“You can breathe, you can blink, you can cry. Hell, you’re all going to be doing that,” said Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan).
After seven months of anticipation, season 7 of “The Walking Dead” aired Sunday, Oct. 23 at 9 p.m.
The scene opens with Negan hovering over Rick as the rest of the gang stand to attention on their knees.
It’s in that moment that not one, but two prominent characters lose their lives at the hand of Lucille, Negan’s right hand woman and barbed-wire covered bat.
As part of their trade agreement with Hilltop, Rick, Maggie and the others had to take out Negan and his Saviors.
The deaths of Glenn and Abraham led to a pivotal moment for Rick. He is now faced with the reality that he is no longer the leader of his people with him or back with Alexandria.
In episode 11 of season 6, Jesus sits down with Daryl and the group to explain the Hilltop and how they can help Alexandria. He leaves them with this chilling message that becomes ever so accurate in season 7: “Your world’s about to get a whole lot bigger.”
There’s a shift in power with the new presence of Negan and his men, The Saviors.
Negan isolates Rick from the group and the gravity of what just happened begins to sink in.
“Bet you thought you were all going to grow old together. Sitting around the table at Sunday dinner in the happily ever after. No, it doesn’t work like that Rick,” said Negan.
To break Rick down further, Negan goes after the one thing that is closest to him, his son Carl.
Still dissatisfied by the look in Rick’s eyes, Negan challenges Rick to harm Carl to prove his obedience to The Savior’s.
This is the first time Maggie, Daryl and the others are faced with such a brutal character.
The last haunting words Glenn muttered were “Maggie, I’ll find you.”
Throughout the course of the episode Negan challenges Rick to “think about what happened.”
Will the death of their two family members propel the group and everyone back at Alexandria to fight back? Or will they become fully submissive to the Saviors?
The Walking Dead airs every Sunday night at 9 p.m. on AMC.