Check out our review of this weeks episode “The Day Will Come When You Won’t Be” of The Walking Dead Season 7 Premiere.
The Walking Dead – Season 7 episode 1: “The Day Will Come When You Won’t Be”
Warning: There will be spoilers.
Welcome to our review of The Walking Dead Season 7 Premiere. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know what’s up with the big story-line for the The Walking Dead Season 7 Premiere. If not here’s a stupid quick summary:
Rick & crew are caught by Negan, leader of the Saviours and one or more of them are about to get their heads caved in by Negan for him to make his sadistic point that HE’S the new boss.
Robert: This 7th season premiere of The Walking Dead was a long, drawn out torture porn episode lead by one of the most sadistic characters this side of Hannibal on television. Negan wielded his barbwire bat Lucille with such glee after monologuing to make his demented point to Rick & Rick’s crew. Negan made his point with the death of both Abraham & Glenn.
Ian: This entire time I was wondering if the show would reflect the events of the comic and it still felt a bit of a surprise. Granted that by the time these deaths were shown off with blood splattering flair, I was taken back by how close the visuals were as Glenn’s fate was practically a 1:1 representation of his fate in the comics. While I felt like the execution done by Negan itself was too drawn out, the character portrayal by Jeffrey Dean Morgan feels so right, making his exchange with Rick throughout the episode even though he’s a bit toned down from his comic origins when it comes to his cussing.
Robert: Negan obviously “gets off” on his sickening monologuing as it shows his power, his intent and his (likely) only enjoyment in this new desolate world they’re living in now. The season premiere was all about the breaking of Rick Grimes to the point that Rick almost cut off his son’s arm for Negan else everyone else would have been shot in the head, again more foreshadowing of the comic book. Fortunately Negan stopped Rick before he could do it as Negan FINALLY broke Rick at that point.
Ian: The arm scene had so much going on. As you know, Rick lost his hand in the comics and right as Negan started drawing a line on Carl’s arm – alarms were going off in my head and tension was running high. We already had Negan just take out two members of the crew and despite it more or less reflecting the comic’s timeline, this came as a bit of curve ball. The expression on Rick’s face as Carl bravely coached Rick to go through with it was pretty damn chilling and the fallout? The perfect setup to Rick/Negan’s struggle in the future as lines are drawn out clearly.
Robert: Some could complain that the episode took too long to actually SHOW the brutal deaths of Sgt. Abraham Ford & Glenn Rhee, some consider it torture porn given how disgusting & detailed the deaths were. I feel that the episode was just as brutal & gruesome as it needed to be. This isn’t the Walton’s, this is The Walking Dead and last nights episode showed that the most deadly monster on the show is MAN not Walker / Zombie. The show hit on two parts – ONE is the brutal deaths and the hands of Negan. SECOND is the breaking of Rick Grimes which starts with Negan taking Rick out on a zombie road trip to retrieve Negan’s new hatchet and ends with Negan forcing Rick into a gruesome choice to the nail home the point home that Negan is now in charge.
Ian: Despite the zombie RV trip being shot to look overly dramatic, you can really feel the weight of the show bear down on Rick as he just lies there for a moment, letting it all sink in as Negan briskly gives him orders. The overhanging zombie was a pretty neat touch, it’s always a thrill to see the FX crew do twisted stuff with the zombie extras as there’s only a few times where you get a memorable walker like the weird bloated water zombies from two seasons back. The use of the fog to reflect Rick’s mood was kinda on the nose but at least it looked nice as he went through the motions.
R.I.P. Sgt. Abraham Ford
“Suck My Nuts!”
Robert: The best mouth piece on The Walking Dead. The true strength of the show and his loss will be felt for years. It may be a while until another character can take that role, if ever. Michael Cudlitz showed that he has great range (just watch him on the big 90 min Talking Dead, such a joker) and I’ll miss watching him each week / episode.
Ian: It sucks to think that the whole Rosita/Sasha thing was so pointless and tacked on as if to serve as distraction excuse to make the audience think he was safe but at least he got in one last dig at Negan before going splat.
R.I.P. Glenn Rhee
“Maggie, I’ll find you!”
Robert: This was tough as I always thought that Glenn Rhee became the true heart & soul of the show. Losing him was the big heartbreaking scene and his last words to Maggie was even more gut wrenching. Steven Yeun has a huge career in front of him as he’s shown that he can carry a show, can’t wait to see what he does next.
Ian: Oh Glenn, you shocked the comic book audience by biting the bullet and now you’ve done the same with the tv crowd. Props to Steven going the full range to match up with the comics, right down to the whole eyeball bit. It was crazy seeing the carnage the first time around and it was equally as mind blowing the second time around, hot damn.
Robert: Overall, I enjoyed the episode and I’m looking forward to how the new Negan dynamic changes the show. Of course, I can’t wait for Savage Rick to come storming out of the gates and be the leader he is again but perhaps it won’t happen like it did last season after Carl got shot in the eye. At this point, the show isn’t a predictable as it once was. This was the shot in the arm that The Walking Dead needed to give it new life despite the loss of life. The show isn’t about torture porn, it never has been although it does like to show grotesque walking / zombie scenes. The season premiere defined that the show is about the crumbling & frail grip everyone now has on humanity in their world.
Ian: This was definitely one of the stronger season premiere episodes and I know the next episode will probably be spent on the group processing their feelings. It was a great introduction to Negan in full bravado to the character and the range from Rick was pretty impressive as well. It mostly makes up for how the last season ended on a tease and the final reveal was pretty satisfying.
I have a lot of confidence in the show getting back to the roots of the comic moving forward from this point as The Kingdom is introduced and SHIVA WILL WRECK SOME ZOMBIE ASS, HELL YEAH.
Bits & Pieces
- Maggie’s resolve will be a powerful key in this new season and likely Negan’s downfall.
- Rosita, Sasha and Eugene taking away Abraham’s corpse got to me. Very heartbreaking yet peacefully beautiful.
- The writers don’t know what to do with Daryl. He’s ALWAYS broken up from the group. Always, it’s becoming tiresome.
- The weakest Walkers yet in that dawn filled scene with Rick outside the RV as they never felt like a threat.
So spoilers from the big 90 minute AMC Talking Dead special (from a graveyard with pouring rain – Kudos to the show & fans!) was that next weeks episode is all about The Kingdom where Morgan & Carol are recovering after Carol’s running off to die story which Morgan saved her from. I’m assuming we get to meet King Ezekiel & his pet tiger Shiva. Yes. Pet Tiger. That said, the TWD trailer below still seems to show the fallout from Negan & the Saviours and Alexandria.