Wow. After The Walking Dead’s Season 2 failed to keep viewers’ heart rates up through much of the first half, the new showrunner, Glen Mazzara, has changed all that by killing off two main characters in the last two episodes. But on last night’s episode (Season 2, Episode 12: “Better Angels”), it was one of our original heroes that died in an emotional bloodbath.

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As most fans of the comic books knew, Shane (Jon Bernthal) is one of the first main characters to die. Former best friends and partners in fighting crime, Shane and Rick (Andrew Lincoln) had become frenemies. But were we the only ones who were shocked to see Rick finally grow a pair and kill someone?

Last week, we saw Rick unable to shoot their hostage Randall, unable to pity-kill Dale, and unable to realize that Shane was now plotting against him. Last night’s image of these two facing off in an eerily moonlit field was both gorgeous and painful. We knew someone would die, and it would be someone we’ve spent two seasons invested in.

Were you more surprised by Rick’s murder of Shane, or by what happened to him afterwards? Why do you think the rules have suddenly changed post-mortem? Are you sad to see Shane go, or are you happy the love triangle is finally severed?

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