The Walking Dead does a great job at keeping fans guessing, but one of the biggest questions of the series — aside from the virus's origin — is finally answered this season: Who is Judith's father? In the first season, Rick's wife, Lori, has an affair with his best friend, Shane, while Rick is presumed to be dead following the zombie outbreak. After Rick reunites with his family, Lori discovers she is pregnant and is unsure who the dad is. Keep reading to see our previous theories, then how Rick's confession goes.
Why Rick Could Have Been Judith's Biological Father
One half-convincing argument that Rick could have possibly been Judith's father goes back to season one, episode three, when we see Lori and Rick rekindling their relationship in their tent when he returns. Shortly after, Lori learns she is pregnant. While technically Lori could have gotten pregnant during their rendezvous, it seems unlikely that her pregnancy test would have come back positive in such a short amount of time.
Why Shane Is Judith's Biological Father
We know, some fans might cringe at the idea of Shane being Judith's father. After all, he does turn out to be a vengeful traitor to Rick and the gang at the end of season two, but the fact still remains that Shane had been involved romantically with Lori prior to her pregnancy. Observant Reddit user TsarNab points out the exact timeline: Rick rejoins his family 60 days following the initial outbreak in Atlanta; eight days later Lori is pregnant. The most logical explanation for Lori's positive pregnancy test result would be that Shane is Judith's biological dad.
Executive producer and The Walking Dead comic book creator Robert Kirkman seemed to agree with the idea, saying "I'd prefer to keep that kind of thing somewhat ambiguous, but I will say if you've watched this show, it's definitely much more likely that it is Shane's baby, but you never really know."
Then, on episode four of season seven, Rick has a talk with Michonne in their bedroom after being raided by Negan and his henchmen for medicine and armory. Rick reflects on his friendship with Shane and shockingly reveals that he knows there is no way that he is Judith's biological father. Rick tells Michonne that he accepts Judith as his own because he wants to protect her from the dangers of the world, regardless. He then asks Michonne if she would be willing to accept the group's decision to submit to Negan to survive and avoid any more deaths following Glenn and Abraham's brutal attack.
There you have it folks, straight from the horse's mouth. What do you think of this shocking revelation from Rick?