Carl’s death on The Walking Dead was inevitable after he was bitten by a walker in the midseason finale, but that didn’t make saying goodbye any easier. After an emotional and heartbreaking midseason premiere, Chandler Riggs opened up about his character’s final scene and what it was like saying goodbye to his co-stars.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Riggs revealed that he was excited to watch his final episode. The Walking Dead star, who has been with the show since he was a young boy, explained how the sets for the midseason premiere were crazy, and he couldn’t wait to see the finished product.
And although Carl had a few heartbreaking goodbyes in the episode, there was one that made Riggs choke up.
“The goodbye scene with Judith, I think, is always going to get me, just because of how depressing some of the stuff I was saying was. It was definitely not a scene that I was excited for. Like, when he’s talking about his mom telling him that he was going to beat this world, and he didn’t. All of that stuff, is just so, so sad.”
Carl’s final scene with Judith was heartbreaking, to say the least. After giving her some advice and telling her that she is the hope of the future, Carl gave her his sheriff’s hat that he’d been wearing since the first season.
For Riggs, the emotional scene was the last one he filmed for the show, which made it even harder.
Carl’s final moments on the show were more than just a sad goodbye. Not only was his death a passionate plea for Rick (Andrew Lincoln) to accept an optimistic vision for what’s ahead, but we also got a glimpse of what Carl thought the future could look like if Rick followed his advice.
Whether or not Rick turns things around is yet to be seen, but Riggs is optimistic that his on-screen father will end up following his advice and living a more peaceful life.
Speaking of Lincoln, the actor also opened up about saying goodbye to Carl and Riggs. Lincoln revealed that the only comfort he got from Carl’s death was that he got to be a hero for a change and left Rick and Michonne a great gift for the future.
He also said the final scene in the church was “unbearable” to shoot, but thought that Scott Gimple and the crew did an excellent job giving Carl the sendoff he deserves.
Outside of their characters on the show, Lincoln and Riggs have developed a strong bond over the years. Lincoln has literally watched Riggs grow up on set, which made saying goodbye even more difficult.
There’s no telling how Rick will handle Carl’s death moving forward. We can only hope that he takes his son’s advice and starts a path that leads to a more positive future for him and his group.
The Walking Dead airs Sunday nights on AMC.