When The Walking Dead concluded Season 8, Rick (Andrew Lincoln) made the controversial decision to let Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) live instead of killing him for all the pain and suffering and death he bestowed on Rick's group. (To be fair, Rick slit Negan's throat, but Negan survived.)
Many fans weren't happy about the decision, and they shared the feeling of Maggie (Lauren Cohan), who wanted Negan to pay for turning her husband Glenn's (Steven Yeun) head into brain spaghetti with a baseball bat. In the final moments of the Season 8 finale, Maggie, Jesus (Tom Payne) and Daryl (Norman Reedus) gathered at the Hilltop to seemingly conspire against Rick for keeping Negan alive.
It set up a possible civil war inside the group with Rick leading one faction and Maggie leading the other, and had us all theorizing that the divide might have something to do with Lincoln and Cohan leaving the show next season. They totally kill each other, right? Wrong.
At The Walking Dead press conference held in San Diego Comic-Con after the fan panel, Season 8 showrunner Scott Gimple addressed the situation and essentially defused things a little bit.
"We've got to remember where we left Maggie in the last season," Gimple said. "They made a deal in the finale that Negan was done. They were going to kill him. So when Rick spared his life and Maggie broke down, she broke down because of all the sheer emotion of everything that he had done to Glen and everybody around them. All the pain that he had inflicted on everyone. So Maggie felt betrayed."
It appears that Gimple tried to explain that Maggie was angry in the moment, but she wasn't going to immediately act with some sort of coup. Danai Gurira, who plays Michonne, expanded on the idea and essentially shut out the idea of a possible war between the two, but didn't rule out lots of complications.
"There's so much tension as a result of that," Gurira said. "It's not all-out grown men fighting each other in a pit with two sticks or whatever, it's more fraught because it's people who love each other and it's people who want to be on the same page, but really, really aren't. It's family. It's a family feud, which is actually much in some ways scarier, and it feels much more volatile."
So for all of you out there getting your #TeamRick and #TeamMaggie shirts ready, better put a pin in it for a bit.
The Walking Dead returns for Season 9 Sunday, Oct. 7 on AMC.
Additional reporting by Lindsay MacDonald.