The Walking Dead's Norman Reedus claims that Daryl needs closure on exactly what happened to Rick Grimes after his disappearance earlier this season. The midway point of The Walking Dead season 9 was punctuated by the dramatic departure of lead actor Andrew Lincoln, who had portrayed protagonist Rick Grimes since the show began in 2010. However, Rick's exit was far from clear cut. Instead of succumbing to a zombie bite or being shot by ruthless villains, Rick blew up a bridge he was standing on in order to stop a horde of zombies reaching his fellow survivors. Having survived the initial blast, Rick washed up on the river bank with serious injuries and was secretly spirited away in a helicopter by the mysterious Jadis.
Many of the remaining characters assume Rick to be dead, despite having never found a body, but some refuse to give up hope. Rick's partner Michonne has been seen in flashbacks scouring the river for any signs of her missing lover, but in the present timeline is more preoccupied with leading a community and raising two children. Daryl Dixon, on the other hand, is far more devoted to the idea that Rick may still be alive. Daryl has separated himself from the other survivors in order to focus on finding out what happened to Rick, swearing to never give up on finding his friend.
Norman Reedus, the actor who has played the popular character since season 1, has now weighed in on Daryl's ongoing hunt for Rick and his inability to move on like the others in his community have. Speaking on AMC's The Walking Dead analysis and interview show Talking Dead (via Comicbook), Reedus stated:
“If he [Rick] died, where’s his body? And he’s [Daryl] a master tracker; he can get you from here to there no problem. He’s very intuitive and he’s very observant, and he just can’t find it. It makes no sense to him. Michonne’s doing it a little bit, and she kind of even says something to the effect of, ‘We have to go forward.’ I don’t know. I think it’s hard for him to swallow. I think he needs closure. There’s a piece of this puzzle missing.”
In recent episodes, Daryl has perhaps started to have put his search to one side, as he deals with the oncoming threat of the Whisperers and the task of protecting teenage sweethearts Henry and Lydia from the latter's abusive mother. These responsibilities have arguably helped Daryl move away from his isolated mission to discover Rick's fate and back towards the communities that his friends are trying to build a future for.
Having said that, Rick's story would no doubt feel very incomplete if no one ever found out he survived the explosion. Michonne and Daryl are currently in a state a limbo, and since viewers know that Rick is still alive, they are willing Rick's loved ones to discover the truth for themselves, rather than continue to wrongly assume he perished. While Andrew Lincoln's time on The Walking Dead may be over, at least one Rick-centric movie has been confirmed by AMC. This project would provide a perfect opportunity for the show to tie off those loose emotional ends and give Daryl the closure he desperately needs.
The Walking Dead continues tonight with "The Calm Before" on AMC.
Source: Talking Dead (via Comicbook)