Tonight is the midseason finale of The Walking Dead: Season 9 Episode 8. And yes, if it feels like the show is ending a little too quickly, you’re not alone. Last season’s mid-season finale aired on December 10, 2017. Today is November 25, so the first half of the season is definitely concluding sooner than last year. In fact, this is the earliest the season has concluded in a couple of seasons, but the timing isn’t unheard of for the show. Season 7’s first half ended on December 11, 2016. But Season 6’s midseason finale was November 29, 2015. And Season 5’s midseason finale was November 30, 2014. So although it certainly feels early this season — and it is earlier than the last two seasons — it’s in line with when earlier seasons tended to end their first halves.
The Walking Dead typically returns with the second half of its new season in February. As of the time of publication, AMC hadn’t announced a return date yet. Usually, at the end of the midseason finale, they’ll announce the month that the show is returning but not the date. Sometimes they’ll announce the date then later during Talking Dead. Until then, we can look at previous seasons to get a better idea of the exact date that the show will return.
In previous years, the second half of each season started in February, no matter whether the midseason finale was aired in November or December. Season 1 is the only exception, and that’s because it was only six episodes long. Here’s when the midseason premiere aired for previous seasons:
- Season 2 – February 12, 2012
- Season 3 – February 10, 2013
- Season 4 – February 9, 2014
- Season 5 – February 8, 2015
- Season 6 – February 14, 2016
- Season 7 — February 12, 2017
- Season 8 — February 25, 2018
If you want to analyze this a little bit more, The Walking Dead’s second half of every season premiered the second Sunday of February, every season except Season 1 and Season 8. Since the mid-season is ending a little earlier than usual this year, it seems likely that The Walking Dead will return closer to mid-February rather than late-February.
Although many people were upset about Rick leaving the series this season (especially after what happened to Carl last season), the show seems to have picked up quite nicely with showrunner Angela Kang now leading things. She’s already working on Season 10, and she’s made some changes to the show in Season 9 that viewers are really liking. For example, Daryl has more lines than is typical for the character this season, and he even has a dog now. Other characters are similarly being fleshed out, and fans are enjoying the new storylines.