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The Walking Dead’s season 9 trailer readies us for Rick’s departure

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The ninth season is Andrew Lincoln’s last — and here’s a taste of how it ends

The Walking Dead’s ninth season is shaping up to be the most exciting yet, as lead character Rick Grimes prepares to exit the series.

A teaser for the next season played during The Walking Dead’s Hall H panel at San Diego Comic-Con, and picks up where the eighth season has left off. Negan is alive, and living without his Saviors. The biggest conversation, however, is what happens after Grimes leaves — something that has all but been confirmed at this point.

“That’s stuff that I obviously don’t want to spoil for fans, but I think what I can tell you is that we’ve got a great story for Rick,” new showrunner Angela Kang told Deadline prior to the show’s panel. “He’s actively thinking about what needs to be done to build for the future.”

Grimes, played by Andrew Lincoln, has always represented the show’s steadfast leader. His departure comes just one season after his fictional son, Carl, was killed off.

The Walking Dead returns for its ninth season on Oct. 7.