The Season 7 premiere of The Walking Dead is fast approaching, and that can only mean one thing: We’re finally going to find out who Negan killed in the Season 6 finale.
If you were hoping that the second promo for Season 7 would hold any clues as to who Negan’s victim is, be ready to be disappointed. The newly released trailer doesn’t give any real clues, leaving the fate of main characters like Rick, Daryl and Glenn a mystery. While that could mean that everyone at Negan’s mercy has an equal chance of being the victim, many have taken it as confirmation that Maggie is the one who will be getting a baseball bat to the head in the upcoming season premiere.
Fans have been toying with the theory that Maggie is Negan’s victim all summer, but are they right? Is Negan evil enough that he would really kill a pregnant lady? According to the Walking Dead fandom, he most definitely is. The most popular theory of what happened at the end of TWD’s Season 6 finale is that Negan killed Maggie, and there’s evidence.
The biggest reason fans seem to believe that Negan will kill pregnant Maggie in the opening of Season 7 is that the actress who plays Maggie, Lauren Cohan, hasn’t been spotted much on set aside from the first week, during which each cast member filmed a death scene in case of leaks. Furthermore, fans have noticed that Cohan’s social media profiles appear to be suspiciously TWD-free as of late, confirming rumors that she hasn’t been on set. Granted, TWD probably knows how to be sneaky when it comes to filming, and social media updates can be scheduled, photos changed, etc. Still, if it is true that Cohan hasn’t been on set, then either Maggie is dead or severely injured.
Thematically, Maggie’s death would be devastating, which is exactly what TWD producers and writers are hoping for in the season premiere. “The kickback effects from that [death], what it makes every one into, how people react, how the world changes for everyone, that’s the next part of the story,” said executive producer Scott M. Gimple in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. For a death to have that much impact, it has to be big for every member of the group. And Maggie certainly fits the bill.
The process of elimination narrows down the pool of possible victims. Michael Cudlitz, who plays Abraham on The Walking Dead, told Popsugar that Abraham and Negan would co-exist in the coming season, suggesting he’s not the one to die. It’s unlikely that Rick (Andrew Lincoln) is the victim, as he’s the leader of the group and the series’ main protagonist. In the end, fans seem to favor either Maggie or Glenn as the potential victim — both heartbreaking scenarios. Fans, along with writers at Vanity Fair and TV Guide, appear to have locked onto Maggie as the victim because of one very simple reason: Glenn wouldn’t be a big enough surprise.
In the comics, Glenn is Negan’s first victim, and his death propels Maggie into a new role of single motherhood and even more badass protector. But, TWD loves its surprises, and staying true to the source material by killing Glenn would be hard on fans, yes, but it wouldn’t have the same shock-factor as killing Maggie — especially a pregnant Maggie. Killing Maggie, someone so close to Glenn, would have fallout for every character, not only because she is a beloved member of the group, but because she’s also pregnant. With her dies her unborn child — a fate that feels crueler when it comes at the hands of a human as opposed to a walker. By killing Maggie, Negan would effectively kill any hope the characters have of a safe, innocent future. It would also establish him as a man not to be messed with, a man without mercy.
If, like me, you find the idea of Maggie dying completely unacceptable (ditto for Glenn, by the way), there is still hope that she can survive the season premiere. In an interview with Comicbook, Gimple promised that fans would find out what was causing Maggie’s pregnancy complications, something that doesn’t seem likely if she dies in the first minutes of the season. “I don’t want to say exactly what it is but the exact diagnosis will be shared one way or the other. We’ll find out one way or another what happened,” Gimple said. OK, so the whole “one way or another” part of the quote is a bit worrisome, but, hey, at least it’s hope!
I, for one, am not convinced that Maggie will be getting her head bashed in any time soon. Then again, I am a hopeless romantic — it's against my nature to believe that either Maggie or Glenn won't survive the coming season premiere. That said, if it's between Maggie and Glenn, then my money's on Maggie. Her death would be so much more devastating for the other characters and viewers. Plus, the graphic death of a pregnant character doesn't happen a lot on television, and if The Walking Dead wants to get people talking, killing Maggie is a sure way to do it.
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