
Straight-up, where the hell did Georgie even go?
She showed up in Season 8 of The Walking Dead, asking for records in exchange for plans on community building, and then vanished entirely – aside from the few mentions of her from Maggie or the others.
Her weird appearance on the show is one of my biggest questions going into the series finale, and if we’re ever going to get any sort of clarity as to where she might have gone. But, I have a feeling that Georgie is going to be MIA for the last eight episodes. I feel like her story was so pointless.
Ugh, this one still hurts. Denise was such a cool character within the comics of The Walking Dead and when they introduced her to the show, I was eager to see where they would take her. And, while she wasn’t nearly as badass as she was in the comics, I really liked Denise in the show, too. She was genuinely sweet, had a good head on her shoulders and tried to look on the bright side despite everything going to crap around her, especially when she had to take up the role of doctor in Alexandria after the only other one was killed.
Unfortunately, she ended up getting an arrow in the eye from Dwight in Season 6, and while it was a cool visual effect, it still peeves me that she was killed so easily when she could have been expanded on more, especially since we barely got to see her.
Don’t even freaking get me started on Noah.
Let me preface this by saying I loved Tyler James Williams' performance, but man oh man was I upset that he died so quickly. Noah was a pretty cool guy. I could see why he and Beth were friends in The Walking Dead. Beth sacrificed her life so he could go free with her group in Season 5.
And then he literally died. In the same season.
I have no issue with people dying in the show, obviously. But what I do have an issue with is when a new character is introduced and has potential, but is killed off so quickly – especially when said character was supposed to replace a previous character who died. It ticks me off to no end wondering what could have been with Noah.
Played by Noah Emmerich, the finale of the first season of The Walking Dead featured Dr. Jenner in his darkest moments as he prepares to commit suicide as the CDC explodes. The group just barely escapes after Jenner is convinced by Rick to open the doors.
While I didn’t expect someone like Dr. Jenner to survive for super long, he would have been an interesting person to follow in this world of zombies as a scientist. It would have been even more interesting to see him meet another supposed scientist down the line (Eugene), and call his bluff on that cure nonsense.
“Here’s Not Here” in Season 6 of The Walking Dead is truly one of the best episodes of the series, and John Carroll Lynch, who played Eastman in the episode, was someone I genuinely wanted to see more of.
I had a feeling that he was going to die quickly, just because he wasn’t with Morgan and the group when Morgan was brought back to Alexandria, but his backstory was intriguing and his performance was fantastic. It also would have been super interesting to see his way of life and method for dealing with enemies, and see how that would clash against Rick's ideas.
Another case of “where the heck did they go?” in The Walking Dead.
Cyndie is a resident of Oceanside, one of the many communities that Alexandria trades with, and while she had a bigger role in Seasons 7, 8, and 9, she just sort of dropped off the map after the Season 10 finale. Even now, with the final season almost done, I still don’t know if she’s okay or not.
And, it’s not even that we might see her in Season 11, because it was revealed in “The Lucky Ones” that she’s not even in Oceanside anymore. She was a pretty badass character and it’s a shame we didn’t get to see more of her.
I have to give some praise to Merle, played by Michael Rooker.
This dude was the living, breathing definition of “ignorant redneck,” for so long, but by the end of Season 3 of The Walking Dead, we started to see the slightest change in him when he goes against the Governor and tries to help the prison group, only to be killed by said Governor. Truth be told, as big of a character as Merle was, he was only a main character in Season 3.
While his death did lead to good character development for Daryl, and we get to see plenty of awesome badass moments with the archer down the line, having Merle in the show for a couple more seasons would have been very interesting. How much would Daryl change? How much would Merle change, too? Would they end up running away? And how many badass Dixon brothers moments would we have gotten? It would have been something else, that’s for sure.
With The Walking Dead coming to an end as part of the 2022 TV premiere schedule on October 2. I am admittedly sad that it’s going to come to a close and I’ll probably never get to see these characters again. But, I can at least return to the show and rewatch it.
Big nerd and lover of Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire. Will forever hate season eight. Superhero and horror geek. And please don't debate me on The Last of Us 2, it was amazing!
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