The Walking Dead has been intense, agonizing, hopeful, and everything in-between this season. From the gut-wrenching premiere with Negan acting as executioner to the anticipated finale, it’s been a season of that we’ll never forget. Here are seven things we’ll never forget about The Walking Dead Season 7…
The Season Premiere Was Torture
There’s not really much you can say about The Walking Dead’s Season 7 premiere that hasn’t been said. The agonizing wait to see who Negan was going to dispatch with Lucille made for torturous viewing. Glenn and Abe. Never forget.
Negan Shaved and It Was Pretty Okay
In The Walking Dead comics, Negan has always been clean-shaven, so it was a surprise to devout readers when Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s character was revealed with a beard early on. But in the midseason finale of the show, Negan begins rocking a beardless look that earns him a spot on the most handsome heartless TV villains ever.
Carl’s Eye Is Gross, You Guys
As if Negan hadn’t already proved himself to be a genuinely heartless bastard, there’s the scene in the “Sing Me a Song” episode during which Negan breaks Carl down and demands he take off his eye patch. Annnnd… what’s underneath is pretty freaking disgusting. Ew. Just ew.
The Only Thing Cooler Than Ezekiel or Carol Is Ezekiel and Carol
Heart. Eyes. Emoji. Ezekiel and Carol are kindred spirits, and the pair are fantastic together in “The Well.” That’s the episode where Carol tries to escape from The Kingdom and the two have a moment of mutual admiration. Ezekiel lets her in on his big secret: His “king thing” is all an act — in his old life he was a zookeeper and an actor in a local theater. But that doesn’t mean he can’t impart sage wisdom. “Where there’s life, there’s hope,” he tells her.
That Gladiator Walker Is Nightmare Fuel
OH MY GOD, RICK, DO NOT TURN AROUND! He turned around. The Walking Dead walkers have always been innovatively gory — that’s something about the show that’s delighted zombie fans from the start. But the spike-covered gladiator walker (a.k.a. Winslow) from the junkyard maze is a whole other level of pee-pants terrifying.
Sometimes Good Shows Make Bad Mistakes
What’s worse: The notorious CG deer or that horrible obviously-green-screen shot of Rick with the junkyard behind him? Walking Dead fans got all worked up this season over a couple of embarrassingly bad effects shots. But for a show that’s been consistently cranking out a convincing CG-animated tiger all season, you can’t come down too hard on them. That TV effects budget only goes so far.
Rick and Michonne Are the Light in the Darkness
In a season full of tragedy and heartbreak, it’s nice to see moments where Michonne and Rick find hope in the darkest of times. Nearly broken by Negan following the execution of his friends, Rick needs Michonne’s help to find his way back to the light. “We made it. We can make it. We’re the ones who live,” she tells him. “That’s why we have to fight. For Judith. For Carl.” And although he might not have won the war, Rick’s taken the fight to Negan and dealt the Saviors a serious blow.