Post Mortems
the walking dead season 8 spoilers

The Walking Dead EP Scott Gimple Talks Finale's Surprise Reunion and Previews a 'Fast-Paced' Season 8

In Sunday’s Season 7 finale of The Walking Dead, in spite of a forewarned act of betrayal — and because of a stunning act of heroism — the rebel alliance managed to drive the Saviors away from Alexandria. But, as Rick & Co. knew all too well, they’d won only a battle, not the war. Here, showrunner Scott Gimple walks TVLine through Sasha’s heartbreaking sacrifice and previews the epic combat in store for Season 8.

TVLINE | Let’s start with Sasha. Was her death the result of Sonequa Martin-Green wanting to move on to Star Trek: Discovery, or was it strictly a storyline decision?
Storyline. The folks over at Star Trek got lucky with the timing.

TVLINE | Were there discussions between AMC and CBS All Access to keep her casting on Discovery a secret, so as not to tip off fans that Sasha wouldn’t survive the season?
We were hoping to [keep her casting on the D.L.], but it didn’t happen, which was kind of a drag. It seems like they did try, it just got out. But that just put it on us to tell a great story. The episode is the most important thing.

TVLINE | Sasha’s death was clearly kind of a nod to Holly’s death in Robert Kirkman’s comics. Did you have to change it up and use the coffin so as not to replicate the Reed-in-a-hood scene from Fear the Walking Dead?
[Holly’s death is] absolutely sort of the kernel from which [Sasha’s death] comes. But the Sasha/Holly deaths are so different. Holly was a victim of Negan. She was used basically as part of an ambush. Fear did wind up taking that, but they used it in a different way, which was sort of desperation. The characters needed to have the person to trade, and the hood was the only way to [make it appear that they] weren’t dead. On Walking Dead, this was about Sasha having a shot at taking out Negan [by] making herself into a weapon. That story was going to be the story no matter what. Would the hood have worked the same way as the coffin? We don’t know. It all kind of worked together. But even if Fear hadn’t done that, I’m not sure we would have done the hood, exactly.

TVLINE | It would have been kind of hard for Sasha to poison herself discreetly while wearing a hood.
Yeah, it would have been quite noticeable. People would’ve been like, “What are you doing with that pill under the hood?” I was happy that we got to see Sasha make the decision [to weaponize herself] and have those last minutes be cumulative with what Sonequa did, which was one shot broken up over the course of the episode. I thought it was very beautiful. If the hood was hers to use, I’m not 100 percent sure we would have used it.

the walking dead season 8 spoilersTVLINE | How did you keep Michael Cudlitz’s return a secret? Had you shot those Abraham/Sasha seen before his initial run on the show ended?
Again, we just got real lucky. We moved him in in a quiet, military fashion and moved him out the same way. I was very happy with the fact that folks didn’t know [to expect him] — both on the show and Talking Dead, for that matter!

TVLINE | Jadis betrayed Rick, yet she clearly can’t trust Negan. No one can. So where do you go with an ally-less character like that?She’s a businessperson. She’s certainly not sentimental in any way. [But] she’s all about her people, and they are all about themselves. I think she’s pretty smart and isn’t under any illusion that things couldn’t turn on a dime. In some ways, I think that Negan should watch out for her [rather than the other way around]. This is somebody who takes any advantage and uses it.

TVLINE | This fight was pretty major — all of our regulars, plus Shiva. What’s the Season 8 war going to be like?
It’s going to be different. They aren’t going to meet in Alexandria every weekend and do that. There are twists and turns to it, definitely some small-scale things and some large-scale things and a whole different momentum to the story. Now that [the various factions] are in public conflict and everything is on the table as far as everybody knows who everybody is to each other and what’s going on, the narrative changes a lot. It’s going to become a bit more kinetic and fast-moving, because that’s where the story is going. The content is definitely going to be determining the form.

How did you feel about the Season 7 finale — and Sasha and Abraham’s reunion via new flashbacks? What are you most looking forward to in Season 8? Hit the comments.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Wrstlgirl says:

    I just want to know why the junkyard people talk so weird. There’s got to be a reason why they wrote them this way or did they just do it to drive us nuts.

    • kmayne says:

      I agree Find group irritating to watch

    • Michelle says:

      I said the same thing they were normal functional people before they weren’t born at the dump. They talk like this have had no education or have even been in civilization

    • Madam P says:

      Best theory: they were all members of an “English-As-A-Second-Language Class” at the local community college. Just as the zombie apocalypse hit, they happened to be on a class field trip to the local waste management facility as part of their instruction in how America handles its trash. So none of them speak anything other than broken English. Except the teacher, whose name was Winslow.

      Hey…. it’s better than nothin’… which is what the writers have given us so far. :-)

    • Brian says:

      Gimple explained that by saying they are minimalists. They take… they don’t give. Therefore they don’t give a lot of words. Just saying what they have to say and that’s it. After hearing that explanation (on the Talking Dead extra), I kind of get it.

    • Brittany says:

      I believe it was mentioned that they talk this way because they don’t want to give any more than they have to, to anyone. They take, they don’t bother.

  2. Natalie says:

    I want Jadis dead. I’m not as enthralled with her as some people are.

    • Christine Nappe says:

      I disagree with Glen coming back.The Sasha mind to mind with Abraham was fantastic.In my rational mind there is no way to bring Glen back unless you do a memory thing(to close to Sasha) it won’t be mind blowing,which at this point you just got it back,I would not loose it.

  3. Lydia johnson says:

    I loved the Abraham and Sasha storyline but her death was in vain as her purpose was to kill negan. cried buckets of tears with the sentimental moments and cheered when everybody came together to fight the saviors and the garbage people

    • Matt C. says:

      Her death wasn’t in vain. She knew that if Negan had presented her alive, the group would be forced to stand down. But seeing her dead (especially as a walker), that was the moment everybody started firing. As sad as I am that Sasha is gone, she certainly went out like a true boss.

      • Brian says:

        She made Negan promise only one would die… She knew it was going to be her. A true boss with beach ball sized lady nuts.

  4. AngelWasHere says:

    The flashbacks were a bit tedious, but I love Abraham and Sasha’s relationship. Made me wish Abraham was still alive.

  5. Martha Day says:

    Love WALKING DEAD ❤❤😊‼
    And watching TALKING DEAD immediately following…..
    So➖Please next season show Talking Dead immediately after & please do not insert ANYother “wannabe” show between Walking Dead & Talking Dead ‼👍‼‼‼
    Walking Dead my very favorite TV series ever ❤❤‼😊‼

  6. Azerty says:

    I have been wondering a few times, last season when Abraham was alive, did we see him actually getting together with Sasha? I do remember him “breaking up” with Rosita and then going after Sasha but I don’t remember them being like “physically” together, am I wrong? I was so surprised when Rosita said they had both slept with the same dead guy because I had the (wrong) feeling they didn’t go there and had a only a spiritual relationship sorta (despite Abe best efforts)… Anyway that’s not what I will remember for this season, great episode, probably the best one because everyone was in it.

    • Saynay says:

      A lot of their relationship was “implied” on the show i.e. Sasha inviting him into her house, Abraham asking about babies, etc. We never saw them physically together.

  7. Couch Mom says:

    When Rick told Negan “you are dead already” I was thinking about way back in S1 when Jenner told Rick that they were all infected. I don’t know if Negan and his group know that everyone is infected like Rick and his group do. Andrew Lincoln’s take on it (on EW.Com) was that Negan was dead (inside) because he was a bully and really didn’t have anyone who cared or loved him. Another way of looking at it that makes sense too.

    • Tracey says:

      Remember in last week’s episode when David tried to rape Sasha.. Neegan left Sasha the knife so she could take care of David before he turned

    • Natalie says:

      I LOVED that scene! Jeffrey Dean Morgan played Negan’s reaction really well too. But Andrew Lincoln was on fire in that scene. I’ve watched it a couple of times. It’s honestly my favorite scene from the episode.

  8. SteelMagnolia says:

    Disappointed in the finale, as I have been the entire season 7. Can’t put a finger on it, but it is as if someone different is writing the script or directing. For me the finale was predictable, which, in the past, TWD was never predictable! However, the acting – especially Rick’s character, Carol, & a few others, is still outstanding!

    Also, Rick & his “love partner” just don’t have any chemistry ttogether…poor match!

  9. Brandon says:

    Dug the episode, but there’s one question no one has asked yet: How the hell did Sasha drink from a bottle of water while lying horizontally in the coffin and not spill?! Those are some mad skillz.

    • Jackie says:

      We saw her get into the coffin when it was horizontal, but at some point it was placed vertically. So, she must have taken the drink sometime after they stood the coffin up.

    • Colleen says:

      Maybe because it’s really not difficult at all…

  10. Trey says:

    I was hoping to see *something* regarding why the storyline has gotten so comedic (especially ‘Cardboard Negan’) and repititious. A simple promise of “it will be different” isn’t going to cut it. Count me as one of the millions who are now done with WD.

    • Jo says:

      Your choice and your loss.

    • Cindy says:

      Everything on The Walking Dead does not have to be so serious, dark, and dramatic. We all need a good laugh every now and again, so if Negan is the one to bring it, then let it be because he is hilarious! Abe was funny too. The show has gotten a lot better since JDM’s addition as Negan– Rick has met his match. I LOVE TWD and will continue to watch because it’s a damn good show. Jeffrey Dean Morgan is the man!

  11. Plew says:

    Nothing on Heath?!

  12. Gagan Singh says:

    I m big fan of TWD….
    Last year I was in US for 3 months, I started watching this on Netflix aftr that me &my family get addicted for this. In India we watched season 7 online. I like the way how they picturised it and connection with Sasha’s dream about Abraham. I was predicted to my family that Jadis must would do something wrong. & she did it…. But I like the whole episode. My family’s favorite stars r Andrew, Michhone, Carol & last but not the least The Daryl Dixon…… We love u guys…. Keep it up & win the war Against the Saviours with a bang.

  13. I was bored with the Abraham flashbacks or whatever they were. I felt they really dragged the episode down. Abraham and Sasha were a couple for about 5 minutes yet the show had him coming back as this tearjerker heartstring-tugging thing and it just wasn’t that for me. I know Abraham’s death was supposed to be driving Sasha to kill Negan but I just wasn’t buying it. And too bad FearTWD ‘borrowed’ Holly’s death for their own show. I would have loved to see that given to Sasha and have her sent into Alexandria to bite Rosita. That would have been awesome.

    Everything else in the finale was pretty good, especially the shootout. Loved Shiva coming in clutch and Negan yelling “It’s a ____ tiger!”

  14. Chris says:

    I’m looking forward to it picking up the pace and not being so slow or dull. I couldn’t wait for the next episode because maybe it would have something exciting happen. Loved the fanale tho.

  15. Sharon says:

    The Tiger was the best!!!!!

  16. Karen says:

    I thought the Season finale 7 was very well done.

  17. Christine Nappe says:

    I disagree with Glen coming back.The Sasha mind to mind with Abraham was fantastic.In my rational mind there is no way to bring Glen back unless you do a memory thing(to close to Sasha) it won’t be mind blowing,which at this point you just got it back,I would not loose it.

  18. Terri Durham-Stone says:

    I’m looking forward to Season 8 just as much as I did with all the other seasons.
    But it’s gonna be interesting of leaves the season and who stay.
    I just dislike all these months going without TWD not being on.
    It’s like an addiction that I just can’t wait
    to see please hurry