Last night’s episode of The Walking Dead was a blood bath, but one person’s disappearance may not necessarily suggest that he or she has died.
Obvious spoiler warning.
Following the death of Hershel and the Governor, Rick and Carl find one another and proceed to look for their young daughter and sister Judith. They come across her carseat without Judith inside, which leads Rick and Carl to assume she’s died. There’s a light amount of blood on the carseat, and the two men are very upset at the discovery.
But… is Judith really dead? There’s evidence to suggest she’s not, as first pointed out by Vulture.
The evidence to suggest Judith is alive: Setting aside the fact that Judith’s body is missing (thus there’s no proof she was killed), on last night’s episode of The Talking Dead executive producer Robert Kirkman played coy when asked by Chris Hardwicke if the young girl is still alive. “You’ll have to tune in,” he said simply. The character was also missing from the talk show’s weekly “In Memoriam” segment during which they pay tribute to those who were killed.
Although the action sequences moved quickly, we did notice this: Beth left the evacuation bus to find Judith and asked Tyreese and Sasha if they had seen her. We never saw Beth leave the prison. It’s very possible that Beth has Judith, and her decision to not take the carseat was a way for the writers to create a tragic moment for Rick and Carl in an episode where the theme of family is so prominent. Leaving the carseat is also logical because of its weight and mobility.
If Maggie or Beth have Judith, they will be able to cope with the loss of Hershel by caring for a baby in need.
Also on The Talking Dead last night, Lauren Cohan (who plays Maggie) said that even though the prison survivors went their own ways as they hectically left the prison, they were probably executing an established emergency evacuation plan. “We’d like to think that the group always has an unspoken plan, or there’s this emergency plan that was hatched and would say, ‘In the event of this, you go here, in the event of this, you go here,’ so maybe everyone just knows the fire exit to go and wait by.”
A promo for The Walking Dead season 4’s midseason premiere depicts many of the characters on the run by themselves, so when the show begins in February we may see who has Judith and eventually we’ll get to cry over a beautiful reunion between Carl, Rick, and Judith.
Additional reporting by Sonya Field.