We love him, he’s perfect, now Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) has to change on The Walking Dead Season 4 finale.

It’s been a roller-coaster season for Papa Grimes. He launched Season 4 as an iPod-listening farmer who wanted nothing to do with weapons or leadership; he forced Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) to get up early to tend to the livestock and retain discipline, as a reaction to Carl getting a little too violent in the Season 3 finale. Then Rick sacrificed his farm animals to keep walkers away from the prison fences. (Dang Lizzie!)

He still didn’t want to be a leader, but Tyreese (Chad Coleman) tasked Rick — a former cop — with the job of discovering who killed Karen and David. When he discovered the truth, he was judge and jury combined, banishing Carol Peletier (Melissa McBride). Then The Governor (David Morrissey) forced Rick to retain the leader role, and he echoed Hershel Greene’s (Scott Wilson) plea for peace — telling The Gov. we can come back from who we were, we can change. He got his butt beat down, but survived into the second half, where he was only seen on occasion. But during one occasion he took a man’s life in an attempt to escape the “Claimed” house and protect Carl and Michonne (Danai Gurira) from the Marauders.

Rick was gone for three full episodes from Episode 12-14 and we only spent brief time with him last week on Episode 15. Now it’s Episode 16, the finale, and Rick is taking center stage. He’s not Farmer Rick anymore, and we’re about to see a guy Farmer Rick would probably fear.

Andrew Lincoln recently talked to The Walker Stalkers about Rick’s journey, saying Season 4 has been a season of two halves. In the first half, Rick was a man trying to suppress his brutality for the sake of his son. "The question is 'Can we ever be the people we once were before the apocalypse?' And you will see that question is very much answered in the upcoming episode this Sunday."

Andy said he loved Episode 9, “After,” because of the final line ("It's for you") and because Rick got to smile, which rarely happens. However, he added, “I would say that the episode that I enjoyed most is the episode you're just about to watch, because there are moments — certainly when you've been playing a character for four years — that are kind of turning points and it's really exciting when something happens to your character that irrevocably changes you, and you're about to see something that happens that does this to him in the episode coming up."

But hopefully there's still a lot of grace in those moments, he said. His favorite episode so far was Episode 14, “The Grove,” even though it was "harrowing" and "brutal,” and he’s the one who warned everyone it would be the most controversial episode they’d ever done. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t great.

What will change Rick in the season finale? We’re thinking it’s tied to a sequence closely adapted from the comic books. It’s also tied to the shocking new weapon Rick will use on the finale. If you want more spoilers on that, check them out over here. If not, just sit back and watch the new incarnation of Rick Grimes emerge. As long as he lives into Season 5 and beyond, we’re sure we’ll love Post-Finale Rick as much as The Ricktator, Farmer Rick and all other versions of Papa Grimes!

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

Source: The Walker Stalkers