Millions of ravenous fans are eagerly awaiting Robert Kirkman’s hugely successful season seven premiere of The Walking Dead which is set to air on Sunday evening, October 23, 2016 on AMC. As usual the show’s producers have again left the fan base hanging on the previous season’s cliff hanger, with everyone asking the question, “Who will Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) kill with his barbed wire wrapped baseball bat named ‘Lucielle’ in the season seven premiere?”
While this article will not be spoiling the season seven premiere (well maybe a little) it will for the most part address this question and offer speculation from three different sources in such a way as to hopefully narrow down all of the Walking Dead anxiety currently being felt by thousands of fans with The Walking Dead premiere less than two weeks away.
The first article cited comes from the Insider on-line website, which does a great job of addressing two very juicy items. The first being a recently released AMC advanced video clip from the upcoming season of The Walking Dead in which a clearly shocked Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) who happens to have a splattering of blood along the right side of his face, tells Negan that he will one day kill him. The video can be seen by following this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_k4gsUmw7lU
In the video Negan then asks one of his captains for Rick’s weapon, with the man handing Negan Rick’s hatchet and Negan then calling him his ‘Right Hand Man‘, before bringing up the bloodied bat ‘Lucielle’ and in essence asking Rick if the person he killed was his right hand man, likely referring to a beloved Walking Dead character he (Negan) would just have killed.
Negan then pulls Rick forcibly along the ground and into the trailer behind him for what we can only hope will not be the resulting loss of Rick’s hand as seen in the Walking Dead comic series, albeit at the hands of the Governor originally. Interestingly however, as the camper door closes, the camera then pulls back and pans down along the dirt to first reveal a blanket on the floor before continuing on to see a bloody stain in the dirt intermingled with what must presumably be bits of skull and brain matter before the scene gut wrenchingly ends.
Interestingly however, there is one more item that must surely raise huge alarm bells for any self-respecting Walking Dead fan. Commingled in all of the blood, guts and teeth in what is left of at least one of Rick’s group is what is clearly a wedding band. The question this raises will be addressed later on this article but that question is simply, who among Rick’s group would have been wearing a wedding band and why would it be commingled with the remains of Negan’s victim?
One the first speculative questions asked by the Insider’s article, was whether or not Negan asking if the deceased member of Rick’s team was his ‘Right Hand Man’, in conjunction with the image of what was clearly Darryl’s (Norman Reedus) blanket, followed immediately by the image of the blood soaked remains on the ground actually points to Darryl Dixon being the beloved character killed by Negan in the season seven premiere episode?
The real question n this case should be whether or not this is simply redirection on the part of the show’s producers so as to build excitement for the coming premiere and new season of The Walking Dead as I can only imagine there would be riots in the streets of Senoi Georgia at the very least were Darryl’s character to die this coming October 23rd, but you never know!? What seems more important however is what hints can be taken from this video preview who dies at the hands of Negan.
In the first instance we see Negan figuratively asking Rick, “Was this your right hand man?” as he levels a bloody Lucielle in front of the kneeling Rick, so then is the character we can expect to die in fact a male?And would that male also by chance be wearing a wedding band?
Secondly, blood splatter can clearly be seen on the right side of Rick’s face and as Negan drags Rick away, the camera likewise pans down toward Rick’s right side to the blanket and then to the bloody remains. Does this likewise mean that Negan’s victim is on Rick’s right side rather than his left!? If so does that potentially mean that everyone kneeling on Rick’s left hand side to include Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green), Aaron (Ross Marquand), Carl (Chandler Riggs), and Eugene (Josh McDermitt) should potentially be sparred from Lucielle’s thirsty wrath. So then does this point to the demise of one of the members of Rick’s group kneeling on his right side?
The Insider article however does not end with this revelation as it goes on to then point to this past weekend’s New York City Comicon in which much of the current cast of The Walking Dead attended a live panel hosted by The Talking Dead’s, Chris Hardwick. At that panel Hardwick happened to ask Lauren Cohan who plays Maggie on the show how differently her character might have dealt with the whole Negan situation had she not been sick from the potential miscarriage Maggie was then going through. What was quite surprising and worth noting was the actresses very emotional reaction to what was not really that big of a question. Or was it!?
The actual moment can be seen in the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kOlvqrLwcjY
What is most striking in viewing the video a few times was not so much what Cohan was saying, but how she was saying it along with the reaction of her co-stars. In essence, the actress whom Walking Dead fans have grown very attached to in her portrayal of Glenn’s wife Maggie, had somewhat of a very touching and overwhelming emotional breakdown in which she began to reminisce, be thankful and also talk about how much larger the show was than their lives and while it was extremely heartfelt it seemed to come out of nowhere.
But more importantly her breakdown had a very unsettling effect on her other costars especially Steven Yeun (Glenn Rhee) who sat immediately to her right, Sonequa Martin-Green who sat immediately to her left, along with Danai Gurira (Michonne) specifically. All of whom were not looking at her but rather staring down with very somber expressions, while some of the other actors and show producers also seemed awkwardly nervous. But perhaps most telling of all was Melissa McBride (Carol) who was clearly affected by Cohen’s emotional display and also began crying herself.
The question then becomes what facts lay behind the sudden and palpable display of emotions by not just Lauren Cohan, but by her costars as well!? Of course she might have simply been overwhelmed because one or more of her dear friends and colleagues for the past six years were moving on from the show. But the sense a viewer gets from the comic con panel is that this was very personal to Cohen just as it was personal to her very good friends around her, but more than that it seemed like a very sad, personal and touchingly overwhelming moment.
And this would also seem to be a good time to once again bring up the presence of the wedding band intermingled with the remains of Negan’s victim. Maggie is in fact Glenn’s wife and Glenn did in fact give her a wedding band which would seem to be the very same wedding band which can clearly be seen in the ‘Right Hand Man’ preview video. As such it would seem wise for all Walking Dead fans to also prepare themselves for the possible death of Maggie on The Walking Dead as well. It may not necessarily be in the season seven premiere, although it might very well be and it might no be at the beginning, but it does seem possible that Maggie could die in the season seven premiere, so be warned!
Below are images of Maggie on her knees in which she can be seen to have her ring on, along with an image of the ring circled in the bloody remains of Negan’s victim and two more images in which we can see the ring up close.
The Insider article also goes on to speak of rumors that have been swirling on the internet, which can in fact be originally attributed to the Spoiling Dead Fans page, that indicates there may in fact be not just one death, but at least two. Further, the Spoiling Dead Fans page indicates that the two members of Rick’s group who will potentially meet their demise at Negan’s hands are fan favorites Glenn (Steven Yhen) and Abraham (Michael Cudlitz).
In support of this possible theory are comments made by make-up guru and director of the upcoming season seven premiere episode, Greg Nicotero, who was quoted in an Entertainment Weekly on-line article which asked him about the fans anger over the season six final episode cliffhanger.
Here is what Nicotero had to say, “. . . in retrospect, I don’t think we would have changed anything. I would have still supported doing it the way that we did it, because of the fact that the story doesn’t end there. If we would have shown the deaths, then they wouldn’t have felt our characters in season 7 the way they need to. And the thing that I think a lot of people will get out of it is how that moment changes the entire makeup of our universe within a split second. And it’s that moment that launches our entire season 7 into that direction.”
It is in fact the highlighted portion of Nicotero’s quote in which he clearly uses the plural ‘deaths‘ in referring to whom will be killed by Negan in the upcoming premiere. This alone would seem to indicate that in fact there may very well be more than one member of Rick’s group who will meet their demise. The question however is not just whether or not there will be two deaths if in fact there will be, but if there may even be more than two casualties from Rick’s group!?
This reasoning comes from two additional sources which are in the first instance, one more Nicotero quote from a follow up Entertainment Weekly article in which he describes the effect the premiere episode will have on the series. Secondly is a quote from a San Diego Comic Con interview in which Kevin Smith seems to get Jeffrey Dean Morgan to acknowledge that his fellow show mates appearing with him at that panel are indeed safe from Lucielle’s murderous thirst in the Walking Dead’s premiere episode.
In the Entertainment Weekly article Nicotero is asked whether or not the premiere season seven episode will show more of the cliffhanger scene from the season six finale in which Negan kills a member of Rick’s group? Nicotero responds with the following, “Yes, without a doubt. And there’s some great drama that stems from that exact moment. Without giving too much away, it’s even more than the comic book, because in the comic book it’s kind of abrupt, and it’s over, and there’s a little, “Okay, I’ll see you guys in a week. We’ll be by to get half our share.” There’s more to it.”
So Nicotero’s description of the pending death scene in the season seven premiere will not end with one simple death scene as it did with Glenn’s death in the comic, rather he indicates that there will in fact be more, “. . .great drama that stems from that exact moment.”
Likewise looking at a portion of Nicotero’s previous quote from the earlier Entertainment Weekly article, “. . .the thing that I think a lot of people will get out of it is how that moment changes the entire makeup of our universe within a split second. And it’s that moment that launches our entire season 7 into that direction.”
So the momentous death scene we will in fact get to see at the very beginning of the season seven premiere will not potentially be the only one and likewise if in fact there is another or multiple deaths in the episode, the point is just how potentially jarring the death(s) will in fact be to the Walking Dead live action AMC universe.
To add one more crinkle to this unsettling Walking Dead fan conundrum, the recent Sand Diego Comic Con Walking Dead panel hosted by Kevin Smith was reported on by BR.com, with the following link to the article and video found here: http://bgr.com/2016/07/26/the-walking-dead-negan-kill/
In the video Smith asked Jeffrey Dean Morgan if any of his fellow cast members sitting in on the panel with him (Steven Yuen, Norman Reedus & Andrew Lincoln) would fall victim to him saying, “With the exception of Jeffrey, this panel is un-killable right?”
To which Norman Reedus points at Morgan and says, “Ask Jeffrey that.” with Andrew Lincoln then chiming in and further pressures Morgan by saying, “Who did you kill? If indeed anyone!?”
A very uncomfortable looking Morgan first looks down as if uncertain what to say, then looks up, smiles from ear to ear, saying towards the audience in a seemingly sincere tone, “No one sitting here!”
With that a very happy Kevin Smith who seemingly got a great and upcoming pop-culture scoop on one of the hottest shows in cable television history shouts, “There you go! Spoilers ladies and gentlemen.” with Andrew Lincoln ending the question with, “You heard it here first.”
While it is in fact very possible that the comments made by the Walking Dead stars and Jeffrey Dean Morgan in particular during this panel are in fact untrue and in essence redirection, the comments were seemingly said more sincere than flippant, but only time it will in fact tell with respect to whether or not Glenn is killed by Negan at the beginning of the season seven premiere.
Now putting everything together discussed within this article so as to come up with the answer to which character(s) may or may not be killed in the upcoming premiere is left up to each and every fan to decide for themselves. But something fans can be certain about is that they should be prepared to be surprised in ways they may not have considered to date.
The season seven premiere will certainly shock the fan base and we should be prepared for more than one member of Rick’s team to be killed in a very dramatic and series changing way and while it could be any of the cast, it may in fact be Glenn, Abraham or potentially even Maggie, but of course this is not certain.
With that good luck to us all and enjoy the upcoming season seven premiere which will air on AMC, Sunday the 23rd of October, 2016.