Sunday's episode of The Walking Dead featured an iconic death from its comic book source material, far ahead of schedule.
Spoilers for The Walking Dead comics and Episode 8x07 follow.
In The Walking Dead's Time for After episode, Rick Grimes marched to the Sanctuary with his new Scavenger allies in hopes of securing victory over the Saviors. What he found, however, was an emptied yard in the aftermath of Daryl's rogue attempt to end the war himself.
Just before Rick found Daryl's work, however, he found a dead sniper who had been working for him. The sniper was an unnamed soldier in Rick's army but was treated to an iconic death from The Walking Dead comics.
In issue #158, The Whisperer War story kicked off with Father Gabriel's death. The character was standing guard atop a water tower and ready to warn the army should the Whisperers approach. Upon seeing the ocean of dead approaching ahead of schedule, Gabriel rushed down the water tower's ladder and fell, getting his leg caught near the bottom. As he hung upside down defenseless, the interim Whisperer leader Beta sliced his stomach and left him to be devoured by walkers.
The sniper Rick found appeared to have suffered the same fate, which may be indicative of bad things to come in The Walking Dead's midseason 8 finale. If this character decided to flee his post upon seeing a massive threat, only to get caught, killed, and eaten, Negan and the Saviors might be marching to Alexandria and might even have a walker herd in tow.
It's also worth pointing out, for the sake of wild theories, that the dead body hanging upside down had no skin on its face, possibly indicating the Whisperers took it and are now wearing it.
With Father Gabriel's health on the decline, it's possible the death was used as an ominous set up for the events of Episode 8x08 as Seth Gilliam's character prepares to meet his end. Of course, Eugene could always come around to the idea of saving Father Gabriel by getting him to a location with better resources for Doctor Carson to administer.