After seven seasons of death, mayhem, cannibals, walking corpses, and a wire-covered baseball bat, it was beginning to look like Rick Grimes was never going to smile again. Turns out, all it took was getting captured by a bunch of gun-toting strangers in a junkyard to get a grin back on that bearded mug.
Welcome to the world of #TheWalkingDead, everyone!
In honor of this momentous occasion, let's revisit some of the happy moments from the past seven seasons of The Walking Dead, and see if they elicited a smile. Or a happy cry. Or at least not a scowl. And that goes for the audience at home as much as for Rick & Co.
1. The Reunion (Season 1)
After waking up from his coma in an abandoned hospital, Rick went on quite the journey before he was reunited with his wife, Lori, and son, Carl. He got trapped in a tank, rode a horse, killed his first walker, and met a pizza delivery boy. But the moment he finally got to see his family again was pure gold:
2. Reunited Again (Season 5)
Fast forward to Season 5, where Rick and his crew had just survived their worst nightmare, having almost been eaten by freaking cannibals from Terminus. None other than Carol saved the day, a one woman Termite exterminator. She blew shit up, shot the shit out of the cannibals, and ended the episode by reuniting not only Rick and Carl with Judith, but Tyreese with Sasha.
Read a little more about Carol:
3. Glenn & Maggie Get It On (Season 4)
Who would have thought a former pizza boy and a farmer's daughter would make such a cute, ass-kicking couple? In Season 4 episode "Cherokee Rose," we got one of the sweetest moments between Daryl and Carol, when he handed her a flower called the Cherokee Rose.
It's a sad, yet happy moment, but the mood changed at Steve's Pharmacy, where Maggie and Glenn were on a supply run. Lori thought she was pregnant, so she asked Glenn to pick up a test for her but keep it on the down low. Maggie came up behind him asking what he found, and he panicked, grabbing the first thing he saw: a box of condoms.
Smooth as ice, pal.
4. Hershel Gives Glenn His Watch (Season 2)
After Glenn and Maggie started their thing, Glenn and Hershel had a talk. Hershel explained the history behind a family heirloom of his, his pocket watch. He told Glenn how he pawned it one day for alcohol, but his wife got it back for him.
He then handed Glenn the pocket watch and said, “No man is good enough for your little girl. Until one is.” Cue the warm, fuzzy tears.
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5. “You're My Brother” (Season 4)
It's hard to believe that a scene featuring a beaten and bruised Daryl, a sleeping Carl who had nearly been molested by a hilbilly, and a bloody-faced Rick is a happy one, but it happened. The group had just claimed the Claimers' lives after a vicious assault that nearly left Carl, Michonne, Daryl, and Rick violated, dead, or both. Rick ripped Joe's jugular out with his own teeth, and the rest of the bad guys pretty much died of WTF overdose. But it was worth it to get to this scene, where you could see Daryl letting go of his deceased brother, Merle. He'd found another brother in Rick.
Negan had better watch his neck.
6. Rick, Carl & Michonne Reunite (Season 4)
The episode was “After,” referring to the days after the Governor attacked the prison, and our group was split up. Rick and Carl thought Judith had become a walker snack, so they set out on their own. Once they barricaded themselves inside a house, not only was Carl Poppa born, but the world lost one big can of pudding.
That meme ain't right. It's funny, but it ain't right.
After Carl had sat on the roof eating that poor dead guy's pudding, and Rick had woken up following his near-death beating from the Governor, they heard a knock at the door. It made for yet another one of the happiest reunions we've had to date.
It almost gave you an idea that one day, you could expect to witness...
7. The Birth Of Richonne (Season 6)
Episode 10 of Season 6, “The Next World,” gave a lot of fans the gift they'd been wanting for a while: Rick and Michonne took their friendship to a whole new level. At the beginning of the episode, it was revealed that the two, along with Carl, sporting his new eye patch, were living together. Rick and Daryl went on a supply run, and Rick got the mints Michonne requested. She must have really liked them, because she thanked Rick in a way that will convince you that breath mints might actually be a good gift for that special lady in your life.
The next morning, Jesus is standing at the foot of their bed, saying that they should talk. But onto the sex:
8. Rick & Daryl Hug It Out (Season 7)
This, and Rick finally fighting back against Negan, is what everyone was waiting for the entire first half of #TheWalkingDeadSeason7: Rick and Daryl reunited. Let the bro-squeeze say it all.
Man, that Daryl is a damn good hugger.
9. Daryl & Beth Flip That House (Season 4)
Not many times can you have a scene where two people commit arson then flip the bird to the house they'd just set on fire, and call it a happy moment. But The Walking Dead finds happiness in really strange places. In “Still,” Daryl and Beth had an entire episode of bonding time that was full of drinking hooch, arguing, Daryl crying about his brother Merle, and, finally, burning down the shack and giving it the one-fingered salute before walking away.
10. Daryl Holds Little Ass Kicker (Season 3)
That picture pretty much sums up the scene back in Season 3's “Say the Word” when Rick had just lost Lori and was taking a slow stroll though Loopyville. He took her death pretty hard, so it was up to the others to pick up the pieces until he got his own put back together. This meant we got to witness the roughest, toughest redneck in the Zompocalypse carry Judith, feed her, and impregnate two million women with just the words, “You like that?” Sure-fire mass verbal pregnancy right there.
Warning: don't watch this video if you're at risk of said verbal pregnancy.
Those were just some of the happiest moments in the otherwise pretty damn depressing The Walking Dead. Share your favorite moments in the comments!