Warning: The following contains major spoilers from tonight's episode of The Walking Dead. Consider yourself warned.
"You'll be alright."
Uh, excuse us, Dwight, but we're not so sure anything will ever be alright ever again. Not after what just went down during tonight's episode of The Walking Dead. During the penultimate episode of the season—a season that's already been brutal and heartbreaking enough—the show really twisted the knife, leaving at least one fan-favorite character's life severely hanging in the balance. That sound you hear? Fans bringing the riot to showrunner Scott Gimple's doorstep.
There's no point in dancing around it any longer, so we might as well rip off the band-aid quick. At the end of tonight's episode, our beloved Daryl (Norman Reedus) was in a bad way. A very bad way. As in, shot at point blank by Negan's cronie Dwight (Austin Amelio). As in, massive blood splatter on the camera. As in, we've got ourselves another Glenn (Steven Yeun) situation on our hands.
But this time, we're not so sure we have any clever theories to explain away Daryl's apparent death (or at least, very grave injury). Would the show so quickly seem to off another popular character only to trick us yet again? If that's what's really happening, it'll feel cheap and lazy. But the other alternative is the loss of one of our favorite characters—and we're not sure we're ready for that. Damn you, Gimple!
And it's not just Daryl in dire straits leading into the finale. To wit, Glenn, Michonne (Danai Gurira), and Rosita (Christian Serratos) are also in the Saviors' clutches. Carol (Melissa McBride), after deploying her truly badass jacket gun to take out a bunch of Saviors, is possibly wounded and on the run, with Morgan (Lennie James) hot on her trail for the rescue, while the lone surviving Savior is tracking them both for the kill. Oh, and Maggie (Lauren Cohan) is probably going into labor. At least she got a cute haircut before everything went to hell.
Next week, it's Negan time. We're already shaking in fear.
Do you think Daryl's dead? Or do you think he'll make it through? Sound off in the comments below.
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on ABC.