Warning, contains spoilers from The Walking Dead’s October 28th, 2018 episode.
The Walking Dead fans knew one of their favourite character’s time was up. When it was announced earlier this year that Andrew Lincoln was leaving the hit show fans started to mourn his character Rick Grimes. It was shocking and sad, and veered from the comic book series drastically where Rick still is the main character. It was understandable though. Lincoln wanted to spend more time with his young children back in England. Then it was released that Grimes would meet his end in episode 5 of the new season, and all that was left was the waiting and discovering how it would happen. And then last night, in episode 4, when Grimes was thrown from his horse, impaled with a giant metal spike, and trapped between two approaching hoards of zombies, fans knew it was almost time to say goodbye. Not wanting to wait until the end came, Lincoln sent a farewell letter to the press, and comicbook.com published it right away.
“Thank you… For coming with us on this journey,” Lincoln began. “For the nine years of fear, heartache, anger and, let’s face it, guts you’ve shown by making it through these 115 episodes and counting. For understanding that despite the high volume of undead, this is actually an ongoing story about what it is to be alive. A story of hope, family and friendship. People with nothing in common discovering that they have everything in common. United in their search for humanity and a place to call home. A story that has perhaps even more relevance now than it did when we began.
It’s been the most exciting, challenging and satisfying role of my career — and for the best part of a decade, the greatest adventure of my professional life. This season feels like the show I fell in love with all those years ago, and the world we were always heading toward when we wrapped the pilot episode.”
Lincoln goes on to recount the things his character has gone through during his time on the show, the people he’s met, and even “Norman Reedus’ extraordinarily luscious hair.”
Lincoln’s final episode, “What Comes After,” airs next Sunday, November 4th, and several stars from the previous seasons will return, including Jon Bernthal, Sonequa Martin-Green, and the late Scott Wilson.
You can read the entire letter here.