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twd-sunThe Walking Dead finally returns to TV on February 8th. Fans have been waiting anxiously ever since the first half of Season 5 wrapped just before the holidays to see what happens next to the survivors. The mid-season finale ended with the death of Beth Greene which left fans reeling and some of them pretty angry. But both the cast and the showrunner Scott Gimple have promised that what fans have seen so far in Season 5 is nothing compared to what’s coming in the back eight episodes of Season 5.

A Lot of Chaos in a Short Time
Even though it seems to fans like the events of Season 4 and the first part of Season 5 have taken a huge chunk of time in the timeline of the show everything has been pretty quick. In Season 3 the conflicts with the Governor were extremely drawn out. But the time from when the Governor attacked the prison the final time in Season 4 to the time when Beth was killed at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta by Dawn was only a few weeks in the show’s universe. Now that Beth is dead it appears that the group will be embarking on their most ambitious plan yet to deliver Noah to his home in Richmond, because that’s what Beth would have wanted them to do.

2A Lot of Loss With More to Come
Season 5 has already been hard on the survivors. While they are finally reunited with each other they have been split up again several times to accomplish different missions. Glen, Maggie, Rosita and Abraham found out Eugene was lying and doesn’t have a cure for the zombie virus. Carol was badly injured getting hit by one of the cars from Grady Memorial. Father Gabriel put Michonne, Carl and Judith at risk when he led the herd of walkers from the school right back to the church. And after finding Beth the group lost her again when Dawn shot her at the hospital. But according to the previews and spoilers that have been leaked the second half of the season will bring catastrophic losses and huge changes to the band of survivors.

The Impact of Losing Beth
The producers have already warned that Beth’s death will have far reaching consequences. Maggie will be reeling from losing what was left of her family and not getting to see Beth again before she was killed. It looks as if the group will be revisiting some familiar locations before leaving the area for good. Will the group head back to Hershe’s farm? It seems a logical place to take Beth before they say goodbye. It also appears as if the group will go to Woodbury one last time. Even though Beth is gone the group will feel her presence very strongly for a long time. It may change some member of the group, like Daryl, forever.

A Whole New Show
Andy Lincoln has said in interviews that the second half of Season 5 will look like a whole new show. There will be new characters introduced as the group leaves Georgia to head for Richmond and the Alexandria Safe-Zone. At least one or two of the main characters will probably not make it to the Safe-Zone. New villains are coming, and fans may even see the appearance of Negan by the end of Season 5. But the dynamics between the characters are also going to be changing. Not everyone is going to agree on the road forward for the group and some of the new personalities in the group may end up clashing. The devastating losses that the group has suffered will be sure to change the characters and how they see each other.1

The New Journey
So far the group has been always reacting to the immediate threats that they face from both walkers and humans as they struggle to hang onto a piece of the life that existed before the turn. But as the show moves forward it’s clear that it’s a new journey for the survivors. They are no longer focused on preserving the past or hanging onto any of the humanity that was part of the old society. Now they are focused on pure survival. It will be exciting to see how the characters that fans have come to love change and develop as they adapt to the new challenges of the post-apocalypse world.

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