[Warning: This story contains spoilers from The Walking Dead season seven premiere and the comic series the AMC drama is based on.]
After a six-month wait, AMC’s The Walking Dead finally revealed Negan’s victim during Sunday’s season seven premiere.
And the victim is …
Like Robert Kirkman’s comic series on which the AMC drama is based, Negan’s victim is Glenn Rhee (Steven Yeun), who has been with the zombie drama since Day 1. Yeun, sources say, only had a one-year deal to return for season six.
The character has had his back up against the wall too many times to count — including the now-infamous “dumpster dive.” Given that Glenn refrained from killing another human until the Saviors arrived late in season six, death by Negan’s barbed wire covered bat Lucille brings the character full circle.
The reveal comes as little surprise given that the AMC series — which tends to take a “remix” approach to Kirkman’s source material — killed off Glenn in the landmark 100th issue of the comics.
In the issue, Glenn is among those captured by the Saviors and lined up before Negan — which the show mirrored in the season six finale. In the comics, Negan initially hesitates to kill Glenn — he didn’t want to be considered racist — but as he rattled off his famed “eeny, meeny, miny, moe” he ultimately landed back on Glenn. Despite Glenn’s screams for wife Maggie — who was holding the still-alive Sofia and begging Negan not to kill him — Negan raised Lucille over his head and swung down at Glenn, beating him to death in front of his friends and family as he muttered his last word: “Maggie!” as the charismatic villain took swing after swing at what remained of his bloody head. Afterward, a horrified and angry Rick — with tears streaming down his cheeks — vowed to kill Negan, who immediately slapped and punched him.
The death comes as The Walking Dead entered season seven with its largest cast to date — 20 series regulars. Yeun has been with the show since its start. The only stars that remain from the pilot are Andrew Lincoln (Rick), Chandler Riggs (Carl), Melissa McBride (Carol), Norman Reedus (Daryl) and Lennie James (whose Morgan guest starred in seasons one, three and five before being promoted to regular for season six).
What do you think about how The Walking Dead handled Glenn’s death on screen? Will you miss Yeun? Sound off in the comments below.
Stay tuned to THR.com/WalkingDead for complete coverage. The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on AMC.