Sunday's episode of The Walking Dead saw the letter "A" make a return when Jadis marked a shipping container holding Rick Grimes with the recurring letter, leaving fans wondering what the letter means.
The letter A has been a theme throughout The Walking Dead, often showing signs of distress. In Season 4's finale, the survivors were locked in a train car outside of Terminus marked with the letter A. Later, Jesse Anderson's son Sam would stamp the letter on people's hands, during a time where Jesse was being abused by her husband Pete. The same stamp would appear on a railing next to Carol after the Wolves devastated much of Alexandria with a surprise attack. Then, when Daryl was taken prisoner by Negan, he was forced to wear a jumpsuit with the letter painted across it.
Now, Jadis and the Scavengers decided to mark the same letter on the shipping container where they locked Rick Grimes at the end of Episode 8x06 (The King, The Widow, and Rick). Though Jadis actress Pollyanna McIntosh promises things will be getting worse for Rick before they get better, the A is unlikely to play a significant part in upcoming moments.
Before Season 8 of The Walking Dead launched with the show's 100th overall episode, showrunner Scott Gimple and executive producer Greg Nicotero promised references to previous seasons as a tribute to the journey so far.
"Some visuals that are carbon copies of earlier visuals, and it very much just has to do about the cumulative nature of the story," Gimple said. "I'll just say weighing upon each character, or in some ways you see how it's made them who they are. Or in other ways, how they might be fighting that history. But the history of the show in general, yeah, very much in the first episode, and even the whole season."
Some are dedicated to the fans who have been with the series all along, which is like what the A in the trash heap is for. "There's going to be some moments that people who have watched the show from the beginning will see and be like, 'Oh, okay. I see what they're doing here,'" Nicotero said. "By paying tribute to specific moments over the last seven years. But, you know, we're always cautious about that because you don't want to take people out of it. There are probably two or three sequences in the first episode that I was particularly excited about doing, that people will instantly recognize it. That's an instance when it's okay that they recognize exactly where it's from because we want them to remember that particular moment."