The mid-season finale of The Walking Dead is finally here, but spoilers point to drama spilling well into the second half of the season as Negan strikes an odd relationship with Carl and Rick makes long-term plans to attack the Saviors and ultimately kill Negan.
[WARNING: Some spoilers for The Walking Dead are ahead, along with speculation on Season 7.]
This has been one of the most eventful, but frustrating season of The Walking Dead for fans, who were forced to wait weeks to see who Negan would kill at his arrival — only to find out that he would eliminate two major characters, Glenn and Abraham.
The season has been marked with more frustration as it’s gone along, with critics taking the show to task for a slow and somewhat sloppy roll-out for Negan’s character. It’s also led to sinking ratings, with USA Today noting that it’s on the way to its lowest rated season since the spring of 2013.
That could be changing soon, and it will likely start with Sunday’s mid-season finale. As Den of Geek noted, The Walking Dead is approaching a strange point for Negan and Carl as the murderous leader of the Saviors.
In the comic book, the two develop what the report calls “a weird father/son relationship, where Negan seems genuinely interested in the boy, who represents the son he never had, and Carl still wants to kill Negan, but can talk to him about things he wouldn’t go to Rick about.”
“In the comic, Carl manages to kill several Saviors when he arrives to the Sanctuary stowed away in a truck before he’s finally captured by Dwight. Carl demands to see Negan, who immediately takes a liking to him. In fact, Carl’s relationship with Negan is a very special one. If done right on the show, Negan and Carl’s scenes together could add a whole new level of complexity to these characters.”
And as Negan and Carl build their relationship, the young survivor’s father could be plotting an all-out war with the Saviors. The Daily Telegraph noted earlier this season that Negan’s entrance to Alexandria is set to be the beginning of a long battle that will play out between the two sides.
“Ultimately, this episode will also show us whether the producers intend to have the second half of the season as All-Out War between Negan, Alexandria, The Hilltop and The Kingdom, or whether they just sow those seeds to finish that storyline in season eight,” the report noted.
And while Rick seems to be broken in the face of Negan’s brutal entrance into his world, Digital Spy noted that he is really hatching a “secret plan is to convince the Saviors the Alexandrians really are intimidated by them – and then to attack when they least expect it.”
Josh McDermitt, who plays Eugene, already hinted the conflict between Negan and Rick in Alexandria as Negan acts as Carl’s “adoptive father.”
“The way the last episode ended, with him holding baby Judith, is pretty disgusting, and we’re gonna pick up shortly after that and see what goes down,” he said (via Entertainment Weekly). “You know, Rick right now is not in Alexandria. He’s off on a supply run or something with Aaron, so we’re gonna see more of that and what happens there. And hopefully, he can make it back to Alexandria in time to see Negan basically becoming the adoptive father to baby Judith and Carl. And everything is going to do go down in Alexandria.”
With sinking ratings and a slow start to the 7th season, it’s likely that The Walking Dead will have a more action-packed back half of its season, so the spoilers pointing toward a war between Rick and Negan could be the most likely path for the show.
[Featured Image by AMC]