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The Carl Storyline That Makes No Sense To The Walking Dead Fans

Throughout The Walking Dead's 10-season run, there have been plenty of moments that left fans feeling frustrated. Plot twists that felt like they came out of nowhere, storylines that dragged on way too long, or characters taking strange turns aren't the norm per say, but all of these issues have come up a few times. Hey, when a series has been on the air as long as TWD, it's bound to happen from time to time.

There are some moments that stick out to fans more than others, though — ones that were so head-scratching, they still can't let them go, even long after the characters involved have moved on (or shuffled off the mortal coil). One, in particular, involving Rick Grimes' (Andrew Lincoln) son Carl (Chandler Riggs), still has fans complaining, even though the teenager was killed off several seasons ago. 

Let's take a look at the Carl storyline that made no sense to fans of The Walking Dead — and why it bugs them so much.

Carl Grimes was a controversial character during his tenure on The Walking Dead

Growing up in a zombie apocalypse can't be easy. Carl Grimes was good proof of that. During his eight seasons on The Walking Dead, he experienced a ton of trauma, and he didn't always handle it that well. Sometimes, fans found his attitude and behavior to be a little bit grating. And it wasn't always easy to tell where the series' writers were planning to take his character. At one point, it seemed like he was perhaps becoming too hardened by the dangerous world he lived in, and he might take a darker path like some of The Walking Dead's villains. At other times, he seemed primed to take over for his father as a leader and mentor to those around him.

Even though his personality and actions were a bit all over the place, you could usually chalk it up to standard teen angst. He was trying to figure out who he was, right? Isn't that what most kids his age do, regardless of whether they spend their free time fighting off the undead? 

However, there was one development for him that still stands out to fans as being completely inexplicable.

Fans struggled to understand why Carl Grimes became a pacifist

A recent post on the /r/thewalkingdead subreddit, one fan asked what the dumbest thing The Walking Dead writers have had a character on the series do so far just to drive the story along. A comment by user PlamiAG discussing one of Carl's story developments received a large number of upvotes and agreement from other users. They said: "Carl suddenly becoming a pacifist in [season 8] despite the fact that he was the one who first shot in the [season 7] finale and that he went on a suicide mission to kill Negan himself."

While many users agreed, some spoke up in Carl's defense, trying to find nuance in the development. One user, littlemiller6, wrote that, "I have no issue with Carl's change of heart. After all he was a kid growing up in a changing world, and he saw what was becoming of it, and hoped to see it go in another direction." Another user, Bickmick284, noted that Carl wasn't technically a pacifist — he eventually told Rick he wished he had killed Negan — but he just didn't want innocent people to die. "The problem is the writing was all over the place," they admitted. 

That last point, ultimately, is the crux of the issue for many fans — that Carl swung between being murderous and fiercely arguing against murder in a pretty short period of time. Unfortunately, we never got to see where his character would land on the good-to-evil spectrum, because he tragically died not long after the storyline in question.