The series' creator opens up a number of avenues the show could go down.
Though there were many questions surrounding the San Diego Comic Con 2017-released trailer for 'The Walking Dead' season 8, nothing was quite as highly discussed as the glimpse of 'Old Man Rick' we saw at the trailer's end. Assumedly a man who has to use a cane to walk and somebody who has a bushy, big, grey beard, comic book readers were left scratching their heads as to how big of a time jump would have to take place following the events of 'All Out War'.
Rick Grimes has been through a lot of changes in 'The Walking Dead'
Generating enough chatter to break records, the trailer took in 31 million views in just four days, breaking its own record back with its SDCC trailer for season 7. So, is all as it seems? It might not actually be the case...
Speaking this weekend at a TCA event, creator Robert Kirkman teased of the 'Old Man Rick' sequence in the teaser: "Or was it the time jump? I don’t know, maybe it was Rick waking up from his coma. Wouldn’t that be weird? That is an intriguing tidbit that we did throw out there on purpose, and we’re hoping that people continue to question how it is that fits into the storyline and what it is. Comic book fans know where a scene that kind of looked like that would fall, but it also doesn’t seem like we would be getting to that just yet if you were a comic book fan, so there’s a mystery to that. I’m pretty sure you’ll learn in the first episode what that means."
The idea of this being Rick re-awaking from his coma is one we have to surely brush aside immediately. Creators wouldn't have the past seven seasons of chaos be something dreamt up by an aging Rick Grimes. With Kirkman teasing a fake-out however, anything is possible. It could be Rick waking up from his coma, the expected time jump or something else altogether. The TV show has always kept us guessing and has liked to do things differently to the comic books from time to time, so it's unlikely that'll all change eight seasons in.
Whatever the case may be, it's likely this 'Old Man Rick' storyline will be one of the most talked-about aspects of the season following its reveal in the premiere episode. We can't wait to see what all the fuss is about.
'The Walking Dead' returns this October to AMC in the US and FOX in the UK.