Season 7 of TWD doesn’t disappoint – most of the time

Carl%2C+Judith+and+Negan

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Carl, Judith and Negan

Carol Ann Gladstone, Staff Writer

On October 23, 2016 the first half of season 7 of the AMC series The Walking Dead premiered with fans anticipating the reveal of who -newly welcomed- character Negan, and most recent supervillain, killed in the Alexandria group.

Some watchers were distraught and horrified when they revealed the victims of Negan’s wrath were the beloved characters of Glenn Rhee and Abraham Ford. In shock and heartbreak it was the talk of social media and even for non-watchers of the show. Many fans even chose to walk away from the show because of what they felt was gratuitous violence.

Did we as fans even predict what was going to happen in the beginning; was there even any foreshadowing to what was going to happen?

Forbes.com says, “The beginning of season 7 foreshadowed with Glenn’s mock death when Nicholas shot himself and then fell on top of Glenn pushing them into a herd of Zombies.”

Either way, the death of Glenn was still hard and though it replicated the exact way he dies in the comics, it was still unexpected.

Forbes says, “I still think Daryl would have been a better move (to kill), the death leaves you feeling unclean and sick to your stomach. The death was unnecessary they were playing with our emotions.”

It being Daryl’s fault that Glenn and Abraham died we do like to blame him for the two losses, but he is only at fault for Glenn.

First impressions are everything and Negan’s  first words were, “Are you p*ssing your pants yet?” Characters and fans alike were bound to be terrified and quite a bit jaded.  

During season 7 we got to know Negan on more of a personal level and we have learned his rules. For example, no rape and no killing/fighting someone who is already hurt, which can explain why Negan did not kill Daryl; he had just been shot.

Moving on in the season we are introduced to King Ezekiel, who is a part of ‘The Kingdom’ another camp which is full of fighters and proper survivors.

Morgan and Carol end up at The Kingdom after Morgan saved Carol and was found by members of the camp, led by Richard.

When introduced to the King Carol was taken back by the tiger by his side, but she was also taken back by what kind of person he is.

Vanity fair calls him “charismatic” and said “he doesn’t relish conflict” which we do see more of farther in the season when Richard suggest that The Kingdom fights The Saviors. He denies the request not wanting to cause problems for The Kingdom.

King Ezekiel and Shiva

King Ezekiel may be the only character who has his head screwed on right (no pun intended) and may be the only one who just wants things to work out smoothly in the apocalyptic world they are all stuck in.

In episode two, the King was not the only new idea we are introduced to. We also learned of  Carol’s itch to be isolated from everyone.

For viewers who have been watching the show from the beginning it is no secret that Carol can hold her own in any situation. She is a strong independent woman who has lost many but continues to love fiercely.

Carol wants to leave The Kingdom and be separated from everyone and everything. She is feeling guilty for everything that she has done in the past for example; remember that sick Terminus explosion? Thank you Carol.

She finds comfort and independence in a small house that isn’t too far away from where Morgan resides in The Kingdom, and even with her commands for everyone to leave her alone- King Ezekiel develops a liking for Carol and has people check on her and bring her cobblers.

Everyone could agree that Collapsable Hearts Club’s song “703 Easy Street” isn’t exactly what we want on our playlist after episode three “The Cell.”

In this episode we tend to learn a lot more about Negan and The Saviors, and also about Dwight, who was first introduced during Season 6 with his wife Sherry.

In season 6 when Dwight was introduced he and his group were running away from Negan. Daryl helped them run and was paid back with betrayal and theft (Dwight relieved him of his motorcycle and his crossbow).

Even it is brutal, but not the most brutal that we have seen from Negan we learn why half of his face is burned in his not-so-lovely return to the show.  Negan was going to kill either Sherry or Dwight until Sherry agreed to marry Negan but he didn’t feel like that was enough so he burned one side of Dwight’s face.

Most of the episode focuses on Dwight but also does show how both Dwight and Negan are trying to break Daryl into becoming a Savior. The beloved character is forced to eat dog food, deal with beatings and listen to the same song repeatedly. Daryl wasn’t having it.

Even if Negan is a powerful leader, so powerful that everyone calls themselves Negan and kneels down at his feet, Daryl didn’t obey when the shows villain asked, “Who are you?”

Daryl remained on the team of the survivors by saying “Daryl” and not “Negan.”

Forbes says the episode brings “great tensions,” which is true. Despite moving slowly, we put missing pieces of the puzzle together, which left us satisfied.

Perhaps episode four did not do that. The abuse, as well as Negan’s familiar sadistic humor made viewers want to punch your T.V screen and probably Rick as well.

The once so brave and in constant survival mode Rick is showing his submissive side to a very dominant Negan. Rick didn’t even say two words to defend himself and the others as The Saviors took everything that The Survivors had.

With Lucille in Rick’s hand we were all cheering for him to give Negan what he gave Glenn and Abraham, but we were let down again.

With more anger coursing in our veins, the foul mouthed Negan leaves with a very descriptive insult, which we cannot write, but if viewers were to look up top ten Negan quotes, it is a definite top three.

On a lighter note, episode 5 took place on  the Hilltop community and focused on Maggie recovering with Sasha by her side. Even better, viewers witness Carl and Enid’s first kiss.

Though before we see The Saviors, we see Gregory trying to rush the both Maggie and Sasha out of The Hilltop but when The Saviors put a herd of walkers into the camp, which the girls protected the civilians and fought with them to take out the walkers.

They earned their keep and the respect of the community. Jesus talks  Gregory into letting them stay. Let’s just admit it, we all love Jesus.

But when The Saviors pay the place a visit, it isn’t quite happy and victorious anymore. Independent.co called the episode “musty” and “the most filler episode in the history of the show.”

This is true due to it being slow paced and not really showing viewers of what they really care about. But it also plants the seed in other subplots which keeps us on the edge of our seats with more problems than we need the answers to.

When Negan’s main man Simon comes out of the truck to interrogate Gregory, the tension in the room is thick and people viewing begin to think about the relationship between the two camps are kind of fishy. The viewers get a laugh when Gregory is forced to kneel to Simon.

Meanwhile that is going on we have Sasha asking Jesus to map out what Negan’s place looks like because isn’t it obvious? She wants revenge!

This lead to Jesus getting in the back of one of Negan’s trucks just to discover Carl is in the same truck as well.

We all got kind of confused as to why he was even in the truck to begin with? He was brave for what he was doing, although he could get himself killed.

Tara got her moment to shine in the the sixth episode “swear”, it wasn’t exactly the best of the episodes but it wasn’t the worst.

We get to see Tara in the spotlight with Heath on their two week scavenge for things to give to The Saviors. Which doesn’t end up too well when Tara falls off the bridge and is separated from Heath.

What wasn’t predictable was the beach she washed up on. The beach had a camp which is called Oceanside. The place is full of HEAVILY armed Amazon women who you should be afraid of if you ever approach them.

Cyndie is a member of Oceanside who revives Tara.

The thing here is, this is when watchers notice they are all women and this is when viewers are curious as to why they are added in the show and what kind of tie can they have to the story?

In fact all of their men were slaughtered by Negan’s people, at this point relief kind of can leave our nerves that Negan only killed two of the Alexandria group’s men and not all of them. Why is this piece of information even important to know?

They can help us, having more hatred toward the same person can give Alexandria more fire power with a better chance of getting Negan killed.

In the end the dumbest thing that has been on the show throughout all of its six and almost a half seasons. When Tara got back to the bridge where her and Heath were separated she saw a walker that looked exactly like Heath but it ended up being a female.

Are you serious? How pathetic can it get?

“I only want Negan, he killed my friends,” says Carl as he kills about two of Negan’s men. In episode 7 “Sing Me a Song.”

There was no doubt that fans palms were sweating and viewers felt almost as if viewers were suffocating when they heard the man himself laugh at Carl basically calling him a little kid with mockery like “you’re adorable” and “did you pick that gun because it looks cool?”

Seriously? Carl a little kid? A child who grew up in the world that he needed to is far from little, sorry Negan you’re not always right.

The episode was actually infuriating, viewers knew that Negan has power though you didn’t think it was actually as much as he has.

To watch 50+ people kneel down to a sadistic man who carries around a barbed wire bat calling it Lucille leaves viewers disconcerted and wondering what is wrong with these people.

Also, they all call themselves Negan. What type of cult even is this?

Negan introduces Carl to his multiple wives, yes-multiple, or shall I say a room full of wives in short tight black dresses. Negan is quite sick, but polygamy now?

There was some conflict with one of the wives which lead to Negan burning half of a man’s face. Guess Dwight has a twin now!

Don’t forget the semi-emotional glance Daryl and Carl gave to each other. Viewers’ hearts were breaking and I think we all wanted to burn Negan’s face instead of the poor guy who just wanted to love his legal wife.

Even if you were scared for Carl, he could hold his own and you all knew he wouldn’t of died. The revelation of his eye though either made us laugh or kind of cringe. It was very anticipated though.

The episode ending with Negan bringing Carl back to Alexandria.

Episode 8 was the last episode of the first half of the season, we were not expecting many things but this kind of was a half start of the whole Alexandria and Savior war. This episode had viewers on their toes.

Many even enjoyed the macabre death of the traitorous Spencer.

The episode was very, let’s say, AMAZING! Daryl gets help with an anonymous letter telling him to get out of The Sanctuary and, yes, we were cheering and screaming, mainly for the purpose that it was Sherri who saved Daryl.

Next, we have Negan in Alexandria doing normal Negan things like swearing and threatening to kill people, ya know normal everyday things for him.

He shaved his beard which made him look sexy -when doesn’t he though? It was really an iconic sight to see, he didn’t look much like a psychopath anymore.

However, he was saying psychopathic things when he, Carl and Judith were on the porch. The sight of Judith even being in a ten foot radius of Negan made us on edge and quite uncomfortable, especially he says “I was thinking about what you said earlier Carl, maybe it is stupid keeping you and your dad alive. I mean why am I trying so hard? Maybe I should just barrie you both in those flower beds and I could just settle into the suburbs.”

Don’t forget he was staring into baby Judith’s eyes while saying those words. Just looking her in the eyes talking about murdering her brother and her father who really isn’t her father at all.

The subplot was very good as well, showing Aaron and Rick going to a boat to get supplies, and Michonne holding a gun to one of The Savior’s head, forcing her to show an eager Michonne where The Sanctuary was.

Back at Alexandria Spencer and Negan play a casual game of pool, when I say casual I mean a very tense game. Spencer’s words and catering to Negan are infuriating.

Lovely Spencer practically begs Negan to kill Rick and viewers thinking about how much we want him to be killed just for saying that, well Negan is on your side with this one. He cuts Spencer’s stomach open with a machete.

The death wasn’t as upsetting as when Rosita tried to shoot Negan but hit Lucille and Eugene was taken away because he made the bullet.

It left us all with a very confused and emotional thinking on what was going to come the other half of the season. In that moment we all knew that there was going to be an all out war or if not then Rick was finally going to start preparing for one.

When the other half of the season returned in February, we were all ready for action and war. We didn’t get much of that.

Instead we got Daryl’s really bad dialogue, Rick making a speech to King Ezekiel and well, the gang taking out a herd of zombies with two cars and a rope, which was probably the best part of the whole episode.

Although Rick’s speech fails to change the King’s mind, viewers still feel a kind of sense of foreshadowing with the speech.

The Survivors leave The Kingdom going back to Alexandria when they come across explosives hanging on a string of rope. It was hung by The Saviors to keep away a herd. Though the group chooses to take all the explosives off the rope keeping them for their war with Negan.

The episode was fairly uneventful until the gang learns that Father Gabriel was taken but left the hint of the boat that Aaron and Rick previously raided.

The Survivors were surrounded by newly welcomed group The Scavengers. They were quite fishy and gave the viewers a bad feeling knowing they shouldn’t be trusted. The Saviors ended up getting Gabriel back with an agreement that they trade with each other.

Hostiles and Calamities made viewers rather pissed off. Eugene is cozying over in The Sanctuary rather fast. While everyone was defending him saying that he is innocent and he is just doing it to kill Negan from the inside.

Someone was saying that they saw right through Eugene, he was doing this because he was afraid. He is bowing down to Negan because he gets to feel in charge and important. Which is just as must BS as him saying that he is Negan.

“Say Yes” was Rick and Michonne going on a heated vacation to get guns, which ended up just being taken away by The Scavengers and Jadis the leader of the garbage pickers said they needed to go out and get more.

Why should someone else be telling them what to do in general? I understand they are powerful, but they also aren’t exactly the type that Rick should oblige to and be afraid of. He has taken out bigger and badder.

Besides that downer, fans see Rosita at the Hilltop asking Sasha to kill Negan with her.

In this viewers opinion they say that they have been waiting for Rosita to die from the beginning of her on the show. Not being rude, but her character leaves a bad taste in their mouth. She is spiteful and tries to act too hard for her own good.

Also, didn’t Rosita and Sasha just have bad blood? Now Rosita wants to hold hands and skip to kill Negan together? Pathetic.

“Bury Me Here” should have made viewers cheer through their tears. This episode was very interesting and very suspenseful.

The Kingdom met with The Saviors, but they were missing one cantaloupe. Yup, one.

Did the fruit really need to lead to Benjamin dying? No, but the death was needed. It was needed to push The King to actually want to fight back.

The best part of the episode which made you like it was the fact that Morgan wanted to ‘clear’ again. In season 6 an episode was dedicated to Morgan and how he found his peace and spirituality. Though before he found his happy place, he called killing people ‘clearing’.

But, It is bad to say that viewers want Morgan to kill someone else, but in that world if you don’t want to kill people. What are you, yourself doing alive?

When he killed Richard it made feel better about the Morgan situation. It gave some hope that he will always be able to move on from his spirituality and fight for what he knows is right.

An additional important even was Morgan’s reveal of the Glen’s and Abraham’s deaths.

“The Other Side” was a joke. Not only for the fact that it was a filler episode to remind viewers about The Saviors and their connections to The Hilltop. It was just overall annoying and made watchers kind of want to stop watching.

The Saviors go to The Hilltop which causes Daryl and Maggie to hide in a cellar. They take The Hilltop’s doctors, leaving fan to wonder what is going to happen with Maggie and her pregnancy.

The episode also follows Rosita and Sasha trying to go into Negan’s lair, but they didn’t fail to remind viewers that Eugene was in fact still with Negan and basically a puppet when they asked him to leave and he said no.

Are your fists in balls yet? Because it got worse when Sasha went into The Sanctuary and left Rosita outside. A viewer wasn’t happy with that, maybe if the roles were reversed they would feel better.

Though it was Sasha taking one for the team, which is brought to bigger light later on in the season.

Something they need was a breathe of fresh air for The Survivors, they gather guns from Oceanside which probably makes them happy that they now have something with the upcoming war to fight with.

The Oceanside people tried to put up a fight, but Rick usually always gets his way so it isn’t a surprise that they got the guns.

Meanwhile at The Sanctuary it showed Sasha as a prisoner and Negan begging her to help him out. We all know Sasha, we all know that even when she is agreeing to something she isn’t exactly agreeing to it. This caused a stir in someone’s stomach, especially when she begged Eugene to give her something to kill herself with. This made us all want to cry.

What didn’t make fans want to cry was the fact that Dwight is at Alexandria with Rosita. This only made viewers want to fight Rosita for allowing him in there. He said he wanted to help which doesn’t mean he actually wants to?

“The First Day Of The Rest Of Your Life” was the last episode of the season which made viewers kind of happy that all the chaos was over. But! A beginning of a war broke out.

Sasha kills herself with the capsule that Eugene gave her previously. She turns into having her turn into a walker and almost bite Negan. Woohoo at least someone wants to fight him up close.

Abraham and Sasha in Season 7 dream sequence

Though Sasha’s death was expected because due Abraham made an appearance telling her to always take one for the team regardless if she is scared or not. It was great symbolism and a good amount of foreshadowing which made it more emotional.

Viewers almost felt like they were there having an intimate moment with both of them. The whole episode was very well thought out and throughout the entire season which wasn’t the most entertaining and eventful season. The wrap up was nice and not so much of a cliffhanger.

When The Scavengers turned against Alexandria, fans weren’t surprised but they also knew what it was going to lead to. All of the groups went to war.

With all eyes on the screen you couldn’t wrap your head around what was going to happen. All of the leaders in one spot was giving you chills and made fans scream at the screen and watchers felt almost as if you were going to lose someone else important to viewers. Which we did have two scares of when Michonne threw one the junkyard gangs girls over the edge of the building and when Negan almost killed Carl.

The tears in someone’s eyes were starting to come out until Shiva came out of nowhere and jumped on one of Negan’s men. It brought empowerment back into watchers. At that moment we all felt like we were actually winning for once in this season. Maybe we actually had an army now.

What happens when a King, Farmer’s Daughter, and a Southern Cop walk into a bar?

Negan, King Ezekiel, Rick and Maggie from “The Walking Dead”

They scare the sociopath who always starts the bar fights and then runs away.

Negan drove away during mid shoot out between The Savior, Scavengers and the allies of The Survivors. Which no offense, but how much of a coward can you be? Constantly hiding behind his men and not going out and doing things himself is kind of getting old and making him less scary of a character.

Being the season finale though and ending it off with Negan saying they are going to war and a beautiful monologue at the end by Maggie with themes about Glenn was truly heartbreaking and made fans all fuzzy inside.

Overall the season dragged on and it wasn’t the best of the show and its entirety, but it was a good road to getting them near the complete end of the show and to the war that will begin between The Saviors and The Survivors with their allies. It makes viewers excited and can’t wait for more.

Hopefully next season won’t drag on like this one, though doubting it will with the supposed events coming up in the show’s future. See y’all in October with the eighth season of “The Walking Dead”.