When does Shane die in The Walking Dead?

Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Shane Walsh (Jon Bernthal) - The Walking Dead - Season 2, Episode 10 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Shane Walsh (Jon Bernthal) - The Walking Dead - Season 2, Episode 10 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC /

In The Walking Dead series, Shane Walsh was the best friend and partner of Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln). This character portrayed by Jon Bernthal was one of those you love to hate, and many viewers wish he lasted longer in the series. It would have been exciting to see him come against villains like the Governor (David Morrissey) or Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), or would he have sided with them?

Walking Dead
Shane Walsh (Jon Bernthal), Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and Lori Grimes (Sarah Wayne Callies) – The Walking Dead _ Season 2 _ Gallery – Photo Credit: Matthew Welch/AMC /

Bernthal is a diverse actor, and his portrayal of Shane in The Walking Dead series was outstanding. He had the swagger and temperament to pull off this character who lost his best friend and gained his family, then upon the return of his friend lost the family, he thought he was the better man to lead. This led to much dissension between Shane and Rick.

When viewers were first introduced to Shane in the series, he and Rick were discussing women in their squad car when they received the call of a high-speed chase. This would lead to Rick being shot, twice, one of which would land him in a coma.

The Walking Dead – Shane Walsh

After the outbreak, Shane would take charge of Lori Grimes (Sarah Wayne Callis) and her son Carl (Chandler Riggs). He tells Lori that Rick died at the hospital, and the two form an attachment. He would lead them to safety and create the Atlanta group that Rick would eventually find his way to.

Shane was extremely bitter at Rick’s return and the treatment from Lori, who felt betrayed by him. Rick, a natural leader, took over the Atlanta group, which added more fuel to Shane’s resentment of him.

He had many redeeming qualities, combat training, protective instincts, and leadership abilities. Still, he allowed his obsession with Lori to take over and would then begin to make morally questionable choices. Shane’s actions and change in his personality happened early after the outbreak, but it is the exact change seen in many others years into the apocalypse.

During the season 2 penultimate episode, “Better Angels,” Shane would meet his maker. He concocts a story that leads him and Rick to search for a missing prisoner, but Rick quickly realizes he has ulterior motives.

His last words to Rick: “What happened, Rick? I thought you weren’t the good guy anymore. Ain’t that what you said? Even right here, right now, you ain’t gonna fight for ’em? I’m a better father than you, Rick. I’m better for Lori than you, man. It’s ’cause I’m a better man than you, Rick. ‘Cause I can be here and I’ll fight for it. You come back here and you just destroy everything! You got a broken woman. You got a weak boy. You ain’t got the first clue on how to fix it. Raise your gun.”

Rick refuses to raise his gun but ends up stabbing Shane, telling him he brought it on himself. He becomes distraught, and then Carl appears, shocked at seeing Shane dead. Viewers think Carl aims his gun at his father, but he is actually aiming behind him at a reanimated Shane. Carl kills the walker version of Shane.

This is the first time viewers see someone change without being bit. In the following episode, Rick will share what Dr. Jenner (Noah Emmerich) told him at the CDC, “We’re all infected.”

Interestingly, Shane’s death was leaked by the AMC shop. The DVD release was announced with bonus feature descriptions, including “Shane’s last episode.”

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