HUGE SPOILER ALERT: Major plotlines for both The Walking Dead comic book Issue #100 and Season 7 premiere 'The Day Will Come When You Won't Be' are discussed here.
Last night's season premiere of The Walking Dead left a lot of fans gawking at their TV screens, and even for long-time fans of Robert Kirkman's comic books, the episode offered more than its fair share of surprises. The Walking Dead Season 7 premiere offered a lot of moments lifted straight from the Skybound comics — and some were pretty graphic ones — so let's stick to the ones you're not about to forget anytime soon.
- The Ultimate 'The Walking Dead' Season 7 Guide: News, Trailers, Premiere Date & All You Need To Know
"Was The Joke That Bad?"
When this teaser hit the web last week, fans took their time to examine the end of the video — the part where you can see the actual brain matter on the floor. What we didn't realize was how perfectly this scene would serve as an opener for the premiere, to help set the horrifying mood again after last season's cliffhanger. At least when Rick's flashbacks were over and Negan said "was the joke that bad?" once more, we knew the worst of it was over.
"Taking It Like A Champ"
Some may argue that this wasn't actually straight from the comics (since in the books Negan says it to Glenn, not Abraham), but I'm sure we can all agree that no one would "take it like a champ" any more than Abe. Devastating as it was to see our favorite ginger hit the ground, it gave us some respite to hear him croak "suck my nuts" to Negan before it was over. And, it sure as hell was heartbreaking to catch Abe signaling his farewell to Sasha on the side.
This was, without a doubt, the hardest part of Negan's freak show to watch. Maybe what made it so difficult to watch was the fact that after Abraham met Lucille, we kind of believed it was over. Maybe it was the fact that Glenn's final words to his beloved Maggie were even deeper and more meaningful than they were in the comics:
Needless to say, Jeffrey Dean Morgan is doing a tremendous job as Negan — he even mimed the exact pose from the comics in many occasions.
"Whatever You Had Going For You — That's Over"
When Jesus said to Rick and the gang that their world would get "a whole lot bigger" last season, I'm sure that Negan and his new world order didn't cross the Survivors' minds. As if making the survivors endure all that loss and pain wasn't bad enough, Negan went on to crushing the last bit of hope the Survivors might have had. Now, everything will be different and the rules have most certainly changed.
This was a moment that many comic book fans were dying to see play out on screen (I know I was!); of course, all of the episode's heartbreaking moments dimmed the "Ta-ta" farewell somewhat, but it was still a very nice touch. Negan throwing Rick's axe back as he walked away topped off this scene; it was a cringe-worthy moment for sure.
"You Have To Go Get Ready...To Fight Them"
Again, this was not exactly a word-by-word re-enactment of the comic book, but this powerful scene captured the essence of the comic perfectly. I admit that when Maggie stood up and said Rick needed to get ready to fight, I had no recollection of her ever taking that stance in the comics. I did remember her punching Rick in the face several times — and was kinda expecting it to happen on the show too — but seeing Maggie toughen up, after all that Negan did, was even better.
As a The Walking Dead fan who has been around from the very first episode (and picked up the comics way before Issue #100 came out), I've got to say: no amount of previous book knowledge or any insight into the producers' twisted psyche could have prepared any of us for what The Walking Dead Season 7 premiere delivered last night. Even if you already knew who was gonna bite the dust because of the spoilers that had been around for a while, watching it all play out was a punch in the gut.
Don't get me wrong, it was a brilliantly executed episode, and maybe in a year or so I'll be able to watch it again with fresh eyes, and less of a broken spirit. But part of me wishes we had these past six months to wrap our heads around those deaths. Instead, we all have to suck it up and get ready for what's next in just a week — which is more than enough time for you to get ahead of the comics (past that traumatizing Issue #100)! Check out the preview for next week above — and brace yourselves for the most brutal season of The Walking Dead yet.