The Walking Dead has had a bunch of controversial moments over its history, but one of the biggest was Glenn’s gruesome death back in the season 7 premiere. For starters, fans were heartbroken by the popular former pizza boy’s demise. What’s more, though, many claimed it was depicted in a needlessly graphic and cruel way. If you’ll recall, the camera captured the moment Negan caved in Glenn’s skull with his baseball bat in unflinching detail, with the ensuing gore achieved with some convincing make-up and prosthetics.
The reaction actually caused a bit of a re-think of how gory The Walking Dead should be and the show has never attempted anything that grotesque again. For star Andrew Lincoln, though, the moment should never have even been attempted in the first place. Having now left the series, the man who plays Rick Grimes revealed to The New York Times that he felt Glenn’s demise pushed things too far. To Lincoln, the excessive gore took away from the emotion of the scene.
“We’ve been able to terrify people in film for 100 years without having to show an eyeball. When that happens, it diminishes what we’re trying to make, which in my mind’s eye is a family drama set in hell. It’s not a sort of B-movie gorefest.”
The actor went on to say that he felt it was a matter of taste and the depiction of Glenn’s death crossed the line. In fact, it’s this scene which started him thinking about directing an episode himself, which he’s planning to do for season 10.
“But when we’re dealing with losing somebody — and a very brutal, human kind of death — I think it’s just taste. My taste is, I think it would be more disturbing just keeping the camera on Maggie’s face [Glenn’s wife, played by Lauren Cohan]. And maybe that’s why I want to direct, because I want to make what I’ve been filming in my head.”
It’s interesting to hear Lincoln speak so freely about his views here, as we’re sure many fans would agree with him. His argument that it might have been more effective to show Maggie’s face rather than the actual moment itself is a good one, too, as sometimes it’s better to leave things to the imagination. Given his clear views about how The Walking Dead should be told visually, we look forward to seeing what Lincoln does in the director’s chair himself when he gets the chance.