I should point out that I’m not a Walking Dead fan at all. When the show debuted my wife and I split up and well, the last thing I had time for was television. I knew about the show but just never saw it due to not having cable. Now that it’s on Netflix I may check it out. I did hear the internet lose their collective shit over Glenn’s death. The violence was unnecessary, and they went over the top and just went straight for the gross out for ratings. I watched it. Three times even, and at some point I want to watch the entire episode. I know that there are a few whiner babies that have actually swore to never watch the show again and my question is: Do any of these people watch horror films? What the hell did they expect. A guy has a bat named Lucille for fuck’s sake. You know at some point he was going to use it right?
On the one hand I can see why people lost their shit. That one shot of Glen’s pulpy head and his hand is still twitching! Jesus! Talk about powerful television! Negan should play for the Cleveland Indians. What I respected was the shows balls. They followed the comic I guess and really swung for the fences (that was funny!). You have a villain that is truly vile and shows just how sadistic he can be. That was what made the death so powerful. When villains are done correctly you as a viewer either love them or hate them. There’s no middle ground. What the shows creators have done is given us a fucked up psychopath that you want to see killed and badly.
It was brilliantly filmed and as you watched it you felt just like the characters did. Except they already knew what was going to happen. Was it too violent? No, and the reason I say that is because it wasn’t violence for the sake of violence. As a writer myself I can see why they chose to film this the way the way they did. It was to shock you and show just how psychotic Negan is. All of those people that don’t watch this show will now tune in. I know I will because I really like the Negan character. He’s my kind of villain. The show writers were trying to turn a corner and they did it by taking their fans into a very dark place. You felt every swing of the bat and if they hadn’t shown it the way they did no one would have given a shit. They wanted to make an impact and they did.
Watching the entire episode was intense because it was a moment where the balance of power shifted and all you can do it watch helplessly as everything these people worked for slips away. Want a happy ending? Not going to happen here. You truly went on a ride and you really felt their loss and helplessness. It was brutal, but it had to be. There was no way to do something like this without the violence. That was where it really hit home. All of these people whining and crying that the show went to far are kind of right, yet imagine the entire episode sanitized for a wholesome audience. It wouldn’t have the same effect.
So what if The Walking Dead lost a few fans. I bet after that premier episode they’ve gained a whole bunch of new ones. They’re going to watch just to see what Negan will do. Now that he’s in control how is he going to stay in control? Will he force Rick to chop off his son’s arm again just to prove a point? Did you really think that zombies were the only thing to fear in an apocalypse? Shit, I’ve never seen the show I expected this happen way sooner. Not everyone sees a new world as a love in. People are going to become violent and selfish. Negan had to show Rick that things were changing and what a way to do that.
I didn’t find the episode too violent. I found it to be engrossing, and powerful. I couldn’t stop watching and as the credits rolled I knew that next week I’d be watching again just to see how things played out. I just hope that no one listens to the whiner babies who are all butthurt and calling for a boycott of what was once their favorite show. They saw a couple of dudes get their fucking brains bashed in and now they’re crying foul. I love a good violent story that involves great characters and that’s exactly what I got. I also got to see a guy twitching while his head was beaten into bloody pulp. This is what you do to get noticed and holy shit I was riveted! All I can say is I can’t wait until next week.