The Walking Dead, AMC’s number one drama, had its season seven premiere obliterating everything else on television. The opener was one of the bloodiest and darkest episodes in the history of the series, but that didn’t keep the audience away. (Read our review of Season 7 episode 1 here.)
Warning: Season 7 Spoilers ahead.
A Massive Audience Tunes In
More than 17 million viewers tuned in to discover who Lucille would be dispatching. Viewers were devastated to discover that not one, but two characters would be meeting a violent end that night. Abraham and Glenn were on the receiving end of Neegan’s barbed-wire baseball bat, and were both dispatched in epic fashion.
This week, Glenn (Steven Yeun) graces the cover of Entertainment Weekly giving personal insight into his character and its impact on the show.
I don’t know if I’ve fully processed it yet.
Says Yeun to EW about his death in the series. Fans speculated that it might be Yeun that would be up to bat since Glenn was taken out by Neegan in the comics in an equally gruesome manner.
This is something that will hit me maybe a couple of months from now. Or maybe it’ll hit me next year. Maybe it’ll be when I’m 45 and all of a sudden I’m just crying in my kitchen and I can’t explain why. At that point, it was beautiful in that it was so easy for me to get emotional. Personally, for me, I’m not one to cry all the time. I don’t cry much in real life. And when you do not cry in real life, the moments that you do cry are very, very fulfilling and cathartic. You realize, maybe I should cry more in general.
Has The Walking Dead Gone Too Far?
The spectacular violence from the week’s episode has come under scrutiny from many groups including the Parents Television Council. These groups are stating that the producers of the show have gone too far with the graphic violence. Speaking to Fox News, Melissa Henson, program director for the Parents Television Council had this to say:
They’ve entered a whole new territory in terms of the violence. In the past we’ve seen zombie on human violence or human on zombie violence but this kind of violence to this extreme is… a whole new category. What we need is a systematic reform of the TV ratings system.
Tim Winter, President of PTC agrees with this sentiment, but says that action is called for:
It’s not enough to ‘change the channel,’ as some people like to advocate, because cable subscribers — regardless of whether they want AMC or watch its programming — are still forced to subsidize violent content. This brutally explicit show is a powerful demonstration of why families should have greater control over the TV networks they purchase from their cable and satellite providers.
Glenn Says Goodbye…
Say what you will, there seems to be no stopping The Walking Dead. The numbers speak for themselves. Getting back to this week’s Entertainment Weekly, Yeun discusses what leaving the show means to him. He has been on the series since the beginning and grew extremely close to all of the cast and crew:
It was a really confusing time for me personally. It was a sense of relief that a chapter was closing, a sense of accomplishment in looking back and seeing all the things that I got to be a part of, a sense of sadness in knowing that I don’t get to work with these people in the same capacity again, and a sense of confusion because I didn’t know how to place a lot of it because I had to keep it secret.
In addition to Yeun’s interview, TWD cast members Lauren Cohan, Andrew Lincoln, and Norman Reedus pay tribute to their fallen comrade.
For more on The Walking Dead, pick up the newest issue of Entertainment Weekly on stands Friday. AMC’s The Walking Dead continues its blockbuster 7th season this Sunday at 8 pm CST.