‘The Walking Dead’ Season Finale Will Be 90 Minutes, Showrunner Teases Negan’s Debut

By March 22, 2016

The upcoming season finale of AMC’s The Walking Dead promises to be a monumentous episode for fans of the series, who have been waiting years to see the introduction of Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s Negan onscreen, perhaps the most vile and iconic villain from the original comics who well, makes quite an introduction when you meet him for the first time.

As it was with the fifth season as well, the season six finale will be a half-hour longer than all of the other episodes this season, making it a 90-minute zombie-killing extravaganza that will probably also break a few hearts along the way.

The episode will of course mark the introduction of Negan for the first time, who has been present for the entire second half of the season already like a crouching tiger, lingering just outside of the frame. That hasn’t stopped other characters from talking about him quite a bit though.

Showrunner Scott M. Gimple spoke with EW recently as well about the episode, and when asked how Negan’s introduction in the series would differ from his comic book debut, Gimple said the following:

“Let me put it this way: Whatever it is, it’s really just all in service to being faithful to the comic book inasmuch as one can. That’s always going to be relatively subjective as to what that means. But taking inspiration from the moments of the comic book and playing them out to the ends of what it can be, it’s all just like taking that moment from the book and figuring out a way to turn it up to get those feelings that it gave you and those emotions that it gave you that much more.

Sometimes we have things from the book that people who read the comics maybe see coming a mile away, and we try to adjust that so that we can give them the same feeling they had when reading the book, which might have been shock or surprise or fear, any of those things. It might be wildly different, but it’s all to get the same sort of feelings that you got when you read them. So will it be different? Absolutely. Will it be the same thing? Absolutely.

So much of the changes of what we do in the comic have to do with that. Sometimes things happen to completely different characters. It wasn’t Lizzie who killed Mika. Carl was the one involved that story when it was Billy and Ben. But I think we still got that same sort of emotion and horror that we got from that moment in the book. So we want to tell the story of the book but from an emotional standpoint first, and that does often create the changes that we do.”

There’s been more than a number of rumors about how Negan might make his introduction in the show since (possible spoilers ahead) in the comics, he meets the group by not only lining them all up and detaining them, but also by beating Glenn to death with his barbed wire baseball bat, named Lucille. Why? To prove a point.

Steven Yeun has said previously that he’d want to see his character go out like he does in the comics, and I think most fans would probably, reluctantly agree as well. However, there’s been rumors that the showrunners might change the kill to another beloved character, like possibly Daryl or even, for those of you out there that desperately seek the unexpected, Andrew Lincoln’s Rick.

There’s really no way of knowing for sure which character it will end up being, but it sounds like one thing is for sure – Negan is very much going to make an impression when he arrives. You might want to have some tissues at hand when he does too.

The Walking Dead airs every Sunday night on AMC.

Make sure to keep checking back for more updates — right here on GeekNation.

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Alex Welch

Alex Welch

Alex dreams of meeting a girl with a yellow umbrella, and spends too much time* staring at a movie screen. His vocabulary consists mostly of movie quotes and 80s song lyrics. *Debatable