Danai Gurira as Michonne in The Walking Dead series finale

‘The Walking Dead’ Series Finale: What Happened, Who Survived, and Who Died?

We ain't the walking dead.

The end has finally come for what is undoubtedly one of the most popular horror series of all time. For better or worse, fans stuck it out with The Walking Dead, and it sometimes paid off. We lost some of our favorites along the way, including in the series finale—which was mostly underwhelming, if I’m being honest. As a fan of the comics, it’s hard not to think about what could’ve been with the Commonwealth arc, minus Rick (Andrew Lincoln) dying in the show as he does in the comics.

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With the upcoming Walking Dead spinoffs, it’s not the last time we’ll be seeing some of these characters. Next year, the Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and Maggie (Lauren Cohan) spin-off, The Walking Dead: Dead City, is coming out. Then, we’ll be getting a spinoff for Rick and Michonne (Danai Gurira), and a Daryl spinoff. But what about the overall ending of The Walking Dead series? What happened and who made a surprising return? Let’s break it down.

(Spoilers ahead!)

Does Judith die in The Walking Dead?

Injured Judith in The Walking Dead series finale
(AMC)

Despite the odds being stacked against her, our little ass-kicker survived getting shot by Pamela! Judith (Cailey Fleming) being killed off would’ve made for too much tragedy. And while this is The Walking Dead, at least some hope is necessary for our characters. After all, she needs to be there for R.J. (Antony Azor), who—despite being the son of Rick and Michonne—is one of the blandest kids TWD has ever introduced.

What happened to Pamela Milton in The Walking Dead?

Pamela Milton in The Walking Dead series finale
(AMC)

As a horde of walkers descended upon the locked-out residents of the Commonwealth, Pamela (Laila Robins) tried to cling to power until our band of misfits, as well as Mercer (Michael James Shaw) and his loyal soldiers, overthrew her. Despite all of the harm and death she caused her own community, Pamela’s life was spared, and she was sentenced to jail (for how long, we don’t know). It was a punishment that even Negan and Maggie (who were both hellbent on revenge) felt was fitting. Believe it or not, she wasn’t killed off or even jailed in the comics.

There was at least one impactful death in the Walking Dead finale

Rosita fighting walkers in The Walking Dead series finale
(AMC)

Surprisingly, most of the former Alexandria, Hilltop, and Kingdom members survived. However, we did lose Rosita (Christian Serratos) and it’s a fucking bummer. Her character has always been a fighter and she’s certainly not someone I wanted to see die. But she didn’t die alone and was loved till the very end of her life. Aside from Rosita, the other characters who died in The Walking Dead series finale were Luke (Dan Fogler) and Jules (Alex Sgambati).

Side note: Christian Serratos actually requested that Rosita die in the finale. And she didn’t even make it to this point in the comics!

And cookie-cutter endings for (almost) everyone else

AMC fumbled when they announced all the TWD spinoffs prior to the end of the show. It took away any suspense surrounding potential character deaths and negatively impacted the series finale. Rosita’s death was the most emotional surprise for this farewell to the main show. Otherwise? It was obvious where everything was going once the group stood against Pamela. And one year later, everyone is doing fine—either having kids, helping run the Commonwealth, or simply living their lives.

What happened to Rick and Michonne in The Walking Dead?

rick in the TWD series finale
(AMC)

A reunion was so unlikely because the Rick and Michonne spinoff hasn’t even aired yet. Instead, we got very dramatic scenes for them both. Rick’s attempt to escape the CRM (which you can learn more about by watching The Walking Dead: World Beyond) is a failure, but we know Michonne is close to finding him. Soon we’ll see how Michonne (in her badass outfit) is going to do exactly that. And maybe Rick will be wearing shoes when she does.

(featured image: AMC)


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Vanessa Maki
Vanessa Maki (she/her) is a queer Blerd and contributing writer for The Mary Sue. She first started writing for digital magazines in 2018 and her articles have appeared in Pink Advocate (defunct), The Gay Gaze (defunct), Dread Central and more. She primarily writes about movies, TV, and anime. Efforts to make her stop loving complex/villainous characters or horror as a genre will be futile.