The Walking Dead Crew Believes Bumping Off Key Characters Is A Necessary Evil

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You weren’t the only one left reeling after the credits rolled on The Walking Dead season 7’s premiere, “The Day Will Come When You Won’t Be.”

As Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Negan) recalled on the show’s recent Blu-ray release (via ComicBook.com), filming scenes that involved the deaths of big-name characters – namely Glenn and Abraham, in this instance – “sucked,” and though his on-screen maniac relished the experience of lining up Rick and his ragtag group of survivors, Morgan admitted, “I hated doing that.”

He wasn’t the only one, either. Speaking as part of TWD‘s poignant In Memoriam featurette, Andrew Lincoln went on to remember “two dear, dear friends” and essentially bid farewell to Steven Yeun and Michael Cudlitz’s respective characters.

To lose those two soldiers and dear, dear friends… I sort of was in denial about the whole thing. It’s essential. What you’re feeling is what we want the audience to feel. They live and breathe and love the show. They’re best friends for life. That’s what it is. That’s what this show is.

But Yeun raised a counterpart to that argument, stating that often times a character’s death is a necessary evil designed to advance the story: “I think this only makes the show better and it allows myself to have a completeness to it all.”

Bouncing off that, Greg Nicotero, who helmed season 7’s somewhat contentious premiere, recalled the moment when cast and crew began crying upon reading the script for “The Day Will Come When You Won’t Be.”

It’s always a challenge when we know a character is gonna go on the show. We did the table read and people cried while we were just reading the script and I’m like, ‘Oh, this is gonna be rough.’

Said to bring a sense of closure to the war brewing between Rick and Negan, all the while zipping along at breakneck speed, The Walking Dead‘s eighth season begins Sunday, October 22nd.

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