‘The Walking Dead’: A Farewell to Michonne and a Look Back at Her Best Moments

When Danai Gurira announced that she would be leaving The Walking Dead, fans were devastated. Her character, the deadly katana-wielding Michonne grew to be a fan favorite over the course of eight seasons. It’s hard to imagine what The Walking Dead will be like without her. Fans loved Michonne for more than just her excellent sword-wielding skills and fierce fighting moves. She was, without a doubt, one of the strongest characters in the face of a seemingly hopeless apocalypse, never surrendering her fight and drive for survival. In honor of one of our favorite characters and as a final farewell, we’ve compiled a list of Michonne’s best moments from her mysterious first appearance to her poetically perfect final exit from the world of the survivors. 

Read on for a trip down memory lane of Michonne’s most savage, most fierce, and overall best moments on The Walking Dead

Danai Gurira
Danai Gurira | AMC

10. Michonne saves Andrea

When creating a countdown of a character’s best moments, it seems only right to start off with their very first appearance on The Walking Dead especially when you have an entrance as intense and mysterious as Michonne. 

Fans didn’t get to know Michonne until Season 3, but she made her first shocking appearance right at the end of Season 2. The survivors were scattered after a colossal herd of walkers overran Hershel’s farm. Andrea was separated from the rest of the group and presumed dead. However, she merely got lost while being chased by a group of walkers. Unable to run anymore, Andrea collapses from exhaustion and right when she might have met a very gruesome end, a quick slash eliminates the walkers. Andrea stares up in fear and curiosity at her savior: a hooded figure with two chained walkers at her side. 

Fans of the The Walking Dead comic book series knew exactly who the show was introducing and couldn’t contain their excitement. Other fans were just as eager to learn more about this mysterious stranger who would soon become a fan favorite. 

Danai Gurira and Andrew Lincoln
Danai Gurira and Andrew Lincoln | AMC

9. Michonne’s relationship with Rick 

Love is hard to find in a zombie apocalypse, so when Rick and Michonne held hands and kissed for the very first time in Season 6 Episode 10 “The Next World”, it was a moment that felt absolutely right and absolutely needed amongst the horrors of surviving hordes of walkers and rival groups. When Rick and Michonne became “Richonne”, their relationship was truly a marriage made in heaven with both characters being seasoned and scarred by the world around them in a way both characters could empathize with. Their romance took a long time to blossom since the pair met in Season 3 as the two learned to trust and depend on one another, evolving from partners in survival to partners in love. Plus, they’re pretty great at disposing of walkers together. Can you say power couple? 

Chandler Riggs and Danai Gurira
Chandler Riggs and Danai Gurira | AMC

8. Michonne bonds with Carl 

Michonne and Carl had a rocky start at first. Carl didn’t exactly trust Michonne right from the beginning and after all, can you really blame a kid being raised in the apocalypse for being a little skeptical of new people? 

The two finally get the chance to get to know one another on a supply run in Season 3 Episode 12 “Clear”. Rick, Carl, and Michonne travel to find weapons and ammunition for the upcoming battle against The Governor. However, things don’t go according to plan and the group gets separated, leaving Carl and Michonne together much to Carl’s anger. However, he quickly learns that Michonne isn’t so bad after all when she risks her life to venture inside a cafe full of walkers to retrieve a picture of Carl with his parents. She also retrieves a cat sculpture just because it’s “beautiful”, allowing Carl to see a different side of her. 

From then on, Carl and Michonne become best friends and almost develop a sort of mother-son bond. Their relationship is definitely one of the most heartwarming aspects of the show. 

Danai Gurira
Danai Gurira | AMC Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

7. Michonne takes down a room full of walkers 

After watching Michonne absolutely obliterate every walker in her path, there’s no doubt that she can hold her own against a herd of walkers. Still, it’s always exciting to see the katana-wielding warrior in her element especially in her final episode. 

Michonne has always had the ability to walk into dangerous situations with a clear, calm head and sharp instincts, so when Virgil takes her somewhere chock full of vicious walkers, we definitely aren’t afraid for her. She orders Virgil to hide and quickly tears apart the living dead within a few minutes, showing she’s definitely not someone to be trifled with. Yet, Virgil still tries to trifle with Michonne by both drugging and attempting to kidnap her. To no one’s surprise, Michonne wins in the end, escaping and actually sparing Virgil. 

Danai Gurira
Danai Gurira | AMC

6. Michonne kills an entire herd of walkers 

After the prison is demolished and overrun by walkers in Season 4 Episode 8 “Too Far Gone”, the survivors are separated and forced to run in opposite directions, with none of them knowing whether or not their fellow family of survivors made it out. Michonne is especially devastated by this and degenerates back into her former self: a cold, hardened survivor. 

In Season 4 Episode 9 “After”, she wanders through the woods, chains up two walkers, and begins her journey alone once again. After walking amongst the dead for some time and seeing a walker that resembled her a little too much, Michonne snaps. She takes down the entire herd along with her new pet walkers in a fit of frustration, pain, and heartbreak. Aside from being another awesome action sequence, this is such a definitive moment for Michonne. She realizes that she has found a purpose in surviving the apocalypse and no longer wants to be part of the walking dead on Earth. 

After slaughtering an entire herd with her own two hands, she discovers a trail of footprints (that actually belong to Rick and Carl) and follows them, refusing to be a lone survivor with nothing to live for again. 

5. Michonne gets creative 

The war between Rick’s group and the Saviors escalates in Season 7. On the drive back to Alexandria, the group encounters a huge roadblock of cars and walkers created by the Saviors. Not one to give up without some ingenuity, Michonne and Rick team up by tethering a tripwire across two cars. Then, the duo drove side by side, literally tearing through a path of walkers in a pretty horrifically gruesome (yet awesome) sequence. After clearing the initial horde, the power couple takes care of the rest of the walkers with some glorious melee action and dynamite. The scene just goes to show that even without her famous katana blade, Michonne is still a lethal weapon all on her own. 

Danai Gurira
Danai Gurira | AMC

4. Michonne takes down the Governor’s men wounded

It’s one thing to fight off a handful of gun-toting men on your own with nothing but a sword. It’s another thing entirely to do it with a bullet wound. 

From the moment Andrea and Michonne arrived at the Governor’s settlement, Woodbury, Michonne knew something wasn’t right. From the sight of military trucks with bullet holes and a collection of unsavory characters, Woodbury clearly isn’t the best place to be in Michonne’s mind. So, she tries to leave peacefully, but the Governor didn’t exactly want such a dangerous woman running free so he sends Merle and a few of his henchmen to eliminate her. Big mistake. 

First, Michonne leaves the henchmen with a bloody warning: the words “Go Back” spelled out with walker parts. Still, they continue to pursue her and are slain within minutes. Merle manages to shoot Michonne in the thigh, but not even a bullet wound could keep her down. Michonne fights off both Merle and a walker before making her way to Rick’s prison without any additional scratches and baby formula. All in a good day’s work for our favorite katana-slashing walker slayer. 

David Morrissey and Danai Gurira
David Morrissey and Danai Gurira | AMC

3. Michonne kills the Governor 

Seriously, has there ever been a more despicable character in The Walking Dead than the Governor? He tortured several of our favorite survivors, including Michonne, killed Hershel, and is just overall a dangerously insane character to come across during the apocalypse. That’s why it is just oh-so rewarding when every survivor gets a swing at the Governor during the climactic battle at the prison before Michonne plunges her katana right through his chest. 

In a moment where every fan definitely screamed, “Yeah!” at their television sets, Michonne took down one of the most evil forces the survivors have had to face. The scene, simultaneously brutal and cathartic for viewers, allowed Michonne to save Rick from certain death and avenge the many fallen friends and survivors who died at the Governor’s demented hands in what is absolutely one of the most powerful instances of good triumphing over evil in the show.

Danai Gurira
Danai Gurira | AMC

2. Michonne takes her place as leader after Rick’s “death” 

Loss is a recurring theme in The Walking Dead. After all, as a wise man named Hershel once said, “You step outside, you risk your life.” Every one of the survivors has experienced some sort of heart wrenching loss whether at the hands of bloodthirsty walkers or vicious rival survivors. When Michonne believes that she has just witnessed Rick’s death, fans’ hearts broke. At this point, almost everyone Michonne has loved deeply has died, but just as expected from such a strong character, the loss doesn’t destroy her. Instead, Michonne steps up and becomes the leader of Alexandria in Rick’s place. In Season 9 Episode 6 “Who Are You Now?”, the series reveals that it has been six years since Rick’s supposed demise and since then, Michonne has risen into the role of a leader. 

From a hardened, traumatized survivor to the leader of an entire settlement, Michonne has grown tremendously over the course of the series, making a farewell all the more bittersweet. 

Danai Gurira
Danai Gurira | AMC

1. Michonne ventures into the unknown 

Wearing her famous hooded cloak with two chained walkers in tow, Michonne makes her exit from the world of The Walking Dead. First, her arc finally comes full circle. On her journey, she comes across a small group of people who have been separated from their group by walkers. In a fierce Michonne fashion, she cuts down the walkers and offers her assistance to the group in a bittersweet nod to how she met Andrea and introduced herself to fans in the very beginning. 

The Walking Dead’s farewell and homage to Michonne is both bittersweet and perfect for her unstoppable character. Now, all fans can hope for is a potential spin-off series where we can follow Michonne’s adventures even further. AMC, we’re looking at you. 

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