27 People Who Were Not Emotionally Prepared For The Walking Dead's Shocking, Fatal Twist

Gigantic spoilers for The Walking Dead below! Like, HUGE spoilers!

Well, you guys, it happened. The Walking Dead finally took my last remaining nerve, put it inside a blender, and hit "liquefy."

During the AMC hit's most recent episode, "How It's Gotta Be," it was revealed that Carl Grimes is going to die. Like really, truly die. Although the show's fandom has long cracked jokes about how awful the character is, there's no denying that watching him (and real-life star Chandler Riggs) quite literally grow up over the last eight seasons has earned him a giant place in our hearts. What are we going to do without that hat? Or the eyepatch? Or that HAIR?! The Walking Dead is never going to be the same.

In the season eight episode, Rick's teenage son discloses the deeply upsetting fact that he was bitten on the ribs a few episodes prior. While he doesn't die outright, the bite is most certainly fatal. Since Carl's character lives on far beyond this point in creator Robert Kirkman's comic series, his fatal bite comes as quite a shock. It's not only one of the biggest departures from the source material but also calls into question Negan's storyline. The monologue-loving villain forges a strange relationship with Rick's son, which plays a big part in where the story ends up.

Riggs is the only original series regular other than Andrew Lincoln (who plays Rick), and his exit from the zombie drama coincides with his decision to take a gap year before starting college. Is there a chance he could ever come back, though?

"Carl is going to die," Riggs put it in no uncertain terms during an exclusive interview with The Hollywood Reporter. "There's no way he can get back from that. His story is definitely coming to an end." Riggs also noted that Carl's tragic fate wasn't tied to his own college plans. "Leaving Walking Dead wasn't my decision," he added. "It was all story related. It made sense story-wise for it to happen for Rick and Michonne and all the other characters."

Needless to say, I wasn't the only one taken aback (like, all the way back) by this plot shocker. Keep reading to see Twitter's best reactions to the heartbreaking Carl twist.