'I've seen so many people come and go on that show, it's a bummer to me,' the actor tells ET.
Where does Daryl go from here?
He's stepped into a few of Rick's storylines from the comics -- including being on the receiving end of Alpha's (Samantha Morton) warning to stay out of Whisperer territory, which she marked with the zombified heads of some of the show's protagonists. But as central characters continue to dwindle (Lauren Cohan's Maggie left this season, while season 10 will be Danai Gurira's last as Michonne), where does that leave Daryl?
As Reedus told ET's Leanne Aguilera ahead of TWD's PaleyFest panel last week, he doesn't "have any plans" to exit the series any time soon.
"I don't want to go anywhere. I'll burn down that whole studio if they got rid of me," he cracked -- but noted that on The Walking Dead, "you never know" when your character's time will be up.
"I always said I wanted to just walk off into the sunset with a dog, but now so many people are doing that, that I don't know. I don't know how I'd want to die," Reedus said. "I don't want to die ever, so I don't want to put it out there. I don't want to give anyone any ideas."
The 50-year-old actor admitted he "cried a little bit" when he found out Gurira would be leaving the show next season; he and Melissa McBride are the only remaining original castmembers on the series.
"I've seen so many people come and go on that show, it's a bummer to me. Their ghosts are always with me. It's a very heavy thing to take with you," Reedus said.
TWD showrunner Angela Kang told ET that writers have already started to work out how to say goodbye to Michonne. "I've worked on something that I've talked to the network about, and then Danai and I will talk, of course, but that's very much underway at the moment," she expressed, noting that it's "a possibility" that Michonne could reunite with Rick in his three planned spinoff films.
"I hope so. It's something I, as a fan, would certainly love to see. It all just depends on how things shake out in the universe as a whole," Kang conceded. "But I know that I would love to see that story."
While it's spawned both a spinoff series (Fear the Walking Dead premiered in 2015) and Lincoln's upcoming films, The Walking Dead itself has fallen to some of its lowest ratings ever this season, with some viewers questioning if it's time to pull the plug. Others -- including Reedus -- remain as excited as ever.
"It feels like a Western, again, this show. I really love what Angela's been doing with this show, the direction... we have all these new cast members too, that are great, and I like the journey," he said. "It's a lot of fun. I love where it's going."
Kang, who stepped in as showrunner this season after Scott M. Gimple was promoted to oversee The Walking Dead franchise, added that in her eyes, the series still has legs.
"The show is so great, the fans are wonderful. It's really healthy, it's still No. 1 in the world, so we're not there yet. There's still a lot of story to tell," she insisted. "The comic book is still being written as we speak, and [Robert] Kirkman always pulls a lot of rabbits out of his creative hat, so we've got tons more story to tell."
The Walking Dead returns for season 10 next fall.