After a seven-month wait to find out which main character was killed by super-villain Negan, The Walking Dead fans finally got the answer to the question they'd been agonising over since the spring when the hit zombie show returned for its seventh season last night.
When season six ended in April, there was a fair amount of outcry from fans, who, angered by the series cliffhanger ending, launched an online petition asking TV network AMC to reveal who was bludgeoned by Negan’s barbed-wire wrapped baseball bat.
Speculation was rife for months over who had bitten the dust - and now we know. The first episode of season seven, titled The Day Will Come When You Won’t Be, saw the deaths of not one, but two key characters - Glenn Rhee and Abraham Ford.
Here’s five things we learned from The Walking Dead season seven premiere …
1- There’s plenty life in The Walking Dead.
While many series become parodies of themselves long before season seven (if they even make it that far), it’s clear The Walking Dead still has plenty distance left to run. The comic books the series is based on are ongoing, so no one really knows where it will all end. One hint the show’s producers have given, however, is that no character is safe. "There’s going to be an expiration date for everybody,” said the show’s executive producer, Gail Anne Hurd, a few weeks back. Be afraid, folks... be very afraid.
2- Negan is just getting started
Negan is absolutely terrifying. Sure, he’s going to be the character all Walking Dead fans love to hate - but hey, this guy is pure box office. Many people are already saying he's the best villain that's ever been on TV - and he's only just appeared. Negan is going to turn the show upside down, we can be sure of that. Speaking about the new series recently, Jeffrey Dean Morgan warned fans: It’s a reset on The Walking Dead. It’s Negan’s world now.”
3- Daryl is in for a rough ride
Chief zombie slayer Daryl Dixon, played by Norman Reedus, has been a fan favourite in The Walking Dead since 2010.Fans feared we’d seen the last of the lovable redneck when Negan started to swing his bat, but he’s still breathing - for now. As it stands, Daryl has been taken hostage by Negan, who has an entire army to keep him under lock and key. This guy is a survival expert - and he’s got himself out of some very sticky situations in the past - but he’s got his work cut out now. We're rooting for you, big fella.
4 - Rick is a broken man
Rick Grimes has been the rock that has kept the survivor community together throughout the show’s seven seasons, but Negan is more than a match for him. Having been tortured into submission and promised to obey the new world order, it’s difficult to see how he can turn things round and keep the promise he made in the new season's opener - to kill Negan. Actor Andrew Lincoln says we'll see a much different character than we're used to. "Everything he's fought and bled for and had family members die for, everything that he's worked for two years to get to, has been shattered in 24 hours. He's not in a good space. He will be a different man."
5 - Maggie is ready to become a leader
Pregnant Maggie (Lauren Cohan) has just seen her lover bludgeoned to death right in front of her eyes, and she’s vowed to take revenge on Negan and his gang, against the advice of the group. Maggie’s probably lost more than any other character over the seasons, but she just keeps bouncing back. Utterly distraught though she is, Maggie is already holding it together better than Rick, and with Daryl being held captive, she's got little choice but to become the group’s leader, for now at least..