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Negan's Rise to Power

Guest Author:  Joshua Turkin


The fictional character of Negan is featured on The Walking Dead. He leads a group of about 500 survivors that are called the Saviors. They are known for trading with others. We first were introduced to Negan in the sixth season finale of the series. This is how Negan rose to power.


Leading up To Negan And Talks of Him

Before viewers even saw him on the show, Negan’s name was mentioned several times during the sixth season. It was first heard in the “No Way Out” episode and then again on “The Same Boat” episode. All of this build up played a role in Negan’s rise to power.

 A New Role as A Tyrannical Dictator Emerges

Not long after the outbreak occurred, Negan’s reputation became well known. He soon became thought of as a totalitarian dictator. He carried around a bat named Lucille that had barbed wire wrapped around it. Many of the survivors soon became quite scared of him and he ended up with a large following. He established different outposts in the D.C. area. He couldn’t do it all alone and recruited a person named Simon, along with other men named Arat, Bud, Dwight, Gavin and Wade. They helped keep things running smoothly and others from crossing Negan. However, Negan didn’t have a problem beating others with Lucille in order to get his point across.

Negan Give Orders That Aren’t Liked

When Rick and his gang were driving to the Hilltop in the sixth season finale, they faced a lot of roadblocks that had been put into place by the Saviors. Rick decided that it would just be better if everyone walked instead. They ended up being ambushed by some of the Saviors and Negan told rick that he had to give them everything that they had with them and that he owned them. He also said that they needed to face a punishment as they killed a lot of Saviors in the past. He wanted to set an example by killing one of them and he played a game of “eeny, meeny, miny, me” in order to decide just who it should be. He ended up beating someone to death, that viewers can’t see. It’s during this time that he got his point across as someone that shouldn’t be messed with.

No One Can Take Down Negan

Season seven’s premiere was pretty intense. Negan decided to kill Negan by beating him with Lucille. A man named Daryl tried to take Negan down, but Negan punched him and then set his sights on Glenn and killed him. He ended up giving Rick an ultimatum that his instructions must be followed or he would kill everyone, and leave Rick for last so that he would have to watch everyone else die. Negan wanted a trade deal and he wanted Rick to cut off the arms of his son, Carl.

 A Brave Young Man Emerges

Despite Carl’s young age, he showed a lot of Bravery as he actually encouraged his father to cut off his arms as it would allow him to save everyone else. Rick raised the axe, but Negan ended up stopping him as he knew that he had already broken the will of Rick. Negan even allowed the others to leave, but let them know that the Saviors would be back in a week to take their supplies. He ended up taking Daryl with him as a way to keep the others from retaliating.

 The Molding of Daryl

Negan wasn’t nice to Daryl while he was in captivity, but did share some information with him. He took him back to the Sanctuary and kept him locked in a cell. His goal was to break him and turn him into a Savior. He talked to him about how spared Dwight for fleeing him by marrying Sherry, Dwight’s wife. He also gave Daryl the choice of staying in captivity or submitting to his will.

 Returning to Alexandria

Negan showed that he was in charge by arriving back to Alexandria with his men earlier than the others had anticipated. He made Rick give him a tour and then took all of their guns. A few guns went missing and he threatened to kill everyone, but thankfully Rick located them. In fact, Rick actually gave him an extra gun he found which got Rick in the right graces of Negan, at least for the moment.

Carl Makes His Presence Known and A Bond Is Formed

Despite Carl trying to shoot one of the Saviors in a previous episode, Negan liked the boy. In the “Sing Me A Song” episode, Carl killed two of the Saviors and demanded that the others bring him Negan. Even though Negan was somewhat afraid of him, he came forward and put on a brave face which threw off Carl and he’s able to be disarmed by Dwight. Negan ended up showing the boy around the Sanctuary and even introduced him to his wives. He sat down and talked to Carl for a bit to try to get to know more about him.

 A Plan to Get Rick Doesn’t Go as Planned

In the seventh season finale, Negan took some of the Savior's to Alexandria to try to get Rick. Through a gunfight, Negan captured both Rick and Carl. He acted like he wanted to kill Carl, but then admitted that he was fond of him and didn’t want to do it. Some of Rick’s followers saved the day by ambushing the Kingdom. Negan ended up retreating back to the Sanctuary with the Saviors, but declared a war with those who were against him.



As you can see, Negan seems to always have been a leader, but has rose to power as the seasons have progressed. He has proven to be someone that you don’t cross. He isn’t afraid of asserting his will, even if others get killed in the process. It’s going to be hard for even people like Rick to take him down.


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