What happened to Judith in The Walking Dead season 11, episode 23 hints the show is about to repeat the show’s biggest mistake in its 12-year history.
Warning: Spoilers for The Walking Dead season 11, episode 23
The Walking Dead season 11, episode 23, titled “Family,” teased a repeat of the biggest mistake in the show’s 12-year history. In the heat of the battle with the Commonwealth’s forces, Pamela Milton went for a gun and took a shot at Daryl, but Judith was caught in the crossfire. “Family” ended with Cailey’s Fleming’s character in dire straits and Daryl desperate to get to her to safety.
In taking this route, The Walking Dead season 11 is signaling a willingness to kill off Rick Grimes’ daughter. While the final season admittedly does need its fair share of shocking moments, killing off Judith would be a step too far. It’s also a line that the show already crossed once in The Walking Dead season 8 when it abruptly killed off Carl. Killing Rick’s child, who was seen as the heart (and the future) of the series, was a hugely controversial decision and one that felt wholly unnecessary. By killing another of Rick’s kids in the series finale, The Walking Dead would be venturing down that same dark road and inviting another round of outrage.
Will The Walking Dead Really Kill Off Judith?
The impression given by Walking Dead season 11, episode 23’s ending is that Judith is on the brink of death, but that doesn’t necessarily mean death is assured. For now, her fate is open to speculation. Judith wasn’t among the many characters thought to be at risk of dying in season 11, so if the series really wants to deliver a shocker, killing off Judith would be one way of doing that. Plus, going in this direction would be a bold move that’s in keeping with other questionable choices made in previous seasons.
However, for the very reasons that Carl’s death in season 8 was a mistake, it’s a bit hard to imagine The Walking Dead finale following through on episode 23’s tease. The show may not be intent on a truly happy ending, but closing out on any sort of positive note will be impossible if Judith doesn’t survive the series finale. So while the show’s history is indeed a sign that Judith dying isn’t completely out of the question, it’s still a rather unlikely scenario. After all, Judith is a character relevant to The Walking Dead’s future after season 11.
What Judith’s Future Could Be After The Walking Dead
In light of the plans AMC has for the franchise, Judith has a great chance of returning after The Walking Dead ends – if she survives, of course. She may not accompany Daryl to France, but she could fit into Daryl Dixon’s overarching story in one way or another since he’s her current guardian. There’s also the matter of Rick and Michonne’s spinoff. Dealing with the CRM and reuniting with each other may be their immediate goals in their upcoming series, but getting back to their children feels like it has to be a later story for both characters.
The Walking Dead releases new episodes on Sundays on AMC.
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