Carl’s youth and recklessness have led to many perilous situations, but like his father, Carl stood up many times in the face of danger.
Here are five times Carl proved to be the bravest character on The Walking Dead.
Shane was a close family friend of the Grimes and Carl’s surrogate father while Rick was comatose. He also developed a sexual relationship with Lori, Carl’s mom. Shane became increasingly jealous and erratic after Rick returned. Shane plotted to kill Rick, win back Lori, and take control of the group. Rick stabbed Shane during a tense confrontation, but it was Carl who shot Shane after he had turned.
Shooting Shane was hard for Carl not only because of their relationship, but Carl had a fear of guns having been shot in a stomach prior and also unable to shoot the walker that killed Dale.
Putting Lori Down
During a walker attack on the prison, Carl became trapped with Maggie and his pregnant mother, Lori. Lori went into premature labor, and fearing the baby wouldn’t survive, instructed Maggie to perform an emergency C-section. After saying their emotional goodbyes, Carl not only watched as his mother was cut open, but also had to reach in and grab his sister. Later, fearing her reanimation, Carl shot Lori in the head.
Carl almost shot his dad in Season 4, after he feared Rick had turned.
Before The Governor attacked the prison, Carl was sent away with his baby sister and the less capable fighters, Hershel and Beth. One of the Governor’s soldiers, Jody, fled into the forest and came across Carl. The young man handed over his weapon, but Carl still shot him in cold blood. It was a turning point for Carl, as he embraced the cruel, kill-or-be-killed reality of the world.
Carl tried to befriend Ron in Alexandria due to their close age. Ron was resentful that Rick killed his father, Pete, and had started a relationship with his mother, Jessie. Ron was also jealous of Carl’s relationship with Enid. During a walker attack, Ron actually tried to murder Carl but failed. They banded together to escape, but during the chaos, Ron’s brother and mother were killed. In a fit of rage, Ron tried to shoot Rick, but was stabbed by Michonne. Ron reflexively pulled the trigger, and the bullet struck Carl in the eye.
After Negan killed Abraham and Glenn, Carl wanted to exact revenge. He stowed away on one of Negan’s supply trucks, and went on a one-man assassination mission to The Sanctuary. Carl killed two men and was eventually caught, but impressed Negan with his bravery.
In the midseason finale, Carl volunteered himself to Negan in order to save the other Alexandrians. After being reunited in the sewers, Carl revealed to Rick that he had been bitten.
What is your favorite Carl Grimes moment? Tweet your thoughts to @getfandom.
The Walking Dead, featuring the death of Carl Grimes, airs February 25.