Well, if Andrew Lincoln (who portrays Rick Grimes on the show) would have had his way, that might indeed have happened.
In an interview with EW, he said this:
I actually pitched an idea, I think in season 3. I said, “I think Beth should have a crush on Rick. And Rick doesn’t have a clue how to deal with it. And also, Carl is really upset about it. And then Hershel gets involved as well.” And everybody ignored me as usual. But I thought it was quite a good pitch.
What an awkward couple they would have made! But, his idea was not always thought of as awkward. In fact, in season three, I remember that some fans actually wanted the two to hook up, especially after the episode, "The Suicide King."
In said episode, if you recall, Rick, Oscar, Michonne and Daryl head to Woodbury to rescue Maggie and Glenn, who were being held captive by the Governor. Rick and co. manage to rescue them, but at several costs - Oscar is killed in Woodbury, and Daryl decides to leave the group and join his brother, Merle. After the rest return to the prison, Maggie reunites with her sister and father, Beth and Hershel, respectively. Afterwards, upon seeing Rick, Beth walks towards him and kisses him on the cheek. Check it out:
Now, I have always thought that this was just Beth's way of thanking Rick for bringing back her sister alive. However, some fans began to opine that Beth's relationship with Rick would start to grow thereafter, from friendly to romantic. Almost every social media site had pictures and memes of the two together, with those who created them trying to somehow persuade the makers of this show to explore the relationship some more.
Obviously, this never happened, nor will it ever happen, now that .... (SPOILER ALERT!!!) ... Beth is dead.
Andrew Lincoln shared his idea after having told EW that he regretted not having had more scenes with Beth's portrayer, Emily Kinney, who he said was a great actress to work with:
... also you do feel robbed as well because I did not get enough time with her. I remember doing a scene with Emily during the Hershel beheading and she’s such a fine actress. I was in the middle of the scene and I walked forward to the fence having this exchange with the Governor and I remember putting my hand down and reaching out, and as he brought Hershel and Michonne on to their knees and my hand came out, she held my hand. She just knew it was there. It was that kind of amazing sense that she had. I really regret not having more time with her.
Lincoln had many kind things to say about Emily as a person, such as when he described her as "one of the sweetest human beings you are ever going to meet." He also described the mid-season finale ("Coda") as being "a terribly sad episode," since he, along with the rest of the cast and crew, were forced to say goodbye to her.
I think this amazing quote from his interview sums up how much he really admired and respected Emily Kinney not just as an actress, but as a human being:
But I do have to say that losing Emily — it was so painful on so many levels. I adore the girl. I think she’s amazing. We lost the voice, her song. And after her having such a tremendous episode that she led in in episode 4 to not even get the chance… I mean, I had three or four seconds to act with her and then she was taken away. It’s just cruel, this job, man. It’s just cruel.
It is always fantastic to know that even on a show as intense and barbaric as [The Walking Dead](series:201193), the cast and crew really do bond on a familial level, if you will. I agree with Andrew in that Emily did portray Beth Greene very well, showing many different sides to the character during her three-season run on the show. Beth started out as a seemingly helpless young girl who many thought would not survive the zombie apocalypse for very long. And then, she ended up as a very competent fighter who proved how strong and intelligent she had become.
Beth Greene was never my favorite character on this show, but I always thought she had potential, since she was Hershel's daughter. I always thought she would persevere and learn to tackle the oppression and barbarism of that world with more conviction, much like her father did. She may not have been at all beloved by many viewers of this show at first, but now she is.
Moreover, we will see how her death will impact Rick and co. going forward. It is almost inevitable that it will leave the group devastated, especially Maggie and Daryl. It was gut-wrenching to see both of them react the way they did, and it makes me wonder whether they will have the strength and fortitude to get past it somehow.
AMC's The Walking Dead returns February 8th.
Should Rick and Beth have been a... thing?
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