‘The Walking Dead’: Everything We Know About Maggie’s Fate in Season 9

Maggie Rhee is, without question, one of the most important characters on The Walking Dead. But Lauren Cohan’s prolonged contract negotiations have left some wondering if Maggie will even survive very far into Season 9. That could mean trouble for the series, since the role she plays will be essential as we head into Season 9. Because even though the war with Negan is over, there’s plenty of other trouble brewing.

Here’s everything we know about what Season 9’s arc could mean for Maggie — including a huge change in her priorities (page 6) and the latest updates on Cohan’s contract negotiations (page 7).

1. She’ll come into her own as leader of the Hilltop

Jesus and Maggie aiming weapons.

Maggie will be taking on the role of a badass leader. | AMC

In Season 8, Maggie finally took her rightful place as the leader at Hilltop. And thus far, she’s earned the trust and respect of most of her fellow colonists. Now that the All Out War is at an end, Maggie’s leadership will be more important than ever.

Rick once hinted that he’d cede his own command to her once they defeated Negan. So, Season 9 could be the time that she really begins to show her fellow survivors that she has what it takes to help them stay alive.

Next: Even though Maggie has earned her place at the top, there are still some ready to drag her down.

2. Maggie has unfinished business with Gregory

Gregory standing in front of the wooden gate.

Maggie will be addressing this. | AMC

After Gregory’s double-crossing relationship with Negan came to light, Maggie put him in his rightful place — prison. Unfortunately, that probably won’t be the last we see of him. In The Walking Dead comics, Gregory can’t stand the fact that Maggie took his place and eventually tries to poison her.

That leads Maggie to have to make a difficult decision — keep him alive, or execute him, so he serves as an example to everyone else who would try to cross her. A similar storyline could play out between Maggie and Gregory in Season 9. But at least she’ll have some backup if the former Hilltop leader tries to usurp her.

Next: Maggie’s bond with one character will probably continue to grow

3. Maggie will have plenty of support from Jesus

Jesus and Maggie talking to Gregory.

She has a friend on her side. | AMC

We’ve watched Maggie and Jesus grow closer throughout the seventh and eighth seasons. And Walking Dead comic fans know that in the post-All Out War era, the two have formed a very close bond: He’s pretty much her right hand man.

Now that the commotion surrounding the war with the Saviors is over, Maggie and the Hilltoppers will have a chance to decide what kind of a world they want to build. And she’ll almost certainly rely on Jesus, most, to help her make decisions and execute her plans.

That allegiance will be especially important when it comes to one of her most difficult decisions, too.

Next: Maggie has bones to pick with another central character, too.

4. A civil war is brewing on The Walking Dead, with Maggie leading the charge

Maggie looking spooked and concerned.

Maggie is in charge now. | AMC

In The Walking Dead Season 8 finale, fans saw Maggie take an unexpected course. She began plotting against Rick with Jesus and Daryl.  Maggie’s anger at the decision to keep Negan alive is justified. But if she seeks retribution against Rick, it won’t just put one of the series’ longest-lasting friendships in jeopardy.

It could start a civil war amongst the barely-united colonies. And with Maggie front and center in the fight, it could be a major turning point for her character. But before we see the outcome of Rick and Maggie’s seemingly impending feud, the two may be caught up in another equally dangerous conflict.

Next: There’s another big villain coming.

5. Maggie will soon have to face yet another adversary

Maggie speaking to Jesus.

She’s got obstacles to overcome. | AMC

The Walking Deads Season 8 finale also hinted at another huge storyline for Season 9: the arrival of a new villain. And when they show up, all bets will be off for Maggie, Rick, and the rest of our favorite characters.

The Whisperers have a unique approach to survival (let’s just say it makes the whole wearing zombie guts idea seem downright pleasant). And they’re also every bit as brutal as Negan when it comes to protecting their turf.

In the comics, Maggie is among those that fight the Whisperers. So we can expect her to play a role in determining how they’ll be dealt with in Season 9. And amidst all the drama and chaos, she’ll have another huge change to contend with.

Next: There’s a bit of unfinished business where Maggie and Glenn are concerned.

6. Maggie has another important role to take on soon

Maggie being comforted.

She’ll be the character to watch. | AMC

We’ve been waiting for Maggie to give birth since Season 6. And, let’s face it, that’s a really long time. In The Walking Dead universe, amazingly only a few months have passed over the past few seasons. If the series keeps going at this rate, Maggie probably won’t have her baby until Season 20.

But, if it follows the comics — which jump forward in time more two years after the All Out War — then there’s a good chance we might finally meet Maggie and Glenn’s baby in Season 9. It would be a great way for The Walking Dead to honor Glenn’s legacy and show us another side of Maggie. And even though we might miss the actual delivery, few fans would complain about seeing Baby Rhee in Season 9.

Since fans have been waiting so long for this particular development, it would be tragic if it never came to pass. But some have worried that could be a reality as the chance that Cohan might not return felt increasingly likely.

Next: Will Cohan return to The Walking Dead and continue to tell Maggie’s story?

7. Cohan’s contract negotiations have reached an end

Lauren Cohan speaking into a black microphone while gesturing with her hands.

Lauren Cohan | Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images

On April 25, 2018, Cohan announced that she would officially be returning to The Walking Dead for Season 9. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, she explained, “There’s a lot more Maggie story to tell.”

While it’s a relief to know Maggie’s story won’t be over, there could be a twist when it comes to how it plays out in Season 9.

Next: Maggie’s fate on the show could still be a bit of a surprise.

8. We may be seeing less of Maggie in the future

Maggie being hugged by Grimes.

Will her end come soon? | AMC

One thing we don’t know is how much Maggie will be around in Season 9. While she was negotiating her contract, Cohan also booked a role in a new ABC pilot, Whiskey Cavalier.  It hasn’t been officially added to the 2018 fall schedule. But if it does get picked up as a full series, Cohan will have to split her time between her new role and The Walking Dead.

That could mean that her role decreases considerably in Season 9, and that she stays mostly on the periphery. Or it could mean that one of the myriad dangers Maggie faces — fighting with Rick, tangling with The Whisperers — could lead to an early demise.

We’ll have to see how her story plays out when The Walking Dead’s ninth season premieres this fall.

Follow Katherine Webb on Twitter @prufrox.

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