Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s highly-anticipated villain, Negan, finally made his debut on The Walking Dead in last season’s finale, but fans were left disappointed with the brief amount of time Negan was actually on screen. In a new interview with Entertainment Weekly, Morgan has affirmed that Negan will play a central role to the entire season, with his character’s backstory making up a large arc of the upcoming seventh season.
Morgan told the magazine that the show is going to pick up right where the sixth season left off, adding that while the finale gave a simple introduction of who Negan is, the premiere is going to answer most of the questions that fans may have about the character.
"Simply put, the premiere is continuing that speech in a way that I don’t think the audience is going to be ready for," Morgan said. "Not only are you going to see who is on the receiving end of Lucille, but you will see how Negan’s mind is working, and it is constantly working. One thing I will say about Negan is he’s no dummy, you know?"
Morgan added that after the premiere, the subsequent episodes will focus on Negan’s backstory and how he became the murderous man that he’s known for. It will focus on how the zombie apocalypse changed him, and by mid-season, everything about Negan will be out in the open.
"The last six seasons we’ve followed Rick and his band of merry men," Morgan said. "Now you’re going to find out in that time Negan has been running his own show in his own way and coming across all sorts of people and taking care of business. So he has created his army of followers and some are probably reluctant followers, and if they’re reluctant followers he has a way to deal with that as well."
The Walking Dead’s seventh season premieres Oct. 23 at 9 p.m. ET on AMC.