Fans of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” had to wait six long months to find out which members of Rick’s (Andrew Lincoln) band of survivors was killed by the sadistic Negan (Jeffrey Dead Morgan). Well, on last night’s seventh season premiere, it was finally revealed.
(SPOILER ALERT: DO NOT READ ANY FURTHER IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN LAST NIGHT’S SEASON PREMIERE)
Negan murdered Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) with his barbed-wire baseball bat, and then after Daryl (Norman Reedus) tries to attack Negan, he kills Glenn (Steven Yuen) in response. The episode was gory and upsetting for fans and critics alike, and on last night’s episode of Chris Hardwick’s live aftershow “Talking Dead,” the producers and the cast expressed their feelings about how Negan’s brutal killings all went down (via Variety).
“The hardest thing about it was starting the script and thinking about what would break Rick,” said showrunner Scott Gimple. “But looking for a way to break the audience, too, not in a way that in any way to hurt them, but for them to believe that Rick Grimes would be under the thumb of Negan…so that they would believe that Rick could do what this guy says.”
Meanwhile, Cudlitz and Yuen had their own thoughts about leaving the show and the grisly demise of their characters.
“The death in the comic Robert [Kirkman] wrote was such a messed up but at the same time incredible way to take something away and make a story as impactful as it is,” said Yeun. “When you read that in the comic you don’t want that to go to anyone else. It’s such an iconic moment.”
Cudlitz, on the other hand, knew he wasn’t long for this world based on the graphic novel, but also didn’t know how it would happen.
“I know Robert always said he was not happy with how he took Abraham out in the graphic novel so I was curious to see where we go from there,” he said. “I think in the group, he made it very clear to Negan that if he was going to take somebody, take me if it’s going to help protect the rest of the group.”
Finally, Jeffrey Dean Morgan himself weighed in on whether his character Negan was really a “villain.”
“I can’t play him like that certainly because then you have only one note to go with,” he said. “In my mind, he’s not a bad guy. He’s still letting these guys off easy at this point. Remember they took out quite a few of my folks. If it weren’t for Daryl, Glenn would still be alive.”