So, as we enter the winter season, a time of the year when we go out a bit less, stay in, light the fire and put on that evening’s new episode of something you love. The Walking Dead has returned a bit early. Fox aired the episode at half two this morning. It’s nice to be eased back into a cracking series.

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The curtain call of Season Six

At the end of Season Six, we were introduced to two new characters – Negan and ‘Lucile’. The latter is an inanimate baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire, but she plays a big part. Negen takes control of Ricks crew immediately. Looking to assert his dominance, Negen plays a game of ‘eeny, meeny, miny, moe’ to choose who he will make an example of. Season Six closed with a vicious first person strike, delivered from the bat of Negan to one of our beloved characters. At this point it hard to see whether they died or not – but survival was universally accepted as unlikely.

negan faces rick's team in the walking dead

Last week, we got a sneak peak of the first episode. We were shown Rick telling Negan ‘I’m going to kill you. Not today, not tomorrow. But I’m gonna kill you.’ Negan proceeds to drag Rick into an RV, which is where the scene ends.

Opening of The Walking Dead Season Seven

Season Seven opened by offering a deeper insight into the character of Negan. He’s a very, very intense guy, violent, with no remorse. Towards the end of the episode, he had my heart racing. In one episode, the writers made me feel I have just witnessed a worse villain than Darth Vader and violence that is on par with Game Of Thrones. Actually, it could be more violent than a lot of it.  While we get some zombie action in this episode, the main focus is Negan, who has a kind of polite intensity about him.

The cliffhanger conclusion of Season Six, the show got a lot of negative reviews with many feeling it was unfair to the viewers. Some feel the writers wanted to secure an audience for Season Seven, keeping who died a secret.

The Walking Dead writers mess with us for a few minutes of the latest episode, but then we are shown who has just been killed off. Even with the big story breaking, the writers fill the remainder of the show with pure quality viewing, heart-pounding intensity and almost crossing a couple of lines. What’s worse is seeing what Negan does on screen, but thanks to Jeffery Dean Morgan and some great one-liners, you’re helpless. Helpless to stop that feeling that you like the character – stoked at the thought of what Morgan has in store for the rest of the season.

What lies ahead for The Walking Dead fans

In the past, we became used to The Walking Dead’s cycle. Find a nice place, bad guys come, big fight, good guys win with one or two big deaths, and repeat. Between that and Glenn’s fake death and Daryl’s ‘shooting’ last season, the audience were getting pretty fed up. So they hold nothing back in the shows return.

From what we have seen in just this first episode, we can expect a very different type of The Walking Dead. One not full cheap scares. There is a big shift in power with a ruthless leader at the helm. Rick and his crew are basically told they will now provide for Negan and his cronies. Next week we’ll see the gang head back to Alexandria to regroup, and… who’s knows? It’s hard to see how Alexandria will be able to take on Negan. But if the writers do listen to the audience, and don’t do the same old cycle again, who knows what to expect from Season Seven.

 

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