There's no question that the first half of The Walking Dead Season 9, could have served as one entire season. The Whisperers reveal at the end of Episode 8 would have been the perfect season-ending cliffhanger, but luckily it was just the winter finale and the show will be back in February. But until then, there are already several Walking Dead theories for Season 9 Part 2. Fans are already going bananas trying to figure out what comes next, basing their theories on the comic books and their own imaginations. And since The Walking Dead doesn't return for another two months, you can't really blame them.
Half of the fun of a show like this is trying to figure out what Negan's next move is or what the Whisperers want with the other surviving groups. There are also several people who are currently separated from their main groups, as per usual, so their fates are all sort of up in the air. I'm sure that some of the more pressing questions will be answered when the second half of The Walking Dead Season 9 premieres, but for now, fans have come up with some wild, and some plausible, theories that are all worth a second thought.
Michonne & Daryl’s Scars Will Be Explained
At different points in the episodes after the six year time jump, both Michonne and Daryl’s backs were shown to have scars shaped like an ‘X.’ Redditor mrgayle wrote that they might have received these from some yet -to-be-introduced enemy they encountered during that six year period after Rick’s death. There had to have been some kind of dark period between then and now. Plus Michonne and Maggie seem to have bad blood between them that could stem from more than just differing opinions on Negan’s punishment.
It might also explain why The Kingdom is failing to thrive as much as Hilltop or Alexandria. According to mrgayle, "Whoever that enemy was caused beef between Maggie and Michonne, and brought The Kingdom down a bit."
Negan Will Redeem Himself
When Negan found his cell unlocked at the end of "Evolution," he did what any incarcerated former mass murderer would do and quietly slipped out of prison. The natural assumption is that he’s off to find his trusty bat Lucille and get up to his old tricks again, but on Reddit, Franksandbeans76 theorized that Negan will redeem himself on The Walking Dead.
They wrote that with the main groups of survivors fighting the Whisperers, finding Negan will be the least of their worries. He could redeem himself by fighting with the remaining survivors or by sacrificing his own life to save Judith’s. I’m not sure if I believe Negan will actually die, especially since he’s such a charismatic character, but I can definitely see a redemption arc in his future.
Michonne & Maggie’s Beef Stems From Another War
When things left off before the time jump, Maggie still wasn't speaking to Michonne because of Michonne and Rick’s decision to lock Negan up instead of killing him. Maggie eventually decided to leave him in his cell anyway but things were obviously never going to be the same between Maggie and Michonne.
A Walking Dead fan on Twitter wrote that Michonne may have killed everyone from Oceanside when they came to kill Negan after finding out that Maggie changed her mind. "Maggie/Tara didn’t agree with her decision hence the hostility," they wrote. It would make sense, given the discomfort Michonne felt going into Hilltop and the fact that Tara also seemed to distrust her.
Gabriel Purposely Let Negan Out Of His Cell
It’s hard not to keep going back to the Negan theories since he’s now out there and his motives are as unclear as ever. One minute he seems like he’s a human being again and the next, he seems like his old sadistic, bat-wielding self. One fan on Twitter wrote the short but sweet theory that "Gabriel left the door unlocked for Negan on purpose," and they could have something there.
The last interaction Gabriel had with Negan was one that resulted in a physical altercation and Gabriel wondering out loud if Negan was worth his time in trying to see any humanity left in him. It could be that Gabriel left the cell unlocked in the hopes that Negan would wander out and get himself killed.
Gabriel Will Die Because Of His Relationship Status
In The Walking Dead comics, Rosita and Eugene get together instead of Rosita and Gabriel. Eventually, Rosita is killed off, leaving Eugene alone. But one Redditor, Enrique061, posted the theory that the show put Rosita and Gabriel together to kill off Gabriel instead since he’s a bit more expendable. The Redditor pointed out that Rosita and Gabriel’s relationship "seems forced and with no purpose," and I’m inclined to agree.
There might be more to their backstory that’s revealed through flashbacks in the second half of Season 9, but right now, there doesn't seem to be much of a point to their relationship and if one of them has to die, I see Gabriel taking the hit.
Dwight Will Return As A Whisperer
Like many of Negan’s former followers, Dwight was a victim of his own circumstances. He was forced to follow Negan, even if it sometimes wasn't for the greater good. The last time viewers saw Dwight, Daryl had left him in the middle of the woods to survive on his own away from any of the established communities. Dwight made his way to the meeting spot he’d originally planned with his wife, Sherry, and found a note from her.
It left things with a hopeful tone, but on Reddit, Jnuck82 theorized that Dwight could return as a Whisperer. Although he’s not the most missed character, he is still remembered and alive out there somewhere. And, as the Redditor pointed out, it "would be amazing if there is a scene where a member is killed by a Whisperer and they take their mask off and it is revealed to be Dwight." Dwight already has a track record of being wishy-washy and playing both sides, so I wouldn't put it past him to fall in with the new baddies.
There are still more than two months before The Walking Dead Season 9 returns on Feb. 10 and until it comes back, fans will likely be theorizing about all of the best and worst characters and plots. Personally, I’m partial to anything that involves learning more about Negan’s motives, but there’s also a war with the Whisperers on the horizon and things are about to get straight up bonkers.
This first-time mom wants to have a home birth, but is she ready? Watch how a doula supports a military mom who's determined to have a home birth in Episode One of Romper's Doula Diaries, Season Two, below. Visit Bustle Digital Group's YouTube page for the next three episodes, launching Mondays in December.