September's The Walking Dead #195 will mark "the end of the line... for someone," teases the issue's synopsis shared by artist Charlie Adlard on Twitter.
Your first look at the cover for #TWD 195
STORY: ROBERT KIRKMAN— Charlie Adlard (@CharlieAdlard) June 20, 2019
ART: CHARLIE ADLARD & CLIFF RATHBURN
COVER: CHARLIE ADLARD & DAVE STEWART
SEPTEMBER 4 | 32 PAGES | BLACK & WHITE | MATURE | $3.99
“The Swordsman Strikes”
It's the end of the line... FOR SOMEONE. pic.twitter.com/ClnZxxYcBg
The book, penned by creator Robert Kirkman, killed off longtime series lead Rick Grimes in its most recent issue.
"I've known for a long time that Rick wasn't going to last until the end. That was one of the things Robert said to me years ago he was planning but I was never 100 percent sure that he was going to do it," Adlard recently told Express.
"The book thrives off no one is safe, we've always said that to everybody. I've always been a firm believer that this book could easily survive without Rick. The book isn't called Rick, it's not Spider-Man, it's not Superman."
Rick was gunned down by an assassin after rallying the oppressed citizens of the Commonwealth, which operated on a class system that highly favored Governor Pamela Milton and her son — Rick's killer — Sebastian Milton.
"You realize you're drawing a significant moment and this moment should be honored," Adlard said of penciling Rick's murder in June's issue 192.
"I have to draw it 'better' because it's a significant moment but as soon as you have those thoughts in your head you're automatically not going to. In the end it's just marks on paper."
"I think The Walking Dead universe is very strong and it has enough characters within it take up not just his mantle but take up the story and where we've left off after that," Adlard said. "Believe it or not we've got a few surprises up our sleeves yet to raise some more eyebrows in the fandom."
The Walking Dead #193 releases July 3.