Spoilers for The Walking Dead Season 7 Episode 8 follow.
Finally, Rick Grimes has his gun and group back together for the first time since The Walking Dead Season 7 premiere stripped him of both. In eight episodes, the show has all but come full circle in terms of Rick's story.
Rick's rise back to power may be a long one, but he is finally on the path to it after eight long weeks of wondering how long he succumb to Negan's oppression.
Andrew Lincoln opened up about the big moments for Rick in the midseason finale and how they'll change things for the show going forward.
Hearts Still Beating (Episode 7x08) was a representation Rick's breaking point, especially when he was forced to watch Aaron get beat up in front of him.
Yeah, that was definitely the idea of the episode is putting it from Rick’s point of view because there were several other storylines they were trying to bring together. They wanted to show a guy who just risked his friend — they risked both their lives in the most insane plan ever and come back — to see somebody tortured in front of you and be powerless again.
And then the next step is seeing two people have been murdered in cold blood, realizing that this is never going to work, this is an untenable situation. You’ve got a distrustful, dishonest, sociopath and the people working for him are… it’s just never gonna work. And that’s what they wanted, stages throughout the episode of dropping of this slow burn. And then, of course, it’s voiced out loud by Michonne in that beautiful speech that she gives.
Really, though, it was Michonne's pep talk which pushed him to rise up and fight.
Rick chooses the cell, Morgan’s cell, to try to get some space from everybody. I think that that was very intentional. [Showrunner Scott M. Gimple] and the gang wanted the voice of reason to calm him after such a chaotic day. That was a man trying to weigh all of the options. I think that she’s able to articulate to him what he already pretty much knew, which is that he would rather die standing up than spending a life in servitude, on your knees.
After weeks of both the characters on the AMC series and the fans watching at home being frustrated by the group's division and Rick's leadership being completely absent, the midseason finale marked the beginning of the end for both of those.
It sucks for that first half of the season to be a guy that led this group for so long — and they’ve been not without their trials and tribulations but there’s always been some semblance of hope in Rick — and to have that beaten out of him is heartbreaking, at least it was for me. I did not enjoy filming on set. I was not a happy camper. To have unity, just the beginnings of the flame being ignited again, was enough to get me excited for the back eight.
Of course, there was also the bro-hug between Rick and Daryl at the end of the episode which brought fans to their knees. Finally, the band is getting back together! It was a sweet moment for Lincoln on set, as well.
Dude, it was embarrassing. What you saw was nothing. You should have seen us in between action and cut. It was just never-ending! You couldn’t pry us apart! I started to cry because I was so relieved he was out of the sweatpants because he stank and he was really unpleasant. I was so relieved that I didn’t have to hug him in those awful sweats.
The Walking Dead returns for the second half of Season 7 on October 23 at 9 p.m. ET on AMC. For complete coverage and insider info all season long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter.
(Photo: Gene Page/AMC)