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The Walking Dead Season 5 Episode 1 returned with one of the most gruesome scenes in the show’s history coming within the first 10 minutes. I’m not even lying when I say I looked away four times.

It seemed for a minute like we were about to lose a favorite character, and if you watch The Walking Dead online you’ll see what I mean. Since we can never be absolutely certain the writers won’t shockingly kill off a main character at any moment, death for one of them seemed imminent.

But Carol stepped in to save the day! All by herself!

After she and Tyreese discovered a Terminus member in the woods, she set off for the compound believing all of their friends to be there and not just Michonne and Carl. What she saw upon arrival was Rick and Daryl being dragged off somewhere within the compound’s walls.

Within minutes she had determined a way to use a propane tank as a bomb, blown up part of the compound, and sneaked in by disguising herself as a newly reanimated walker.

Of all the characters on this show, Carol has grown the most over the course of five seasons.

After the group made it back to their weapons stockpile in the woods, Rick declared they would all be going back to the fence to kill any remaining Terminus members.

“They don’t get to live,” he said, and Maggie reminded him that they aren’t those people. Then Carol arrived and their reunion squashed Rick’s plans to go back and finish Terminus.

The two best moments in TWD history took place in last night’s premiere:

1. Carol and Daryl being reunited.

2. Rick and Carl learning that Judith is alive.

Tears were streaming during those scenes, and the hopeful ending made the brutal beginning a thing of the past. Until, that is, we see the Terminus people again. Something tells me we’re not done with Gareth just yet.