Among all the death and destruction of AMC's The Walking Dead, the cast reveal whether Season 8 of the zombie apocalypse will see Melissa McBride's Carol and Khary Payton's Ezekiel finally find love in each other's arms.
On a show that is best known for pulling its characters apart rather than putting them together, is showrunner Scott Gimple really going to give us a rare glimmer of happiness? There has already been the surprise pairing of Rick and Michonne, while it looks like Carol and Ezekiel are pitching themselves as the newest couple in town. Season 7 of the show teased a will-they-won't-they between the unlikely lovers, but The Walking Dead may up the ante when it returns.
Speaking to EW, Payton couldn't confirm or deny whether the two will take their respect for each other to the next level, but he said all the sings are there:
“I mean, he clearly likes her. He clearly has a thing for Carol. Now the question is, it takes two to tango, man. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, that Carol is a tough nut to crack.”
McBride remained equally tight-lipped on a possible romance, and reminded viewers that the "new" Carol is not a woman who lets emotions get the better of her:
“I think she totally appreciates him and she’s trying to be standoffish because it hurts. It hurts to get close to people. When you get close to people, you have to fight for them. So she’s trying to maintain distance with anyone until she can resolve this gobbledy-doo in her head one way or another about having to kill.”
No matter what is going on, Payton reminds us that Carol and Ezekiel making goo-goo eyes at each other across a field of rotting corpses should really be the last thing on anyone's mind thanks to that incoming threat of Negan. He also went on to say it isn't quite as simple as "Yes they will," and it sounds like the cast is just as clueless as the audience as to Carol and Ezekiel's intentions:
“I literally don’t f–king know! It’d be great, because I get that question more than anything, and they have not alluded to a thing, and they won’t tell me a thing. It’s crazy. I’m pretty sure that they still haven’t decided themselves if these guys are going to just be friends or get together. I have no clue. I am literally sitting here wondering just like everybody else.”
From beaten housewife to cold-blooded killer, loving mother to child shooter, fans of the show have seen quite the journey for the Carol Peletier they met in Season 1. As one of the most dangerous players out there in the apocalyptic wasteland, McBride has become a leading member of Gimple's cast. Elsewhere, Payton's role as King Ezekiel may be relatively new, but just like his comic book counterpart, he has already become a fan-favorite of the piece. Putting the duo together would certainly be one for the history books, however, for those who follow Robert Kirkman's comics, a tragic end could be around the corner for either of the pair.
If Gimple does intend on putting Carol and Ezekiel together, he better do it fast, because Season 8 is teasing some major cast departures. While Carol and Ezekiel would certainly make a formidable power couple, will anyone ever stop shipping the union of Carol and Daryl as Caryl? Find out more when The Walking Dead returns on October 22.