'The Walking Dead' season 4 will finally premiere the first of its back eight episodes this coming Sunday, February 9, picking up with the survivors after the events of last year's finale, "Too Far Gone," but our burning questions for the remainder of the season have only grown? For instance, when might we see new comic characters like Abraham, Rosita and Eugene finally appear, having been announced months ago?

Fans of the Robert Kirkman comics from which AMC's monster drama derives have no doubt been eagerly anticipating the arrival of the comic trio, announced back in October to be played by 'Southland' vet Michael Cudlitz, 'Twilight' star Christian Serratos, and Josh McDermitt, respectively. At the time, it was considered plausible that the trio might crop up in or before the midseason finale, as with Tyreese (Chad Coleman) the season before and Michonne at the end of season 2.

Of course, while it remains to be seen which of the splintered character factions will encounter the trio, and what circumstances might bring them together in the back half of season 4, series creator Robert Kirkman tells Entertainment Weekly that it won't be altogether long before we see a largely faithful rendition of the characters:

These characters are going to be extremely similar to who they were in the comics and I’m really excited about that. The visuals and costuming for them has been absolutely amazing. These people really do look like they were torn out of the comic page, it’s pretty startling. But I will say people excited for the introduction of these characters won’t have to wait very long.

I don’t want to reveal exactly when they’ll be introduced, but it won’t be too terribly late in the season so get your hopes up. They really are going to add a very interesting and very compelling dynamic to the show. I think they’re going to bring in elements to the show that we’ve never really explored before and I think that’s exciting and something that’s going to change the game to a certain extent.

I’m always very excited at how much this show evolves over time and changes season to season and these three characters are agent that very much changes the story and very much changes the direction of the show to a certain extent.

Fans of the AMC drama are warned of comic spoilers from here on out, though readers will remember that the trio encounter Rick's group while on their own mission to Washington, D.C., wherein scientist Eugene claims to belong to a think tank that knows how to stop the zombie apocalypse. We're not entirely certain if AMC would follow through on such an ambitious plot line or on any of the subsequent twists from the book, though it certainly seems as if Kirkman has strong plans for the back half of season 4.

We've got plenty of photos, trailers and more to accompany our impending coverage of 'The Walking Dead''s 2014 return this Sunday, but in the meantime, what say you? Are you excited for three new characters to impact the series? Watch the latest preview below, and give us your predictions for "After" in the comments!