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The Walking Dead Credits Easter Egg Only Real Fans Noticed In The Season 8 Premiere

When you've been on television as long as "The Walking Dead" and have fans that have absolutely slavish attention to detail, you have to make your Easter eggs absolutely perfect and sustained. Various episodes of "The Walking Dead" are chock full of Easter eggs including nods to everything from series creator Robert Kirkman's other work, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Stephen King, and the late director George Romero, just to touch upon a few. 

Originally starting off by following the wounded Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) as he wakes from a coma, Rick's fugue state is shared with the audience, who go on a shared journey throughout the first episode and observe a shattered and undead-infested world. Surviving is always the number one concern for Rick and his disparate group of allies, and they go through many heartbreaking and deadly scenes that not only involve rotting zombies, but dangerous and unstable human adversaries who often pose a far greater threat than any horde of hungry undead. 

Season 8 focuses primarily on the war with the bat-wielding Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and his army of Saviors, who demand a tithe of resources from their would-be subjects. Season 8 also features the 100th episode of the popular show. To commemorate this moment, "The Walking Dead" creative team planned ahead for a number of special scenes. So, what exactly transpired during the start of Season 8? 

The opening credits of Season 8 parallel the first moments of the show

The first moments of the Season 8 premiere episode ("Mercy") see Rick and Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) skulking through an abandoned highway. Here, they search for any salvageable supplies and are confronted by a zombie girl. One particularly observant Reddit user noticed some glaring similarities between this scene and an iconic scene from the very first episode of the series ("Days Gone Bye"). In fact, the first scene in Season 8 is a nearly perfect duplicate of the famous scene in which Rick kills the bicycle girl walker. 

Proudly displaying an edited video that sets the two scenes side-by-side on the r/thewalkingdead subreddit, u/Alik013 created a thread that caused several others to chime in with interesting factoids. The video shows both Rick and Carl making a similar journey, complete with a shot-for-shot recreation -– the only difference is that in the 100th episode, the decay of man-made objects is much more pronounced, as well as nature's efforts to reclaim the land. 

In response, u/SamuelNuttall211 noted that there are other scenes from the 100th episode that acknowledge moments from the first, and said, "This was really great seeing all the references to 1x1, they had a shot at the end where Gabe was trapped with Negan, where it was the same shot as the Tank scene at the end of 1x1." Others like u/fatbean100, u/mrfox130, and u/why_is_he_bread were all surprised by the synced-up scenes and expressed appreciation for the faithful recreations. 

Notably, like nearly everything else in the show, these recreations required the work and input of a large number of cast and crew, including one special guest.

One Reddit fan pointed out a special guest zombie who returned for the 100th episode

In talking about Episode 100, "The Walking Dead" executive producer Greg Nicotero told The Hollywood Reporter, "It really gave us an opportunity to show the audience how far we've come, to pay tribute to the cast, every single castmember who has been on the show from the beginning and every crewmember who has worked on the show, to go back to where it all started." 

This plan didn't go unnoticed. Back on the Reddit thread, u/iJashin even pointed out that the actress portraying the walker girl in Season 8 is actually the same as in the pilot episode. In a post to her Instagram page after the episode aired, the actress, Addy Miller, expressed her excitement about returning to the series after so long, sharing photos of herself in zombie makeup in both episodes. In a similarly timed interview with The Huffington Post, Miller explained that it was difficult keeping her return a secret. She said, "They had to film me separately from Andrew because he's known to spill some spoilers, so they had me in hiding the whole time so the crew couldn't even know."

In another interview with Entertainment Weekly, co-executive producer Denise Huth said of filming this particular episode, "The energy here is really good. Everybody is super-pumped up ... This year is a really exciting way to start." Even for those "Walking Dead" fans that did not immediately recognize the opening moments of Season 8 for its tribute to Season 1, to see it now certainly shows how much attention to detail a series like "The Walking Dead" requires.