*Major spoilers ahead from The Walking Dead comic books*
Change of plans! Gotta give credit to The Walking Dead comic book writer Robert Kirkman — he keeps messing with our expectations and surprising us. That's probably a good thing.
We're up to Issue 126 in the comics (released April 23), which ends the "All Out War" volume between Rick Grimes and Negan's The Saviors. Two issues ago, we were worried it might be the end for Rick. In 125, Rick sliced Negan's throat, so we figured the possibility of vengeance was nigh.
But here's a bit of a surprise, although maybe we should've expected it: Rick's knife was not infected, and he didn't try to kill Negan. He got a doctor to heal him.
No one killed Negan — Negan is alive and in jail, and Rick says they are going to thrive without him to prove Negan wrong. It's almost Old School Rick — before unleashing his own brutality — but part of the conflict was to show the difference between Negan's way and Rick's way. Rick is back to the sheriff in town, and if you war with his crew, you get locked up. But no one is too far gone, and the others can work together if they try, etc. Sometimes if you want to end a war, you need to make peace talks and an alliance. But we’ve seen mercy backfire before. Will Rick regret his choice?
There were no major deaths, which in some ways is similar to the end of TWD Season 4. But The Walking Dead — comics and TV — is about humanity trying to survive, and sometimes the best way to show that is with actual survival instead of killing off more characters. Rick is still trying to set a good example for Carl by showing him that killing is not the only answer.
What do you think of the idea of Negan surviving, even after what he did to Glenn in Issue 100? Is this a satisfying, or at least believable, conclusion to "All Out War"? Fans seem mixed on the results so far, with some readers feeling disappointed by the anticlimactic end, since it looked like Negan was going to get his karma. Maybe being locked up for life (if that's what happens...) is a fate worse than death?
Tell us what you think below!