By Lisa Nault
Tensions were high on Sunday night when the premiere episode of season 7 aired for “The Walking Dead.” Last season ended with a cliffhanger that frustrated many fans because they knew a character had died but did not know which one.
The premiere episode, “The Day Will Come When You Won’t Be,” went above and beyond all expectations and was a rollercoaster of emotions for its viewers.
Season 6 ended with the introduction to the new villain of the story, Negan. In season 6, Rick Grimes and the gang mercilessly slaughtered a portion of Negan’s group because they wanted to make an alliance with the others under Negan’s control.
He captured them and wanted his revenge. Negan is a villain but Rick is not an innocent man either. The fans had last seen their beloved characters under Negan’s control and one of them was beaten to death.
Season 6 ended with a-point-of-view shot of the character dying but the viewers could not see who it was.
Season 7 began with Rick sitting on the ground with blood on his face. Negan walked over to Rick, who declared that he would kill Negan someday. Not the smartest move.
Negan then drags Rick, tosses him into a vehicle, and the camera pans to the ground where fresh blood has been spilt as he drives away with Rick. Then the opening credits begin.
Many fans wanted answers right away and were annoyed that they had to wait a commercial break before finding out who it was. They have waited for months, though, so they could wait a few more minutes. And the wait was worth it.
This review will not be spoiling the episode, because people need to watch it and experience it for themselves.
To put it simply, everything was perfect. The acting was some of the best the show has ever had. Jeffrey Dean Morgan was the perfect choice as Negan. He brings charisma to his character, the type the Governor never reached. He is also incredibly threatening and intimidating. When his smile goes away, people better run.
Negan is a sadist, a fact made clear during Sunday’s episode. He understands how to break a person emotionally, which is what made the episode so intense. For some people, it may be too graphic to watch.
“The Walking Dead” is known for its gory makeup detail, but this episode is special. Negan literally beats someone to death and their head is crushed. When he is finished, the viewers can no longer see the person’s head from the beating.
In preparation for the premiere, meany “Walking Dead” fans were able to gather at Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles, to watch the episode together, later joining Chris Hardwick on “The Talking Dead” when it ended.
“The Talking Dead” was necessary for viewers to watch after the premiere because they were drained emotionally from that episode. Hardwick made jokes, spoke with cast and writers, and validated people’s emotions. When it began to rain on them in LA, he said that even the heavens were crying.
Next week, audiences will tune in and watch the aftermath of what the characters have just experienced.
This is the beginning of Negan’s reign. If the rest of the season is anything like the first episode, fans should be prepared, because this could be the best season of “The Walking Dead” yet.