Appearing at Universal Studios' Hollywood Horror Nights, The Walking Dead star Andrew Lincoln surprised the audience by appearing clean-shaven.
That's something that has happened very rarely since the series launched, since the post-apocalyptic world of The Walking Dead doesn't allow for a ton of time to be spent on personal grooming. Even when they settled in the prison for a fairly long stretch of time, Lincoln's character Rick Grimes continued to grow his beard.
So, of course, when he appeared in public, beardless, despite principal photography for the season not being over yet, it startled some fans who speculated that Rick might not make it through the year. And while that seems wildly unlikely, Lincoln was loathe to totally discount the possibility.
"Either I'm not in the show anymore or there's a flashback where I found a razor," Lincoln told The Hollywood Reporter with a laugh. "[Losing the beard] was more pleasant for my wife!"
"It's an extraordinary and interesting thing that goes down," he added of his altered appearance. "I can't really go into it because I don't want to spoil it."
Set and promotional photos for the season have shown Lincoln and his co-stars appearing at Father Gabriel's church, which could potentially be a place where they could rest, shave and the like. Set photos and trailer footage apparently set there seem fairly calm relative to the rest of the show, and in the comics, Gabriel had been alone since the start of the outbreak, meaning that the facilities in the church were still set up to help the fairly large number of survivors who found their way in.
Of course, in the comics, it had been somewhere in the neighborhood of a year or less between when the outbreak began and when Rick's group made their way to the church. In the TV series, which has been unfolding in relatively real time for most of its run, that would be closer to three years and change. Whether any supplies would have lasted that long, even with only one person using them, is questionable.