WARNING: Spoilers for 'The Walking Dead' TV and comic series ahead.
After the confirmation that Jeffrey Dean Morgan has been cast as Negan in The Walking Dead, and the introduction of Negan's Saviors in a prologue scene at the very end of the Season 6 mid-season finale, Morgan has now confirmed another important step in his transition into the role – he has "met" Negan's trademark weapon, Lucille – a razor-wire-covered baseball bat.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Morgan was able to confirm that he had seen the brutal weapon that Negan famously favors in The Walking Dead comic series, saying "she is gorgeous. She is a beautiful girl." Not only has 49-year-old actor seen the baseball bat, he also told EW that he doesn't even need to practice his swing, given that he "grew up with a bat in my hands." Is he the perfect man for the role, or what?!
But, Morgan meeting Lucille isn't the only introduction to have been made on-set, with him confirming he has also met Steven Yeun, as well as the rest of the main cast. Fans of the comic series will know that Morgan's character Negan, and Yeun's character Glenn have a rather horrible first encounter, something which is being hotly anticipated in the TV series.
In his interview, Morgan also mentioned the "speed bump" that is Negan's choice of language. In the comic series, Negan is well known for his casual use of some pretty harsh swear words. While it's easy to get away with that in comic books, unfortunately the show has to work with AMC and their advertisers, so it seems unlikely that the same level of language will be possible. However, Morgan does confirm that the show is trying to secure the ability to push the envelope with Negan's speech, saying:
"We’re going to push AMC — the plan is to push them as far as they can because it’s who Negan is. He uses some colorful language. And I use some colorful language. And reading the comic, it’s important. So we’ll see where that lands. It’s our intention that this character is going to leap off the pages of the comic book. It’s very important that that’s who it is. Some of the characters there’s much more leeway, but Negan is a guy that you want to keep as true as possible, and that would be how I want to play him as well."
And hey, all we can do is hope The Walking Dead crew manage to convince AMC that a series which has some of the most violent scenes on TV can totally get away with a few f-bombs every now and then – especially after six hugely successful seasons.
'The Walking Dead' returns to AMC with the mid-season premiere on February 14, 2016