Season 9 of AMC's The Walking Dead consists of sixteen episodes; it premiered on October 7, 2018 and concluded on March 31, 2019. On January 13, 2018, AMC announced the show was renewed for a ninth season with Angela Kang replacing Scott Gimple as showrunner.
A year and a half has passed since the end of the War. While on a supply run for the communities, one of Maggie’s people is killed by a Walker. The parents of the teen victim, Earl and Tammy Rose, are furious that he died for nothing, as half of what they got goes to the Saviors. Gregory seizes an opportunity to use the father to kill Maggie and take over but fails. Rick arrives, and he and Maggie conflict over how to handle the Saviors. She refuses to help them while Rick tries to assist them despite Daryl stepping down as leader and the group still yearning for Negan’s leadership. That night, Maggie hangs Gregory publicly with the intent to not let it happen again.
A month after Gregory’s death, the communities attempt to rebuild a bridge for better and faster passage to each other. Saviors who are on the construction crew begin to go missing and tension begins to grow. Things hit a boiling point when Aaron loses his arm in an accident due to Justin, a Savior causing trouble, failing to sound an alarm. Justin is removed off the project but is abducted by an unknown group while on his way to the Sanctuary.
Meanwhile, Michonne tries to convince Maggie to help the Sanctuary, but Maggie still refuses. After talking with Earl, who is imprisoned for his crime, she is enlightened to help the crippling community.
Rick talks to Negan about the bridge’s progress but the former Savior leader continues to taunt Rick over his decisions and that his vision for the future is going to fail.
After Justin is discovered to be a Walker, the Saviors, led by Jed, are ready to leave the project and demand guns to protect themselves, but Rick refuses. After Jed tries to hold him and Carol hostage, Rick has no choice but to send them away.
Meanwhile, Anne, former leader of the Scavengers, increasingly begins to feel out of place when everyone thinks it’s her who is killing the Saviors. She returns to her old home to call for a ride out of the area. Gabriel finds out, and after he refuses to keep it a secret, Anne kidnaps him.
As the group tries to find out who is killing off the Saviors, Daryl and Maggie figure out it was Oceanside, killing only the Saviors who killed their men. They claim they were inspired by Maggie to do it and that Rick’s rules aren’t the only rules. Deciding that she gave it enough time to try Rick’s rules, Maggie enacts a plan to assassinate Negan.
After being warned of Maggie’s plan, Rick tries to stop her, but Daryl drives him off and the two end up falling into a deep pit. They argue over the morality of the situation, with Rick believing Negan will become a martyr for the Saviors, while Daryl disagrees stating that it’s time to let it go. They escape and realize a herd is on route to the bridge. They go in separate directions to divert the herd with Rick being thrown off his horse onto a concrete slab, impaling his torso with rebar and knocking him unconscious.
Meanwhile, Anne attempts to have a Walker bite Gabriel but cannot bring herself to do it and knocking him unconscious again, she leaves him in the Heaps with a goodbye note. Also, Michonne deals with Negan who is refusing to eat; During their conversations, she reveals that they do not know the whereabouts of Lucille, which causes him distress.
Maggie arrives in Alexandria to kill Negan, despite Michonne trying to convince her otherwise. Upon seeing Negan’s state of being, Maggie relents declaring that he is already worse than dead. As she leaves, there is word of trouble at the bridge.
Rick wakes up and frees himself to get to the bridge while hallucinating Shane, Hershel, and Sasha along the way. He makes it to the bridge but realizes the group's efforts to fight them will be in vain. He sacrifices himself by blowing up the bridge much to the sadness of the group. Later, Anne discovers Rick on the riverbed and convinces her helicopter ride to take him with them.
Six years later, an older Judith Grimes rescues a woman named Magna and her group from a horde of Walkers.
Judith and some Alexandrians bring Magna’s group to their home. A hardened Michonne is reluctant to let them stay and during a council meeting, she points out Magna’s prison tattoo to make everyone distrustful of her group. After talking with Judith and a visit from Magna in her home, Michonne decides to take her group to the Hilltop where she’s sure they will be safe.
Meanwhile, the Kingdom is beginning to fail due to broken pipes which supply power and water. Henry decides to go the Hilltop to learn how to become a blacksmith to help keep his home afloat. He and Carol travel on the road but are interrupted by Jed’s group, the remnants of the fallen Sanctuary. The men raid their wagon and attack Henry. In the night, Carol burns them all alive in retaliation. Later, the two travelers come across Daryl.
While setting up radio transmitting equipment, Rosita and Eugene are followed by a strangely-acting herd of walkers that appear to talk.
Michonne leads Magna's group towards the Hilltop but is still distrustful of them. She learns from Siddiq that Maggie is no longer at the Hilltop and that her people still keep in contact with them. After stopping at Magna’s former camp, they continue their journey. While Jesus and Aaron are out and about, they come across an injured and fatigued Rosita who informs them of Eugene's whereabouts.
Carol and Henry see Daryl’s camp and convince him to come to Hilltop with them. Carol also asks him to mentor and watch over Henry while he’s at the Hilltop. After they arrive, Daryl opts to go with Jesus and Aaron to look for Eugene.
Magna's group is ultimately accepted into Hilltop, but they are told by Tara that they must "earn their keep". Michonne and Siddiq learn from Rosita of what she and Eugene saw and how the rescue party is not prepared for it.
Daryl, Jesus, and Aaron find Eugene, who reveals that he heard walkers whispering to each other, suggesting that they are evolving. The whispering herd pursues the group and corners them in a cemetery. They are soon joined by Michonne, Magna, and Yumiko who provide their escape. However, while holding off the Walkers, Jesus is stabbed by a "walker" through the chest. After fending off the herd, the group discovers that the whispering walkers are indeed people wearing walker skins. The Whisperers suddenly surround the group.
After his cell gate is accidentally left unlocked, Negan escapes from confinement.
The group manages to escape the cemetery, and they capture a young Whisperer, Lydia, on their way back to Hilltop. While the community mourns Jesus’ passing, Michonne and Daryl interrogate Lydia on her group but don’t get anywhere, and Michonne’s group heads back to Alexandria. Seeing Henry is getting close to Lydia, Daryl listens in on their conversations to get answers.
After escaping, Negan leaves Alexandria and returns to the ruined Sanctuary trying build a new start there but decides it’s not worth it and returns to Alexandria where his cell is.
Meanwhile Alden and Luke, one of Magna’s people, are lured into a trap by the Whisperers led by Alpha.
Lydia finally opens up about her past where she reveals that her mother and father were with a group for over a month and the group was soon overwhelmed and her father was killed in the attempt to fight them. Daryl, however, sees the cracks in her story and finds bruises on her arm which were obviously caused by abuse. After talking to Henry some more, she remembers that her mother killed her good-natured father and forced her to remember things differently. She reveals her mother leads the group which is bigger than they thought. The next day, Alpha shows up at Hilltop to demand Lydia’s release.
Ezekiel and Carol lead a supply run for a trade fair that will ensure their survival. They retrieve supplies and a projector bulb for their movie theatre.
Meanwhile, Hilltop’s confrontation with Alpha heightens when she offers to trade Alden and Luke for Lydia. The Whisperers even abandon a baby after it can’t be silenced whom the Hilltoppers rescue. Knowing Alpha won’t let up, Daryl is forced to give up Lydia despite Henry’s wishes. After returning to her mother, Alpha slaps her and demands that she call her “Alpha” like the others. Later that night, Henry goes after Lydia, causing Daryl and Connie, a deaf survivor, to follow him.
In the woods, Alpha questions Lydia about her time at Hilltop but gets nothing out of her though she suspects something is up. Henry is discovered by Beta who takes him to Alpha. Henry sees their way of life and what happens when someone challenges Alpha. At night, Alpha and Beta decide to test Lydia’s loyalty by forcing her to kill Henry. This is halted by the arrival of Daryl and Connie who lead Walkers into their camp. Henry forces Daryl to let Lydia come along.
In Alexandria, Michonne scolds her council for keeping secrets from her only for Gabriel to retort that she would’ve shot their ideas down anyway like sending a delegation to the Kingdom’s upcoming trade fair. She asserts that it’s so Alexandria survives. She later allows a delegation to go, after Judith confronts her on how she changed despite her belief that no one can change.
Ezekiel and Carol learn of the Highwaymen who demand a toll for use of their roads. While prepared to kill the group if need be, The Kingdom attempts a compromise which is reached when Carol promises them that they will see a movie at the fair. As a result, the Highwaymen become escorts for people going to fair.
Meanwhile, Daryl’s group is on the run from Beta who is attempting to get Lydia back. At an abandoned building, the group kills Beta’s men one by one while Daryl fights Beta. The giant is pushed down an elevator shaft but survives. With Henry injured in the fight, they decide to go to Alexandria to get him patched up as it is closer.
In a flashback, it is revealed that Michonne’s hardened nature came to be due to the arrival of Jocelyn, a friend of hers before the apocalypse. She kidnaps Alexandria’s children with her own child army, and Daryl and Michonne go after them. The are both branded and Michonne is forced to kill Jocelyn and all but one of her child soldiers to rescue Judith and the others. Alexandria has closed its gates ever since.
Back in the present, Daryl’s group arrives to get Henry patched up. Judith knows that Daryl and the others need help, so she escapes Alexandria to go after them. Michonne follows and rescues her from a Walker, and the two finally get their feelings out. Judith believes Michonne doesn’t love her friends anymore which enlightens Michonne to make amends and go to the fair and give Daryl’s group a ride to it. Two Whisperers watch as people arrive at the fair, and they tell Alpha.
As the fair opens, Alpha infiltrates the fair and observes the lives of the people. She encounters Lydia who renounces her mother and tells her to leave before anyone finds her. Michonne meets with the leaders of all the communities and Alexandria agrees to give Lydia asylum. They sign a charter Michonne drafted six years ago as a protection pact should the Whisperers attack any one of them.
Michonne, Daryl, and others lead a search party for other fairgoers only to be surrounded by Whisperers. Alpha shows Daryl a large herd of Walkers she’s ready to use if they cross her borders again. The group leaves and find that Alpha marked her borders with ten pikes with severed heads of members of the community which include Enid, Tara, and Henry. Siddiq gives a eulogy as he was with them when it happened. As Lydia and Daryl visit the border, snow begins to fall.
Months after the fair, The Kingdom has finally fallen and the community is forced to go to Hilltop for the remainder of the winter. Realizing a snowstorm will either hinder their way there or trap them, they decide the best way to get to Hilltop is to cross through Alpha’s border. Lydia, who has become suicidal, is reluctant to go because of how most people see her. Carol begins to see her true colors and tells her she is not weak. After they reach Hilltop, Carol breaks up with Ezekiel and returns to Alexandria with Michonne and Daryl.
Michonne learns that Negan saved Judith after she ran off to get Daryl’s dog out of the storm and thus earns her respect. After Ezekiel and Judith finish conversing on the radio, a voice sounds through asking if anyone is out there.
|Title||Writer(s)||Director(s)||Original Air Date||U.S. Viewers|
|1.||"A New Beginning"||Angela Kang||Greg Nicotero||October 7, 2018||6.10 million|
|2.||"The Bridge"||David Leslie Johnson||Daisy Mayer||October 14, 2018||4.95 million|
|3.||"Warning Signs"||Corey Reed||Dan Liu||October 21, 2018||5.04 million|
|4.||"The Obliged"||Geraldine Inoa||Rosemary Rodriguez||October 28, 2018||5.10 million|
|5.||"What Comes After"||Matt Negrete|
|Greg Nicotero||November 4, 2018||5.41 million|
|6.||"Who Are You Now?"||Eddie Guzelian||Larry Teng||November 11, 2018||5.40 million|
|7.||"Stradivarius"||Vivian Tse||Michael Cudlitz||November 18, 2018||4.79 million|
|8.||"Evolution"||David Leslie Johnson||Michael Satrazemis||November 25, 2018||5.10 million|
|9.||"Adaptation"||Corey Reed||Greg Nicotero||February 10, 2019||5.16 million|
|10.||"Omega"||Channing Powell||David Boyd||February 17, 2019||4.54 million|
|11.||"Bounty"||Matt Negrete||Meera Menon||February 24, 2019||4.39 million|
|12.||"Guardians"||LaToya Morgan||Michael Satrazemis||March 3, 2019||4.71 million|
|13.||"Chokepoint"||David Leslie Johnson|
|Liesl Tommy||March 10, 2019||4.83 million|
|Millicent Shelton||March 17, 2019||4.57 million|
|15.||"The Calm Before"||Geraldine Inoa|
|Laura Belsey||March 24, 2019||4.15 million|
|16.||"The Storm"||Angela Kang|
|Greg Nicotero||March 31, 2019||5.02 million|
- Bob Miller (Confirmed Fate)
- Kenneth Sutton
- Justin (Alive and Zombified)
- Beatrice's Husband (Confirmed Fate)
- Kathy (Alive and Zombified)
- Norris (Alive and Zombified)
- Bernie (Alive, Confirmed Fate; Zombified)
- Paul Rovia
- Richie (Alive, Confirmed Fate; Zombified)
- Matias (Alive, Flashback)
- Frank (Flashback)
- Rose (Flashback, Off-Screen)
- Henry and Benjamin's Mother (Confirmed Fate)
- Rasmus (Off-Screen)
- Russ (Flashback)
- Michonne's Mother (Confirmed Fate)
- Jocelyn (Flashback)
- Mitchell (Flashback, Off-Screen)
- Linus (Flashback, Off-Screen)
- Gina (Flashback, Off-Screen)
- P.J. (Flashback, Off-Screen)
- Hilde (Off-Screen)
- Miles (Off-Screen)
- Martin (Alive and Zombified)
- Casper (Alive and Zombified)
- Ozzy (Alive and Zombified)
- Alek (Alive and Zombified)
- D.J. (Alive and Zombified)
- Frankie (Alive and Zombified)
- Tammy Rose Sutton (Alive and Zombified)
- Rodney (Alive and Zombified)
- Adeline (Alive and Zombified)
- Enid (Alive and Zombified)
- Tara Chambler (Alive and Zombified)
- Henry (Alive and Zombified)
- At least 1 unnamed Kingdom resident (Alive and Zombified)
- At least 20 unnamed Saviors
- At least 22 unnamed Whisperers
- 1 unnamed Hilltop Colony resident (Confirmed Fate)
- At least 1 unnamed dog (Off-Screen)
- Several unnamed shelter refugees (Flashback)
- 7 unnamed members of Jocelyn's group (Off-Screen, Flashback)
- Several elks (Confirmed Fate)
- 6 horses
- This season is mainly based on "Volume 22: A New Beginning", "Volume 23: Whispers Into Screams", "Volume 24: Life And Death" and parts of "Volume 25: No Turning Back" from the Comic Series.
- This is the first season in which Angela Kang is the showrunner for The Walking Dead.
- This season features a new opening sequence, which features several easter eggs and references, such as:
- Rick's hat, revolver, red handled machete, and hatchet
- Daryl's ear necklace, crossbow, and bolts
- Carol's knife
- Michonne's sword
- Carl's handgun
- Hershel's pocketwatch
- Philip's eyepatch
- Cherokee roses, which have been seen in "Cherokee Rose", "Pretty Much Dead Already", "Nebraska", and "Always Accountable"
- Abraham's dog tags
- The tree with the stained glass window where Rick slit Negan's throat in "Wrath"
- The noose that was used to hang Gregory in "A New Beginning"
- The "FINAL WARNING" sign written by Simon and his group at Oceanside's old home, as seen in "Warning Signs"
- The helicopter that Rick is taken away in in "What Comes After"
- The windmill that was built in Alexandria between "What Comes After" and "Who Are You Now?"
- The motorcycle that Negan uses to drive back to Alexandria in "Adaptation"
- This season features four time skips:
- "A New Beginning" takes place a year and a half after the events of All Out War.
- The second time skip is about a month long after the events of "A New Beginning".
- The third time skip takes place at the end of "What Comes After", jumping about 6 years into the future.
- With this, the current year of the apocalypse may be deduced to the year 2020, considering the year the outbreak began was 2010.
- The fourth time skip takes place a few months after the events of "The Calm Before".
- This is Andrew Lincoln's final season portraying Rick Grimes.
- Below are the changes made to the main cast in this season:
- Katelyn Nacon (Enid) and Tom Payne (Jesus) have been added to the opening credits after being listed under "Also Starring" in previous seasons.
- As of "Guardians", Tom Payne has been removed from the opening credits.
- Lennie James (Morgan Jones) has been removed from the opening credits following his crossover to Fear The Walking Dead.
- Austin Amelio (Dwight) is no longer listed under "Also Starring" due to his character's departure last season.
- Xander Berkeley (Gregory), Khary Payton (Ezekiel) and Pollyanna McIntosh (Anne) are still listed under "Also Starring", despite being credited as series regulars in previous seasons.
- Following his character's death in "A New Beginning", Xander Berkeley is no longer listed under "Also Starring".
- Following her character's departure in "What Comes After", Pollyanna McIntosh is no longer listed under "Also Starring".
- Starting with "Who Are You Now?", Khary Payton has been added to the opening credits.
- Callan McAuliffe (Alden) and Avi Nash (Siddiq) have been upgraded to series regulars after recurring appearances.
- Despite their status as series regulars, they are listed under "Also Starring".
- Samantha Morton (Alpha) has been cast as a series regular for her first appearance this season.
- Starting with "Omega", Samantha Morton has been added to the opening credits.
- Katelyn Nacon (Enid) and Tom Payne (Jesus) have been added to the opening credits after being listed under "Also Starring" in previous seasons.
- Despite only being guest stars, Cooper Andrews (Jerry) and Eleanor Matsuura (Yumiko) are credited in some episodes they do not appear in.
- This season features the most number of departing regulars in a season, with seven leaving the show.
- This season also features the most number of main characters written out of the series without being killed off, with three: Rick, Maggie and Anne. The previous record was Season 8, where Morgan and Dwight departed the series without being killed off.
- This season is tied with Season 5 and Season 7 with killing off the most main cast characters, with four regulars killed off: Gregory, Paul "Jesus" Rovia, Enid and Tara Chambler.
- Jon Bernthal (Shane Walsh), Scott Wilson (Hershel Greene) and Sonequa Martin-Green (Sasha Williams) returned for a guest appearance in Rick's final episode.
- This is the final appearance of Wilson, due to his death on October 6, 2018.
- Michael Cudlitz (Abraham Ford) directed the seventh episode of this season.
- The soundtrack used in the Season 9 Comic-Con trailer is "Take What's Mine" by Future Royalty.
- The usage of firearms in this season is very limited, especially during the second half. In stark contrast to previous seasons, no automatic weapons appear in Season 9.
- In this season, the survivors no longer drive vehicles with the only one still running that is seen is Negan's motorcycle. Instead, the survivors use horses and later horse-drawn car shells.
- This is the first season in which Daryl Dixon appears in all of the episodes.
- This is the fourth consecutive season which Robert Kirkman wrote none of the episodes since Season 5.
- ↑ The Walking Dead renewed for a ninth season with Angela Kang as the new showrunner.
- ↑ https://www.skybound.com/the-walking-dead/news-events/the-walking-dead-promotes-two-actors-to-series-regulars-for-season-9/
- ↑ https://i.imgur.com/ffQ4YXO.jpg
- ↑ http://comicbook.com/thewalkingdead/2018/07/13/the-walking-dead-michael-cudlitz-return-season-9/