Warning: Major comic-book and television spoilers ahead
If you have seen tonight’s mid-season finale of The Walking Dead and in particular, if you stuck around for that epic post-credits Easter Egg, you’ll know that the scene ended with a word that I’m sure will be trending on Twitter for several more hours — Negan.
If you’re a comic-book reader like myself, you know exactly who Negan is and are probably doing back-flips about now. But, for the general audience, you may be wondering, “Who in the f*ck is Negan?!”. Unfortunately, you’ll have to wait until at least February to find out. But, for those who absolutely cannot wait, check out my below “Negan Primer” that will tell you all you need to know about this character and why you should be super-f*cking excited about his arrival.
1. His name is pronounced KNEE-gan
#1 rule as we embark on this iconic arc in The Walking Dead comics — get the guy’s damn name right. If you have never read the comics, you may be inclined to pronounce as you would “Megan,” but doing so will get you only a bunch of rolling eyes.
2. He is THE super-villain of the series
A show of hands — how many of you thought The Governor was bad and the worst of the worse? Yeah, well, I did too, but honestly, Negan makes the Governor look like Big Bird on roller skates. If you recall, while the Governor had been classified as a villain, for the most part the people of Woodbury liked him. Remember all the praise Milton, Merle, and just about every other resident of Woodbury gave him? Well, I can guarantee you none of Negan’s followers will have anything good to say about this man.
And, we kind of have already seen this. Remember Dwight, Honey and Tina sitting around the fire talking while Daryl was in and out of consciousness in “Always Accountable”? Well, Dwight said “Yeah, they probably hate him too” referring to the men that were chasing them. We weren’t really told, per se, but most people assume these people are the Saviors and the “him” that everyone hates is Negan. Honestly, you have to be the devil if your own people can’t stand the sight of you.
3. He’s the leader of The Saviors
The Saviors are a group of violent survivors based at a place called The Sanctuary, which is in the same general area as the Alexandria Safe-Zone, The Hilltop Colony and The Kingdom, which are survivor communities in the Washington, D.C. region. The Saviors rule by fear, where they demand supplies and rations in exchange for killing walkers outside of the communities.
4. He kills Glenn in his first meeting with Rick
In the comics before we meet Negan, Rick kills some members of the Saviors when they ambush him and demand supplies. Negan later sneaks up on Rick’s group and gets revenge for the Saviors that were killed. He gives a speech and plays a sick game of eenie-meenie-miney-mo to select whom to kill in retaliation, and our beloeved Glenn draws the short straw. He bashes Glenn’s head in with his weapon of choice, a bat wrapped in barb-wire that he calls his “Sweet Lucille,” and he cruelly does it in front of Rick, Maggie, Glenn and Maggie’s adoptive daughter, Sophia, and several others. Rick vows to avenge Glenn’s death, which ultimately leads up to the “All Out War” arc in the comics.
5. He’s not a ruthless killer and does have a code
No, seriously. I know, I know he kills Glenn, but this isn’t something Negan goes around doing everyday. While Negan is by all means cruel, sadistic and just plain evil, he’s not really a cold-blooded killer. Yes, if you pose a big threat or even worse, if you kill any of his men, he will track you down and kill you just as we saw with Glenn. However, for the most part, he doesn’t just randomly kill people.
What’s more, he may actually spare you if you have qualities that he admires. Negan values loyalty and courage, among other things, and if you exhibit these, it may very well save your life. He does this with Carl, sparing his life even after Carl gunned down several of the Saviors and solely because Carl showed him that he was strong and brave, unlike the spineless, piece of sh*t father of his.
On the flipside, when Spencer Monroe later tries to recruit Negan to help him overthrow Rick as leader of Alexandria so that he can take Rick’s place, Negan doesn’t take too kindly to this request. He sees Spencer as just a coward who’s trying to get him to do his dirty work and doesn’t hesitate to disembowel and kill him right on the spot.
6. He loves to swear
Need I say more? And, this excerpt from the comics is on a good day. Obviously Negan loves to drop the F-bomb, and it’ll be interesting to see how AMC deals with this unique aspect of the character.
7. He takes multiple wives
You would think someone like Negan might be a rapist, right? Nope, not him. As another part of this very complex character, Negan instead takes multiple wives, and they are usually the wives of his very own men. Basically, if Negan decides he wants your wife, you better let him have her, because if you don’t, you’ll pay the consequences. What’s more, if the wife tries to return to her lawful husband, Negan will strike back by ironing the face of the husband as punishment.
This attitude is exemplified in the episode “Always Accountable” when Wade comments that “he likes only willing ass.”
8. Jeffrey Dean Morgan has been cast for the role
This casting was announced 3 weeks ago, and Morgan is expected to make his first appearance in the season 6 finale. Unfortunately, if they follow the comics, this will likely be the famous Lucille scene. The only question that remains is will it be Glenn who meets the end of that bat, or will another beloved character be given the most famous death of The Walking Dead comics to date?
The Walking Dead returns for the 2nd half of season 6 in February of 2016.
Geeky computer and math nerd by day and TV fanatic by night. My beats are The Walking Dead, The Strain, Person of Interest, Z Nation, and anything that most people would call freaky. Editor-In-Chief and Lead Writer of TVGeekTalk.com