The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus is surprisingly similar to Daryl Dixon. If anything, Norman is deeper and darker than Daryl. Reedus once told GQ that every part he ever played represented a part of him. That sounds pretty cliché until one remembers those roles. He’s played a killer in more of his movies than not.
Norman Reedus has a dangerous side, and he’s not one bit ashamed of it. Reedus really is tough, rowdy, and kind of extreme. Norman is a real-life bad boy, and perhaps that is what is behind his overwhelming popularity.
The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus has all the marks of a rough and rowdy life. From his love for Harley Davidson, and the devil tattoos on his back, to the titanium repair to his eye socket, Reedus is tough inside and out.
The devils on his back are real according to Reedus, and the tattoo just drew them out into the open where he could deal with them. It seems that is just one way of dealing with his powerful dark side. Acting out his darkness in some of the most violent movie roles imaginable is another.
Norman Reedus is as hot as the manifold on his Harley, as dark as the night he killed his own mother (in a movie of course), and he has a super dangerous vibe. So have the roles he played in so many little-known films. Reedus is a horror movie and thriller star, and often he’s been the most deadly member of the cast.
In The Walking Dead, Norman Reedus uses his deadly side for good. Daryl Dixon served as the strongest protector of the group, but many of his former roles were far less benevolent. For example, he told GQ about his role in the 1997 movie Six Ways To Sunday, in that film, Norman kills his own mother, played by Debbie Harry.
“Sleeping with Debbie Harry and killing her and taking her dead body on a bus out of town is one of my fondest memories, you know what I mean? What do you want? What can I say?”
Norman Reedus, more than Daryl Dixon on The Walking Dead is amazingly creative. Like Dixon, Reedus is an outdoorsman, but unlike Daryl, he’s also artsy. Before his acting career, Reedus worked in a Harley Davidson repair shop, but he was also an artist, photographer, and serious painter. If that sounds harmless or even soft, look at his work in the video below and read what he told GQ about his work.
“Even with photography and artwork, I’ve really liked having grotesque things and finding beauty in them. I’ve always been a fan of horror films and I like aggressive music and I like aggressive people — they all kind of were interesting to me. I mean I really don’t see myself ever being, or wanting to be, in some sort of light romantic comedy about nothing.”
The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus is no more a romantic than Daryl Dixon, and he cannot stand romantic comedy. Like many more complex people, he prefers horror movies by far.
The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus once turned down a romantic comedy type film with Jennifer Love Hewitt, simply because his character would not be raping her and killing her dead. Norman’s never had a role where he was supposed to be truly happy and carefree. Reedus told GQ he wasn’t sure he could handle that kind of role.
“I questioned whether I’m sad enough to appear that happy in a fake world.”
Norman Reedus, once again blowing folks away with his philosophical darkness. It’s pretty heavy, and suddenly quite relatable, at least for some.
While The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus shares a lot in common with Daryl Dixon, he is different in some ways. Unlike Daryl, Reedus is well traveled. He was born in Hollywood Florida, moved to Los Angeles as a baby, and has lived in Japan, England, and Spain according to his biography on NormanReedus.org. It is a bit hard to imagine Daryl in Europe, much less Japan.
Before The Walking Dead, Norman Reedus played a lot of roles, mostly villains and darker characters. While some of the films are obscure, horror buffs will recognize some very familiar titles on his list of films.
Norman Reedus’ films include Mimic, Floating, Six Ways To Sunday, Deuces Wild, Blade II, 8MM, American Gangster, Hero Wanted, The Conspirator, Moscow Chill, Antibodies (German Film), Red Cannon, and of course Boondock Saints. This is hardly an exhaustive list, though. Reedus has been in dozens of very dark and frightening films.
As Daryl Dixon, Norman Reedus made a place for himself in the show. Daryl Dixon was not part of the original comics, and his role was supposed to be a supporting role at best. As Daryl, Norman has turned a bit part into a starring role.
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On The Walking Dead, Daryl Dixon fits in among the other zombie fighting characters, but in real life, Norman told GQ he has no desire to fit in.
“I prefer [not fitting in], and I like people like that. I always liked shy and sort of interesting people, rather than pretty people trying to please everybody—I always dislike them right off the bat… I guess I didn’t fit in with those people, didn’t like those people, grew up not wanting to be one of those people. I don’t know. I like dark things. I like reasons why things are dark, you know.”
The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus isn’t afraid of darkness. He acknowledges his devils and not only faces them, he isn’t afraid to turn his back to them either. Reedus embraces his inner darkness. No one has anything to fear from Norman, though, any more than the cast of TWD fears Daryl. What is scary, though, according to Norman are those pretty people, who will do anything, including pretending to be something they are not, just to be liked. Those folks can be scary.
The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus is a powerfully dark and compelling character, much like Daryl Dixon.
[Featured Image by Jesse Grant/Getty Images]