One of the best features of “The Walking Dead” is the way it develops characters, so when they are eventually killed, we feel a lot of pain for losing them. Carl, a young child who grew up in the apocalyptic world, has had one of the best character developments.

A frightened child

In season 1, Carl was believed to have lost his father, Rick, and had to look up to Rick’s partner, Shane Walsh, who saved Carl and his mother, Lori, when the world ended. Being left fatherless, Carl was weak and extremely soft, but it was understandable since he was only a child. It was very difficult for him to adapt to the cruel world at such a young age, so he needed his parents to look after him 24/7.

Thankfully, Rick found Carl and Lori and was around to protect them.

Attempting to be brave

In season 2, a man named Otis, who later directed Rick to take his son to Hershel’s farm, accidentally shot Carl. After being shot, Carl began to gradually change. He tried to be braver, usually running off on his own to face the outside world. In season 2, Carl also learned how to shoot a gun, becoming an expert shooter later on. Having developed a new skill played a major part in Carl’s growth. He knew that he was fully capable of being a fighter but was too young, inexperienced, and unwise to take the next step. His stupidity in season 2 led to Dale’s death, but that was a huge learning curve for young Carl.

Major growth

Once the group arrived at the prison, Carl completely changed. He killed his own mother before she could reanimate, helped Tyrese’s group kill walkers in the tombs, and shot an innocent Woodbury kid in cold-blood during The Governor’s attack on the prison.

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It was safe to say that he had fully grown and adapted to the new world. However, he was taking it a little too far, almost at Shane’s level, and had to be tamed.

Maturity and continuous growth

By season 4, Rick had tamed his son and taught him how to lead and fight intelligently. Thankfully, Carl significantly matured in season 4 and followed his father’s orders into becoming a courageous young warrior. Carl reached a level where Rick trusted him enough to let him do things on his own. He had become fully capable of taking care of himself and even protecting others.

Courageous acts

Carl has committed many courageous acts of late. He most recently snuck into the Saviors’ home to attack Negan, killing a few of his people. He also murdered a handful of Scavengers when they were holding the group hostage, and helped Alexandria survive the attack by The Wolves. He is not afraid of anything anymore and has developed into a miniature version of Rick.

Going from a frightened child who would just about cry for anything, to an out-of-control fighter, to a brave Young Leader, Carl has come a long way. He is just as ruthless and cold-blooded as his father, and has been a valuable member of Alexandria.