It's been a rough time to be a fan of AMC's juggernaut series The Walking Dead. The demise of Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) leaves a big void for the series moving into Season 9 next month. With news of both Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Maggie Greene-Rhee (Lauren Cohan) exiting the series in the first half of Season 9, things seem very bleak for the series moving forward.

Considering the series, it's widely presumed by fans that this means Rick and Maggie will be meeting their end in some kind of horrific fashion. It's what has happens to everyone who leaves the show. For the most part, people were only speculating as to whether it'd be a walker or a vile human to take these beloved characters out. However, new showrunner Angela Kang has revealed that she is still planning to use Maggie in Season 10, so as long as her availability allows it.

"We still plan to tell more story with Maggie. Lauren wants to. It will just be subject to her schedule. But hopefully we have her back next season."

Clearly, what this implies is that Maggie will be written out of the series in a way that's not permanent. It's been made clear that a significant time jump will have occurred when the series returns in October, meaning Maggie and Glenn's baby will have been born. It's hard to imagine Maggie leaving the baby behind, so if she departs the Hilltop, will she be taking Glenn Jr. with her to find a place off-screen to call home?

Unfortunately for fans of Rick Grimes, Andrew Lincoln's decision to leave seems much more definitive. While Lauren Cohan is merely balancing her time between The Walking Dead and the ABC comedy series Whiskey Cavalier, Lincoln feels his time on the show had simply run its course. However, the actor has made it clear he's interested in returning to the series at a later date, but only as an episode director. Sadly, Rick Grimes is more than likely walker bait.

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Season 9 will be Angela Kang's first as the new showrunner of the series. Perhaps it's all for the best for the show to go in a new direction creatively, given the recent departures of so many major players. While there will still be several familiar faces, Season 9 will feel like a completely new beginning for the show.

As of now, there's no word on the potential exit of other fan favorites like Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Carol (Melissa McBride). But Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) doesn't seem to be going anywhere, which ought to satisfy those fans who've been threatening for years to riot should the character ever bite the dust. Despite the show's falling ratings, it remains one of the highest-viewed programs on TV, and AMC has plans to keep the universe alive for at least another decade. This story comes to us courtesy of Cinema Blend.

Jeremy Dick