The Walking Dead Season 7 midseason finale tonight on AMC is not nearly so anticipated as the season’s premiere but hopefully, it will jump-start ratings. The gory premier seemed to have delivered the opposite impact.
Norman Reedus’s character Daryl was at risk, as were the lives of all the characters, but Glenn and Abraham died in their own bodily gore, crushed by Negan’s bat. Ratings for the premiere were record breaking with over 17 million viewers, according to TV Guide.
The Walking Dead Season 7 started with a shocking end to the cliffhanger, but ratings have been going downhill ever since. Each episode is substantially lower than the previous one for the last seven episodes. Episode 7 attracted only 10.5 million viewers. Why?
Norman Reedus put on an awesome performance while totally nude for Season 7, Episode 3. One would think that alone would attract viewers, but no. Though Daryl’s nudity and his profound acting skills in overdrive were highly publicized, only 11.72 million viewers chose to watch Daryl’s most amazing performance.
Though The Walking Dead is still the absolute top show for AMC and among the most watched shows on television, even now, it has fallen far from its usual numbers. While most shows would kill to exceed 10 million viewers per episode, for The Walking Dead it means a huge drop in ratings from last year. So what do viewers want to see? They are divided.
Norman Reedus fans want to see Daryl kill Negan right now. They cannot stand to see Norman’s Daryl, degraded. Akin to the Norman Reedus fans are those fans who find this whole season’s plot unrealistic, boring, or depressing. A lot of fans want more action, and they want their heroes to fight back.
The Walking Dead comic fans want the show to stay true to the comics, while others clearly feel the television show should take a different direction. The show is different from the comics in many ways, but Season 7 seems to be dragging the show back to its comic book script. The Walking Dead comic book enthusiasts love it, but others find it annoying.
Timothy Wells and many others commented about The Walking Dead in response to a recent Inquisitr article.
“PEOPLE…. Glenn was going to die, that’s all there was to it, the story line shows it in the comics, it’s building to an All Out War with Negan, read the comic.”
Chad Foster seems to agree, and notice he doesn’t mention Daryl (Norman Reedus) once. Why? Because Daryl wasn’t in The Walking Dead comics. For Comic book fans, Reedus, and occasional writer deviations from the comics, are the only wild cards. They know the plot from the comics.
“Maybe if people would put their phones down, long enough to follow an actual plot, they’d see the storyline unfolding. This is the best season so far. Can’t wait for Maggie to take leadership of the Hilltop and the three colonies to unite and declare war on The Saviors.”
The Walking Dead fan Sten Vought Cantwell says Season 7 needs to “pick up the pace.”
“Unfortunately they will drag it out so much people will lose interest. They need to pick up the pace.”
Sten really sums up the problem rather nicely. Many of the fans want action, and while the majority of The Walking Dead viewers are willing to wait, and some are even enjoying that comic book ambiance, there are millions of viewers not enjoying Season 7.
The Walking Dead Season 7 needs to be fixed, according to many headlines. Journalists have ideas to fix Season 7. TV Guide’s Tim Surette agrees the show’s pace needs to increase. Nothing is happening fast enough.
“Make stuff happen on a weekly basis (is that so much to ask?). Focus on the show’s strengths, which involve action, horror and the genius of gore master Greg Nicotero.”
Norman Reedus’ character Daryl is the show’s best character argues Surette in TV Guide, as he firmly aligns himself as not a comic buff. The Walking Dead should “Go off script” and “experiment,” a little shockingly to comic book buffs he explains why.
“But here’s a little secret: The comics aren’t that well written, particularly for a TV adaptation… Is it any wonder that Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus), who was not in the comics but was added just for the show, is the show’s best character by a longshot? He’s still fresh, he doesn’t feel like a comic-book character.”
While most The Walking Dead fans, who aren’t into the comic books want to see less of Negan, and many are calling for his death, Vanity Fair suggests that Negan needs a backstory, and so do his followers. Negan will be around for Season 8. It would be better if fans had a clue who this guy is, and why no one had killed him yet.
“Negan’s introduction to the series has been less than impressive. He’s supposedly ushering in an ‘evolution’ within the show, but his characterization and leadership often seem ‘cartoonish’ and ‘juvenile’ when transported from page to screen, as some fans have complained.”
The Walking Dead fans, who are not completely thrilled with the show’s direction in Season 7, seem to agree that the pace needs to pick up. They want more action, more zombies and a lot less humiliation for their heroes.
Norman Reedus seems to be iconic for the crowd who aren’t all that familiar with or fond of The Walking Dead comics. Reedus fans are generally fond of the survivalist concepts and the idea of fighting zombies. They want realism, and to them, Season 7 isn’t logical or realistic.
The Walking Dead TV-only fans feel suddenly affronted by the comic book flavor of Season 7, after an at least relatively realistic portrayal of survival via Norman Reedus’ Daryl Dixon during any post-apocalyptic situation, even if it is zombies, there has been a decided sense of realism until this season.
They believe Norman Reedus’ Daryl could survive the zombie apocalypse, but they are unimpressed by Negan. The tiger in Season 7 is outlandish for some. Negan’s character, so far, is two dimensional and his lines are corny, and his weapon of choice, Lucille, is inexplicably primitive say various others. Plot lovers ask, what is his motivation and why are his followers loyal?
The Walking Dead comic book fans are thrilled with Season 7, though. They like this flight into what others seem to feel is a two-dimensional fantasy.
How can The Walking Dead keep all the fan’s happy? More zombies, more action, and more character development without dragging on. Tell viewers the story quickly and move on. That seems to be the prescription. The experts and fans agree, stick to the comic book or not, but give people something reasonable that makes sense. Explain without being dull.
RELATED REPORTS FROM THE INQUISITR
Spoilers For Episode 8 And Beyond
The Walking Dead Season 7, Episode 8 – ‘Hearts Still Beating’ is officially summarized as follows, according to Digital Spy.
“Negan’s unwelcome visit to Alexandria continues as other members scavenge for supplies; things quickly spin out of control.”
There will be a death in The Walking Dead Season 7, Episode 8. There is usually a death in the midseason. It’s been true since Season 2, but with such heart-rending losses as Glenn and Abraham still fresh, who will die this time?
Norman Reedus’ Daryl Dixon is probably safe right now. If one could call what Daryl is going through safe. At any rate, the victim has been already chosen by The Walking Dead comic book. Negan will stab Spencer in the gut, apparently for suggesting that they should kill Rick. Negan hates disloyalty, even disloyalty to his enemies apparently. If Glenn was killed for the sake of continuity with the comic books then, certainly Spencer can be sacrificed for the same reason.
The Walking Dead will continue with more of Negan and more of Jesus. Jesus is to become a major character. There will be a slow building of alliances with various groups who in Season 8 will team up to fight Negan and the Saviors. Maggie is going to take charge on the Hilltop.
Norman Reedus is the only The Walking Dead character who’s fate is not written in the prophetic comic book that rules the plot. Everything else will likely be “by the book” this season.
[Featured Image by Jesse Grant/Getty Images]