AMC presents 'Talking Dead Live' for the premiere of 'The Walking Dead'"The Walking Dead" Season 8.

The image of an older Rick Grimes showed up at the end of the big TWD Season 8 trailer at Comic-Con, leading fans to speculate on what was happening.

Despite what comic book writer Robert Kirkman previously said, fans will not get the definitive answer on Old Man Rick in the October 22 premiere itself. Instead, showrunner Scott Gimple told TVLine, "That won't come until about halfway into the season."

Andrew Lincoln told Entertainment Weekly his initial reaction to the older Rick twist:

"I was shocked and kind of excited by it. My instinct was, what a great storytelling device. That was my instinct. I thought it was very interesting, and also gives us an opportunity to do something else a little ahead of the game, which I think is very, very neat."

He would not confirm fans' theory about Old Man Rick connecting to the time jump in Kirkman's comic book, but he did confirm that "gray Rick" is "an older Rick" so "by virtue of the fact that you see, that means that it's in the future."

Hopefully it's not just a dream sequence, but all Lincoln would say is that it will "become somewhat clearer" after the premiere, but will maybe be still "somewhat opaque." So -- shocker -- "The Walking Dead" is going to tease out a reveal. It's probably still exactly what comic book fans expect. But even if that's the case, a midseason reveal would be early in the story, no? Wouldn't you expect All Out War to last the full season? Maybe they are finally condensing storylines. We shall see.

"The Walking Dead" Season 8 begins with its 100th episode, airing Sunday, Oct. 22 at 9/8 p.m. on AMC.

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