Looks like you just can’t keep a good zombie down. Or in this case, a homicidal psychopathic one either. Throughout its eight seasons, The Walking Dead has gone through many ups and downs. It’s been the most popular, beloved show on television. It’s also been the most hated and vilified. Characters have been killed off who we were more than happy to say goodbye to, like Lori and The Governor. Others, like Hershel, Abraham, and most recently Carl, broke fans’ hearts.
But there have been a few along the way who were very polarizing – loved by some, and hated by others. Perhaps none more than Shane Walsh. The former police officer was Sheriff Rick Grimes’ right hand man and best friend. Then Rick was shot and left comatose, and the whole world went tits-up during his extended nap. He eventually awoke to find himself in the midst of a zombie apocalypse, and his erstwhile BFF banging his wife, Lori.
Shane wasted no time in swooping into Rick’s life. He assumed the husband/father/protector role to Lori and Carl, their son. He convinced them Rick was surely dead, and they would only be safe with him. The speed with which he appropriated Rick’s family suggested that he had been waiting to do so for quite some time.
So of course, once Rick woke up and located his wife and son, Shane was less than pleased. Thus began his descent into madness, as his love turned to jealousy, possession, and a determination to keep them “his” at all costs. All of this culminated in Shane’s attempt to kill Rick in the Season 2 finale, which led little Carl to have to take him out to save his father’s life.
All that was more than six years ago. So why does it matter now? Because it’s just been announced (via The Hollywood Reporter) that actor Jon Bernthal will be making a return appearance in Season 9. He’s already been killed twice (as a human and as a walker), so how can this be?
The most likely scenario is that he will appear as either a hallucination or a flashback. It was previously confirmed that Season 9 will be the last for Andrew Lincoln, who plays series lead Rick Grimes. Given the pair’s complicated history, perhaps it would be fitting for Shane to appear to gloat over his former friend in his dying moments.
Or perhaps it will be a callback to more pleasant times, when Rick and Lori were happily married, and Shane was a faithful friend. That certainly sounds like a better way to join the afterlife.
What do you hope to see from Shane’s final appearance? Tell us in the comments!