Credit: AMC Photo: Tyreese and the Girls See a Map With Terminus

The Walking Dead Season 4, Episode 15 wasn’t as dark as we expected (you “claimed” the only death, Len, congrats!) and the season was always meant to move toward something “more hopeful” by the end. So maybe things won’t be that bad in Episode 16, “A”? Is that even possible?

The penultimate ep, “Us,” rewarded Maggie Greene (Lauren Cohan) and Glenn Rhee (Steven Yeun) for never giving up on each other, and ended with the combined groups being offered food by a nice (maybe?) lady named Mary at Terminus. The Hollywood Reporter asked director/producer Greg Nicotero if we could see a season finale more about hope than bloodshed.

“We're going into it with hope,” Greg answered. “We've been hearing since Episode 4 about Terminus and those that arrive, survive. They all have that glimmer of hope. The fact that Glenn says ‘Maggie would go there; I know it,’ and vice versa, they all find those landmarks and realize that in a world without cell phones, computers and cars, they have to have faith that they will find each other. Tyreese really lost his faith after Karen died, and reuniting with Carol and the girls, it's amazing and gut-wrenching to see what all these people have been through. As far as Tyreese knows, Sasha is dead and vice versa. Maggie doesn't know Beth is gone. It's all these little microcosm of stories that will all collide.”

Yeah, the Team Prison stories colliding — that does give us hope. It would be great to see Tyreese (Chad Coleman) reunite with Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green) and especially wonderful for Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) to see that Judith is still alive. And will Maggie ever reunite with Beth Greene (Emily Kinney)? Can we hope for that, too?

Sadly, we know “brutality” is coming on the finale, which comic book writer/producer Robert Kirkman summed up in this one word: “savage.” So pair that with RK’s answer to TheWalkingDead.com’s question on Terminus — is it good news or bad? “Terminus could be what it is on face value or it could be hiding something darker,” RK said. “We do try to change things up, so it’s entirely within the realm of possibility that Terminus is all lemonade and sunshine and recliners and pajamas. So we’ll see, maybe this season has a happy ending.” But as the interviewer added, “A hearty laugh was enjoyed by both parties after that last one.”

Sigh. There are no happy endings on this show. No recliners and pajamas. But still, are you looking forward to some Team Prison reunions — Rick and his daughter, Carol and Daryl, etc.? Something good will probably happen to balance out the brutality, right?

The Walking Dead Season 4 finale airs Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on AMC.

Sources: The Hollywood Reporter, TheWalkingDead.com