Someone is going to die this Sunday, when AMC’s gory The Walking Dead returns to our televisions. The great reveal of who exactly Negan beat to a pulp via his beloved bat “Lucille” comes to be, and with it follows anger, sadness and reflection.
We don’t know just how much time will be spent on Negan’s murderous blows, who is on the receiving end or how long TWD show runners will give us to grieve during the aftermath. All we know is that Season 7 of The Walking Dead is coming, and it’s bound to be as unforgiving as ever.
Okay, we know a little more than that. In anticipation of The Walking Dead Season 7 premiere, let’s reflect on the journey that got our favorite zombie fighters to this fateful point:
NOTE: SPOILERS AWAIT YOU
Where We Are Now
We’re in a bad, bad place, my friends. The Walking Dead survivors as you know them are likely no more, as Rick Grimes and co. have walked right into a deadly trap set in motion by Negan’s army, as well as their own poor decisions.
This is truly on our favorite group of survivors, who sought redemption at the Alexandria community and after befriending the Hilltop people, aimed high and decided they’d take advantage of someone else’s problem to better their own situation.
Behind Maggie’s negotiation abilities, the group leveraged the Hilltop’s uncomfortable position (behind in the palm of Negan and The Saviors’ hand) and demanded half of the Hilltop’s goods as payment for taking out The Saviors for good.
Rick and co. made good on that promise initially, but didn’t kill all of The Saviors and their plan ultimately backfired. They didn’t fully realize that until Maggie came down with some type of illness, which required the group escorting her to the Hilltop community for medical assistance.
On that journey, Rick and co. ran into various packs of The Saviors, culminating in dead end after dead end. The group could have potentially saved themselves by flexing their muscle in any of these one encounters, but Rick opted to hold off each team. Eventually, the sun fell and the group’s final path led to a blocked off road that was being clogged by their own RV.
Negan and his gang had captured Eugene, Glenn, Michonne, Daryl and Rosita and before long, Rick and everyone on site knew they had nowhere to run.
Once the group relinquished the idea of fighting their way out of an obviously impossible position, they turned over their weapons, knelt in a line and were introduced to the infamous Negan:
And that, folks, is where we are.
State of Our Characters – The Lineup
Missing from our lineup are Carol, Morgan and some other minor characters, but in all we have 11 people here who have very interesting storylines. These characters are layered, they’re largely crucial characters and they’ve played a big part in the group to this point.
Let’s brush up on each character and their backstory real quick before we dive into any speculation:
Eugene looks to be about as shaken up as anyone, which makes sense because he’s naturally been a bit of a coward through the show and he previously was captured and beaten before this scene.
If you’ll remember, Eugene was a bit of a useless, sorry sack for the longest time, as he lied to Abraham and let everyone think he had an inside track to a cure for what caused the zombie virus. That was never the case, but he has proven to be a smart and useful asset and even stepped up and started to learn how to fight in season six.
Eugene’s biggest asset has become his gun ammo recipe. With bullets becoming harder and harder to come by, Eugene’s ability to make new bullets (or at least the knowledge that he handed down to Rick) could prove to be invaluable.
Carl has really had a heck of a series, hasn’t he? First he thought his dad died, then he saw other people die, then he got shot, shot down a zombie-fied Shane, put down his own mother and then got his eye shot out of his head.
It’s been a wild ride for Carl, who looks way more mad than scared when it comes to confronting Negan. Perhaps we’ll see some kind of rivalry or weird bond between them, much like the comics.
Aaron seemed sketchy when we first met him, but in the end he was telling the truth: he was scouting our favorite survivors to see if they were safe to bring back to Alexandria.
Since then, Aaron has turned out to be a pretty useful part of the group and has even struck of a friendship with Maggie.
Sasha has had a rough ride, like most of our survivors, as he saw her brother Tyreese die, saw most of her initial group killed off and then even sunk into a deep, suicidal depression after her boyfriend, Bob, also died.
Sasha seemed to be turning a corner, though, as he struck up a relationship with Abraham and was back in the “I want to live” arena. We’ll see if that’s still the case if she makes it out of the lineup still breathing.
Rick has probably evolved as much as any character on The Walking Dead, as he went from scared and passive to protective and decisive to full blown “Shane mode” and back to a firm but fair leader.
He’s why the group has survived this long, but his increasingly reckless approach to human life may also be why they’re in this pickle. Rick, like most of the group to this point, clearly felt they were special and/or untouchable.
We’ve seen Rick Grimes scarred and fractured before, but he looks as shaken as ever as he prepares to meet his own demise or witness the demise of someone he loves. I’m not sure if he’s flat out petrified of Negan or just so rattled over being duped. Either way, he’s headed for a mini-downward spiral that’s going to be awfully tough to crawl out of.
Maggie is a big reason why the group is in this jam, as they probably would have never exposed themselves so harshly by leaving Alexandria had she not gotten sick.
She’s pregnant, so there are two lives to worry about here, which is why Rick and the gang were so hell bent on getting her medical assistance.
The wife of Glenn, Maggie had actually recently stepped up in a bigger leadership role and has often been a bit of a badass. Unfortunately, she looks pretty sick at the moment and odds are good that she’s about to see her husband beaten to death.
Abraham was about to kill himself before Eugene lied to him to get his help, so perhaps he should thank him for that? It looks like he may die either way, though, so maybe not.
Regardless, Abe has been a strong force for the group for a few seasons now, as he’s good with guns and can kill his fair share of walkers without breaking a sweat. He was hooked up with Rosita, but as it turns out, he had a deeper connection with Sasha.
Those two connected and everything seemed to be awesome until Negan came into the picture. Naturally.
Michonne was a loner for the longest time, carting around two zombie friends connected to chains to help her survive. The samurai-wielding menace befriended Andrea, pissed off The Governor and rather quickly earned the groups’ trust.
Since then, Michonne has been arguably one of the best characters on the show, expressing zero fear, a desire to cut off zombie heads and hope for a better tomorrow. She and Rick are now a thing, too, and she also maintains a special bond with Carl.
Rosita is a fairy bland character, although she’s a bit of a badass and helped Abraham and Eugene get as far as they did. She’s got some sass and personality to her, but the show doesn’t seem to let her do too much.
Currently, Rosita has to be a little miffed that the guy she loves – Abraham – has ditched her for Sasha.
Daryl has had a pretty bumpy ride, too, as he lost his brother, saw Beth die right before his eyes and at least in his mind failed Carol when it was revealed her daughter Sophia died.
Daryl has always been a great person at heart, as well as a very reliable tracker, hunter and fighter. Rick’s right hand man, Daryl has formed a lasting bond with the group’s leader and always tries to do right by him.
Last we saw Daryl, he was chasing down Dwight (who he hates) and got shot. He’s clinging to life and very well could be one of Negan’s victims as we head into The Walking Dead Season 7 premiere.
Probably the front-runner to get Lucille’d, Glenn has had a plethora of close brushes with death, truly a list too long to go back and count. We can safely tell you that there has been a ton of foreshadowing for his character, whether it be with baseball bats, him seeing people getting their heads bashed in or simply the show faking us on in regards to his ultimate demise.
At this point Glenn was one of the few that got captured by Dwight and tossed into a van, where he awaited his fate along with Daryl, Michonne and Rosita. Negan now knows he has close ties to Maggie, likely leading to one of them being bashed to bits. Seeing as Glenn has come full circle as a character and died by Negan’s hand in the comments, it would be pretty fitting for that to happen.
All of the Speculation
There is so much speculation on The Walking Dead right now. From how it ended to who actually gets killed by Negan, to what is to come – it’s endless.
Sticking just with the “who did Negan kill” narrative, if you don’t want to know what we think, stop reading now. If you don’t want to know what other people think, stay offline. Seriously, there are endless articles and YouTube videos detailing all of the different reasons why character A or character B definitely got beat by Lucille.
It’s all a guessing game, but ultimately we don’t even think this big delayed reveal is about tricking the viewers. It’s about making us feel what the group felt. It’s about making this thing real.
WARNING: MAJOR SPOILER
Ronny Haze is a notorious The Walking Dead analyzer and he does a pretty good job breaking things down, speculating, and the like. He claims to have gotten an email with a leaked clip of the season 7 death scene and his reaction probably paints a vivid picture of at least what The Walking Dead is going for:
He doesn’t give anything away there, but really dives into the feeling and the raw emotion of what he saw. It’s certainly over the top (like, chill, bro) and as much as we love the show we’re not shedding ACTUAL TEARS (we don’t think), plus we can’t be certain he’s not full of it.
We don’t know if he got a video and watched anything or if what he hypothetically watched was the real footage.
What we do know is we agree with the sentiment that The Walking Dead is a very character driven show and that once you get into it, it’s easy to feel like you’re part of the gang. Naturally, saying goodbye to one or more of these characters, depending on who gets beaten to death, could be tough.
Negan whacks the person once and looks impressed, noting they’re “taking it like a champ”. There’s really only one person in that lineup who could handle a blow like that and then still look back up at Negan in such defiance.
I’ve grown to love this dude’s character and his awesome one-liners, so it’s sad to admit he’s certainly going to be the first to go. He’s become a strong character, he’s in a good place with Sasha and there is just no way Negan keeps this guy around.
Negan knows a guy like Abraham will never fall in line. He also knows Rick is going to be tough to control, so killing off one of his toughest friends might help do the trick.
Note I said Abe is the first to go. I don’t think he’s the only death, as I do think the show runners feel they owe it to the fan base to kill off Glenn in this episode, too.
Glenn’s death came by the hands of Negan in the comics and he’s also been teased to die like a hundred times. All of the teasing and speculation ends.
I’m not sure if Glenn dies by the bat as well, but he’s going to be killed. Perhaps he thinks it’s Maggie who gets beaten at first (Maggie is right next to Abe) and again lashes out for the second time. Considering Negan said there would be “no exceptions” if that happened again, I tend to believe him.
Maybe he shoots him, beats him with a bad or has Dwight or one of his other guys kill him.
Ultimately, one way or another, I think Abraham and Glenn are goners. It’s going to be crazy, in some ways awesome and in every way horrifying.
What Happens Next?
The big reason why both of these massive characters are going to die is two-fold:
They’re making way for big characters
The show needed to maximize the power of this moment
King Ezekiel, The Kingdom, Jesus and the Hilltop people, other Alexandria members, plus Negan and The Saviors – the list goes on. There are tons of new characters and new storylines to build, so something needs to be cut back or cut out entirely.
From a power perspective, two big deaths not only pays off for the show in terms of ratings and community chatter, but it also shows you just how menacing and cruel Negan is.
The show is going to utilize two of its strongest characters to prove that and from this point on, we’ll realize no one is safe.
Obviously Glenn and Abraham dying alone will dramatically alter the show and we may see a lot of people spiral out of control. Carl could lose faith in his dad, the group could lose trust in Rick as well, and Sasha, Maggie and so many more could struggle to cope with such personal and horrifying event.
The Kingdom, Carol and Morgan will come back into play during season 7 of The Walking Dead, but this season is about Negan largely and how the world the group thought they were in is not the one they’re going to be in going forward.
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