Bernthal, who exited the AMC show in its second season more than six years ago, was spotted hanging with some of the show's current stars near its Senoia, Georgia set. Of course, this does not mean the actor is bringing Shane Walsh back to the show in its ninth season nor does it indicate any sort of flashback will feature the actor. The close knit group stay in touch, regularly seeing one another at conventions around the country, and Bernthal could have stopped in Senoia for any number of reasons.
In the photo below, posted by a fan to Instagram, Bernthal is in the background as a family poses with Daryl Dixon actor Norman Reedus and Rick Grimes actor Andrew Lincoln in Reedus' Nic & Norman's restaurant (which he co-owns with The Walking Dead executive producer Greg Nicotero).
"I mean, there's a reason why Andrew Lincoln and Sarah Wayne Callies and Steven Yuen and Melissa McBride and Norman Reedus, that we all consider each other best friends and family," Bernthal told Den of Geek. "When we started [The Walking Dead], it started in an unbelievably humble place, you know, we had no idea what that show was going to become."
Bernthal has been busy with his role as The Punisher on Netflix, where he debuted in Daredevil's second season. He has expressed a grateful attitude for having left the AMC show when he did and being allowed to explore other opportunities with his career.
"Doing the show and being killed off the show are two of the best things that have happened in my career," Bernthal pointed out.
Still, the highly unlikely idea of a reunion scene with Rick and Shane for what is likely to be Lincoln's last season with The Walking Dead is one which makes fans giddy. More likely is a scenario where cast and crew members are getting together to celebrate Lincoln's time on the show.
Just look at Lincoln and Bernthal posing with a fan in the photo below, though. It's reminiscent of their pre-apocalyptic scene in the cop car discussing Rick's marital issues over some french fries.2comments
"All we knew [about The Walking Dead] was there was a script we really believed in, there was a showrunner [Frank Darabont] we really believed in, and we got to know and love each other intimately and believed in each other and we had no idea whether it would be a success, or a failure and we really didn't care, we just believed in it," Bernthal said back in January.
The Walking Dead will return for its ninth season in the fall. Fear the Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 pm ET on AMC, returning for the second half of its fourth season on August 12. For complete coverage and insider info all year long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter.