‘Walking Dead’ Season 4 Finale Details Provide Terminus Hints

Published 4 months ago by

[Warning: Spoilers for The Walking Dead Season 4 and the comic book!]

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The second half of The Walking Dead‘s fourth season has been about the journey, with shocking and upsetting twists and turns. But while the road to Terminus has been long, we finally got a peek at the mythical sounding destination last week and we’re sure to get a fuller idea of what this latest sanctuary looks like in this week’s season finale. 

Still, even though it’s mere days away, the not knowing is gnawing at us: what is Terminus? Wouldn’t it have to be something wicked and vile to live in the world of this show? Make no mistake, while the show isn’t absent those spare moments of happiness and ease (eat that whole pudding bucket, little man!), the overriding theme of the show seems to be that while humans will constantly reach for the familiar feel of civilization, it is often a mirage, fleeting, or far worse. So is Terminus a mirage, fleeting, or far worse?

If you use the comics as a broad guide, it’s easy to wonder if Terminus may be a cannibal base camp and the home of The Hunters that appeared in the comic book just after the death of Billy; an event that was mirrored in the 14th episode of this season, “The Grove”.

the walking dead the hunters Walking Dead Season 4 Finale Details Provide Terminus Hints

In the comics, Rick and company encounter The Hunters while on the way to Washington, but there is no promise of shangri-la and they don’t leave plywood breadcrumbs along the course of a railroad track to lure people in. Aside from the informed suspicion that the comics have instilled in us, and a general eerie feeling, there have been few hints as to whether or not we’re about to meet the cannibals. That is, until comic creator and show producer Robert Kirkman spoke to EW about Rick Grimes and the season 4 finale.

“This is Rick Grimes being pushed to his absolute limit. And if you think you’ve seen that before, you haven’t. And the Rick Grimes that comes out of this is really going to shock people.”

The nature of the second half of this season has robbed us of the chance to keep much of an eye on Rick following the escape from the prison; in the mid-season premiere he was comatose and in the season’s 11th  episode, “Claimed”, he had to fend off the group of nap craving home invaders that Daryl is now slumber partying with by strangling one of them.

Aside from those two episodes, though, we’ve only seen brief snippets of Rick while showrunner Scott Gimple has adroitly centered his lens on the show’s many other characters, which means that we really don’t know what Rick might do (besides choke out a dude) if pushed. What would push him, though? Despite (and maybe because of) the events of “The Grove”, it seems really unlikely that either Carl or Judith will be put into peril, so what else could “push” Rick to his “absolute limit”? Maybe the potential loss of an innocent?

the walking dead beth poster Walking Dead Season 4 Finale Details Provide Terminus Hints

Beth Greene seemed like a red shirt way back in season 2 when she tried to kill herself back on the farm; but she survived, made it to the prison, and grew as a character. She wasn’t Hershel’s toughest daughter – that’s Maggie – but Beth has her own kind of strength and she was vital to Rick and Carl as one of Judith’s primary caregivers in the absence of Lori. That strength was on full display when she and Daryl bonded and worked through their demons in “Still” before Beth was abducted.

Might the sight of seeing Beth in peril, possibly at the hands of cannibals, push Rick beyond the limit so soon after Hershel’s death and the loss of the prison? It seems like it could, and if the show follows the comic blueprint, it’s easy to see why Kirkman would say that the events of the finale will “shock people”, considering the level of brutality unleashed by Rick and the others on The Hunters in the comic after they attacked the group and ate Dale’s leg. The thing is, this show has always been about more than a shock factor, so the question is, what would the takeaway for this season be if that is how Gimple, Kirkman, and company choose the end things?

Here’s producer Greg Nicotero on the message of this season.

“This entire season was based on the premise of, “Can you do what it takes to stay alive?” Crossing that line between the brutality and the humanizing aspect of life, and can you be compassionate and still survive in this world or are you always going to be a bad guy? In different worlds and different perceptions, who is a good guy and who is a bad guy?”

the walking dead rick s4 finale Walking Dead Season 4 Finale Details Provide Terminus Hints

For 4 seasons, we’ve seen Rick battle to survive and to stave off the turn before the turn that makes people do heinous things to keep breathing. We’ve seen this good man be compassionate, we’ve seen him murder, we’ve seen him wrestle with both those acts and the losses that stubbornly persist – but though we’ve come close, we haven’t yet seen Rick Grimes turn into an animal, and maybe that conversion is the powerful parting image for this season that contrasts the hope that we saw at the end of last season. All of the posters are asking, “Who will survive?”, but maybe the real shock will come from what state they’ll be in if they do.

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The Walking Dead‘s fourth season comes to a close on AMC this Sunday @9PM ET

Source: EW, THR

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25 Comments

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  1. “Who will survive and what will be left of them?” This finale has a real Texas Chainsaw Massacre vibe to it, Terminus is going to be bad news kids.

    • Yep. Terminus is made up of the hunters, no question. The real question is what is Rick going to go through? That last shot of him in the promo with the blood on his hands shows that he’s just taken care of someone. Will that be Joe’s group, or someone from Terminus?

      • terminus isnt full of hunter , matter of fact terminus has nothing to do with the hunter , you see in the comic serise the “hunters” are a group of six or maby even seven people but terminus might have some link to thee hunters theirs no telling yet but im sure we will find out more in season 5 or maby 6 and as far as negan gose he probley wont be introduced til season 7/8 , rick and his group still have to get to andrea but what ever one should be think is 1)how are the group getting out of terminus and 2)whens carol and her sorta group getting their but whats bugging me is when rick and his group start to leave terminus will carol and her group arrive and be killed and as fars as deaths come theirs going to be a whole lot of that and no rick , daryl , carl are safe !

  2. **SPOILER WARNING FROM THE COMICS**

    Do you think Rick will lose his hand in the finale? Even though in the comics, The Governor cut off his hand? I know Kirkman said cutting off Rick’s hand was his biggest regret because while writing the story for the comics, sometimes he would forget that Rick lost his hand and would have to rewrite certain things. But if they cut it off in the season finale, there’s no way any of the writers will forget that while writing episodes in the future seasons. Just a thought. Here’s hoping for a better season finale than the Season 3 finale.

    • My theory is that Joe’s group will attack Rick’s in a similar way those three guys did in the comics (the ones that tried to rape carl). I think Rick is going to kill these guys in a similar, brutal way he did in the comics.

    • No, I thought I read somewhere where Kirkman always regretted having Rick lose his hand in the comics…so I would be shocked if that ever happened on the show.

      • It’s even worse than that, Rick will have to eat his own hand.

        All kidding aside, that’s why I like that the show doesn’t totally mimic the comic. It keeps us guessing and wondering what’s next.

        The whole phone thing was spoiled for me since I already knew what it was but for anyone who didn’t read the comic, I can see how it would intrigue them.

        • +1

  3. Man I hope he and Daryl don’t get into it and he kills Daryl.

    Maybe cause Daryl is part of that group and they do something to someone innocent and Daryl doesn’t stand up to them…

    This could really send Rick over the edge…

  4. ****COMIC BOOK SPOILERS*********

    My prediction…….

    Terminus is full of cannibals (come on, the last line was “Let me make you a plate.”) Beth was most likely kidnapped by the Priest, brought to the cannibals. And that was her cooking on the grill, or the prepping to cook her. Maggie Glen and Co. realize they’re cannibals. Chaos ensues. They dip. They did say season 5 will be mostly on the road, so we know terminus won’t work out for some reason.

    Rick, Michonne, Carl, Daryl…..

    The intruders/Daryl and Rick/Co. collide. Instead of an attempted rape on Carl like in the comic books, they try to rape Michonne and then kill Rick or something. But like in the comics, Rick turns crazy and stops it. With some help from Daryl and Carl.

    • This is so close to how I think the last episode will play out! Being the Dale is already dead, Beth is the one to fall prey to the cannibals…

  5. I think once everyone is together they’ll sit down for a nice meal and at some point after they will realize it was Beth.

    • As terrible as this scenario would be, there is probably a good chance that it does go down like that with them eating Beth. That would allow a much darker side of Daryl to come out in Season 5 and also it would possibly drive Maggie to do something drastic as she does in the comic at around this same point.

  6. I’ve not read the comics but may do as I like the AMC tv series…. Terminus is bad news by the looks of it, it seems Tasha Yar is cooking something, maybe people…. One things for sure in my mind, Carol is going to be a big player in Ricks future decent into the unknown…. I’m also not convinced that Eugene Porter is the ‘real deal’ and those hunters will recognise Ricks voice. It seems also Rick finally gets some with Michone

    • Tashar Yar, lol. Good one, Chris.

  7. Carol, Tyreese and Judith will arrive at terminus followed by Rick and Carl and Michonne…

    Joe and company will arrive to kill Rick; once Daryl realizes Rick is the target he will turn on the claimed group.

    Carol will take a bullet to save Tyreese as a final act of redemption. Daryl, after turning on the Claimed, will witness this and let his guard down, and Joe will kill him…

    • Carol will take a bullet to save Judith – redeeming herself by finally succeeding in saving a child

    • The second one was spot-on haha.

  8. according to danai none of the theories she’ve seen so far is close to what will really happen in the finale of season 4. Will it be the last season for the original walking dead cast and the beginning of new batch for this zombierrific series??.. Just my two cents tho.

    • “Will it be the last season for the original walking dead cast and the beginning of new batch for this zombierrific series??”

      they’re not gonna kill off the whole cast. AMC’s not stupid. They’re not gonna kill off the faces of their hit franchise. And plus, they still have a lot more of comic book material to get to. NEGAAANNNN!!!!!

  9. All im thinking of is how bad terminus is gonna be. nothing good can happen here.

  10. Terminus is the End of the line for the Train station and the beginning when you get on the train to take you to a new place? Terminus is also what they call Atlanta Georgia before it became Atlanta Georgia it stands for City limits.

  11. I don’t like any of your ending predictions…):
    I don’t want anyone to die, I love them all. D:

  12. Season finale was pretty awesome….Rick finally decided to leave the farmer persona far behind.

  13. You’re not using semi-colons correctly—they don’t precede conjunctions, such as and, but, or, yet, etc. only false conjunctions, such as therefore, however, etc. Incorrect example from above: “farm; but she survived.” Wrong. Also, em-dashes don’t precede conjunctions either, and unless you’re European, punctuation goes inside “quotation.” ← Same if it’s a comma.

    -Hope that helps with future posts.

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