If there's one thing you come to terms with very quickly as a Walking Dead fan, it's that your favorite characters have a high chance of dying horribly. It's now been two weeks since the death of Carl Grimes – one of the very few characters you might have assumed was safe – and we're still in shock. Death in The Walking Dead is always sudden and often random, but fans have identified a pattern that might help to figure out who's in danger.
Last night's episode, "Dead Or Alive Or," found Father Gabriel (Seth Gilliam) on the run with Dr. Harlan Carson (R. Keith Harris), following their escape from the Sanctuary. Father Gabriel, determined to get Dr. Carson to Hilltop so that he can take care of the pregnant Maggie (Lauren Cohan), is understandably devastated when Carson ends up being killed by the Saviors. But as points out, Gabriel really should have seen this coming, because this show only has room for one doctor at a time.
Seriously. As soon as a new character with medical qualifications gets introduced, you can pretty much say "goodbye" to the previous one. A correctly predicted Carson's death two episodes back, purely on the basis of newcomer Siddiq's (Avi Nash) revelation that he used to be a medical resident. By the same token, Alexandria's doctor, Denise (Merritt Weaver), was not long for this world once Dr. Crason was introduced back in season six.
Why do The Walking Dead's writers kill off doctors? Well, the obvious answer is that the more characters you have around with medical expertise, the lower the stakes when somebody gets injured – so keeping the doctors limited to one at a time makes it easier to kill even more characters! Bleak. But that's why you love this show.