23. Walker Sophia
One of the great iconic moments of The Walking Dead also is one of the most brutal walker kills. In the season 2 mid-season finale “Pretty Much Dead Already” the group and viewers find out what really happened to Sophia.
After Shane initiates a slaughter of all the walkers being kept in the barn one small walker comes slowly out into the sunlight. It’s Sophia. There’s a massive bite on her neck. Most likely she was killed the first day that she was lost. She probably wandered onto the farm property and Otis put her in the barn before Carl got shot.
The emotional impact of seeing Sophia as a walker is still something that affects viewers. It changed the course of Carol’s story arc forever. It also changed the group forever. While it was unlikely at that point in the story they would find Sophia alive they all still had hope. When that hope was dashed it took the group a long time to recover.
In that moment Rick had to accept not only that he failed, but that his failure cost Sophia her life. When he shoots her a part of his humanity died. And what happened to Sophia continues to haunt him.
Sophia coming out of the barn as a walker and Rick raising his Colt to shoot her in the head is one of the most brutal walker kills the show has ever done.