Credit: Gene Page/AMC Photo: Carl Grimes Has a Cut on His Face in The Walking Dead Season 4, Episode 16: "A"

It’s hard to imagine Carl Grimes’ (Chandler Riggs) near rape scene coupled with Joe’s (Jeff Kober) grizzly death being any more graphic than what we watched in The Walking Dead Season 4 finale, but apparently what we witnessed in Episode 16 (“A”) was a toned down version of what was originally planned.

Last week, The Hollywood Reporter chatted with Andrew Lincoln (Rick Grimes) and asked him how seeing Rick savagely kill a man like that will impact Carl, who is already under the impression that he is a “monster.”

“That scene was supposed to be more graphic, and we played it more graphic than that, which was a justification for the throat rip and everything, because it's something any father seeing his son about to be raped would probably do,” Andy dished, seemingly revealing that in earlier versions of the attempted rape scene we saw even more than we did in the episode’s final cut. The attempted rape plot point was taken right from Robert Kirkman’s comics, and in that medium Carl’s attackers managed to get his pants off but nothing more.

As for how Joe’s brutal death and the events leading up to it will affect Carl, Andy explains, “It's interesting territory to explore: Can the man and the monster live in the same body? How does that work? Is it possible? Can that schizophrenic idea exist? It's very disturbing; the gloves came off in a couple of these episodes in the back eight. The child witnessing that and saying it didn't affect me. Carl has that scene with Michonne where she thinks he was frightened by his father. Carl says it's the opposite; that he wasn't disturbed or frightened by it; he wanted to watch. That's a deeply disturbing area that we're possibly heading toward next season.”

There’s no doubt in our mind that poor Carl has been profoundly affected by this new world he’s inhabiting, but he actually seems to be in a better place now than he’s been in the past. In Season 3 he killed an unarmed kid, but in the Season 4 finale he immediately ran to a man screaming for help. That’s clearly progress.

There’s no telling how nearly being raped will affect Carl moving forward, but we’re glad he has his dad and Michonne (Danai Gurira) there to help him through everything.

Are you surprised that Carl’s attempted rape scene was initially more graphic than what we saw in the Season 4 finale? Vote below!

The Walking Dead Season 5 premieres in October 2014 on AMC.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter