If Team Prison leaves the prison in The Walking Dead Season 4, we’re going to have to give them a new name. They were the Atlanta group, then the farm group, then the farm people joined Rick Grimes’ (Andrew Lincoln) Ricktatorship. Now we’re settled at the prison, which has a bunch of Woodbury people and other strays from Decatur and who knows where else.
But the prison is now infected with a fast-spreading illness, plus the mystery of whoever burned those bodies in Episode 2. It’s bad enough to deal with the threat of walkers (and The Governor?) outside the prison, but to have two major threats locked in with you? As Hershel (Scott Wilson) says in the Comic-Con trailer, “We might be safer outside those walls.”
The Hollywood Reporter asked new showrunner Scott Gimple how much longer our group can stay at the prison, especially with the fences looking so vulnerable. “We've shown from the beginning that they have to do this regular maintenance on those fences — meaning taking out walkers at fences,” Scott said. “They're a little busy right now, and they're not at full strength but they need to be. They have a big problem coming up. We've talked about different locations this season, so who knows what can happen. Who knows, maybe they'll pull it off and maybe that requires another location. Maybe other locations come from them not pulling it off. It comes to a head sooner than later.”
But what other locations? As Hershel (always the voice of reason) notes at another point, “We need a place to go.” Woodbury is apparently no longer in one piece. Rick’s old hometown may be an option, since the wonderful — if mentally delicate — Morgan Jones (Lennie James) did “Clear” the place last season. Last July, Scott did say we’d see Morgan again this season. Maybe Morgan eventually joins the group, as he does in the comics?
We could also make a brief return to Hershel’s farm. It appears to have burned down in the Season 2 finale but, in the comics, that’s where our former prison group meets Sgt. Abraham Ford, Dr. Eugene Porter, and Rosita Espinosa. All three of those characters will be joining Season 4 later on, which leads us to believe we’ll be hitting the road — maybe after Episode 8, which is the December 1 mid-season finale. When the show picks back up in February 2014, we may be on the move. (Or maybe not. We’re just guessing.)
In the comics, Abraham, Rosita, and Eugene are on their way to Washington, D.C. and Rick’s prison/farm survivors join that group. They end up near D.C., at the Alexandria Safe-Zone.
In a preview for this Sunday’s Episode 3, “Isolation,” we see Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) , Michonne (Danai Gurira), Tyreese (Chad Coleman) and Bob Stookey (Larry Gilliard Jr.) in the car on a supply run, listening to a message on the radio mention “survive” and “alive.” In the Comic-Con preview, a woman’s voice says “Sanctuary … Those who arrive, survive.”
What is the “sanctuary”? We were figuring that sanctuary was the Alexandria Safe-Zone, but Alexandria, Virginia is pretty far away from our rural Georgia group, so would the radio signal go that far? Here are a few other “sanctuary” guesses. Maybe we’ll find out by the end of the season, or they could be saving some of the Safe-Zone stuff for Season 5.
Do you think Rick’s group will leave the prison this season? If so, when do you think they’ll hit the road and where do you think they’ll end up? Share your thoughts and theories below!
The Walking Dead airs Sunday nights at 9 p.m. ET on AMC.