Well, it was nice while it lasted. Fans of The Walking Dead universe were able to enjoy 48-hours of speculation after it was teased that a surprise guest would be showing up on this Sunday's edition of Talking Dead. It was all about the timing, what with Fear the Walking Dead heading into its midseason finale and The Walking Dead: World Beyond wrapping up its series run with a ton of CRM/Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) expectations attached to it. So there was no way it wasn't going to be some major film news, right? Wrong. TWDU bigwig Scott M. Gimple broke the news on Wednesday that it was not Rick Grimes related to give fans realistic expectations- but did tease that the news was still "massive and momentous." So what news could drop on Sunday that could possibly match or surpass earlier expectations? Well, we have some thoughts on that…
Daryl/Carol Spinoff News: For the Norman Reedus & Melissa McBride-starring spinoff to have an impact as big as Rick Grimes film news, we would need a premiere date, some casting news, things like that. Not sure a 30-second teaser will work here as it did 25 years ago when films were announced (just having a little fun, Gimple). Of course, we have our theory that this could be a swerve to distract from our feeling that Daryl might go the "Rick route" from the comics before the show's final credits roll.
"Fear the Walking Dead" Season 8: Unfortunately, Fear TWD suffers here from its own success. Because unless it royally shits the bed during the second half of Season 7, the spinoff series is having its best season yet- and both the critics & viewers have been making that known. The shocking news would be if the series wasn't returning. But if they announce Kim Dickens is returning as Madison and she shows up via video on Talking Dead? Well, that makes things a bit more interesting. But would Fear TWD want to tip its hand storyline-wise so soon?
"Tales of the Walking Dead" News: Could viewers get a returning cast member checking in via video on Talking Dead to drop some news about the upcoming anthology series? There have been rumblings that Summer 2022 was being eyed for the show's premiere so maybe this is the time Gimple's ready to share more details.
New Spinoffs: Might this be the time that some additional spinoff series get announced? Will Jeffrey Dean Morgan be able to finally answer "yes" to those Negan questions? This might be the opportunity to roll out some early looks at an animated spinoff (though it feels like that might get saved for "Tales"). Robert Kirkman and Gimple have expressed their interest in the past about the franchise going global. Could we see an international spinoff with some streaming support?
Aligning TWDU's Sacred Timeline: This is the one thing that might just make up for the lack of Rick Grimes film news. If they announce that the eighth season of Fear TWD will have its timeline in line with The Walking Dead then the avalanche of possibilities begins because that could have implications on both the films and any future spinoffs. then we have to look at who from TWD might make the move to Fear TWD… and who from Fear TWD might be able to make an appearance at the end of the flagship series' 11-season run. If you want to keep fans' dumpster fires of random speculation raging over the holidays, then this would be a big way of making that happen.
"This will be BIG. I see this blew up a li'l bit. It's big, but it's not about Rick Grimes. We're sorry some things are taking a while — this announcement is something, though, that's been a long time coming. THANK YOU for being with us on this journey; everyday alll around the country (& the world!) we endeavor to make stuff to thrill you, to intrigue you, to make you feel — we're working hard not to let you down. If you dig the TWDU, Sunday's news will be massive and momentous," Gimple wrote in a series of tweets on Wednesday in an attempt to both tamper unrealistic expectations before they get bigger while also letting fans know that the news will be worth the wait.