Warning – Major Spoilers for Season 6 of The Walking Dead

Watching The Walking Dead is always a stressful experience. Most of the time I peek at the screen through clenched fingers, flinching every time a zombie jumps out and attacks our heroes (spoiler alert: it happens a lot). But my fear is justified: no one is safe on this show, not even those characters we’ve grown to love for six seasons.

This season is especially stressful, as big bad Negan is finally about to make an appearance. Fans of the comic books know just how terrifying Negan, leader of The Saviors, will be and that he kills a major, beloved character right off the bat (pun intended). The show has never been perfectly true to the comics, sometimes killing one character in place of another, or keeping people alive long after they’ve died on the page. But it has been hinted over and over that there’s going to be a BIG death coming in the season 6 finale and that shooting it was significant enough to leave the cast shaken and upset. Great.

So it’s probably going to be someone we love who’s been with us since the beginning. *SOB* There are tons of rumors going around about who might be the one killed, and all of them leave me with a bitter taste in my mouth. I realize how insignificant it is to pray for characters to live on a show as brutal as this one, but here are the six people I really, really want to make it out of the zombie apocalypse alive:

  1. Glenn Rhee (Steven Yeun)


Leave my poor Glenn alone! He already almost died in season 6, had a body ripped apart on top of him, and survived under a dumpster without food or water for days. Even though he’s the one who (SPOILER ALERT) gets horrifically beaten to death by Negan in the comics, I’m really hoping and praying and willing to sacrifice parts of my soul for him to make it through the finale. From the beginning, I was drawn to the geeky pizza delivery boy, and his progression into a badass fighter and all-around hottie has been pretty awesome to watch. Please let him only “die” once this season.


  1. Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus)


Part of the joy of The Walking Dead is seeing how much a post-apocalyptic world changes people; sometimes for the better. That is certainly the case with Daryl, who starts out loud, brash, reckless and kind of an asshole. But he finds his place – and his worth – with Rick and the gang, and now he’s one of the most morally stable characters on the show. Watching him die would be devastating and a waste of such positive character development.


  1. Maggie Greene (Lauren Cohan)


As far as I’m concerned, Maggie and Glenn (and little baby Rhee) go hand-in-hand. They’re my favorite couple on the show, and not just because they’re the only couple who have survived more than a season or two. They seem to really love each other and their relationship is a true partnership built on trust. Maggie is awesome in her own right of course: a natural leader, a warrior and the only surviving member of her family. To kill her while she’s pregnant seems unnecessarily cruel. But this is The Walking Dead we’re talking about, and cruel is basically their middle name. Still, I will root for Maggie until her very end (which will hopefully be peacefully of old age many, many years from now).


  1. Carol Peletier (Melissa McBride)
Melissa McBride as Carol Peletier - The Walking Dead _ Season 5, Gallery - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC


Carol is hands-down the most interesting character on this show. When we first met her in season 1, I was sure that the abused, meek housewife wouldn’t last more than an episode or two. Luckily I was wrong, and Carol has turned into one of the toughest, most bad ass characters around. And not just because she’s good with a knife. She’s clever and has single-handedly saved the gang from both Terminus and The Wolves. I honestly don’t think Rick and the others could survive without her at this point.


  1. Michonne (Danai Gurira)
Michonne (Danai Gurira) - The Walking Dead - Season 3, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC


If I could only pick one character to have beside me during a zombie apocalypse, it would definitely be Michonne. She’s clearly the best fighter of the group, taking down the dead with practiced ease. She’s also just…cool. And fun. And someone I’d want to hang out with. It took a lot for Michonne to learn how to let people in and her death would be a serious tragedy. Also, she just started hooking up with Rick! Let the girl have some sexy-times before the show even thinks about killing her off.


  1. Paul “Jesus” Rovia (Tom Payne)


It’s only been a few episodes, but Jesus has completely won me over. To the point where I already do not want him to die. Ever. He’s funny, smart and quick, moving like a tornado of legs and feet when cornered. He also has a clear moral compass, shows a strong judge of character and seems willing to do anything for his people. Plus, he’s super hot. Let’s keep this guy around for a long time, OK?

Notice how Rick isn’t even on this list? I don’t think I’m asking for too much here, Walking Dead. Just keep these six alive for the foreseeable future and all will be well.