Move over Jesus, there's a new religious subtext in town! In case you didn't notice, The Walking Dead Season 8 premiere was jam-packed with nods to the bible and more — and not just from Father Gthe biblical character Judas
Of course, this isn't the first time The Walking Dead has made reference to religion. Aside from the five million or so mentions of Kung Fu Christ himself, Jadis' name was an obvious reference to the biblical character Judas— so you can blame your lack of Sunday school if you didn't pick up on the foreshadowing of her betrayal back in Season 7.
But the Season 8 premiere really set a record for religious references — and not just Christian ones, either. Take a look:
8. 'My Mercy Prevails Over My Wrath'
"Mercy" was the title of this week's episode, and it was a concept that certainly got a few mentions. The first came from the mouth of a new mystery character, who paraphrased the Qur'an with, "may my mercy prevail over my wrath".
Hold up — did we just meet The Walking Dead's second Muslim character? Season 8 was pegged to have a Muslim character by the name of Abbud. Given the fact that he can recite the Qur'an, it's likely that we did indeed just meet him — which probably means we're going to see him in future episodes.
This same concept of mercy — and the direct Qur'an quote — was also repeated by Rick toward the end of the episode when he stated:
"My mercy prevails over my wrath."
This might be an indicator that Rick is going to become less hostile and more, well, merciful — much like we saw Carl do when he left the cans of food for Mystery Guy.
7. Eric Said His Prayers
While everyone else checked their ammo and layered on the armor, Eric was low-key crapping his pants and saying a prayer. Even Aaron picked up on his boyfriend's out-of-character spiritual moment.
6. Angelic Music
The background music as the survivors prepared for battle was undeniably church-like, with choir vocals serenading their preparations. No wonder Eric felt compelled to pray.
5. Stained Glass
During one of the few flash-forward scenes, Rick looks up at a pane of stained glass — much like what you'd find in a church.
4. Countdown To Seven
Despite counting down from ten, Rick opened fire on Negan and the Saviors once he got to seven. The number seven holds heavy significance in the Bible, and is said to be "the foundation of God's word."
3. Hail Mary
While you were fixated on that epic explosion, you might have missed something else amidst the Savior slaughter: A statue of the Virgin Mary, which survived the chaos unscathed.
2. 'Thank God'
An episode of The Walking Dead wouldn't be complete without Gabriel attempting to preach his muddled ideologies to his fellow survivors. To be fair, this priest has become less bible-thumping-coward and more wisdom-packed-warrior.
When Gabriel runs to Gregory's rescue, Gregory breathes a sigh of relief and says, "thank you, Father." However, Gabriel is quick to correct him, saying:
1. Framed By The Heavens
Rick's motivational speech is given in drips and drabs throughout the episode. Throughout this sequence, we can see the blue sky behind him. Sometimes it appears clear, and sometimes it looks completely overcast.
But at the very end of the episode, as Rick delivers his final words of hope, the sky is noticeably different. We see Rick framed by fluffy clouds, the bright sun shining through directly behind him. It's an undeniably angelic shot.
Did you notice these religious references in The Walking Dead Season 8 premiere?