WARNING: THIS POST CONTAINS SPOILERS
Well wasn’t that something, yet again AMC have decided to play on the emotions of it’s loyal viewers. They saw an infamous scene played out in front of them and despite all the tragedy, the great writing, production, acting and directing of the cast and crew made it almost impossible to not appreciate this work of tragedy.
First of all they threw the fans what could be described as a red herring, they killed Abraham off first, leading the viewers into a false sense of security, all of a sudden the real tragedy strikes when series regular and fan favourite Glenn in next to be brutally murdered. His last words to his distraught wife Maggie will be remembered for the rest of the show.
“I will find you.”
Glenn to Maggie during his death
The plot continued with the Rick and Negan road trip and many hints towards comic plots. We didn’t know what was going to happen next, all of a sudden Carl is going have is arm cut off by Rick, until Negan stops it. We see the grief of Maggie as she mourns Glenn. The entire episode was tragic but it was well done. The characters and plot made it all worthwhile. They focused on the uncertainty and used it to strike fear into the hearts of the viewers.
The plot of the entire episode was genius. It gave the viewers an unexpected start to the new series while keeping the identity of the victims a mystery.
The storyline fulfilled it’s purpose, it was supposed to feel a sense of uncertainty, a sense of the unknown. As viewers we had some hints about what may happen to our favourite characters. It jumped from scene to scene and effectively built up suspense. We finally finished out that Abraham was the one killed by Negan. This scene ultimately led fans into a false sense of security. Then we were given a Daryl Dixon moment, Daryl rushes and punches Negan, while he is pinned down Negan lectures the group about how he will not tolerate any rebellion. All of a sudden they introduce shock horror. Negan takes Lucille to Glenn, and brutally beats his skull until he is dead. The scene cuts to Rick on top of the RV. After Negan let’s him in the uncertainty continues, fans know about Rick losing a hand in the comics so they play on the viewers knowledge using the bloody axe. When the group return Negan orders Rick to cut off Carl’s left arm, and as Negan sees that Rick is now a broken man, he stops him. Much to the relief of the viewers.
The plot of this episode has fulfilled it’s intended purpose, it has placed the viewers in the same situation as the group, in a situation that they are unable to control, and with a grim feeling of uncertainty surrounding the whole thing. The Lucille deaths played a big role in seeing how this was played out. When Abraham was the one chosen by Negan, fans thought that the slaughter was over, all of a sudden Negan begins to brutally murder fan favourite Glenn. The shock horror that the fans recieved would’ve been the same as the characters were feeling at the time when they saw their friend’s death. The plot was well played out, and the viewers may hate it, but we love the way that it was done.
This episode of the show had a very heavy character aspect. The actors had to show real emotion when carrying out this role, with the deaths of Abraham and Glenn characters such as Sasha, Maggie, Eugene and Rosita had to show real emotion, and they did. When Glenn died the whole group was distraught, we could see the emotions on their faces, the grief, the sorrow, the anger and the fear that they all had at that moment in time. Another major character who had to show his emotions was Rick, the group’s leader had a genuine look of fear on his face, he was powerless but kept his one last bit of defiance until Negan broke him. Negan played the Nuclear Option and almost had Rick wound his own son. Rick was broken, his cries and screams begging Negan for mercy showed that the group’s new nemesis has won, he has broken Rick.
One reason that these emotions had to played well by the actors is because it was the exact same way that the viewers were feeling, we were scared at the beginning out of fear of the unknown, when we saw Glenn’s death we were shocked and distraught. And at the end of the show we were all basically begging Negan for mercy, we, as the viewers, were then broken. We accepted that the group had no choice and that Negan had won.
The best thing about this whole episode was that the show placed the viewers in the same feeling as the group. The plot, characters and emotions played on our own feelings. We felt the same way throughout the events of this episode. A show that does that to it’s viewers is great, it involves them in the plot and makes us feel more about the plot and the characters, it makes us genuinely care.
The actors in the premier were outstanding. Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s performance as Negan was outstanding, we loved to hate his character, he brought Negan to life in such a way. We know that Negan is superior to the group as he projects confidence, he knows that he has more power and he knows that the group know it. Andrew Lincoln and Lauren Cohan need to be credited. Maggie’s grief at the end creates sympathy, and the mental and physical breakdown of Rick Grimes was in depth and accurate. We felt for these characters and had genuine emotions for them, and this wouldn’t have been possible without a merge of plot, emotion, and character.
AMC and TWD should be credited for this episode, for something so tragic it was so well done, you almost can’t fault it.
I certainly give it 5 stars.
It was a brilliant piece of television work and fans are not going to forget it anytime soon.