|This article is about the TV series character. You may be looking for his Social Game, No Man's Land, or Survival Instinct counterparts.|
Daryl Dixon is a main character and survivor of the outbreak in AMC's The Walking Dead. He is the younger brother to Merle. Daryl is an expert at hunting, tracking, navigation, and observation. Due to his survival skills, Rick Grimes values him as an important member of the group. Following the deaths of Ed and Sophia Peletier, Daryl has developed a close bond with fellow survivor Carol Peletier. He later formed a brief bond with another fellow survivor Beth Greene. He is the last surviving member of his family. Daryl begins the show as a brazen, impulsive redneck but develops himself an integral part of the group. His aggression is unprecedented, and it remains one of his most valuable assets, as well as one of his most noticeable.
Daryl is a both physically and emotionally strong man. He is often volatile, but he is still significantly more level-headed and rational than his older brother, Merle Dixon. Though he is usually distant, Daryl has often shown to be caring and selfless. All on his own, he risks his life in an attempt to find the lost Sophia Peletier on multiple occasions, one of which nearly cost him his life, and immediately takes initiative to go back to find Andrea when she gets separated from the group.
Daryl has also proven to be an incredibly honest individual and hardly ever lies, a characteristic he shares with his leader and close friend, Rick Grimes, thus making him a very respected and trusted right-hand man to Rick. He is much more clever than he looks, even more so than his erratic brother, Merle. Although he is not as tough as his brother, who is an experienced bruiser and has military experience, Daryl is just as aggressive and agile and can hold his own against the dead and the living.
In addition, Daryl has a keen sense of intuition, especially when it comes to meeting new people. Like his group mate Michonne, Daryl can tell almost immediately who can be trusted and who cannot. This is pointed out by Aaron in "Forget", when Aaron states that Daryl can tell the difference between "a good guy and a bad guy", something that Daryl's leader, Rick, is not much of an expert at. In many ways, Aaron's theory can be considered correct, given that despite Rick's long time distrusting Aaron, Aaron proves all along to have been telling the truth about the existence of a safe haven for Rick and his people, something that Michonne and Daryl were the first to believe was true. Due to having more fluidity than Rick, Daryl tries his best to be an advisor to the slightly mentally unstable Rick, with the help of Michonne, Glenn Rhee, Maggie Greene, and a few others.
On rare occasions, Daryl shows his very vulnerable side, particularly crying, when he loses someone very close to him. The best examples are when the only family member he has left, Merle, is killed, and Daryl himself is forced to put down zombified Merle. In "Still", an intoxicated Daryl cries and becomes emotionally distraught as he blames himself for the Governor's attack on the prison which resulted in the death of Hershel Greene. The other instance is when Beth Greene is killed; Daryl had grown close to Beth due to her sweet and innocent personality and her restoring his faith that there are still good people left in the harsh, new world. In "The Cell" Daryl cries after realizing Glenn Rhee's death was his fault. Although he loses some of the closest people he has in his life, he tries his best not to believe that the world has gone into complete darkness, especially since he still has his other friends, including his close companions Rick, Carol Peletier, Michonne, and even Aaron.
An experienced tracker and hunter, he has deadly accuracy with his crossbow. Daryl is also highly skilled with various firearms and knives. He has taken a prominent role in safeguarding the members of his group. Rick trusts Daryl completely by the end of the second season, and by the third season, Daryl replaces Shane Walsh as Rick's right-hand man. Although he is shown to be the lone wolf of the group early on in the series, he starts to gradually integrate himself into the group, particularly in his friendship with Rick and his growing relationship with Carol. By the end of the third season, he is well-liked and respected by the entire group.
Daryl was born in the early 1970’s, where he grew up in the mountains of Northern Georgia alongside his older brother Merle, under the roof of their neglectful redneck parents, their father, an abusive alcoholic alongside their chain-smoker mother. Merle was the only inspirational figure he had during his youth and thus inherited his backward views on society, however due to his older brother’s service in juvenile detentions, he became frequently absent from Daryl’s life and thus he was reluctantly forced to fend for himself, upon where he developed a hard-boiled survivalist mindset.
At a young age, the brothers lost their mother in a house fire which had been caused by a cigarette while she was asleep or presumably drunk. Some point after this event Daryl found himself lost in the woods for nine days during where he was forced to consume wild berries and utilize poison oak as substitute for toilet paper. Eventually he managed to find his way back home, upon arrival however, his father had unnoticed his absence and thus Daryl simply walked through the back door and made himself a sandwich.
The siblings were mentally and physically abused by their father, which eventually caused Merle to abandon the family and join the military, subsequently leaving Daryl in the process which resulted in severe scars located on his back, this abuse however was left unknown to his older brother’s knowledge. Following their father’s death, Daryl moved out from his birth home and eventually reconnected with Merle and thus simply followed his brother’s lead upon where they entered into a drifter lifestyle, where the pair utilised their survival instincts, upon where Daryl grew into a proficient hunter and tracker, hunting for food and dealing in contraband.
At one point, the pair resided in Merle’s drug supplier’s house where the trio watched TV and by noon had become intoxicated, a discussion turned violent where the dealer punched his older brother, where Daryl retaliated by savagely beating the man. However The dealer then threatened to shoot Daryl, a large argument ensued, which ended with the dealer punching Daryl in the gut, causing him to vomit. Merle and the dealer laughed the incident off. Following this near-death experience, Daryl gradually came to view himself as an unimportant individual who held no value or purpose in life.
When the apocalypse began, he and Merle headed towards Atlanta (a declared safe-zone) for shelter. Along the way, they both met up with Shane's group and found out Atlanta was overrun. They helped set up camp near a quarry. During their stay at the camp, they spent a considerable amount of time hunting animals. According to Merle, they had planned to rob the camp blind before Merle was left in Atlanta.
Daryl owned a grey 1973 Ford F-250 pickup truck. He used it to transport the corpses of the fallen camp-survivors, such as Ed Peletier and Amy, to the graveyard made by Jim. When the group left for the CDC, Daryl was driving his truck with his brother's motorcycle in the back. When his truck ran out of gas, he put his belongings in one of the other vehicles, (possibly Dale Horvath's RV) and switched vehicles to his brother's motorcycle. His truck was then abandoned and is never seen again in the show. The motorcycle was in use up until "Too Far Gone" in which it was abandoned when Daryl was forced to flee the prison during the Governor's attack.
- Main article: Daryl Dixon (Survival Instinct)
After Merle Dixon was abandoned on a rooftop in Atlanta during a supply run, Daryl is mentioned by Morales, who notes that he may be the only one who'll be upset at Merle being left behind. He is mentioned again as being away hunting by Dale Horvath, who also mentions that he will become volatile. When a walker appears nearby the camp eating the corpse of a deer, Daryl appears out of the woods, complaining that he was on the trail of the deer that he had shot with his crossbow. He finds it partially eaten by a walker, surrounded by the rest of his group. After Dale decapitates the zombie, the head continues to growl only to be permanently silenced by a bolt from Daryl's crossbow.
At the camp, Daryl arrives calling for his brother, but he is informed by Rick Grimes and the others that Merle was insane and a threat back in the city, so he was handcuffed to a roof and left behind. This prompts Daryl to snap. He tries to attack Rick, but Shane restrained him as T-Dog reassures Daryl that Merle is okay, as he had locked the roof door shut before fleeing the city. Daryl then demands the location of the building so he can go there and rescue his brother. Rick offers to go with him. T-Dog and Glenn Rhee also offer to go. Daryl is later seen telling the others to hurry up, so they can rescue Merle quickly. The four men get in a truck and depart.
Daryl and the others arrive at Atlanta. Rick says that he also came back to retrieve the bag of guns that he dropped when he first came into the overrun city. Daryl silently kills all the walkers in the way with his crossbow, and when they reach the rooftop of the department store, they find that the only thing remaining is the handcuffs, a hacksaw, and Merle's hand. Daryl, shocked and angered at what he sees, breaks down and starts crying.
Daryl, after seeing what he saw, points his crossbow at T-Dog, blaming him for his brothers disappearance, but gives in after Rick holds a gun to his head. Daryl wraps Merle's hand in a cloth and puts it in Glenn's backpack. They begin to follow the blood trail left by Merle. The trail leads them into a room with two dead walkers where all but Daryl are astonished that Merle was able to kill both with just one hand. In the same room they find an iron steak weight covered in burnt skin which Merle used to cauterize his stump. Later they find a window with a hole in it, possibly meaning Merle has escaped. When Daryl decides to go search for Merle on the streets, T-Dog reminds him that they need to get the bag of guns first. Glenn makes a plan to get the guns: Daryl must accompany Glenn to the store's alley, while Rick and T-Dog wait in an alley two blocks away.
The plan gets underway, and Glenn is able to retrieve the guns, but another survivor, Miguel, runs into Daryl from the back of the alley, to which Daryl rationally asks him about his brother and begins to beat him with his crossbow. Miguel screams, alerting Rick, T-Dog, and two other survivors: Jorge and Felipe. Jorge and Felipe arrive first and beat up Daryl, until they spot Glenn with the bag of guns. They tackle Glenn, who drops the guns, and Rick's hat, which gives Daryl enough time to aim his crossbow and fire an arrow into Felipe's behind. A car arrives at the scene. Jorge and Felipe grab Glenn and get into the car, leaving Miguel behind. When Rick and T-Dog arrive, they see Daryl closing a gate to prevent the walkers from crowding the alley. Daryl throws Miguel against the wall, in which Rick restrains him.
Later, while they are trying to get information about Glenn's whereabouts, Daryl threatens Miguel and shows him Merle's hand, bluffing and threatening that it was an enemy of his. They head to the "Vatos"' hangout, where Rick tries to negotiate into giving Miguel to them and getting Glenn back, but their leader, Guillermo, also wants the bag of guns. They return to the building and Daryl, T-Dog, and Rick decide to go back and threaten the Vatos. They return and then enter the Vatos' hideout threatening bloodshed, but an elderly woman enters the room and they find out that the gang are actually nurses taking care of elderly people. After solving the problem, that was just a misunderstanding, Rick gives the gang half of the guns inside the bag. Daryl, Rick, T-Dog and Glenn are returning, Daryl comments how he was against giving away half of the guns. On the way back, they notice that the truck they used to get to Atlanta was stolen, they assume that Merle stole the truck to go back to the camp and get revenge.
Daryl and his crew return to the camp on foot, and notice that walkers had infiltrated the camp, where they were attacking the survivors, killing/infecting quite a few of them. Despite the high number of casualties, Daryl, and the rest, are able to kill all of the invading walkers, thanks to the weapons inside the bag of guns.
The next morning, Daryl helps in the cleanup of the zombie carcasses and the bodies of the fallen campers. He and Morales drag the body of a man towards the bonfire but Glenn stops them, demanding that the dead be buried properly. Daryl hesitates but eventually agrees, he ultimately curses everyone, saying that they deserved what they got after leaving Merle behind. As Daryl impales each corpse with a pickaxe to prevent reanimation, Carol stops him as he is about to hit Ed Peletier, saying that she should impale her husband's head. When the survivors find out that Jim has been bitten, the group unites to discuss what to do with him, Daryl immediately grabs the pickaxe to take Jim out, but is stopped by Rick, who points his gun do Daryl's head, prompting him to drop the pickaxe and walk away.
After the funeral of the fallen camp survivors, the group decides to move to the Center for Disease Control in hopes of finding a cure and saving Jim's life. They part ways with Morales' family, who decided to go look for their relatives, and Daryl heads with the group to the CDC. Along the way, the RV breaks down, so Shane and T-Dog scout out the gas station ahead for parts, while a dying Jim is perched against a tree as everyone says their goodbye to him. Daryl glares at Jim and after a moment gives him a nod, before turning back to his car. As the night comes, Daryl and the survivors reach the CDC complex to find it locked, walkers start to close in on the group, but Rick refuses to leave as he says that the security camera is moving. Shane finally convinces Rick to get out of there, but right when everybody is leaving, the doors open at the last minute.
Daryl and the rest of the group are admitted into the CDC by Edwin Jenner after going through a blood test to ensure none of them are infected. He is introduced to the luxuries the facility has to offer, including hot water and real beds. He enjoys dinner and wine with everyone and learns about Test Subject 19 and Dr. Jenner's work, and the fall of the CDC's infrastructure. After Dr. Jenner reveals the purpose of the countdown timer and shuts the control room's door, Daryl is enraged and tries break through the metal door with an axe. While Rick tries to convince Dr. Jenner to let them leave the building and try their chances on the road, Daryl loses his temper and tries to cut the scientist's head with the axe, but is restrained by Rick and the others. As the survivors finally get Dr. Jenner to open the door for their escape, they all reach the lobby to find the doors permanently locked and the windows bulletproof. However, Daryl and the others are able to escape to their caravan after Rick's grenade explodes a window pane. During the escape he spectacularly decapitates a Walker with an axe. After everyone gets in their vehicles, the CDC explodes; Daryl drives off in his pick-up truck following the rest of the caravan, getting away from the complex as the ruins burn.
During their excursion to Fort Benning, the group is forced to hide from a herd of walkers, Daryl saves T-Dog from one of them, then covers himself and T-Dog up with corpses to fool the rest of the walkers. When Carol's daughter Sophia goes missing in the aftermath, Rick enlists Daryl's expert tracking abilities to help find her. During the search, they dissect a zombie to see if it had eaten Sophia. When the trail runs cold, they are forced to return to the others empty-handed.
On their way back, Lori hears a gunshot and is suspicious about it as Rick or Shane wouldn't risk wasting or alerting walkers to kill a single walker. He reassures Carol that they are going to find Sophia and she is going to be fine. When Andrea is facing a walker and Maggie Greene comes in by horse for Lori, Daryl rushes with the rest of the group as Lori jumps on the horse. He says that they don't even know her or who she is so how could they trust her, but in the end with nothing really to stop her, he lets her go to the Greene family farm. Later, the group decides what to do as they need to head to the farm and meet up with Rick but don't want to risk Sophia coming back to an empty highway. Daryl offers to stay one more day and set up signs to tell her just in case, after Dale mentions that T-Dog is in bad shape and needs medical attention. Daryl goes to Merle's stash and gets him some "first class" antibiotics for his blood infection.
Daryl wakes up at night hearing the sound of Carol sobbing over Sophia. Daryl grabs his crossbow and decides to go out and look for Sophia and is joined by Andrea who could not sleep either.
While in the woods, Daryl assures Andrea that Sophia is going to be fine. Andrea protests and tells him that Sophia is only twelve years old and is not yet capable to survive on her own with no food or weapons. To reassure Andrea, he tells her a story about his childhood when he was lost in the mountains living off of berries and cleaning himself with poison oak. No one ever knew he was gone, not even Merle because he was in a juvenile detention center, and when he finally made it back, he walked into the kitchen and made himself a sandwich. The story lightens the mood and Andrea laughs.
Daryl and Andrea continue on down a path and hear something that they suspect to be Sophia but are mistaken and arrive at a campsite where a man hanged himself and had turned into a walker. Daryl read the sign that the man wrote that said, "Got bit, fever hit, world gone to shit, might as well quit" that Daryl commented on saying that the guy was too stupid to shoot himself in the head. Daryl continues to describe the flesh that had been eaten off the man's legs by other walkers and Andrea pukes. Andrea then asks if he was planning on just leaving him hanging up there which Daryl replied that he wasn't doing any harm up there. Daryl asked Andrea if she still felt like dying and Andrea said she would answer for an arrow. After answering with a fairly confusing answer, Daryl shot the walker in the head and said it was a "waste of an arrow." They return home without Sophia.
In "Cherokee Rose", Daryl goes searching for Sophia again, alone this time, and finds a Cherokee Rose for Carol. He sets it on the counter beside her and explains that when the Native Americans were being relocated, many of their children died and went missing, and it was believed that the tears of the mothers made a Cherokee Rose bloom. He also stated he doubted the flower had grown for his brother, Merle, but instead for Carol's daughter, Sophia.
The next day, Daryl and the rest of the group continue to search for Sophia. Daryl takes a horse and heads to search alone. While searching near a creek he discovers Sophia's doll. Shortly afterwards he falls off a cliff-side into a river when his horse is spooked by a snake. On the way down Daryl hits his head and impales himself on one of his arrows. He leaves it in and attempts to climb a steep cliff only to fall and lose consciousness. As he drifts in and out he hallucinates his brother Merle who mocks and taunts him, calling him a failure and telling him the others in the group just see him as a freak. Daryl awakes to see a walker gnawing on his boot and another one approaching. He kills the closest one with a branch and pulls the arrow out of his side to dispatch the second one. After bandaging his wound he once again attempts to climb up the cliff. On the way up he again hallucinates Merle who again mocks him, telling him nobody cared about him but his brother and that he should shoot Rick next time he saw him. Eventually Daryl makes it back to the farm, but due to his blood soaked appearance and limp, Andrea takes him for a walker and shoots him. The bullet grazes his left temple and Rick and Shane rush Daryl back to the house. His injuries are not mortal and Hershel bandages him up. Later, Carol brings him dinner and thanks him for doing so much to find her daughter, kissing him on the forehead to show someone does care about him.
Daryl is seen recuperating from his injuries in a tent outside the farm house. Andrea gives him a book and attempts to apologize for accidentally shooting him, but Daryl brushes off her concern stating she was just trying to protect the group and that he did not blame her. As she left, he added, "You shoot me again you best pray I'm dead."
Daryl is first seen eating breakfast with the rest of the survivors; when Glenn tells them that the barn is full of walkers, Daryl sets his jaw.
Later, he walks to the stable and readies a saddle to go out looking for Sophia again, but as Carol sees he's still hurt from the arrow wound, she tries to stop him, telling him she doesn't want to lose him too. He throws the saddle to the floor, and, still in pain, walks away calling Carol a "stupid bitch." Shortly after he takes Carol to a pond where he apologizes and shows her another Cherokee rose that's blooming to restore her faith in finding her daughter. Much later, when Shane starts giving out the guns to the group, Daryl takes one quickly. As the group sees Rick and Hershel walk up to the barn with two walkers on long poles, he approaches them and keeps his gun aimed at the male until Shane shoots it and opens the barn doors. He quickly lines up with Shane, Glenn, T-Dog and Andrea and starts shooting the walkers. When zombified Sophia finally steps out of the barn, he catches a horrified and grief-stricken Carol to stop her from getting too close to her daughter.
Daryl is angered that Carol won't attend her own daughter's funeral but he still attends with all the other survivors. Lori decides that Daryl is the best choice to look for Rick, Hershel and Glenn, but he is still upset over the sacrifices he made in vain to collect Sophia and snaps, "I'm done lookin' for people."
Daryl tells Carol that Lori had asked him to find Hershel, but he had refused. He speculates that Lori went on her own to town. Back at the Greene Farm, Carol goes to check on Daryl, finding many dead squirrels and severed walker ears hanging on a clothes line. Daryl catches her and confronts her. After their argument Daryl walks away from Carol and she yells out that she will not let him push her away.
In the farm's slaughter shed, Daryl beats a bound and whimpering Randall who cries out, "I've told you", to which Daryl replies "You've told me shit!" Randall says he barely knows the guys he was with so Daryl asks how many are in his group, but when he receives no reply, he draws his knife. Randall confesses that he was traveling with a group of about 30 men who never stayed anywhere for more than one night, but he doesn't know where they plan on going next. Continuing the interrogation, Daryl rips Randall's bandage off and sticks his knife into his wound. Randall quickly admits that the group is heavily armed with automatics but is insistent that he's not dangerous and is nothing like them. Randall tells a story of how one night, whilst scavenging, the men found a father with his two teenage daughters whom they proceeded to rape in front of their father for fun. Randall insists he didn't touch them but Daryl continues to beat him. Throughout the interrogation Randall begs and cries for it to stop, to no avail.
Daryl reports what he's found out to the rest of the group, explaining that if this gang "rolls through here, our boys are dead, and our women they're gonna... well, they're gonna wish they were". Carol asks what Daryl did; he replies that they "had a little chat". This leads Rick to declare Randall a threat, and that he must be killed, "You can't just decide on your own to take someone's life," Dale objects, begging Rick to give him time to talk to the group and find another way. Rick reluctantly agrees to give Dale the rest of the day, after a short bit of persuasion.
Later, Daryl can be seen inspecting bolts and placing them into his crossbows quiver as Dale approaches. "The whole point of me coming up here is to get away from you people" Daryl expresses, before Dale can speak. Daryl asks if Carol sent him but Dale explains that it's not only her that's concerned about him, or his new role in the group. "This group's broken, I'm better off fending for myself" Daryl says, stating he doesn't care what happens to Randall in reply to Dale asking where he stands. Dale asks Daryl to stand with him anyway, but Daryl won't because he believes his opinion won't matter and he knows that Rick only listens to Shane. He also mentions about how Shane killed Otis and how he didn't believe Shane's story because he came back with a dead man's gun, this leaves Dale shocked that Daryl seems disinterested at the fact Shane is a killer. Before walking off Daryl reiterates "The group's broken".
An upset Carl comes across Daryl's (Merle's) motorcycle and starts looking through its satchels, he finds a handgun and decides to take it.
At the meeting to decide Randall's fate, Dale pleads with the group to do what's right. Andrea eventually sides with him, but the others still want him dead, bar Carol, Maggie, Hershel, Patricia, and Daryl who remain neutral. Despondent, Dale leaves the room. Putting a hand on Daryl's arm, he says "This group is broken."
Afterward, Rick, Shane, and Daryl walk a begging Randall to the barn. Shane says "This is all going to be over soon." and Randall suddenly realizes what is going on, which leaves him scared and begging even more. Rick asks him whether he wants to stand or kneel but when he doesn't answer Daryl forces him to the ground. Rick now asks if he has any final words to which Randall just continues begging for his life. As Rick raises his gun, Carl enters the barn. "Do it Dad, do it" he says. Shocked, Rick lowers his gun and orders Randall taken away which Daryl obliges. Shane then storms out of the barn.
When Dale's screams are heard, Daryl, who at the time is about to cut Randall with his knife, runs to the scene. Being the first to get there he sees the walker on top of Dale, tearing into his stomach. Daryl leaps at it tackling it off Dale, he rolls and stabs it in the head. He calls for help and tries to comfort Dale but his intestines are spilling out of his gut and he goes into shock, just as everyone else arrives. When Hershel finally gets down, he says that Dale can't be saved. A teary Andrea who is also comforting Dale begs Rick to help. Rick takes out his gun, but can't bring himself to shoot so Daryl takes the weapon and aims it at Dale's head. "Sorry brother," Daryl says and shoots Dale in the head out of mercy.
To the dismay of Shane, Rick now promotes Daryl as his new wing man. When Rick and Daryl prepare to leave, T-Dog is sent to get Randall. He discovers the barn empty, as a short time earlier, Shane had brought Randall into the forest informing him he is done with Rick's group and wants to join with the others. This is merely a ruse as Shane breaks Randall's neck, killing him. Before returning to the group, Shane pounds his own face into a nearby tree to make it seem as if Randall had injured him during an escape.
A thorough search of the farm shows no sign of Randall. Shane buries his gun upon returning, before he shouts to the group announcing that Randall escaped and is armed. Rick assembles Glenn and Daryl to go with him and Shane to track him down.
Glenn and Daryl come across the area of the forest where Randall was last seen. Daryl notices that the area shows signs of a struggle. As a walker appears, the two of them take cover behind some nearby trees. The walker turns out to be Randall and tries to attack them, but Glenn drives a knife into his head, killing him. Daryl conducts a brief examination of the body, only to find that it shows no sign of bites or scratches, and that his cause of death was his neck being broken. Daryl starts to wonder what is going on that could cause him to turn into a "walker".
As the inhabitants of the farm notice the herd approaching, Daryl is asked by Lori to go and look for Carl. He puts his crossbow and pistol to good use, killing many of the walkers. Eventually he notices Carol surrounded and rescues her, fleeing the farm afterwards.
Later on, he and Carol meet up with everyone else on the highway. After everyone realizes Andrea is not with the group, Daryl volunteers to go back and find her but his attempt is thwarted by Rick, who says she's either dead or far away from the farm by that time. Later on, when Rick suggests they camp out on the road, Daryl brings up that Randall reanimated due to a broken neck and wasn't bitten. When Rick shares that Jenner told him everyone was infected, Daryl was at first skeptical but later accepted that Rick did the right thing by not telling everyone about it. That night around the campfire, Carol tries to persuade Daryl to separate and go off on their own; Daryl wants to stay. Carol then says that Daryl is a man of honor and that he should be leading them, not Rick. Daryl refuses, saying Rick has honor and that he trusts him.
Daryl has now completely replaced Shane as Rick's right hand man, and is seen along with T-Dog, Rick, and Carl leading the charge in killing the Walkers that have taken over the abandoned house they stumbled upon. Daryl kills an owl that he finds in an bedroom upstairs. He is seen picking off the feathers to get it ready for cooking. The group, however, is forced to flee when more walkers show up to their location. Daryl offers to take Rick hunting while the others fetch water, where they stumble upon the prison. Daryl and the rest of group help Rick to shut the main gate by distracting and killing the walkers inside of the prison yard.
At night, after Carol brings Daryl some food, she seems to be in discomfort, complaining that her shoulder hurts because of the kick-back of a rifle she was shooting, and that she's just not use to that rifle yet. Uncharacteristically, Daryl quickly tries to relieve her pain with a shoulder massage, but after only seconds and some nervous eye contact, Daryl stops and suggests they should return with the others. Carol points out that they just had a romantic moment and jokingly asks if he would be interested in screwing around. Daryl and Carol both laugh off the statement.
The next day, Daryl, Rick, T-Dog, Glenn and Maggie lock themselves within the prison courtyard and kill the remaining walkers, where they secure Cell Block C (The safest). Daryl and Rick are the only two that choose not to sleep in the cells that night. The next day, Daryl, Rick, Glenn, Hershel, T-Dog, and Maggie go in search for the prison's cafeteria and infirmary but get ambushed by a group of walkers. Unfortunately, Hershel is bitten in his right calf by a lurker lying against a wall when he, Rick, and Daryl go back to look for Maggie and Glenn. Once they reach prison's cafeteria, Daryl notices a group of what he believes to be walkers behind a metal grate on the other side of the cafeteria. Upon further inspection, he (along with the others) realizes that they are surviving inmates.
Continuing right where the last episode ended, Daryl has his Crossbow raised at the five figures and asks who they are; the five men are prisoners. One of them, Tomas, is scared and points a gun at Daryl and T-Dog, this confrontation is cut short as Rick and the rest are taking Hershel back to the cell block and Daryl decides to go with them, leaving the five prisoners behind. As Hershel is taken to a safe place, Daryl keeps guard on the approaching prisoners and once again a confrontation starts between him and Tomas until Rick shows up and stops the heated argument by calming the prisoners down and explaining what is going on. When Rick explains about the walkers, Daryl is the one who tells the prisoners that no matter how they die, they will come back as a walker unless their brain is damaged.
After Tomas creates another argument, this time with Rick, they decide to take half of the food supplies that the prisoners kept in the cafeteria, in exchange, Rick, Daryl and T-Dog helps the prisoners clearing another cell block so they can live in it. Daryl is mostly seen for the rest of this episode accompanying Rick, T-Dog, and the prisoners on the way to secure Cell Block B. After the cell block is secured for the last two remaining prison survivors (Oscar and Axel), he apologizes to the both of them for the loss of their friends. He then watches Hershel with some of the group and sees him wake up (signifying that he will be all right).
Daryl, Rick, T-Dog, Carol, Glenn, and Maggie are preparing to burn the bodies of all the walkers they killed so far in the prison. Oscar and Axel approach the group, asking to join them since they claim that Cell Block B is a haunted place and they can't just live there with all those corpses. Rick consults Daryl about this decision and Daryl gives Rick a sign to not to trust the prisoners. They decide to let the prisoners leave the prison, since they don't want to live in the Cell Block B. T-Dog questions this action, Daryl expresses his opinion that he knew guys like Axel and Oscar and they are not psychos, even though, they should try their own luck on the road. Rick, Glenn and Daryl go out to get some wood to burn the bodies, when they realize that walkers are invading the prison's courtyard and the three men run to try to save the others from the group.
After killing the walkers and realizing that the others disappeared and someone broke the gate open, allowing the walkers to get in, Rick blames the two prisoners, but the prison alarms start blaring, proving that someone else is messing with the group. He, Oscar, and Rick go to the generator room to disable the alarm. When Andrew attacks Rick, Oscar leaves the door to help out, and Daryl is left holding the door shut alone. He eventually goes for his crossbow, and kills the walkers. He is seen sneaking up on Oscar after Oscar killed Andrew, saving Rick. When he realized that Oscar was not acting hostile, he relaxed. He, Glenn, Rick, Oscar, and Axel reunite and find T-Dog's devoured body, along with Carol's head scarf. He assumes that she was devoured by walkers.
Rick is brought to a breaking point, leading him to abandon the group and find Lori's body. Daryl steps up and takes on the role of the leader and giving everyone a job to do. He then offers to go on a supply run with Maggie and Glenn in order to find formula for the baby. Maggie suggests that Glenn not go. Daryl and Maggie head to a daycare center not far from the prison in search for the formula that Hershel suggested retrieving earlier. While entering the daycare, Daryl notices a child's paper cut-out hand hanging on the wall with the name "Sophie" written on it. Inside, Maggie grabs supplies while Daryl searches the building for Walkers. Eventually, he hears rattles within a closet and spots a possum, which he shoots and says will be dinner. Eventually, the two return to the prison with the formula and the proper supplies. Daryl is seen giving the formula to the baby and the baby's name is brought up. Carl suggests all the names of the women in the group they've lost. Daryl then jokingly suggests the name "Ass Kicker". At dawn the next day, Daryl places a Cherokee Rose on a grave designated for Carol and holds a moment of silence for her.
Daryl is seen talking with Rick while eating. Daryl, Carl, and Oscar explore the prison in search of supplies. While they do so, Daryl talks to Carl about how he had also lost his mother when he was young, and Carl reveals to Daryl that he was the one to shoot Lori before she could reanimate. Daryl, Carl, and Oscar are startled by a walker and kill it, with Daryl discovering Carol's knife plunged in its neck. Daryl is seen sitting alone after having a breakdown, while a door shutters. In frustration, he opens it, and discovers a weak and dehydrated Carol. Daryl carries her back to the group.
Daryl arrives back in the cell block, and witnesses Rick carrying Michonne into the prison. After watching for a few moments, he invites everyone over to a cell, where he reveals the weakened, frail Carol. After several embraces between Carol and the group members, he prepares for the journey to Woodbury after learning the locations of Glenn and Maggie from Michonne. While on foot, Rick personally thanks Daryl for taking care of Judith. Soon they are approached by a large group of walkers and are forced to take shelter in the home of a hermit. While there, the hermit nearly allows walkers inside, but is killed by Michonne. They toss his body to the walkers, giving them the time to escape through the back door. Later, they arrive at Woodbury, and survey the area, crouching behind the wrecks of cars.
In this episode, Daryl assists the group in recovering the captive Maggie and Glenn from Woodbury. While hiding out in one of the houses, Daryl learns that Merle was responsible for brutally beating Glenn and yearns to talk with him before they depart, but Rick refuses, due to it being too risky. Daryl throws out a flash grenade and fires during the shootout between the Woodbury soldiers and their group. Once Rick, Glenn, Maggie, and Michonne are ready to escape, they notice that Daryl has fallen behind. It turns out that Daryl was captured by Woodbury soldiers during the shootout and is brought to the walker pit as Philip asks the residents what they should do with the "terrorists". The Governor brands Merle a terrorist and traitor as well, having conspired with his brother. Two Woodbury soldiers bring out a person with a potato sack on his head, who is revealed to be Daryl. Merle stares at Daryl in shock as he was one of those who were in the shootout. The Dixon brothers are finally reunited as the crowd cheers for their deaths.
In the arena, Philip orders Merle and Daryl to fight to the death, with the winner walking away free. Merle says that he will do whatever he can to prove his loyalty to Woodbury before beginning to fight Daryl. On the ground, Merle tells Daryl to follow his lead, proving that he has no intentions of killing his brother. Daryl and Merle flee with Rick's group when Rick and Maggie return. Daryl seems to be angered at Merle for aligning himself with The Governor, and doesn't object when Rick knocks him out. The group, however, doesn't want Merle to live in The Prison. Daryl then lays down an ultimatum: either Merle comes with them or he's leaving. After Rick firmly says that Merle will be too much of a liability, Daryl begins grabbing his stuff. He tells Rick to take care of Judith and Carl, and says that Carl is a tough kid; Daryl also says that Carol will understand his reasons for leaving. Rick pleads one more time for him to stay, but Daryl refuses to abandon his brother again and walks off with Merle.
Daryl and Merle wander through the woods after departing the group. They argue about where they should go, as Daryl says they should loot the houses they come across. This urges Merle to sarcastically mention it as something his "sheriff friend" taught him. They hear sounds, which Merle believed emanated from a wild animal, but Daryl recognizes it as a baby's crying. They find a family stuck with their car on a bridge over Yellow Jacket Creek. Daryl decides to help them, to Merle's disapproval. After killing multiple walkers with Merle watching, only shooting his gun once to save Daryl, the family is finally saved. Merle then ransacks the car for food. Daryl raises his crossbow on Merle, insisting that he allows the family to depart freely. After doing so, Merle argues about Daryl's pointless act of saving people who wouldn't do the same to them. When the argument becomes heated, Merle tears Daryl's shirt apart, exposing multiple scars inflicted by their abusive father. Merle claims that he was unaware that Daryl had received the same abuse as him from their father. Daryl decides to go back to The Prison, saying he belongs there, rather than with Merle. Merle reluctantly decides to go along with him, despite knowing that nobody wants him there for attempting to kill Michonne and beating up Glenn. When The Governor attacks The Prison and releases some walkers in the yard, Rick, trapped outside the fences following a hallucination of Lori, is almost devoured by multiple walkers before Daryl shoots an arrow through one of the walker's head. Together, Daryl, Rick, and Merle kill the walkers outside of the fences, and watch the remaining walkers roaming inside the yard.
Daryl assists in creating a plan to eliminate the walkers in the yard. He gets into an argument with the others concerning Merle's presence. Later, Daryl is seen sitting in his cell when Carol appears to talk to him. Carol tells Daryl that Merle is no good for him, and not to allow him to bring Daryl down with him. When Andrea arrives at The Prison, Daryl threatens to gouge out The Governor's other eye when he sees him again. Later that night, while Beth sings by candlelight, Rick informs Daryl and Hershel of his plans to go on a supply run with Carl and Michonne. Daryl volunteers, but Rick insisted he stayed behind to take care of the others and keep an eye on Merle.
Daryl accompanies Rick along with Hershel to a meeting that was set up with The Governor. Later, he is seen talking to Caesar Martinez when Rick is trying to talk with Philip about a compromise for their rivalry. Daryl and Martinez quickly get into a fight, and then proceed to have an unspoken walker-killing contest. Afterwards, the two share their thoughts on the situation while smoking cigarettes.
Daryl is first seen being informed by Rick about the plan to hand over Michonne; he disagrees and states "This ain't us", but is convinced by Rick that it is the only option. After this, he is seen aiding Glenn and Michonne in setting up barbed wire in the field to deter The Governor's trucks, lest they attempt to take the yard. Later Daryl aids Glenn in securing a broken gate and tries to convince him that Merle is sorry and that he intends to make things right. Daryl later finds his brother in the generator room, and talks to him about the plan with Michonne. Merle mentions that he feels like the group needs him as a "bad guy", to do the "dirty work". He states that before the apocalypse Daryl would've called people acting like he is "sheep". Daryl expresses his concern for Merle's change in personality and states that he wishes he had his brother back. Towards the end of the episode, Daryl tracks down his brother to bring him back to the prison. Along the way, he encounters Michonne alone. He continues on to the feed store, and finally finds Merle, but not in the way he had hoped: zombified. He then breaks into tears as a zombified and bloodthirsty Merle walks towards him. Daryl pushes his zombified brother back three times before stabbing his neck and pinning him to the ground. In rage, he stabs his brother's head multiple times. After he is finished Daryl breaks down crying over his brother's death.
Daryl is back at the Prison, mourning his brother's death. When the Woodbury Army arrives at the Prison, they enter "The Tombs". While in there, Daryl and Rick throw out smoke bombs to lure them out. When everyone regroups at the gate, Daryl, Michonne, and Rick decide to head out and attack Woodbury. On the road they find almost every soldier dead, with the exception of Karen. They go to Woodbury, where Tyreese and Sasha are on the gate. After a brief firefight, Tyreese lets them in. Rick, Daryl, and Michonne learn that Andrea is most likely being held captive in The Governor's torture room. In there, they find a dying Andrea, who suffered a bite wound from Milton Mamet. Daryl leaves the room when she wishes to end her life.
Back at the prison, the group lead the women, children, and elders from Woodbury to stay. Daryl is seen entering on Merle's motorbike.
Daryl first appears at the inner courtyard looking for food from Carol. He is then thanked by Patrick for getting food for the prison people, and shakes his hand. Daryl is commented by Carol how walkers don't spread out anymore and they are pinning up against the fence. Daryl doesn't seem to worry about it, but for the supply run to the Big Spot, which he had been planning for weeks and wishes to use the place as a constant supply-place. He, along with Sasha, Tyreese, Glenn, Michonne, Bob Stookey, and Zach, go the store and is revealed that he is looked up to by Zach, who is constantly trying to guess what he did before the apocalypse. The group clears the entrance from the only apparent walkers in the store and enter the place, not knowing that there is herd on the rooftop. The herd begins to fall through the decaying roof after Bob knocks a wine aisle to the ground, breaking all of the bottles and pinning himself under the shelf. Seeing that there is a wrecked helicopter on the roof about to fall over their heads, Daryl and the group kill all the walkers they can and he and Zach free Bob, but Zach is caught by a walker and bitten. Knowing that he is doomed and that the helicopter is about to fall, the group leaves as the helicopter falls, crushes Zach, and destroys the store. After returning to the prison, Daryl informs Beth about Zach's demise, which whom the boy was in a relationship with. Beth doesn't seem affected, as she claims that she doesn't cry anymore, which concerns Daryl. They are both glad that they got to know Zach and hug each other.
Daryl is first seen when the cell block D is attacked and helps clear out the walkers and save the citizens in the process. He then joins the others in making sure the dead do not reanimate and saves Glenn from a undead Patrick during this before joining Rick, Dr. Caleb Subramanian, Hershel, and Bob to discuss the new infection. At some point after this he along with the rest of the "council" discuss the new situation at the prison and how to deal with it before he leaves to dig graves for the dead. While he's digging he talks with Rick telling him he deserves a rest before Maggie calls for their help dealing with walkers at the fence and eventually helps Rick use the pigs to draw them away.
In the inner courtyard, Tyreese explains to Rick, Carol and Daryl how he found Karen and David's burnt corpses; he came to see Karen, saw the blood trail on the floor, and it led him outside. Tyreese demands Rick to find who did it and bring the killer to him; when the latter tries to calm him down, he turns violent and attacks Rick, punching him in the face. Daryl holds him up, and Carol tries to stop Rick from retaliating, but it's too late. Rick charges at Tyreese, knocking him down and brutally beating his face. Daryl eventually pulls Rick off Tyreese before it goes any further. Rick looks at his severely injured hand, horrified with what he just did. Daryl and Bob fuel up a car, and Bob is disturbed when Daryl reveals that it was Zach's car. Back in A-Block Tyreese, who's there watching the sick (making sure no one will try to kill them), is asked to join the supply run for medical supplies with Daryl, Michonne and Bob. He refuses at first, but Daryl is able to convince him otherwise, saying he'll help them more in the run, looking for medicine than there, watching. He bids farewell to a sick Sasha, and leaves with the team. While driving towards the hospital for the supply run, the group hears a voice over the car radio repeating the word "Sanctuary... Sanctuary...survive..." Daryl is distracted by it and hits a few walkers on the road. He stops the car, shocked at the massive herd of thousands of walkers between them and their destination. Daryl drives in reverse and runs over several more walkers, but the car eventually gets stuck, forcing them to ditch it. Daryl, Michonne and Bob make it out and hold their own, but Tyreese stays behind, seemingly in a stupor. Bob eventually snaps him out of it and Tyreese storms out of the car and in a rage, ferociously begins to kill the walkers that are quickly surrounding him, yelling at the others to go as he is swarmed. After running in the woods for a while, the group stops to rest, and notices movement in the bushes. Tyreese emerges, covered in walker guts and blood, but alive and unharmed. They keep moving as the walkers chase after them.
Daryl continues with Tyreese, Michonne, and Bob on their mission to retrieve medicine from the veterinary college. While helping Daryl jump-start a van they found, Bob says that he almost started to run when Daryl found him because he was the last man standing in the first two groups he was with, and that he blames himself for Zach's death because of accidentally knocking over the liquor shelf and attracting the herd of Walkers, to which Daryl tells him that it is "bullshit". After getting the medicine, the group is forced to jump outside onto the roof of a walkway where Bob almost loses his bag to a herd of walkers, but manages to retrieve it despite the protests of the others to let it go. Daryl discovers Bob's bag contains nothing but a bottle of liquor, but Bob has his hand on his holster when Daryl attempts to throw it away. Daryl disarms Bob and grabs him until Tyreese breaks it up, saying that Bob has made his own choice. Daryl says that they should have never let him join the prison group to begin with and threatens to beat Bob into the ground if he takes a sip of the liquor before the medicine is given to the sick members of the group.
Daryl appears near the end of the episode, returning with the supply search party to the prison. Next morning, Daryl is informed by Hershel to talk with Rick about Carol.
Daryl is first seen talking to Rick about Carol's banishment due to her killing Karen and David, clearly upset and shocked at the decision. After calming down, he and Rick go to tell the news to Tyreese. When they arrive in the tombs, Tyreese shows them a dissected rat inside the prison, which he believes is the work of the same person who killed the two. Before they have a chance to say anything, the Governor's camp attacks and everyone able relocates outside.
Daryl is as shocked as everyone when he reveals Hershel and Michonne are his prisoners and demands Rick come down and negotiate, which he does. As Rick descends to the gates, Daryl discreetly arms everyone and lines up a rifle against the gates next to Carl. Carl suggests he take out the Governor with one shot, but Daryl tells him to let Rick handle it. However, Hershel is executed and war abruptly erupts. Daryl takes out several of the Governor's people and eventually destroys the tank with grenades, killing its operator Mitch with a crossbow to the chest. As the Prison falls, Beth came across Daryl and together, they left the prison to places unknown.
Daryl and Beth appear deep in a forest fighting walkers. After killing numerous of them, the two run into a field and collapse, visibly exhausted. By nightfall, the two have made a campfire in the forest, and Beth convinces Daryl to go with her and look for any other survivors. The next morning, the two find small footprints. They follow them for a bit to a grape bush, where Daryl suggests the owners of the tracks picked up the pace. Beth says Daryl should have hope, to which Daryl replies "[Faith] sure as hell didn't so nothing for your father," upsetting Beth. The two find a plant with blood on it, and Daryl states that it is human blood. They continue down to railroad tracks, where they find a pile of dead bodies, including those of Molly and Luke.
Beth and Daryl make their way out of the woods and come across a destroyed car. Walkers are heard coming from the trees and Daryl tells her to hide in the trunk. The next morning they get out, scavenge the car for anything useful and leave. Later, Daryl tries to shoot a squirrel with his crossbow, but it dodges at the last second and the arrow is destroyed when it hits a tree. He later kills, skins a rattlesnake and shares it with Beth. When Beth says she wants a drink, Daryl throws her a water bottle. She says that she wants some alcohol (due to her father not allowing it). Daryl ignores her and she goes off to find some on her own. After she lures several walkers away, Daryl finds her and brings her back to camp. Furious, Beth says that she wanted something to do and will find some alcohol, whether Daryl helps her or not. They make their way to a country club and Daryl looks for supplies while Beth goes to find some alcohol. Daryl hears a scuffle going on and sees her stab a walker. She sarcastically thanks him for the help, but he said she "had it under control." He is seen taking money in several rooms; when Beth asks why, he doesn't respond. The two later find the bar as well as a bottle of Peach Schnapps. While she looks for a glass, Daryl grabs some darts and throws them at a picture of the country club presidents. He hears Beth crying and he smashes the bottle of Schnapps, saying that it won't do for a first drink.
Daryl leads Beth to a shack he found with Michonne and brings out some moonshine from the back. He says that the house reminds him of the one that he grew up in with his parents and Merle. He pours Beth a drink and after some hesitation, she drinks it and pours one for him. After awhile, she teaches Daryl the drinking game 'I never' but accidentally angers him, sending him into a rage and attracts a walker outside. After he haphazardly shoots several arrows at the walker, Beth stabs it in the head and the two have a fight. After Beth continues to belittle Daryl for his cold and distant outlook since they left the prison, he eventually breaks down and says everyone else is probably dead now because he stopped looking for the Governor with Michonne. He starts to cry, blaming himself for Hershel's death while Beth comforts him by hugging him from behind. That night, Daryl finally reveals what he was doing before the outbreak; he was a drifter and a junkie who traveled from place to place with Merle. Never having to care or look out for anyone but himself or his brother, Daryl had to learn by himself and never had anything given to him like Beth did in her life. Beth acknowledges that she doesn't have the skills necessary to survive like he does and that out of them all, he will most likely be "the last man standing." Daryl disagrees, saying that she's changed as well. Beth then says they both should burn the building down; Daryl goes inside, saying they need more booze. After emptying all the jugs of moonshine, Daryl hands her a book of matches. She lights the wad of money Daryl took earlier and they light the shack on fire. They flip it off, and as they leave the burning shack, Daryl smiles.
About a week prior to the events of "30 Days Without an Accident", Daryl is seen, through a flashback, coming across with Glenn a wandering Bob Stookey. He asks Rick's three questions (How many walkers have you killed? How many people have you killed? Why?) before allowing Bob to accompany them back to the prison.
In the present, Daryl is first seen accompanying Beth as she uses his crossbow and practices her tracking skills, and she correctly deducts walker footprints and finds it feasting. Before she can silently kill it, she gets her foot caught in an animal trap and alerts the walker. Beth fires the crossbow, but it doesn't pierce the brain, and she is saved by Daryl. Daryl takes her via piggyback to a nearby funeral home, where they first pay their respects to a "beloved father" at his grave, which reminds her of Hershel, and she then holds Daryl's hand. At the funeral home, Daryl and Beth find that the home is in a clean condition and that the shelves are stocked with foods which have no dust, and Daryl determines that someone else is using the funeral home for themselves. Daryl mistakes the ruckus at the funeral home's door for a stray dog that had approached him earlier, only to have a herd of walkers attempt to barge in. Daryl instructs Beth to run outside and meet him there, but she is kidnapped by an unknown party as Daryl sees their car driving off when he finally makes it out. Daryl gives chase after the vehicle, but eventually gives up and sits down near the railroad tracks. Joe and his group of marauders approach Daryl, who responds by punching Joe and aiming his crossbow at him. Joe says to Daryl if he kills him, his buddies will kill Daryl, saying it would be suicide, and asks Daryl why hurt himself when he can hurt other people. Daryl and Joe introduce themselves.
Daryl is first seen in the woods aiming his crossbow at a rabbit. He fires at it at the exact time that Len, one of Joe's group members, fires his bow and strikes the rabbit. Daryl says that he has been tracking the rabbit all morning and that it is his, but Len disregards this because "the rules of the hunt don't mean jack" and because he already "claimed" the rabbit. Len reasons that the loss of Beth is the cause of his poor mood, and begins to speak provocatively of her before Joe arrives out of nowhere to diffuse the situation. He asks Len if he claimed the rabbit, which he says he did, but Daryl does not relinquish the rabbit. Joe explains his rules and system of "claiming", but Daryl says that there are no rules anymore. Joe assures him that there are, and that's why he didn't kill him for his crossbow. Joe takes his hatchet and cuts the rabbit in half, giving one half to each man.
Later while on the tracks, Joe speaks to Daryl and asks him what the plan is. Daryl says that he will be sticking with the group for right now. Joe talks about his rules and says that, if you break them, you will be punished. He explains that when men like them follow the rules, the world becomes theirs. When they come across an old mechanic building, Joe whistles and orders them to stop, saying that they will be camping there for the evening. Daryl says that "there ain't no us" and Joe says, "You leaving right now?" When Daryl does not respond, Joe says, "Then sure seems like there's an us."
Later that night when things are quiet, Len claims that his half of the rabbit is missing and accuses Daryl of stealing it. Joe asks Daryl if he took the rabbit, but Daryl assures he didn't take anything. When Joe empties Daryl's bag, Len's half of the rabbit falls out. Daryl accuses Len of planting it in there when he went out to use the bathroom. Len is eager to teach Daryl a lesson for lying and stealing, but Joe turns and punches Len to the ground. Joe orders his men to "teach him all the way" for being a "lying sack of shit". The Claimers savagely beat Len. Joe tells Daryl that he saw him put the rabbit in the bag. Daryl asks him why he didn't stop him, and Joe says that he wanted to play that out; he let him. The next morning when they leave from the building to continue their walk, Daryl finds Len beaten horribly and with an arrow shot through his head. He is about to cover him with a sheet but decides against it and leaves him exposed.
On the tracks, Joe explains their mission to Daryl: They are heading to Terminus in the hope of finding the man who strangled their colleague Lou in the bathroom of a house in which they were staying some time ago. Unbeknownst to Daryl, this man is Rick Grimes, who was staying in the house after the fall of the prison. Spotting some radishes in the ground, Daryl claims them and stoops down to collect them, seeming to have found his place in this group.
Daryl appears right after Joe and his group have ambushed Rick, Carl, and Michonne on the road in the night. As Joe begins to count down from ten, to shoot Rick in the head, Daryl comes out, "stopping him at eight". Daryl looks as Joe and the rest have Rick and Michonne held at gunpoint and Dan having Carl caught inside the car. He reasons with them that the trio are "nice people", but Joe does not believe this and tells him that Rick killed their group mate Lou and thus that Daryl is lying. He orders Billy and Harley to beat Daryl to death. While Daryl is assaulted and Dan prepares to rape Carl, Rick becomes enraged and kills Joe, biting his jugular out of his neck. Michonne kills Tony by turning the gun pointed at her back on him and shooting him in the head. Daryl punches Harley and Michonne shoots him, and Daryl finishes his attackers by stomping Billy's head in. Daryl turns and watches as Rick disembowels Dan on the other side of the truck.
The next morning Daryl explains to Rick how he ended up in Joe's group. He says that he was with Beth for a short while after the prison fell until they got separated when a group of walkers attacked them and split them up. He also says that Joe and his group had only one "stupid" rule, but it worked. Rick assuages Daryl's fears that his interaction with the group had anything to do with the attack the night before and affirms that he is his brother.
As they continue their journey, they come across Terminus from the side of its fences. After scouting for a short while, Rick, Daryl, Michonne, and Carl climb inside from the back of the sanctuary's fences and sneak inside. They run to a nearby door and end up in a large spacious room, where a resident is doing a broadcast over a PA system repeating the words "Sanctuary for all" to all the survivors who can manage to hear them via radios. They are welcomed by man named Gareth who tells them to lower their weapons and frisks them. After the check, they are welcomed to Terminus and Gareth warns them to not do anything stupid while his brother Alex shows them around. A woman, Mary, offers them some food while they're shown around. Rick becomes suspicious as he spots someone donning the hitchhiker's orange bag (which Glenn took with him from the prison), Glenn's riot gear (which he also retrieved), and Daryl's poncho (which Maggie was wearing upon entering Terminus). When Rick spots Hershel's pocket watch dangling from Alex's pocket, he concludes something is up and grabs Alex and holds him at gunpoint. He demands where he got the pocketwatch, riot gear, and poncho. A gunfight ensues between Rick, Daryl, Michonne, and Carl and the Terminus people. The Terminus people force them through an alley while they are being fired at. They make it to the back fences but are cut off when Terminus people emerge from the bushes. Gareth arrives and orders them to go to the nearby boxcar in order of Ringleader (Rick), Archer (Daryl), Samurai (Michonne), and Kid (Carl). As they enter the boxcar, they are reunited with Glenn, Bob, Maggie, and Sasha and meet Abraham Ford, Tara Chambler, Rosita Espinosa, and Eugene Porter. As Daryl walks around the boxcar, Rick says the last line to be said in the season: "They're screwing with the wrong people".
Daryl and the others create makeshift weapons to fight off their captors, but the Terminus guards instead drop a flash-bang grenade into Boxcar A and drag Daryl, Rick, Bob, and Glenn out. They are taken to the slaughterhouse and lined up bending over a pig trough next to another four male survivors from another box car. One by one, the four survivors are brutally slaughtered over the pig trough. Before Glenn can be executed, an explosion distracts the guards which gives Rick an open window to break free and slaughter the guards. Rick lets Daryl, Bob, and Glenn free before the four discover that Terminus were planning to butcher them and use them as food. Rick orders them to not put down the guards and kill any Terminus member on sight.
After fighting through a horde of zombies invading Terminus as well as the Terminus residents without his crossbow, Daryl and the others make it back to Boxcar A and set the rest of the group free. The group manages to escape Terminus, hitting Gareth with a bullet in the process. As everyone regroups on the outskirts of Terminus where Rick buried his weapons, Carol re-appears, which causes a tearful Daryl to run over to her and embrace.
Daryl travels with the group as they leave Terminus. Later that night, he's sitting with Carol. She tells him she doesn't want to talk about what happened and needs to forget it. They hear a noise in the woods, and Daryl stands up. After a while, he concludes it was nothing and they leave.
The next day, Daryl has hunted for squirrels and brings them back to the group. He tells Rick he saw no trail of who/what was making the noise in the night. They continue on until they hear someone screaming and rescue him; the man reveals himself to be Father Gabriel Stokes. Daryl expresses his skepticism about him many times. The group arrives and decides to split up, hunting for supplies. Daryl travels with Carol and they collect some water. As they're on the road, Daryl tells her they get a chance to start over and "whatever happened, happened." They manage to find a car with a dead battery and a working emergency starter in the trunk, and Carol thinks it best if they leave it for emergencies. Daryl offers to carry some water, but Carol playfully refuses.
Daryl is later enjoying dinner with the others and is present when Abraham makes his speech and Rick accepts the idea to go to Washington, D.C.. He eventually goes to find Carol at the car once again and starts to bring her back when he spots the car with the white cross driving away. He and Carol immediately follow suit in the car.
Daryl appears at the end of this episode after Michonne heard some rustling in some bushes, and in turns out that it was Daryl. Michonne is relieved and happy to see him and smiles, but it soon fades away as she asks where Carol is, but Daryl answers it by telling someone in the bushes that they can come out.
Daryl and Carol are seen following the car believed to have taken Beth. They follow the car into the city, up until the car stops at an intersection. Discovering that the driver is a cop, the two question each other about the fact of who took Beth in the first place. As this is happening, a walker tries to get them but is blocked by the car window. Visually alerted, the cop gets back into the car. As the cop drives away, their car runs out of gas and stalls. This forces the two to kill several walkers that surround the car, before continuing to a building. As Daryl is trying to pry open a barricade on a window, Carol rushes towards an upcoming walker, but before killing the walker, the two notice a herd is coming. The two then crawl into the building and decide to stay for the night.
Carol takes the first watch as Daryl sleeps even though he offers to take first watch, but Carol insists to stay up. As Daryl sits on the bedside, the two talk about "starting all over". The conversation between the two ends by a rattling sound heard outside. Following the sound, the two discover two walkers, one being a child, trapped behind a glass door. Carol wants to kill the child, but Daryl stops her and insists that she doesn't have to.
When morning comes, Daryl kills the two walkers he and Carol found the previous night, and burns them as Carol joins him, thanking him for doing so.
The two then continue their journey on finding where Beth is believed to be. They burn a paper to lure the walkers blocking their way, before entering a parking lot and building. As they enter the building, they discovered a camp of walkers, and the two kill most of them, but not the ones that are trapped in the tents. The two then rest up in an office after crawling into the room from the gap in between the chained doors. Observing the scenery of the destroyed city from the window, Daryl sees a van with the white crosses on them stuck on a bridge. Daryl and Carol then decide to go check it out, but as they crawl out from the room, they encounter Noah. While holding Carol's rifle, Noah asks Daryl to put down his crossbow at gun point. Daryl obeys what the boy asked, before killing the walkers that Noah freed from the tents to give him time to escape. The two kill the walkers, and Noah is still in sight, giving Carol a clear shot. Despite of what he has done, Daryl stops Carol from shooting him, saying that Noah is just a child. As Carol explains to him that regardless of his age, he could've killed them, could've killed Beth, and added that's why she did what she did at the prison to Karen and David, saying that she can not be one of those people who just stand there and do nothing.
Nevertheless, Daryl still disagrees with Carol. Despite not having any primary weapons, Carol and Daryl still go to where the van is that's believed to be related to the people who took Beth and her location. They search the van to find some clues to where the place is located but they find nothing. A herd of walkers then comes their way and Carol hints to Daryl that they have to fight through the herd. They try to but the walkers overwhelm them, forcing the two to go back into the van, which falls off the bridge and onto the ground below. The two survive the fall but Carol injures her shoulder when landing. The two then enter another building and rest up in one of the rooms. While in there, Carol tells Daryl about her past with Ed. The conversation is distracted by a sound they hear outside. As they walk towards the sound, they find a walker that's nailed to the wall by a bolt of Daryl's crossbow. Daryl kills the walker. Then they hear gunshots and they follow the sound and find Noah killing a walker. Then he gets hit by Daryl and eventually gets pinned down underneath a book shelf. A walker is seen trying to pry open the door that once barricaded by the book shelf. Seeing this as an opportunity to kill Noah without getting his hands dirty, Daryl tells Carol to leave him be. Carol disagrees and insists Daryl help her help him up.
Daryl leaves Carol to save Noah by herself. When the walker successfully pries open the door and tries to bite Noah, Daryl sends a bolt into the walker's skull, saving Noah's life and then helps Carol lift the bookshelf. After being saved, Noah mumbles about the folks at the hospital, whom are hunting him down. Hearing this, Daryl asks Noah whether or not he knows a blonde girl. Noah is shocked upon knowing that Daryl and Carol know Beth, before realizing the cops are just right outside the building. Fearing the cops will find them, Noah tells Daryl and Carol to run away with him. As the three are running away from the building, Noah trips and causes Daryl to lag behind. Carol leads the way but once she is outside, a car hits her. Witnessing this, Daryl tries to go to Carol, but is held back by Noah who tells him that he needs to let the people take her because regardless of how the place is, they have a doctor and Carol needs one. Daryl, overwhelmed by seeing Carol get taken, asks Noah about what is it gonna take to save Carol and Beth. Noah answers, "A lot. They've got guns and people." "So do we." Daryl replies back, hinting the people at the church.
The two then leave the city, using a truck they find. Daryl stares sharply to the road as the episode ends.
Daryl is seen along with the others, fortifying the church, before leaving to Atlanta in order to rescue Beth and Carol from the hospital they are hold in, as said by Noah. When doing his chores, he is somewhat concerns about Sasha's well being after Bob's death. He asks to Tyreese how is she doing, to which Tyreese replies she is not 'there' yet. Daryl then leaves with the stockade of organ pipes, fortifying the entrance of the Church, using it, piercing the pipes to the ground, just like what they did to the Prison's entrance.
Daryl, Rick, Noah, Tyreese, and Sasha leave the church, heading towards Atlanta. Upon arriving to the hospital. The group formalizing their plan, when Rick said that they need to attack the hospital, Daryl supports Tyreese's plan on making a trade instead of attacking the hospital, and thus everyone will go home safe, and sound. Rick refused, disagreeing with Tyreese's thought on his plan, but changes his mind and agrees after Daryl backs up Tyreese.
The group then capture Officers Amanda Shepherd and Bob Lamson from the hospital, who was drawn in by Noah, and their plan. They hold the officers captive, and said they need to talk. Bob asks Rick if Rick is a cop by the way he talks and acts. Daryl is seen holding Bob to stand on his feet, before eventually takes cover from the incoming shots of the gun fight that ensues.
Sasha managed to shoot one of the tires, forcing the officers to leave the vehicle. the group chases the three, while the others doing so, Daryl hears something behind an already burned CDC van. He lags behind to check it out, and gets pounced on by Officer Licari. Licari drags him to a paralyzed but still alive walker on the ground, trying to kill him by having the walker bite him. Daryl saves his own life by pulling off a walker's head, using it to beat Licari with. Rick then intervenes, shooting the walker that almost bit Daryl. Realizing what might have happened next, Daryl calms Rick down and talks him out from killing Licari.
He is later seen hearing the officers' testimony on whether or not they should trust Dawn on the trading. He calls Rick over to hear what Bob is saying on how they should execute the plan, before eventually decided that they will go with the trades.
Daryl and Rick discuss strategy after Lamson's escape and death, and is surprised when Shepherd and Licari agree to the prisoner trade and that they will lie about Lamson's fate; that he was killed by walkers instead of Rick. He and Sasha later provide security for Rick at the parking garage, where Rick discusses the trade terms with Officers Franco and McGinley. At the hospital he presides over the successful exchange, but Dawn's demand to have Noah returned to her prevents the group from leaving. Beth suddenly attacks Dawn, and after witnessing Dawn shoot her in the head, Daryl is overcome with rage and he retaliates - shooting Dawn in the head as well. He aims his gun at the other officers, devastated by the violent loss, but he stops when Carol moves to plead with him to stop. He carries Beth's lifeless body to the rest of the arriving group, utterly grief-stricken.
Daryl appears at the end of the episode during Tyreese's funeral.
Daryl appears when he is digging up worms and eating them. He reunites with Maggie and Sasha and all three of them head back to the group. When they run out of gas Daryl and the group are forced to walk. Daryl goes off for a moment along with Carol. When Daryl and Carol are out, Carol kisses him on the forehead and tells him that Beth saved her life. She gives him Beth's knife and they head back to the others. When Daryl shows up and he grabs the walker out of Rick's hand. The group continue to move along the road but Daryl decides to to head into the woods to circle back. He finds a dead deer and a walker by a tree. He then again returns back to the group. While the group are sitting and taking a moment, four dogs come out of the forest and start barking. Sasha kills them almost instantly and they start barbecuing them. While the others keep moving, Daryl decides to go ahead into the woods to see if he can find anything. He finds a barn in the distance but just sits down by a tree and lights a cigarette. He starts to cry and burns his hand with the cigarette. Daryl shows back up when the group spot water bottles in the middle of the road. The majority of the group think the water is poisoned but Eugene grabs one and tries to drink it. Abraham knocks the water out of his hand. The group then hear thunder and lightning and it starts to heavily rain. When the storm gets worse, Daryl tells them there's a barn to take shelter in. During the night Rick gives a speech saying what his grandpa told him when he was in war. Rick tells the group that they are "The Walking Dead" to which Daryl replies with "We ain't them." Later, Daryl checks outside to see a herd of walkers heading towards the barn. Daryl starts to hold the door shut to stop the walkers coming in. One by one the survivors wake up and all push against the storm. The storm ends and everyone is asleep. Maggie wakes up and sits with Daryl. They talk about Sasha and how she is grieving Tyreese's and possibly still Bob's death. Daryl tells Maggie that Beth was strong but she didn't know it.
Daryl pats Aaron down when he first enters the barn. He then agrees with Michonne about going to the community. He rides in the RV during the night, arriving at the flare which Eric Raleigh fired unharmed. He then takes the RV to Alexandria.
Daryl is first seen entering Alexandria with the others, shooting an opossum at the gate and bringing it inside. He refuses to hand over his crossbow with the others weapons once inside. In his interview he refuses to sit down, pacing the room. Deanna Monroe does not know what to do with him, being one of the only ones not immediately assigned a job. He has trouble adjusting, not showering and remaining at the house whilst the others explore. When Glenn gets in a fight with Aiden Monroe, Daryl tackles Nicholas to prevent him from helping Aiden, before storming off again.
Daryl is with Rick and Carol out near the house where Rick hid his gun before entering Alexandria. They decide one of them should sneak into the supply house and get the guns that they were forced to hand over when the coast is clear. A walker ambles out from behind the house and Carol puts it down. When they near it, they notice that it has a "W" carved into its forehead!
While Daryl is out in the woods when he hears something. He raises his crossbow and orders the person to show himself, but it is Aaron, who claims he was only out to hunt rabbits. Aaron joins him to hunt with him. While they are out they spot a horse. Daryl tries to wrangle it but walkers to the scene and scare the horse away. They chase it down to an enclosed field but walkers get to it before they can and devour it. The two put down the walkers and Aaron puts Buttons out of its misery. Later that night, Daryl is seen hanging outside of Deanna's house, considering joining the party, but he decides against it. Heading home, he is approached by Aaron, who invites him inside to join him and Eric for dinner. After dinner, Aaron reveals that he wants Daryl to be Alexandria's recruiter because he doesn't want to risk Eric's life anymore and Daryl can tell the difference between a good person and a bad person. The next morning, Daryl reconvenes with Carol and Rick. He considers that they do not need the guns anymore and refuses to take one.
Beginning a new recruitment mission, Daryl rides out of Alexandria on his new motorcycle while Aaron follows him in a car.
Daryl appears at night as he shoots a walker with his crossbow while out on the recruiting mission with Aaron. They continue scouting until they spot a light far off in the distance. They decide to quietly observe whoever is at the light, but find little success in actually seeing the person. Aaron comments on how this person clearly did not want to be found, and they continue tracking until morning. After sunrise, the two stumble upon a dismembered corpse along their trail. They continue on and find a naked, dead woman tied to a tree with her entrails spilling from her torso. Daryl inspects her face to see if she was a walker and notices a "W" crudely imprinted on her forehead. She reanimates shortly after, and Daryl somberly puts her zombified body to rest. Daryl and Aaron continue to track the killer of this woman, following a path of both blood and crushed flowers.
Daryl appears when he is riding his bike and Aaron is driving his car behind him. They stop and head into the woods, looking for the person they saw the night before. Daryl mentions someone came through here a while ago.
Next, Daryl and Aaron find a truck shipping building with a few walkers trapped inside the chain-link fence. They eliminate the walkers before going to check out the trucks. Aaron stoops to collect an Alaskan license plate while Daryl tries to open the back of one of the tractor trailers. The trailer was booby-trapped to release walkers when it opened, as well as the other trailers that were also full of walkers. Aaron and Daryl manage to kill a few walkers before making it to the refuge of an abandoned car parked near by. While they were searching the car, Aaron found a note telling them the car was a trap and 'bad people' were coming. Daryl tells Aaron that he will draw the walkers away so Aaron can make it to the fence. When Aaron refuses, the two of them get ready to make a break for the fence. Just before they open the doors, Morgan Jones appears and helps them escape. Outside the fence, Aaron asks him to come to Alexandria but Morgan explains that he was going somewhere but he is lost. He shows a map to Daryl who recognizes that it was the map that Abraham gave to Rick. They return to Alexandria, arriving just in time to see Rick execute Pete.
In a flashback, Daryl eats while Rick and Morgan talk. While outside Rick tells Daryl that Morgan told him all about the truck traps and the men he fought the W's on their foreheads. Rick states that they need to protect themselves and there is no need to go out and recruit people anymore. Daryl, however, disagrees with this but in the end follows Rick's lead. While at the meeting, Daryl listens to Rick's plan. While constructing the set up for the walkers at the quarry, Daryl tells Rick, hoping to change his mind, that going out and recruiting people is taking care of themselves, but ultimately says it's Rick's call. While getting everything set a few walkers came by. Rick wanted to let the new people take care of themselves, however, Morgan intervened. Meanwhile Rick, Daryl, and Morgan show up just in time before Carter shoots Eugene. Carter states that he's taking the community back from Rick and his people. Rick quickly disarms Carter and points the gun at his head. Rick threatens Carter and tells him that he has no idea who he's talking to. Carter tells Rick to just kill him as it was his idea and not Spencer, Tobin or Olivia's idea. Daryl silently tells Rick to give him the gun, saving Carter's life.
In the present, Daryl is at the quarry with the group who are going to help remove the herd of walkers trapped inside the quarry. When the truck trapping the walkers gives in, Daryl rushes along with the others to execute the plan on the spot. Daryl leads the horde of walkers through the designated zone in which Rick planned out. Later on, Sasha and Abraham meet up with Daryl to help him keep the horde on course. Daryl is last seen in this episode, along with Sasha and Abraham, leading the walkers down the designated path 20 miles out.
After the horn is blown, over the walkie, Daryl asks Rick what's going on. Rick tells him that half of the quarry herd broke off and that they're moving towards Alexandria. Daryl offers to help, but Rick tells Daryl to stay the course and keep the rest of the herd moving along the road. However, Daryl tells Abraham and Sasha that he's leaving them to help defend Alexandria. Abraham and Sasha implore Daryl to stay until they reach the 20-mile marker as planned, but Daryl refuses and rides off on his bike. Later, Rick radios Daryl to inform him that the breakaway herd will soon be back on track. When Rick gets attacked by the Wolves, the group that set up the trap at the shipping building, Daryl hears gunfire over the walkie and calls Rick's name, but gets no response. He races down the road, reluctantly rejoining Abraham and Sasha as the herd trails behind them.
Daryl, Sasha and Abraham arrive at the 20-mile marker set for leading the herd away from Alexandria. As they pull away from the herd and begin the journey back to Alexandria, a group of gun-wielding assailants ambushes them in cars. As they flee, Daryl crashes on his bike and is separated from Sasha and Abraham. Daryl eludes his attackers and quietly walks his motorcycle through a burnt-out forest littered with charred walker bodies. He tries to radio Sasha and Abraham but gets no response. As he inspects a wound on his arm, he hears a noise nearby. He hides his bike under a pile of branches and finds two sisters, Tina and Sherry, with their hands up, telling him they took what they deserved. Just then, a man knocks him out from behind.
As Daryl drifts in and out of consciousness, he sees his captors rummage through his supplies and put his crossbow in a bag. The man pegs Daryl as a soldier from an outpost – one of the men who originally attacked Daryl, Sasha and Abraham. The man, Dwight, wakes Daryl at gunpoint the next morning. Daryl insists he isn't who they think he is, but Dwight doesn't believe him. Daryl's captors march him through the woods. Dwight declares that they are not returning to the community they came from. "You feel you gotta kneel? Fair enough. We don't." Dwight tells Daryl. As they keep moving, Dwight lays out a plan to find "Patty" and then leave immediately. He describes how he and Sherry burned the entire forest with the walkers in it. He then explains that they joined up with a community, thinking naively that they would rebuild society together. Daryl argues that they should let him go, but Dwight refuses to listen, and holds him at gunpoint when Daryl suggests that they're making a mistake. Dwight angrily questions if Daryl possesses an immediate threat and demands to be told whether he should be killed. Daryl says no. They arrive at a gated parking lot full of walkers and start to panic. "Patty", Dwight says. "She's gone." Tina faints, and as they tend to her, Daryl grabs their duffel bag and runs back into the woods, evading gunfire from Dwight.
Safe in the woods, Daryl again tries to radio Sasha and Abraham without luck. He grabs his crossbow from the duffel to shoot a nearby walker. Afterwards, he looks down at the fallen contents of the duffel and sees a cooler filled with insulin: Tina's a diabetic. Daryl returns Tina's insulin and forces Dwight to hand over their gun as well as a wooden figurine that Dwight carved. They're interrupted by the arrival of men in a truck. Wade, the leader, orders Dwight to return what he took – Tina and Sherry, who angrily reply that they're not going back. In response, the truck begins to plow through the forest, trying to flush them out. Daryl helps them find a hiding place further away, and gives their gun back to Dwight. He lures one of Wade's men into the path of a walker, which bites him. Wade hacks off the man's arm and calls off the search. Daryl's group comes across a burnt and melted greenhouse. Tina recognizes the two dead people encased in melted glass inside and lays flowers at their side. The corpses awaken and attack Tina, breaking through the glass and killing her. Daryl kills the walkers as Sherry breaks down and Dwight looks on distraught. Daryl and Dwight dig a grave for Tina.
Daryl asks him how many walkers he's killed, how many people, and why. Satisfied with Dwight's answers, Daryl invites them to come live in Alexandria, and Dwight acknowledges his offer, seemingly interested. Daryl brings Dwight and Sherry to his motorcycle, and explains that he doesn't know where Abraham and Sasha are, but that he's going to find them. Dwight looks at Sherry, and then turns his gun on Daryl, forcing him to hand over the crossbow. Dwight and Sherry get on the bike and ride off. Daryl finds a fuel truck in the woods branded "A.A. Pattrick Fuel Co." Its license plate reads "Patty". He kills the walker in the cab and drives to pick up Abraham and Sasha. They drive down the road in the fuel truck. Daryl tries to radio Rick. "Help," a muffled voice on the radio replies.
Daryl's voice is heard when he is asking if anybody is receiving his voice. Eugene picks up the walkie-talkie and says, "help."
Daryl, Abraham and Sasha are still headed back to Alexandria, but are stopped by a group of bikers blocking the road. One of the bikers, Bud, tells them to give up all their supplies and their truck, to which, Daryl asks, "Why should we?". The biker then claims, "Your property, now belongs to Negan".
Bud takes their sidearms. He orders Timmy to take Daryl to the back of the truck and inspect its cargo while Sasha and Abraham stay behind. After some conversation between Abraham, Sasha and the leader of the gang, the whole group of bikers explodes. Daryl then comes out from behind the truck holding an RPG, having subdued and killed the Savior who went to check cargo with him, getting cut on the back in the process, and leaves with Abraham and Sasha. They arrive in Alexandria that night, only to find the safe-zone overrun by walkers. Glenn gets in the truck and proposes to Daryl that they use the vehicle to lead the walkers away, but Daryl suggests an alternate plan. As the fighting intensifies, he dumps fuel from the truck into the pond in the middle of Alexandria, then launches an RPG into the water. A ball of fire erupts in the sky, distracting the walkers. Rick’s group and all the Alexandrians keep killing and killing as the walkers flock to the fire, going up in flames as they stumble into the lake. The next morning, Denise stitches up the cut on his back.
Daryl tracks down Denise to review her list of requested supplies and asks why she wants orange soda. Denise explains her plan to surprise Tara, who's leaving with Heath on a two-week supply run.Rick and Daryl leave for the supply run. He gives them a map to agricultural supply stores and instructions to track down sorghum, a "criminally underrated grain" that could help replenish their low food supply.In the car, Rick predicts they will finally find food and new people that day.
Daryl notes that they haven't encountered anyone in weeks.Rick and Daryl spot a sorghum barn and find a truck inside. They open the truck and discover a large store of supplies. Rick proposes they drive the truck and come back for their car later.En route to Alexandria, Rick and Daryl stop at a gas station to scavenge. Daryl finds a tipped over vending machine, and they chain it to the truck to flip it over. Just then, a masked man races over and crashes into Rick, prompting Rick and Daryl to pull their guns on him.The assailant introduces himself as Paul Rovia -- though his friends call him Jesus -- and tells Rick and Daryl that he was just running from walkers. Rick asks him how many walkers he's killed -- the test for new members of the group -- but Daryl cuts him off. Eventually, they decide to let Jesus go on his way.
While Daryl and Rick talk about Jesus and whether to follow him, they're surprised by the sound of gunshots behind the gas station. They investigate and discover firecrackers in a trash can. Realizing it was a trick, they run back just in time to see Jesus driving off with the truck, dragging the vending machine behind it. Rick and Daryl sprint after the truck and find the vending machine discarded in the middle of the road. Daryl shatters the display case and stuffs orange sodas for Denise and some snacks into his bag. Then they keep running. Rick and Daryl catch up with Jesus and hold him at gunpoint. Rick ties Jesus up, assuring him the knots are loose enough to eventually wriggle free. Then Rick and Daryl drive off in the truck. As they drive across a field, Rick and Daryl hear a sudden noise and realize that Jesus is on the roof of the truck
Rick screeches to a halt, sending Jesus tumbling to the ground. On foot, Daryl chases after Jesus while Rick kills nearby walkers. Jesus and Daryl wind up struggling inside the truck and Jesus accidentally knocks it into neutral, causing the truck to roll into a pond and sink. Daryl begrudgingly agrees not to abandon Jesus, who was knocked unconscious, after Rick points out that Jesus saved Daryl from a walker.Later, Daryl guards an unconscious Jesus in the back seat as Rick drives them back to Alexandria.As they arrive in Alexandria, Daryl tells Rick that he was right when he once suggested they stop bringing new people into the community. Rick disagrees: he thinks Daryl was right in the first place.
Rick and Daryl bring Jesus to the infirmary so Denise can check him out. Later, in the townhouse basement, Daryl and Rick leave water and a note next to Jesus' still unconscious body. Back at home, Rick wearily flops onto his couch, where Michonne joins him. He tells her Daryl is guarding a man that they brought in.
Daryl is first seen preparing the motor home for the trip to Hilltop, and reluctantly accepts a homemade oatcake from Denise for his efforts in trying to retrieve a soda for Tara.
On the road, the group stops as they approach an overturned car and Jesus recognizes it as one of Hilltop’s. Daryl follows tracks to a nearby building where they rescue four of Jesus’ people before continuing on their journey.
They arrive at the Hilltop, where they meet Gregory who orders the group to clean up before talking with him. As they wait in the foyer, Abraham asks Daryl if he’s ever thought about settling down. “You think shit’s settled?” Daryl replies.
After Ethan stabs Gregory, Daryl saves Abraham by breaking the arm of the resident who was throttling him. He asks Abraham if he is alright, to which he replies he is better than alright.
Jesus explains that a group called the Saviors agreed not to attack the Hilltop in exchange for half of their supplies. Rick mentions Daryl, Sasha and Abraham’s encounter on the road with a group of Saviors’, and Daryl argues that they just have a good story. He suggests that they wipe out the Saviors and strike up a deal with Hilltop in which they exchange supplies. Jesus agrees to discuss this with Gregory.
After the deal is made, the group head back to Alexandria. Daryl looks at Glenn and Maggie’s ultrasound scan before passing it on to the others.
Daryl is present at the church meeting where Rick discusses the deal that was made with the Hilltop.
At a meeting to coordinate the attack, Andy draws a map of the interior and exterior of the Saviors' compound for Daryl, Rick, Glenn, Maggie, and Michonne.
At the Saviors’ compound that night, as Andy waits for one of the guards to get Craig, Daryl approaches silently and kills the other guard. The others emerge from hiding and clear the scene before killing the first guard when he returns with Craig. They then sneak into the compound.
After the alarm is activated, Daryl and the others shoot at the Saviors’ as they make their way through the compound. When the fight is over, the group emerge from the building. Suddenly, a lone surviving Savior tries to escape on Daryl’s motorcycle. He is shot off the bike and Daryl tackles him as he tries to flee, punching him as he demands to know where he got the bike. A voice comes over the Saviors’ walkie-talkie, revealing that they have Carol and Maggie.
Daryl is seen at the beginning of the episode along with the rest of Rick's group when Paula is spying on them. At the end of the episode, Daryl and the group arrive at the slaughterhouse to save Carol and Maggie. He and Carol hug each other.
Carol visits Daryl, who is sitting by his recently recovered bike. Daryl admits to Carol that he should have killed Dwight while he had the chance. Daryl and Rosita soon accompany Denise on a run for medical supplies. However while returning, Denise is shot by Dwight with Daryl's crossbow, leading to a standoff with Dwight and Neil's group. A captive Eugene creates a distraction allowing Daryl and the others to kill several Saviors, including Neil, forcing Dwight and the remaining to flee. Later back at Alexandria, Daryl buries Denise, clearly somewhat saddened.
Daryl sits on his motorcycle, looking at the Dennis keychain that Denise found at the apothecary. Despite Rosita’s protests, Daryl opens the front gate and leaves on his motorcycle.
Daryl is seen making his way through the field where Dwight fled towards. He hears a noise in the trees and shoots his crossbow, coming inches away from hitting Rosita in the head. He tells him they shouldn’t have come after him, to which Michonne says he never should have left. Glenn tries to stop Daryl from going after Dwight, but he refuses. He explains that he tried to help him before but if he had killed him, Denise would still be alive. Rosita joins Daryl as Glenn and Michonne head back to Alexandria.
In the woods, Daryl and Rosita creep up on the Saviors’ camp where Glenn and Michonne are being held. Glenn tries to scream a warning to Daryl through his gag, but Daryl is caught off-guard by Dwight sneaking up behind him. “Hi Daryl,” he says as he points a gun at him. Daryl turns around and Dwight pulls the trigger. A large amount of blood splatter is seen as Dwight then says, "You'll be alright."
As the other members of Rick's group are lined up outside the truck Daryl is being held in, Dwight drags an injured Daryl out along with Rosita, Glenn & Michonne. As they are sitting in line on their knees, Negan begins his monologue and points his bat towards Daryl and the others during his game of "Eeney, Meeney, Miney, Moe".
After Negan kills Abraham and starts taunting Rosita, Daryl attacks Negan by punching him in the face. The Saviors however restrains Daryl and Dwight points Daryl's crossbow at his head and asks Negan if he can do it, but Negan has other plans. Dwight drags Daryl back in line. Daryl's outburst prompts Negan to bash Glenn's skull in as well. Daryl is seen shocked, even flinching in horror as Glenn is beaten to death because of his own refusal to cooperate. Daryl feels a deep sense of guilt and responsibility for Glenn's death and then watches on helplessly as Negan returns with Rick and threatens the lives of the surviving group members (Daryl included) if Rick does not obey Negan's command to amputate Carl's left arm. After Negan is satisfied, he stops Rick from performing the amputation believing he has become submissive and thus spares Daryl's life along with the others who were also threatened.
He is later taken captive by Negan, and declares that due to his bravery, he shall now join Negan's group. However, Negan says that if Rick ever tries to fight Negan and his Saviors again, Daryl will suffer slow mutilation from either Negan or Rick, who will be forced by Negan. Negan leaves a truck with Rick’s group so they can transport the goods they are to produce for him. He says they will return for their first offering in one week. When the bodies of Abraham and Glenn are being carried away, Rick imagines life for his group if they never went to war with the Saviors and Daryl is seen eating dinner with the others.
Daryl appears huddled in a dark corner of a cell, naked. Dwight occasionally comes by with a small sandwhich made with dog food to feed Daryl, and leaves a radio playing "Easy Street" by Daryl's cell all day. Daryl endures this torture for several days, before he is taken out of his cell by Dwight. Dwight brings Daryl to the doctor of the Sanctuary, who says that Daryl's gunshot wound will heal. Daryl encounters Sherry, who tells him he should do whatever the Saviors tell him, or he will receive worse treatment. Dr. Carson examines Daryl’s injured shoulder and assures him that Negan will take care of him.
As Dwight leads Daryl back down the hall, Negan appears and pulls Dwight aside for a talk. Fat Joey guards Daryl at gunpoint. Directly in front of Daryl is an open door; beyond it, he sees an efficiency apartment. Dwight drags him away. Dwight takes Daryl outside and shows him the compound’s fence-line. They watch as two workers secure a new walker outside -- it’s the red-headed man from the marketplace. Dwight says Daryl will be forced to work in the yard if he doesn’t make the right choices.
Back in his cell, Daryl tells Dwight that he will never kneel for Negan. “I said that, too.”, says Dwight. He shuts the door. The sound of the lock is heard and the music resumes. Daryl desperately probes the cell walls and kicks the door.
While Dwight is off capturing a Savior who deserted the Sanctuary, Daryl makes an escape attempt. Sherry attempts to convince him to stop, but he ignores her and makes his way outside. He does not make it far as he is stopped by a group of Saviors who anticipated his escape. Negan appears: “Are we pissing our pants yet?” he asks. Negan asks the Saviors surrounding Daryl “Who are you?” They all respond, “Negan.” He tells Daryl that he failed his chance to prove he’s ready for the next step. Negan presents three options: Death, working for points, or working for Negan and living like a king. Daryl doesn’t reply. Negan swings Lucille at Daryl, stopping just short of hitting him, but Daryl doesn’t flinch which Negan admired. Negan leaves as the Saviors beat Daryl up.
Upon his return, Dwight is infuriated at Daryl's escape attempt. Dwight taunts Daryl, claiming his actions got Glenn killed. He leaves a picture of Glenn's smashed skull in the cell before closing the door. Dwight changes the radios music to Roy Orbison's "Crying" in order to torture Daryl physiologically. The picture combined with the music overwhelm Daryl, who begins to cry in guilt for Glenn. Dwight hears him sobbing from the hallway and slightly smiles and walks away. Dwight returns sometime later and finds Daryl passed out next to a pile of vomit. He brings Daryl to Negan, who attempts to lure Daryl to work for him. He asks who Daryl is, in which Daryl plainly responds "Daryl". Dwight brings Daryl back to his cell, and yells at him for jeopardizing his own life. “I get why you did it, why you took it,” says Daryl. “You were thinking about someone else. That’s why I can’t.” Daryl settles back into his cell as "Easy Street" begins playing once more.
Daryl has become a slave to Negan, and helps him round up Alexandria's supplies. When Rick tries to talk to Daryl, Negan immediately butts in and forbids Rick and everyone else in Alexandria from talking to Daryl, or else Negan will make Rick mutilate Daryl. When Negan is told that Maggie had died and had been buried alongside the graves of Glenn and Abraham (when in actuality Gabriel had made a false grave for Maggie to keep her status and whereabouts a secret from Negan), Daryl looks sad as he believes that Maggie had died because of Glenn's death taking its toll on her, causing Daryl to feel even more guilty. At the end of the day, Daryl is offered the chance to beg to stay in Alexandria, but says nothing, and leaves with the Saviors. Dwight takes the motorcycle from Spencer and rides up to Daryl and says, "You can have it back; just say the word." Daryl remains silent, so Dwight drives off.
Later, we see Daryl entered the room where Negan is showing Carl his "wives" with Dwight. Daryl asks why Carl's there, but Negan tells him that's none of his business. Seconds later, Negan tells him to go with Dwight to get a mop.
Time passes, Daryl is seen holding a mop. As Negan arrives, Daryl is kneeling, helplessly, along with everyone else. While Negan is using an iron to burn the left side of Mark's face, Daryl is seen showing sorrow. Afterwards, Negan tells Daryl to clean up the floor.
Daryl is then seen walking to the truck of which Negan and Carl are in. Negan tells him he's taking him home because he was worried. Daryl responded, "If you do anything to him-" but gets interrupted by Negan. Negan tells Dwight to put Daryl in a "time-out", and gets put back to his room.
While Daryl sits in his room, he hears footsteps outside his door. A note slides under, and the footsteps fade away. Daryl picks up the note, and reads it. The sign says "go now," with a key attached to it.
At the Saviors’ compound, Daryl escapes his cell. He sneaks down the hallways and hears Saviors approaching, so he ducks into Dwight’s apartment. Inside, he devours a jar of peanut butter, changes into Dwight’s clothes and listens to the Saviors in the hall. He notices Dwight’s carved figurines on a table.
Daryl hears the Saviors leave the hallway. He seizes the moment and flees the apartment, but not before flipping the table and smashing Dwight’s carved figurines.
Daryl grabs a pipe from the hallway before heading outside and running over to the motorcycles. Fat Joey appears and pleads for his life, but Daryl beats him to death with the pipe as Jesus arrives. Daryl notices Rick’s gun on Joey’s belt and takes it before hopping on a motorcycle and leaving the compound with Jesus.
As the others reunite at the Hilltop gates, Daryl appears with Jesus. Rick is shocked to see him and the two share a hug before Daryl presents Rick with his gun that he retrieved from Fat Joey. Together, they all stride towards the mansion.
Daryl is seen with Rick and the others in the Hilltop mansion, trying to get Gregory to join the fight against the Saviors. Daryl calls out to Gregory, for his big mouth and not being part of their plan.
After they leave his office, Daryl reasons they might not need a large army and if they find the right supplies they could blow them up. Tara reminds him there are civilians inside the Sanctuary.
Afterwords, Jesus then decides to take Rick and the group to the Kingdom, to meet Ezekiel. He leads them to the outskirts of the Kingdom, where they are greeted by Richard and Alvaro. When taken in to meet Ezekiel, Jesus introduces him to Rick and requests Ezekiel to join in on Rick's plan to fight the Saviors
Ezekiel is reluctant to break the peace with the Saviors and ultimately refuses, however, Daryl is offered asylum by Ezekiel since the Saviors won't harm him there. While reluctant, Rick tells Daryl to stay and try to convince Ezekiel to change his mind about helping them. Simon and the Saviors later search Alexandria for Daryl but are unable to find him due to Daryl being at the Kingdom.
Daryl confronts Morgan about his meeting with the Saviors. He comments on his injury and says if Carol saw that and knew about Glenn and Abraham, she’d be leading them straight to the Saviors. Morgan agrees and says that’s why she left.
Daryl joins Richard as he practices archery. Richard says that Morgan told him he was a bowman and hands him a new crossbow before asking for his help.
Daryl and Richard take some weapons from his hidden trailer and arrive at a location by the side of a road commonly used by the Saviors. Richard tells Daryl his plan to kill the Saviors when they pass and when the others find them, they will follow a trail that leads to a weapons cache then to a house that someone Ezekiel cares about is living in. When Richard mentions it’s a woman, Daryl demands to know her name. Richard says it’s Carol and he was hoping he didn’t know who she was. Daryl refuses to put her in danger, and when Richard is about to go ahead, Daryl tackles him to the ground and they fight. Daryl tells Richard that if anything happens to Carol, he will kill him.
Daryl arrives at Carol’s house and the two hug. He tells her that Jesus took them to the Kingdom and he asks why she left. Inside, Carol explains to him why she had to go and starts to cry as she asks if everyone back home is OK. Daryl lies and tells her the Saviors came but they made a deal like Ezekiel did and everyone is fine. They eat together and as he leaves, he turns back to hug her and tells her to watch out for herself.
Back at The Kingdom, Daryl sits by Shiva's cage as Morgan appears. Daryl tells him that he found Carol and Morgan tells him she didn’t want him to tell anyone where she was. Daryl says he understands, and that they need The Kingdom and he has to make that happen. Morgan apologizes and says it can’t be him. Daryl says whatever he’s holding on to is already gone. Morgan says that he is the same as him and Daryl says he doesn’t know anything about him, but Morgan says he knows Daryl didn’t tell Carol about Glenn and Abraham or she’d be there now. Daryl leaves and tells him he’s going back to The Hilltop in the morning to get ready.
The next day, The Kingdom gates open and Daryl walks out. He looks back at Morgan before heading to The Hilltop.
Daryl sits outside Maggie’s trailer, despondent. She brings him a plate of food and places her hand on his shoulder before heading back inside.
Kal yells that the Saviors are coming. Enid runs over to Daryl and asks him to help her hide Maggie.
Enid guides Daryl and Maggie to a root cellar and they hide behind some shelves. As a Savior takes some supplies, Daryl readies his knife to attack but Maggie holds him back. When the Savior leaves, they come out of their hiding place. Maggie remarks that Daryl nearly killed a Savior unnecessarily, and he says that he deserves to die. Maggie says that ever since he arrived, he has avoided her. She asks Daryl to look at her. He starts to cry and apologizes. Maggie insists he is not to blame for Glenn’s death, and that Glenn thought Daryl was one of the good things in this world. She tells Daryl they need to win and hugs him.
Later, Daryl asks Jesus where Sasha and Rosita are.
Tara revealed to Rick and the group that she encountered a group with guns while on her supply-run with Heath called Oceanside who had once fought the Saviors but lost, and are now in hiding. Realizing she needs to break her promise in order to acquire the guns and people to win the war against the Saviors, Tara leads the group to Oceanside. Following Tara, Rick brings Eric along with Aaron, Carl, Michonne, Daryl, Gabriel, Enid, Tobin, Francine, Scott, and Jesus.
Jesus voices his regrets about Rosita and Sasha, chastising himself for not stopping their attack against Negan. Daryl assures Jesus that Sasha is a good shot and guesses that they could be back at the Hilltop.
Later, Rick’s group sets off the explosives near the Oceanside walls. Daryl and Jesus capture Beatrice and Kathy as the other residents flee. They are able to round up the residents and Rick assures them that he doesn’t plan to hurt anyone but they have something they need. Natania appears, holding Tara at gunpoint. Cyndie tells her people that Rick’s group wants to fight the Saviors. Beatrice suggests they join the fight but Natania refuses to lose more people to the Saviors.
Michonne warns Rick that walkers are approaching. Rick’s group and the Oceansiders work together and take down the walkers. Beatrice hands Rick his knife back and they shake hands. Natania angrily concedes and allows Rick’s group to take their guns but she remains adamant they won’t fight.
The Oceanside residents watch Rick’s group leave with their guns. Gabriel wonders whether they need to take all the guns. Rick insists it’s necessary.
Rick’s group returns to Alexandria late at night. Rosita opens the gate for them. Jesus asks about Sasha, but Rosita doesn’t answer. She tells them they have a visitor.
Rosita leads Rick’s group to the Alexandria prison cell: Dwight sits behind bars. Daryl charges at Dwight but Rick and Michonne hold him back. Rosita says that Dwight wants to help. “Okay,” says Rick. He aims his gun at Dwight and orders him to kneel.
Daryl will appear in this episode.
This list shows the victims Daryl has killed:
- Shawn Greene (Zombified) (Alongside his fellow survivors)
- Arnold Greene (Zombified) (Alongside his fellow survivors)
- Duncan (Zombified) (Alongside his fellow survivors)
- Lacey (Zombified) (Alongside his fellow survivors)
- Mr. Fischer (Zombified) (Alongside his fellow survivors)
- Mrs. Fischer (Zombified) (Alongside his fellow survivors)
- Greene farm inhabitants (Zombified) (Alongside his fellow survivors)
- Dale Horvath (Out of Mercy)
- Merle Dixon (Zombified)
- Greg (Zombified)
- Patrick (Zombified)
- Mitch Dolgen
- Dawn Lerner
- Carla (Zombified)
- Delly (Zombified)
- Tina (Before Reanimation) (Alongside Dwight and Sherry)
- Savior 1
- Neil (Alive)
- Glenn Rhee (Indirectly Caused)
- A few unnamed camp survivors of Atlanta (Before Reanimation)
- 3 unnamed Woodbury soldiers (2 Alive, 1 Zombified)
- A few unnamed prison newcomers (Before Reanimation and Zombified)
- At least 7 unnamed members of the Governor's militia
- At least 11 unnamed members of the Saviors
- Numerous counts of zombies.
- Daryl has been shown to survive the most severe situations. In episode Chupacabra, Daryl fell off a horse and, in result, getting impaled through the torso by one of his own arrows. Later in the episode, he got shot at the side of the head by Andrea. In East, he got shot in the shoulder by Dwight and still survived, and in The Day Will Come When You Won't Be, he had enough strength to land a single punch on Negan.
- Originally Daryl was never planned for the AMC show, however after Norman Reedus's audition for the role of Merle Dixon, the producers admired his performance so much they created Daryl Dixon specifically for Norman.
- Daryl won IGN's "Best TV Hero" of 2012.
- His signature weapon is a Stryker Crossbow.
- Daryl has been captured 4 times and is in a 3 way tie with Glenn and Eugene for being captured the most times
- He was captured in the Season 3 mid season finale by Woodbury and forced to fight his brother Merle Dixon. He was captured a second time in the Season 4 finale by Gareth at Terminus. He is then captured again by Dwight and The Saviors after he and Rosita were trying to free Glenn and Michonne. The final moment was in the season 7 premiere after being recaptured by The Saviors because Negan liked the way he stood up to him.
- Daryl has the second highest number of appearances than any other character, behind Rick.
- Daryl's crossbow has been stolen 5 times on the show. Once was by Shumpert when he was captured by The Governor and forced to fight Merle Dixon. The second time was when the group attempted to flee Terminus, but were guided by multiple gunshots to a train car, and being made to drop their weapons for confiscation. The third was when Carol and Daryl visited Atlanta in Season 5 while looking for Beth, but get held-up by Noah in an abandoned building. The fourth time was when he saved Dwight and Sherry in the woods from the Saviors and Dwight double crossed him, stealing his bow and motorcycle. The fifth time and final time was by Dwight again when he shot Daryl in his upper shoulder area and added him into Negan's lineup in which he still has possession of. However in New Best Friends, Daryl gains a new Crossbow from the Kingdom.
- Daryl is currently the longest living original character of the AMC series.
- Skybound published a 2014 April Fools Joke in which it was "spoiled" that Daryl would appear in Issue 129 of the Comic Series.
- Though Daryl is a fan favorite on the show, Kirkman confirmed that he has no interest in including him in the comics.
- Daryl displays several stereotypes of a redneck.
- He possesses a southern American accent.
- His most consistent trait is his aggressive and hostile demeanor.
- He has shown to have a fondness for alcohol.
- He has shown to be a chain-smoker.
- Daryl may be a motorcycle enthusiast - this can be theorized through several hints throughout the series.
- He owns a personal motorcycle jacket
- He drove a 1976 Triumph Bonneville Hardtail Frame Conversion, which was originally owned by his older brother Merle.
- When questioned by Aaron, Daryl dryly remarks, "I ride bikes."
- Daryl appears to have a proficient knowledge of mechanical engineering where he has been seen repairing several broken vehicles to the point of being able to construct a fully working 1992 Honda CB 750 Nighthawk out of spare parts in a garage.
- Daryl possesses several tattoos including one located on his left chest which says 'Norman' - (Reedus' own and father's name), a small devil located on his upper right arm, a red tattoo with the name "Mingus" (Norman's son's name), and two individual demons located on his back.
- On Talking Dead for "Coda", Robert Kirkman confirmed Daryl is straight, if slightly asexual, as previous fan theories suggested that Daryl was gay and Kirkman himself had alluded to the possibility.
- Reedus originally asked the writers and crew if Daryl could get a dog. His request was denied, and Daryl instead got a new crossbow.
- Daryl currently owns Beth's Browning Hunter Knife, which he keeps as a memento of her.
- Daryl has killed the fifth largest amount of living characters on the TV series with a list of at least 28 victims, while Negan has the fourth largest with at least 30, Carol has the third largest with at least 37, Rick has the second largest with at least 40, and the Governor has the largest with over 50.
- Coincidentally, whenever the group comes into conflict with an antagonistic force, Daryl always finds himself with the antagonists in some way and is separated from Rick's group. When Rick's group began a conflict with the Governor, Daryl left with Merle. When Rick's group encountered the Claimers, Daryl was associated with them. Right after meeting Negan, Daryl is then held captive by the Saviors.