The moment has finally arrived: Negan killed not one, but TWO of our beloved survivors, and continued the havoc as ‘The Walking Dead’s season 7 premiere episode continued. Spoilers ahead!
The highly anticipated premiere begins with a scene we’ve already seen: the aftermath. We see Rick with blood covering the right side of his face, and he whispers to Negan, “I’m gonna kill you.” You can hear what’s left of the group behind them sobbing, reacting to the death we still haven’t seen, and that’s when Negan asks Rick to repeat himself.
After hearing Rick’s threat loud and clear, he mentions how Simon is his “right hand” man. Then he asks if Rick has one, or if that’s who he just killed, to which Rick starts visibly shaking. Simon hands Negan the ax, then everyone watches as Rick is dragged through blood and dirt into the camper by Negan. When the camera pans down we see a blanket (Daryl’s?) and a large pile of blood and brains, a little too close to where Rick was sitting. Yikes.
Inside the dark trailer Negan beats on Rick a bit before throwing his ax into a table and then trying to start the trailer. Rick immediately puts his eyes on the ax, and when the trailer doesn’t start Negan tells him to grab it over and over again. Of course Negan pulls a gun on him immediately and Rick is forced to drop the ax, to which Negan uses the handle of the gun to knock the wind out of him. Negan tells him to think about what just happened and what can still happen, and with that the trailer finally starts for Negan. As Rick drives away he sees flashes of the people they left behind, his friends, starting with Rosita and Glenn. Negan finally pulls over far away from the site and then comes back to Rick and tells him, “You are mine. Those people back there? They are mine.”
Negan then opens the trailer door, throws the ax out into the darkness where there are a bunch of walkers, and demands that Rick go get it. Rick hesitates, but once Negan throws him out we see more flashbacks. Sasha appears first, before Rick starts taking on walkers, then Eugene as Rick makes a run for it. Walkers attack as Aaron passes by, then Abraham, followed by Maggie, which is when Rick starts climbing up the back of the trailer to safety. Daryl is seen next, and once Rick is on top of the truck he sees Michonne. That’s when he loses it, falls to his knees and finally has a moment to take in what just happened, his own son, Carl, passing through his mind. As he lays on the top of the trailer, Negan reminds him how he probably thought they were all going to grow old together, but no.
Negan’s Victim Is Revealed
Then, suddenly, we see it from Rick’s perspective Negan walking over to him and starting with “eenie,” then going down the line. He’s looking around and his people are trembling with fear, and Rick is there completely helpless. It’s torture, absolute torture, and no one feels it more than Rick. And then Negan stops on Abraham, and through Rick’s eyes we watch as Negan hits him over and over again. Of course through hits Abraham gets one last hit in: “Suck my nuts.”
Everyone is watching in horror, but it’s Sasha and Rosita who are completely ruined. Even worse? Once Abraham is killed, he puts blood-covered Lucille in Rosita’s face to taunt her with it. The taunting becomes too much, and Daryl reacts by jumping up and swinging at Negan. He’s immediately taken down by Negan’s guys, and in response Negan reminds them that he wasn’t giving any more free passes. Even after Dwight comes running over to kill Daryl for Negan, he lets the guys put him back in line safe and sound. Then Negan comes over to him with Lucille swinging and instead of hitting Daryl, he goes for Glenn, a direct page from the comic — busting eyeball and all.
Negan is shocked that, once again, his trusty Lucille has left another man standing after one hit, and he lets Glenn and his partially crushed skull sit there for a moment while he mutters, “Maggie, I’ll find you.” Then Negan swings again, and again, and again until Glenn is a pile of mush on the floor, just like Abraham, expect his hand is still twitching as he slowly dies. Maggie’s reaction to this can’t be described in words, especially since she couldn’t stop looking at him no matter how hard she tried. Her last image of Glenn will be him being pulverized by Negan’s bat.
Unfortunately we saw all of this through Rick’s flashbacks, and when we return to him he’s laying on top of the trailer in tears. Negan warns him one last time to get the ax, and then starts shooting through the roof to chase Rick off. Rick gets up and runs off the top of the trailer, jumping onto a walker hanging off of a bridge. He starts to imagine “what could happen,” as Negan says, if he doesn’t get the ax back to him. One by one we see Rosita, Daryl, Eugene and more get slammed by Lucille. This encourages Rick to fight off the walkers as best he can, slipping down into a mass of them as Negan offers just enough help to clear the area so he can get back up again. Then he gets the ax, and fights his way to the door of the trailer, where Negan pops it open and offers just a little more help — enough for Rick to jump inside. It’s a bizarre trade, but this is Negan’s way now, and Rick has no choice but to follow it.
The taunting doesn’t end there. Negan drives Rick away, again, and then he continues to remind him of what just happened. How he used to be “King Sh-t,” and now he just lost two of his own men in front of his own son. Negan then goes through all of the cabinets until he finds rubbing alcohol, randomly, which he uses to clean the ax before handing it back to Rick. While doing so he tells him that he has a good future ahead of him, but only if it involves “producing” for Negan and The Saviors.
Negan Continues To Torture Rick
Negan finally returns Rick to his people, all of whom are still in the same place on the ground where they were left, except now that the sun is rising and it’s light out. He tells Rick why he took him on that little trip, that he wanted him to look at him with fear and not just annoyance, but that it didn’t work. He asks Rick if he deserves one more chance to which Rick says yes, and so Negan offers him one — but it’s not what Rick was hoping for. Instead Negan has all of his men stand behind the remainder of the group with guns pointed to their heads. He then calls over Carl, who naturally hesitates before listening, and uses his belt to wrap it around his upper arm. Negan then asks Simon for a pen, which he surprisingly has, and uses it to draw a line around Carl’s forearm. Once Carl is laying on the ground he tells Rick that he has to cut off his arm, to which Rick loses it. He begs Negan not to make him do it, but Negan tells him if he doesn’t he’s going to kill everyone left there, then Carl, then everyone back home in Alexandria, and then Rick last. As Negan begins to countdown for Rick’s last chance, it’s Carl who whispers to his dead and tells him to do it, that it’s okay, and finally Rick pulls the ax up in the air.
Just when you think Rick is actually going to do it, Negan stops him to tell him that he finally has the look of fear in his eyes that he wanted to see this whole time. He lets them go, but not before packing Daryl into a van to keep for himself. Negan tells Rick that they’ll be back in a week to pick up their supplies, and that if they don’t comply he’ll start cutting Daryl up into little pieces — or, worse, make Rick do it for him.
The Group Faces Their New Reality
As The Saviors clear out we see the remainder of the group left in shock, surrounded by the bodies of their loved ones, Glenn and Abraham. It’s Maggie who gets up first, struggling and barely walking as she’s still having complications with her pregnancy — if she’s even still pregnant at this point. Rick tells Maggie she needs to sit down but she tells him no, that she will get to The Hilltop by herself, and that they were all out there for her. She tells Rick they need to go back to Alexandria to prepare to fight, but Rick tells her that that’s not going to happen. She puts up a fight, but when Sasha volunteers to take her she agrees. Sasha then leans down in front of Rosita and tells her she’s going to take Abraham, and Rosita nods, knowing there’s no other way. With Eugene’s help the three of them lift him up, and at the same time it’s Rick, Carl and Aaron who lift Glenn’s body up to take him home.
As Rick drives the trailer home, we see a scene that unfortunately will never be reality for our group. Everyone’s sitting at a long table in Alexandria, there’s plenty of food, and Glenn is sitting at the head with a beautiful little boy in his lap. Next to him is Abraham, and everyone is happy: it’s what they always dreamed, but what will never be.
Tell us, HollywoodLifers — How are YOU feeling after this episode? How do you think the show will go on after this? Comment below!