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Daryl Dixon Questions We Need Answers To In His Walking Dead Spinoff

The comic book and TV show versions of "The Walking Dead” diverge significantly from one another, but perhaps one of the most glaring differences is the inclusion of Daryl Dixon in the show, a character who isn't in the comics. Fortunately, our crossbow-wielding hero gets enough screen time that it's hard to feel as though he's underrepresented in the franchise, even without any comic appearances to his name. That's about to increase with "Daryl Dixon," a France-set spinoff series that promises to follow him on a solo adventure into the still mostly unexplored wider world of the zombie apocalypse.

When we first met Daryl, he was living in the shadow of his brother Merle, a bigoted man who ultimately caused his own demise through his short-sighted, dog-eat-dog mentality. In contrast, Daryl has long been one of the most community-minded members of the Alexandria crew. Though he admittedly dips out when he feels claustrophobic and certainly enjoys his alone time, there's no denying how much care he puts into protecting those he's come to consider family. It's hard to imagine him outside of the friendships he's formed over the show's run, but the upcoming series has a lot of potential and could very well answer some of our nagging queries about Daryl. Here are some questions about the character we would love to see answered in his solo show.

Spoilers for "The Walking Dead" ahead.

What will happen when he finally reunites with Rick and Michonne?

Perhaps the most obvious question of all is: Will Daryl find Michonne and Rick? This feels more like a "when" rather than an "if," as Daryl discovers in the last episode of "The Walking Dead" that Judith knows Michonne is alive and searching for Rick. This knowledge may very well be all that it takes for Daryl to track the two lovebirds down, but what is he going to do when he finds them? Or will Michonne or Rick find Daryl first? And what have Rick and Michonne even been up to? While we got a glimpse of things in the finale, that left just as many questions as it answered, making this one of the biggest puzzles for the pending spinoffs to tackle.

More importantly, how is Daryl going to respond? He spends much of the final season in the Commonwealth caring for Rick's daughter Judith, and he nearly loses her in the finale after she suffers a gunshot wound from Pamela Milton. Daryl's commitment to his family is always at the forefront of his mind, leaving us to wonder how he's going to react when he sees his long-time friends again after so much has occurred. It seems that both Michonne and Rick have reasons for not staying in touch, but they've missed a lot in their time away. This reunion may not occur in the Daryl spinoff, but we have hopes that the gang will get together for some good old-fashioned zombie fighting again soon.

Are we going to see Connie, Carol, or Judith?

Daryl is going off on his own, so it's unlikely that we're going to be seeing much of the Commonwealth's citizenry in the mix, but that doesn't mean there won't be flashback sequences with some of the people that mean the most to Daryl. The finale of the main series saw Daryl saying temporary goodbyes to three very important people in his life. First up, of course, is Carol, who opts to stay behind, but gives a tearful farewell to Daryl. When he laughs that the goodbye won't be forever, she tells him in no uncertain terms that he's her best friend and she's going to miss him regardless.

Meanwhile, he and Connie have a quick but lighthearted chat about his activities outside of the Commonwealth, while his farewell to Judith is perhaps the most difficult as he's stepped into a surrogate big brother role for her. Though Daryl has relationships with most of the characters on the show due to his continued presence and authority, these three are perhaps the most important to him in the present, all for completely different reasons. While they may not make real-time appearances, it doesn't totally eliminate their potential to drop in via memory or dream sequences. They're all fan-favorite characters who mean a lot to Daryl, so if it occurs, we'll be happy to see it.

Does he still have Beth's knife?

When looking back over the most impactful moments of Daryl's life after he joined the main crew, his relationship with Beth Greene remains one of the most vital, and likewise easily among the most heartbreaking. Though it's difficult to say how their relationship might have evolved had she lived, the way it stands, the two of them had a deeply-felt affection for each other that ranks them at the top of the list when it comes to great friendships of the franchise. Beth was never going to go out as anything less than a hero, but the fallout of her death in the fifth season episode "Coda" absolutely wrecks Daryl and her sister Maggie.

Dying in an altercation with the villainous Dawn at Grady Memorial Hospital, Beth's death remains iconic but also somewhat bizarre, as there is essentially no follow-up on the hospital. We have no idea what happens to the place or the shady group of people that hole up in there. Likewise, we don't know if Daryl still carries Beth's knife, which is a major detail indicating his long-term mourning of her before it falls off the map entirely. It appears to have been stolen by Dwight in the sixth season finale "Last Day on Earth." In the turmoil of the seventh season, we never confirm whether Daryl reclaims Beth's knife. Likewise, it's a bit odd that there was never any follow-up on the GMH plot, considering how devastating it was for the central cast.

How does he get to France?

After years of teasers around what may have initially caused the zombie apocalypse, the finale of the main series appears to have confirmed that the outbreak originated in a laboratory in France, though the details around this have yet to be fleshed out. This could be a major indicator for what Daryl is going to be doing while he's overseas. It seems he will be uncovering one of the greatest long-running mysteries of the series by investigating the circumstances that caused so much global chaos and devastation. The main series thrived by keeping such details close to the vest, but with new spinoffs on the horizon, the franchise is primed to explore its larger mythos in new ways.

We have lots of questions about Daryl's sudden appearance in Europe, and it appears that the character himself will have just as many. AMC president Dan McDermott has indicated that Daryl is caught by surprise when he awakens to find himself in France without any explanation. Even pre-apocalypse it's a fairly long trip to make while unconscious, so that only adds to our growing pile of questions around what exactly this series is going to be about. Even if we don't find out any new information on the outbreak, we're still dying to find out how exactly Daryl just pops up in Paris one day, and what he's going to do to get home.

Will we learn more about his childhood?

One thing we know about Daryl is that his childhood was pretty awful. Though the series thankfully has avoided showing much of the abuse he suffered as a boy, it's very clear in the text that his father was a mean alcoholic and his mother was negligent, leaving his brother Merle as his primary role model. That's not great, because Merle is not a nice guy, and he spent a lot of his youth in juvenile detention as a result. When their mother died in a fire, Daryl wandered the woods alone for over a week, only to return home to a father that didn't even notice he was gone. Merle joins the military, leaving Daryl to bear the full brunt of his father's abuse until the brothers are reunited in adulthood.

However, Merle isn't exactly a knight in shining armor when he returns. In fact, his cruelty toward Daryl is similar to that of their parents, just more subtle. He instills in Daryl a belief that he is worthless and will never amount to anything in life. This mindset continues into the zombie apocalypse until Daryl begins to find a sense of purpose as a part of the group. Though Merle dies at a time when it is still devastating to Daryl, it's easy to get the sense that their truce as brothers was rapidly coming to an end. Still, Daryl references his brother even in the finale, noting that he used to send him out to donate blood when they were younger. What we know of Daryl's childhood is rough stuff, leaving us to wonder if the series will tap back into it. Will we see young Daryl in flashbacks? Or will the spinoff be too occupied with present-day concerns to open up old wounds? Time will tell.

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Is there something we don't know about Leah?

When it comes to tragically misguided characters, "The Walking Dead" has no shortage, but one of its most flawed yet somehow likable antagonists is Daryl's kind-of ex, Leah Shaw. They first encounter one another when Daryl encroaches on Leah's space, and it's a rocky start — she pulls a shotgun on him right off the bat. With Daryl's camp and Leah's cabin fairly near to each other, they have a handful of interactions. The two loners very gradually develop a fondness and a romantic relationship blossoms. However, these two deeply traumatized characters are a little too much alike for their own good, and Leah ultimately leaves when she becomes frustrated with Daryl's attachment to his found family, something she just cannot understand.

The next time we see Leah, she has joined up with the militaristic, paranoid man known as Pope, and her life continues to spiral. Despite running into Daryl once more, she refuses to hear him out, and when he seems to betray Pope, she allows him to take the madman out — only to promptly turn on him, as well. This kicks off a chain of events that leads to her death, but it all feels like it escalates pretty quickly, and the resolution leaves lots of questions with very little time to address any of them. Was there something we missed in Leah's story? Even if she doesn't pop up in a flashback in "Daryl Dixon," we'd love to learn a little more about the circumstances that drove her to join up with a man like Pope, even if it's just a few lines of dialogue. She's one of the pivotal figures in Daryl's post-apocalypse journey, after all.

Why did he lose his faith?

With Rick gone in the ninth season and Michonne in the tenth, the eleventh season of "The Walking Dead" was free to shine the spotlight on Daryl and others. This meant that fans got to learn a handful of surprising new details about several long-time characters, including Daryl's confession that he once believed in God but has since lost his faith. This all came to light in the episode "Rendition." This episode is a rough one for Daryl as he reunites with Leah under terrible circumstances. She has joined a group called the Reapers, led by the religious and clearly unstable Pope. This leads to Daryl being tortured at length only for Leah to eventually opt to vouch for him, despite her distrust.

This all goes terribly wrong over the next several episodes, of course, but in the meantime, Daryl's confession around prior religious beliefs presents its own line of questions. How his family interacted with religion in his childhood doesn't come up in the context of the series, nor do the specific circumstances of his loss of faith. It's hard to imagine Daryl with any kind of strict religious structure, although he appears to have access to some form of spirituality due to his ability to find peace amid so much death and destruction. Will we find out more in his standalone series, or is this another thing that will be left open-ended? We're hoping that "Daryl Dixon" lifts the lid on the titular character's faith — or his lack thereof.

What was he up to during the time jump?

The finale of "The Walking Dead" sees the group go through so much loss and reconciliation that it's hard to gauge what everyone was up to, but one major question centers around — you guessed it — Daryl. The episode opens on him struggling to save Judith's life after she is shot by Pamela. Once she stabilizes, he knows he has to stay on his feet and move on to the next altercation. After reading Pamela the riot act and playing a key role in removing her from power, one would think that our scruffy but loveable loner might take the opportunity to rest up a bit. Yet, as fans of the show know all too well by this point, that is simply not Daryl's way.

The one-year-later time jump of the finale shows him chat briefly with Connie, who asks him how things are going outside the community, indicating that he has spent more time away from the Commonwealth than inside it. Though Judith's revelation that Rick and Michonne are both likely still alive may have spurred him on to search for them, that doesn't really make sense, as they would likely not be anywhere close by. So, what exactly was Daryl up to during this time jump, and what new clue makes him choose to leave in search of his long lost friends? We're guessing that this is going to come up in his solo series, and we can't wait to find out what went down in those 12 months.

What did he do for money pre-apocalypse, anyway?

As noted, most of the details of Daryl's past seem rough enough that we're more than happy to leave them in the rearview mirror, but we certainly have questions regarding what he did for money in his pre-apocalypse life. We get the sense that, whatever it was, it wasn't particularly lucrative, as the tidbit that Merle sent him out to donate blood in exchange for cash regularly paints a pretty clear picture of poverty and despair. However, another thing that comes up time and again throughout the series is Daryl's incredible resourcefulness and his ability to survive seemingly insurmountable odds through fast thinking and ingenuity.

Due to this, as well as Merle's general shadiness, we have some further questions about what exactly Daryl did for money in the years before the zombies caused planet-wide devastation. Donating blood is, after all, not something that pays a lot, nor is it something that one can do every day. Though we get the sense that Daryl's on-paper education is pretty sparse, his street smarts are second to none, and his ability to work keenly and efficiently either with a group or on his own remains unmatched. Did he ever have a solid job before he met up with Rick's crew, and, if so, what was it? This may seem like a minor detail, but every little bit helps when it comes to understanding the enigma that is Daryl Dixon.