ByMatthew Clancy, writer at Creators.co
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Matthew Clancy

The best part of The Walking Dead is that the characters are all complex and heroic in their own unique way. We have been lucky enough to watch the few survivors from the first season grow in strength and survive the most impossible of situations. However, whether the danger is human or walker, there is one person that has come the farthest since the beginning: Carol.

In the first season of The Walking Dead, Carol was portrayed as weak, and honestly sometimes annoying. Being unaware of what her epic role was going to turn into, I often wrote her off and was surprised when she wasn't one of the people we witnessed being devoured. Well, it's very apparent that this perception was completely wrong. Carol has become the hero of the series, but not the hero that you would expect, or even the hero that you would want to be around. She has become the hero that is lurking in the shadows. The hero that isn't afraid to make the heartbreaking decisions. The hero that can seem weak and vulnerable, then explode with fury and vengeance. Carol is the hero that is necessary in the world of The Walking Dead.

Here are the top 5 moments that defined Carol as the hero of The Walking Dead.

1. When Carol decided to put an end to Ed

It may be hard to remember what the characters were like way back in the first season, but if you remember Carol, she was absolutely nothing like she is now. We were introduced to her character as the weak and very vulnerable wife of an abusive misogynist named Ed. Ed was not only a threat to Carol, but he was a threat to all of the women in the camp. Unknowingly, we got an early glimpse of what Carol was meant to become. Ed was bitten by a walker and just as Daryl was about to off him with an ax, Carol stops him. That's when we first get our glimpse of the Carol we know as she stabs him over and over again, making sure that he can't hurt her or her daughter again even in the afterlife.

2. When Carol decides to deal with the virus in the prison on her terms.

We didn't know that Carol was the one taking the sick and killing them off at first, but when we figured it out it all made sense. If there is anything more dangerous in a world ruled by the undead, it's a virus. A common cold can take a turn for the worse, the flu can turn into the plague. This was something Carol noticed over everyone else. She knew that the group could not survive a deadly outbreak of any kind, and she took action. Carol didn't just separate the sick, she stole them from the group and killed them. This may not sound like a heroic move, but it was a move that saved the group and a firm example of why Carol is the hero that they need. Without her, they may have been able to hide from the walkers, but the sickness would have gotten them all.

3. When Carol asks Lizzie to look at the flowers.

This may be the darkest moment in Carol's history. It was very obvious that there was something wrong with Lizzie. She put herself in danger, her sister in danger and was a danger to the entire group. There is no one else in the group that could have made the decision that Carol made when she realized just how dangerous Lizzie was. After seeing Lizzie stab her little little sister in the neck, Carol knew that the time had come. She walked Lizzie out into the field, told her to look at the flowers and then shot her in the back of the head. A seemingly heartless, and dramatic move. But in the world of The Walking Dead you need someone to make those decisions.

4. When Carol executes the baddies at Terminus.

I don't know about you, but watching our favorite characters get captured, tortured and almost executed at Terminus was gut wrenching. That was true until our newfound hero Carol decided to disguise herself as a walker and wreak havoc on the sick inhabitants of this false safe-house. This was the turning point for Carol. She was not only willing to do what she had to do, she was more than capable of doing what she had to do. Even our main character, Rick, was at the mercy of Carol at this point. She recognized what needed to be done and systematically took down the inhabitants of Terminus. At this point, by all means, Carol is now our hero.

5. Carol as the happy homemaker.

When Carol and the group run into Alexandria, Carol -- to our surprise -- hands over her gun. She pulls back her true self, puts on a facade, and falls right into line as one of the new Stepford Wives of Alexandria. Now, at this point we all know what Carol is capable of. We know she is willing to kill when necessary no matter who it is. We also know that she will kill anyone, no matter how close (or young), if the situation depends on it. Carol is calculating and merciless, especially when it comes to a kid that sees her stealing the gun (you know what I'm talking about). But when it comes to a band of blood thirsty bandits, they are no match for Carol. We watch the murderous group rampage through Alexandria, until Carol unleashes her fury. She disguises herself as one of the group and tears through town with machete and gun, killing the evil and putting the terminally wounded out of their misery.

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