‘The Walking Dead’: Is [Redacted] Dead or Alive?


We are only three episodes into Season 6 of The Walking Dead, and it’s already been one hell of an emotional ride.  We kicked off the season with the biggest walker horde we have ever seen on the show, and followed it up with a complete massacre back in Alexandria at the hands of the Wolves.  By the end of episode 603, we still hadn’t even had a chance to catch our breath yet when The Walking Dead gave us maybe its most painful sucker punch yet.

[Warning: Major TV spoilers ahead.  Only read on if you’re all caught up…]

The Walking Dead may have pulled a stunt similar to Game of Thrones, in the sense that a main character was possibly killed off without confirmation.  I am, of course, talking about Glenn Rhee, whose slightly ambiguous death now has fans in a heated debate.  Is he dead?  Is he not?  I have my own theory, but first, let’s take a look at both sides of the argument.

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For one, The Walking Dead has been known to tease character deaths only for them to later be found alive.  Does anyone remember Carol disappearing in the prison, assumed dead, only for Daryl to find her later in a cell?  What about when baby Judith’s bloody carseat left most fans to believe that walkers had gotten her, before it was revealed that Tyreese had saved her?  Even Tyreese himself reappeared soon after being completely enveloped by a large pack of biters.  So, at the very least, it wouldn’t be unusual for the producers to fake us out with another false alarm.

When Nicholas killed himself, inadvertently pulling Glenn straight down into the horde with him, it seemed like all hope was lost.  I’m sure millions of people nearly had simultaneous heart attacks when they next saw zombies feasting on fresh guts, with blood spraying all over Glenn’s face.  It certainly looked like he was getting torn apart, but deniers believe that the walkers were actually eating Nick’s corpse, which had fallen on top of Glenn and served as a shield for him.  These fans are hopeful that this was what happened, allowing Glenn the chance to roll under the nearby dumpster and essentially ‘wait out’ the walkers.

The other major factor causing fans to think Glenn survived was the omission of his death on the memorial segment on Talking Dead.  For those unaware, the after-show for The Walking Dead always includes a tribute video for the humans and zombies that died in each episode, and Glenn was absent.  Host Chris Hardwick repeatedly made sure to refer to Glenn as “possibly” dead, as well, making his death all the more ambiguous.

Unfortunately, however, I fully believe that Glenn did not survive his fall into the walker parade.  How could he?  The human shield on top of him wasn’t going to last very long considering the amount of walkers, and it also seems rather unlikely Glenn would be safe under the dumpster, had he rolled under it.  I agree that there is a certain mystery surrounding his death, but I also believe this to be by design; the producers have got to be loving all of the discussion that this moment has created.

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The reason Glenn wasn’t included on Talking Dead‘s memorial video is because his death hasn’t been officially confirmed.  I believe that his demise will be confirmed, probably as soon as the next episode, when the others inevitably go to look for him.  Those who think he survived will be carrying a false hope that his friends will find him alive, but I say they’re only half-right; they’ll find him, but he’ll be dead.  Similar to how Daryl came across a zombie Merle, I’m betting we’ll see Glenn as a very badly mangled walker, retaining just enough of his face for us to recognize who it is.  That would be a moment even worse than seeing him falling into the biters to begin with, which is exactly why I think they’re doing it.

I may be wrong, as not every prediction I’ve had about the show has been correct, but my final ruling on the matter is that Glenn is, in fact, dead.  I just don’t see any realistic way for him to have survived.  I wouldn’t mind being proven wrong, as I am a Glenn fan, but in this case, I don’t feel that I am.  The Walking Dead wanted to just give us enough to believe that he might have survived, so that there will be a certain level of suspense for his rescue mission.  All I’m saying is… don’t get your hopes up.

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