After seven seasons of build-up, The Walking Dead is about to become "an-out war story" that may finally "break" some of its characters. The creator of the hit AMC series, Robert Kirkman, spoke to reporters about what's in store for the group in season 8, and also teased the "Old Man Rick" scene from the trailer that was revealed at San Diego Comic Con 2017.
At a press event for the Television Critics Association, Kirkman was asked questions about the upcoming season, which he labeled as an "all-out war story." Kirkman had this to say about the tone that the show will carry in season 8:
So in Season 8 we’re trying to do a more fast-paced season, a more action-packed season, really focusing on momentum, and we feel like over the first seven seasons we kind of set all of the characters into place, and now it’s time to break them to a certain extent.
Kirkman was also asked about a particular scene from the new trailer which showed a somewhat older Rick with a cane. Kirkman was careful not to reveal too much, but did remark that the intention of including the scene was to make fans question what it is and how it fits in the story. It had recently been confirmed by showrunner Scott Gimple that viewers will understand the meaning of the scene in the season 8 premiere.
There have been many theories on what the "Old Man Rick" scene could mean for the direction of the series, and the most popular theory happens to stem from events that took place in the comic book series itself. In the source material, Rick's leg was broken by Negan, and after a two-year time jump, the character was shown carrying a cane.
Kirkman appeared to take note of the similarity of the two scenes, and remarked that though it "doesn't seem like we would be getting to that just yet," fans will "just have to see."
The next season will pick up where the last season left off, which showed Rick and his group take their stand against Negan and the Saviors. After spending an entire season being forced to work for the enemy, Rick's group managed to unite both the Hilltop colony and the Kingdom in an attempt to take the fight to Negan.
Season 8 of The Walking Dead will premiere on AMC on October 12.