But the writers have had a long time to think about these deaths — and what they mean for the future of the show. TV Guide spoke to executive producers Robert Kirkman and Glen Mazzara about what's coming up after this game changing episode.
Is Lori Still Alive? The show didn't actually show Carl shooting Lori. And after you've watched TV for long enough, you learn to distrust any death that isn't on-screen. However, in this case the Walking Dead big-wigs are not planning a surprise twist.
"A lesser show would have a zombie Lori lurking in the prison and doing all kinds of nefarious things. That would be an absolutely hokey, ridiculous thing to do," Robert Kirkman explained. He added that having the shooting take place off screen was just about making the scene "tasteful." She's definitely dead.
What happens to the group? The producers explained that losing Lori and T-Dog will definitely impact our favorite group of survivors going forward, especially when it comes to their dealings with the Governor (David Morrissey).
"Had the Governor attacked in Episode 1 or 2, it would've been a very different outcome," Kirkman explained. "Rick was in a very different headspace. He was much more together."
What, you mean having your wife die brutally messes you up? You don't say!
Glen Mazzara added that the "well-oiled fighting machine" that the group had become has been "shattered" by what happened this week, explaining that while "the band of soldiers that we meet in the season premiere could possibly match the Governor," after this week's losses "it's a very, very different game." Uh-oh. Sounds like the group is in serious trouble.
Will there be more death this season? Is two major characters kicking the bucket enough for the year? Not necessarily. "You should always expect death on The Walking Dead," Mazzara warned. "That's what we do."
For much more about the choice to kill these characters and what it means for the show, read the full interview atTV Guide.