'The Walking Dead' Showrunner Compares Rick's Exit to Iconic Comic Death

Rick's departure from The Walking Dead will have a similar impact on Michonne as Andrea's comic book death had on Rick.

During a season 9 preview special for the AMC show's upcoming episodes, new showrunner Angela Kang shared quite a few details from the new storylines. With Andrew Lincoln set to exit the series in season 9, a new comparison to a devastating comic book death has fans nervous.

"For comic book readers, they'll know that when Rick lost Andrea, that was a huge moment for him," Kang said. "So, we will be exploring the different directions that Michonne goes and it may not be exactly what you expect."

Ahead of Lincoln's exit, fans will get plenty of time with Rick and Michonne enjoying their relationships more than a year into the future by comparison to the season 8 finale's setting.

“We’ll see that Rick and Michonne, it’s one of the strongest relationships that we have on the show," Kang said. “They’re raising Judith. They’re so in sync with each other and they support each other's goals. They’re not doing exactly the same things, Michonne has her own journey she's going through this season. This being Andy’s last season on the show, we're going to explore what that does to Michonne."

Lincoln himself has also promised there is a good bit of Richonne going around for everyone. "There's a lot of love going on," Lincoln told ComicBook.com. "Oh, yeah. Don't worry."

In fact, women like Michonne will be at the forefront of season 9.

"We're going to see some really great stories with the women on our show, particularly," Kang said in July. "And I think for people who are really invested in say Michonne, Maggie, Carol, there's such great material for them as well as, of course, Rick and Daryl, and those other characters that we love. But for people who are looking for that specifically they will really see some incredible work from our women."

Many, however, are certainly hoping it's not in the aftermath of a devastating death for Rick Grimes.

In The Walking Dead comics, Rick lost his wife Andrea after she was bitten by a walker following the Whisperer War. Rick since has struggled to deal with the loss, but ultimately he seems to be rising up as the Commonwealth community demands his tending to.

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The Walking Dead will return for its ninth season in the fall. Fear the Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on AMC, returning for the second half of its fourth season on Aug. 12.

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