I have a theory that Walking Dead comics fans are slightly less annoying than Game of Thrones books fans when it comes to how we react to major plot developments in the televised series. See, GoT book readers have this smug, sorta-condescending attitude towards people who have only seen the show. "Oh, was the Red Wedding shocking for you?" they say. "That's adorable you didn't know what was coming." Walking Dead readers, on the other hand, are sitting on the couch going, "Holy shit, that is SO not how she died in the comics."
It's a show that keeps us guessing, because there's no guarantee the show creators will follow the original storyline. Which leads me to the subject of this post: a major twist from the comics is rumored to be in the works for season 4, and it involves the Governor doing something incredibly brutal to Rick.
Warning: SPOILERS AHEAD.
If you've read the comics, you probably remember what went down in Issue #28: the Governor has Rick, Glenn, and Michonne in his office and he's interrogating them about their prison location. When Rick lies about it, the Governor tells him he doesn't understand how serious his situation is, then he does this:
Yeah, that would be the moment when Rick loses his right hand.
Interestingly, a number of leaked photos from the season 4 set seem to indicate that Rick will suffer some sort of hand injury -- and it's the same hand. The images show Rick with a bandage over his right hand, and I suppose it's possible they'll add in the CGI to make it look like a bandaged stump if they follow the amputation story.
Personally, I doubt it. I don't think Rick will lose his hand next season, or in any season. Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman has actually been pretty up front about how he doesn't want to include Rick's amputation for logistical reasons:
One thing I'm adamant about is I don't think that we should cut Rick's hand off [on television]. When I'm writing a comic book, I don't think about what I'm doing. I go, 'Oh, it'd be pretty cool if they cut his hand off right now. That'd be pretty shocking, right?'. Then I do it, and five issues later, I write 'Rick opens a can of beans' and then I look at the script and think 'He can't do that now'. I didn't even think that through.
Yeah, it'd be a giant pain in the ass to deal with the FX work of a second amputation, and Rick's missing hand would be much more obvious than Hershel's non-leg. My feeling is that Rick's hand is bandaged for a totally different reason, maybe as the result of a separate story from the comics (Rick savagely beats a murderer almost to death, seriously injuring his hand in the process).
But who knows? That's part of the fun of The Walking Dead: trying to predict who's on the chopping block. Er, so to speak.
What's your call -- do those photos make you think Rick's going to lose his hand in season 4?
Images via AMC, Image Comics