Fans have a crazy theory that’s quickly gaining momentum during Season 6 of Fear the Walking Dead. They think the storyline has the perfect opening to allow Madison to return to the show. We never actually saw her die on the series, so is it possible? Could Madison return to Fear the Walking Dead?Could Madison be returning to #FeartheWalkingDead? Click To Tweet
This article has spoilers for Fear the Walking Dead Season 6, up to the episode right before the mid-season finale.
Madison Never Died on Screen
Showrunners Andrew Chambliss and Ian Goldberg took over the series in Season 4 after Dave Erickson left. They changed things up big time. They departed from Erickson’s goal for Madison and killed her off instead. But ever since they did that, fans have been hoping that Madison would return.
Madison’s death was revealed in the mid-season finale of Season 4. She died off-screen, after leading the walkers into a ballpark and locking herself in with them so Nick and Alicia could escape. But because we never actually saw her die, fans have held out hope that maybe, just maybe, she survived.
At the time, Chambliss and Goldberg were quite clear that Madison was dead, even if we didn’t see her death. They confirmed with EW after the episode that Madison had died.
Goldberg said at the time: “The thing Madison fought for, the thing that she gave her life for was a philosophy about a way of living and treating people in this world that she left behind in the people that survived her. And that’s something they’re gonna carry with them going forward. Madison’s legacy will be held very much in the way that these characters continue in the world going forward.”
Chambliss told The Hollywood Reporter: “There were thousands of walkers in that stadium that were feet away from her just before they went up in flames. So Madison died making that sacrifice for her family.” When asked to confirm specifically that she had died, Chambliss said: “Yes.”
They also confirmed that Kim Dickens hadn’t asked to be written off the show, but it was a decision for the storyline.
Fans See an Opening for Madison to Return in Season 6
Still, fans are hoping that the showrunners’ feelings about Madison’s journey have changed since that interview in 2018. They point to all sorts of clues that Madison might still be alive. Some have even made videos envisioning Madison in the Season 6 opening, like this one below.
For example, there’s an unknown, secret person who saved Morgan’s life. It’s clearly not Sherry at this point, since she’s been reunited with Dwight. Some fans hope that maybe it’s Madison.
Redditor u/AD-2018 insists that it must be Madison, because why else would they keep it a secret on the show? They wrote: “I’m thinking it’s gotta be Madison. I mean unless it’s a new character (and if it was why keep it a mystery?) then who else could it be? It could be Dakota, but she’s a teenage girl and I don’t see her being able to kill all those walkers and drag Morgan away from the area on her own. Madison however, does make sense somewhat. We didn’t see her die for one; Kim Dickens keeps hinting that she could come back; and also that survey referencing Madison’s return. I just find it hard to believe that the topic isn’t at least in discussion.”
Others think it’s Madison who has been leaving spray-painted messages that read: “The end is the new beginning.” That could have multiple levels of meaning, including Madison’s “end” really being a new beginning on the show.
But some fans think that some of the things the “End is the Beginning” Group is doing are just too dark to fit Madison’s personality. Why would she be sabotaging Ginny instead of looking for Alicia, after all?
A fan asked Lennie James, who plays Morgan, about the possibility of Madison returning in a Reddit AMA. James responded: “I would love to be in a scene with Kim. Anywhere. In anything. As I said to someone else about Duane, I don’t know the answer, but anything is possible in this WD universe!”
In a virtual panel at NYCC about a month ago, user Eurech said they wanted to see Madison at CRM on The Walking Dead: World Beyond, Fansided reported. Gimple responded: “All I can say is that there’s some possibilities. With Tales [of the Walking Dead] and beyond. (But not Beyond).”
Unfortunately, that seems to put to rest the idea of Madison returning to Fear. She might return to Tales in the form of a flashback, but it seems like she’s still really dead. Unless, of course, Gimple is giving us the runaround because he doesn’t want us to guess that she’s coming back. Which has certainly happened on TV series before.
These theories about Madison’s resurrection have been circulating in fandom ever since Madison died. In August 2019, Comicbook.com reported that fans thought Madison was returning then. They thought she was behind the paintings on the trees, which she was not. When one fan tweeted #bringbackMadison”, The Walking Dead’s official Twitter account responded with this photo of Madison in front of a barbed-wire fence in Season 3. The official Twitter account wrote: “As close as we can come atm.”
As close as we can come atm pic.twitter.com/YzYM0H6BFr
— The Walking Dead (@TheWalkingDead) August 14, 2019
Interestingly, Season 6 just had a storyline surrounding a barbed wire fence and a murder mystery that was never solved. Some people think maybe Madison was the person who committed the unsolved murder. Sure, that idea wasn’t really in play back when this photo above was shared, so any similarity is just coincidental. But it’s still interesting, isn’t it?
If fans are right in their theories, then will the show return to Erickson’s plan for Madison. Erickson had envisioned turning Madison into an evil character who would face off against Nick. With Nick gone, who would even play that role? Strand? Alicia? It wouldn’t be nearly as fulfilling, especially without watching her evolution over the past few seasons.
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