This article is about the TV Series episode. You may be looking for the Comic Series volume.

"Here's Negan" is the twenty-second and final episode of the tenth season of AMC's The Walking Dead. It is the one-hundred and fifty-third episode of the series overall. It premiered on April 4, 2021. It was written by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick and directed by Laura Belsey.[1]

Plot

With Maggie back at Alexandria, Carol takes Negan on a journey to minimize the increasing tension. There, Negan reflects on his late wife Lucille and the events that led him to this point.

Synopsis

Negan works on rebuilding in Alexandria while Maggie, walking with Hershel, glares at him from across the street.

Negan later accompanies Carol hunting and thanks her for getting him out of Alexandria for awhile due to how tense things currently are with Maggie. Although he doesn't mind being "lay low Negan" for a bit, Negan asks if Carol can help him smooth things over with Maggie, stating that given his and Carol's recent history, Negan feels that she at least owes him that much. Carol leads Negan to Leah's Cabin where he finds his belongings inside. Carol explains that Daryl helped her to move Negan in and that the council has voted to banish him and that what Negan wants isn't going to happen and that it's not possible. Carol feels that given their less recent history, it's better than Negan deserves. Although disappointed, Negan accepts this and asks if he was really banished by the council or if Carol acted on her own again. With a smile, Carol tells Negan that the rabbit they caught is for him and leaves without answering Negan's question.

That night, Negan sits drinking heavily by the fire when he hallucinates a younger version of himself sitting in a chair holding Lucille. The younger Negan taunts him about how Negan believed that the people in Alexandria would ever see him differently than who he truly is, the younger version of himself that had been the brutal leader of the Saviors. Negan calls his younger self a clown and "a cult of personality with no cult." The younger Negan reminds his older self that he had gotten a lot further as Negan leader of the Saviors than he's gotten just by being kind. "It's time to face the facts old man: you are nothing without her." Enraged. Negan tosses his glass at the chair, shattering the glass and causing the hallucination to disappear.

The next day, carrying a shovel, Negan returns to the tree where he had fought Rick Grimes and remembers Rick slitting his throat and Michonne telling him that they don't have Lucille and that the bat is "still out there." Negan begins digging holes around the tree while a walker slowly approaches him from across the field. After digging numerous holes, Negan finally hits something and, with a smile, recovers Lucille from where she has been buried for years.

Twelve years earlier, a terrified Negan is tied to a chair in a bar. Negan begs his captors to let him go as his wife has cancer and she needs the chemotherapy drugs in his cooler. Negan insists that keeping him there is killing both Negan and Lucille. Craven claims to be sympathetic to Negan's plight, but the bikers didn't find the doctors where Negan had claimed they had given him the drugs. Negan insists that the doctors move around and it isn't his fault, but Craven doesn't believe him. Craven is sure that if the doctors had something as rare as chemotherapy drugs, they must have a lot of other stuff as well. Negan finds a loose screw in his chair as Craven talks to him and begins unscrewing it, unnoticed by Craven. Craven promises that if Negan helps them find the doctors, he will allow Negan to take the drugs to Lucille but if he doesn't, he will pour it down the toilet and make Negan watch. Craven punches Negan in the face and he agrees to tell Craven what he wants to know if he puts the drugs back into the cooler. Craven has one of his men return the drugs to the cooler and Negan starts to explain how the clinic is true and the doctors have a medical stockpile somewhere he doesn't know the location of. Negan was tracking them for weeks and found them two or three days before.

Two or three days before, Negan, armed with a pistol, makes his way to a small campsite with RVs and two armed guards. Negan emerges and demands that the men drop their guns while Franklin tries to calm him down. Disorientated, Negan notices that the two guards are both dummies just before Laura knocks him out with a baseball bat.

Attached to an IV bag, Negan awakens in the clinic, handcuffed to the chair. Negan and Franklin introduce themselves and after checking that they won't have any problems, Franklin releases Negan. Handing him a bowl of food, Franklin comments that Negan has exposure, exhaustion, dehydration and malnutrition and asks why Negan is in that state and trying to rob a bunch of doctors with an empty gun. Negan explains that his wife has cancer and was in the middle of her treatments when the world ended and Negan has been trying to keep it going since then. Franklin asks if Negan's a doctor, but Negan clarifies that he's a high school gym teacher and that, having been given a calendar of what had to be done and when, he had to find the drugs and figure out how to do infusions. Franklin is shocked that Negan was able to teach himself how to give someone chemotherapy, but Negan states that the pumps aren't that complicated unless something goes wrong which has happened.

Six weeks earlier, as a walker growls outside of his house, Negan removes a chemotherapy treatment from his fridge and sets it up for Lucille who is trying to determine which James Bond movie she wants to watch. Negan refuses as it will make too much noise, but Lucille states that they will have to kill the walker. Negan wants to just turn the generator off a bit which will cause the walker to lose interest as he sees no point in killing the walkers. Negan moves the remaining chemo drugs into the freezer and sets up a thermometer to keep track of the temperature before going outside and shutting off the generator. Negan reads to Lucille, but finds the book boring. As the walker breaks through their gate, Lucille tells Negan that he has to take care of it and, wearing goggles and wielding a hammer and a butcher knife, Negan tries to kill the walker but fails even when he stabs it in the eye, much to Negan's frustration. Negan is saved by Lucille who shoots the walker through the head and notes that she just used their last bullet. Lucille brushes off her husband's concerns and orders him to turn the generator back on so that she can watch a movie.

Walking down a road, Negan scavenges for gas and attempts to siphon from the tank of an abandoned car without any success. Searching the car's glove box, Negan finds a small pouch containing the car owner's weed stash. Negan brings the drugs back to Lucille to help with her nausea, but she knows that he has to go further and further every time which he confirms as their generator needs gas and the local area has been picked over. However, Negan thinks that that is what's keeping them safe: there's nothing that anyone wants. Lucille insists that her husband can't keep it up and they need to leave and find other people. However, Negan wants to finish his wife's last three treatments and get her strength back up before they leave on his motorcycle to wherever Lucille can dream of. Cuddling, Negan sings "You Are So Beautiful" to Lucille while, in a montage, the two enjoy happier times, Negan trying on his wife's wigs, playing darts and giving Lucille her treatments.

As Lucille opens a can of dog food, Negan is dismayed to hear yet another walker outside and Lucille insists that it's not like killing a person or even an animal and Negan can't keep letting it bother him. Negan states that it doesn't bother him, he is just worried that he will get used to it which Lucille accepts and has him turn the generator off. Negan and Lucille enjoy their dinner and Lucille hands him a bag containing an anniversary gift even though she doesn't know what day it is. To his surprise and pleasure, Negan pulls out his signature leather jacket which Lucille admits to having kept in the crawlspace, angry that she couldn't return it to the store. Negan is ecstatic and Lucille apologizes for making such a big deal out of the credit card bill for the jacket, stating that she wouldn't have made such a big deal out of it if she'd known that the world was going to end. Negan insists that he doesn't deserve anything from her and it should be him apologizing to his wife, not the other way around. "The man that I was... the pain that I put you through.... You know, uh, you know I lay awake at night... just wondering how I got so lucky that you stuck with me." Sitting in her husband's lap, Lucille tells him that she stuck with him because she could always see the man he is right now "even when you weren't" and that "that asshole really had it coming." Lucille convinces her husband to smoke the pot with her.

The next morning, the ice in the freezer has melted in the sunlight coming in through the window and Negan discovers that the remaining chemotherapy drugs have been ruined. Making a plan, Negan reminds Lucille about a family that had come through the area awhile back looking for doctors traveling around in a mobile clinic and is confident that he can find the doctors and get more drugs from them for Lucille. Lucille is unconvinced, reminding Negan that they might not exist and even if he can find them, he has nothing to barter with. Lucille orders him to stop and admits that she has something to tell Negan.

Seven months earlier, Negan plays Gears of War 2 in the basement and trash talks the teenagers that he is playing with, much to Lucille's anger and frustration. Lucille confronts her husband about spending six hundred dollars buying his leather jacket, but he insists that he has two leads on a new job and is just celebrating a little early. Lucille demands to know more, reminding Negan that he can't be a gym teacher anymore with a misdemeanor assault on his record and he refuses to go back to school. When Negan can't respond, she recognizes that he's lying and states that she's returning the leather jacket. Negan yells that he threw out the receipt before returning to his video game. At dinner, Lucille reminds her husband that she has an MRI the next day at 2:15 and needs him to drive her home, but Negan claims that he has a meeting with his probation officer at that time and is convinced that everything will be fine anyways.

The next day, Lucille's MRI reveals that she has cancer and she is unable to reach either Negan or her best friend Janine. Lucille calls Negan's probation officer, only to discover that Negan isn't supposed to see him for two more weeks. Checking her call log and seeing that both Negan and Janine are out of touch at the same time, Lucille realizes that her husband is having an affair with her best friend. When Negan returns home, Lucille is waiting for him with their gun in one hand and cancer brochures in the other. Negan instantly realizes that something is wrong and Lucille reveals her cancer diagnosis to him, forgoing using the gun.

Lucille reveals that she knew about the affair the whole time and an emotional Negan promises that he had ended the affair as soon as she was diagnosed and never saw or even talked to Janine again. Lucille knows that too and Negan asks why his wife is telling him this now. Lucille tells Negan that he made up for it and he can stop and if Negan really wants to help her, he can just stay with her. Negan refuses to give up hope and insists that the chemo can work if they can finish it, but Lucille knows that they went down swinging and that it's time for Negan to go on without her and "do my fighting for me." Lucille begs Negan to stay, but he refuses to give up and wants to see it through. Negan promises to find the doctors and bring back the drugs that she needs and beat the cancer.

With Franklin, Negan explains that that was about six weeks ago and Negan had figured that he would scavenge along the way, but it was worse out there than he'd thought and he ran into some problems with the dead and here he is. Franklin reveals that he found Negan's note and he sent Laura out to the warehouse to see if they have what he needs. Laura enters, having found the drugs that Negan needs. Franklin tells Negan that they have a lot and just want to help. Walking with Franklin and Laura outside, Negan expresses surprise at the kindness that they have shown him without expecting anything in return. Franklin returns Negan's gun while Laura warns him that a gang owns the roads at night and asks if the empty gun is his only weapon. After Negan confirms it, Laura gives him her baseball bat which he is pleased with, commenting that the bat packs a wallop.

Craven interrupts Negan's story as he continues to loosen the screw, frustrated with being given "one pointless story after another." Craven complains that Negan talks too much and, drawing his gun, demands that Negan tell him where he got the drugs or he will kill Negan and Lucille will die thinking that Negan ran out on her. Negan gives in and asks Craven to bring him his map. Negan marks Franklin's location on the map and explains that security is light and that they are dealing with a guy and his daughter, the guys on top of the RV are decoys and while there could be a couple of others, they have no guns. Craven has Negan locked in the storage room while he checks it out. In the morning, Craven releases Negan, having found Franklin and Laura exactly where Negan told him they would be. Negan leaves on his motorcycle, briefly hesitating after hearing Laura struggling with the bikers in the RV now parked outside of the bar.

Returning to his house, Negan finds a message on the basement door reading "please don't leave me like this" and is heartbroken to find a reanimated Lucille who had tied herself to the bed before committing suicide by ingesting a drug overdose and suffocating herself with a plastic bag, having presumably lost hope that Negan would ever return. Raising his bat, Negan is unable to bring himself to put Lucille down and instead rips off the bag, crying as his wife growls at him. Depressed, Negan sits at Lucille's bedside, drinking and that night goes out to his fence where he removes some barbed wire and wraps it around the baseball bat, creating his signature weapon. Pouring gasoline on the basement floor, Negan dons his leather jacket and, looking at his zombified wife, sets his house on fire. As Lucille and his house are engulfed in flames, Negan smashes his way out of the front door with his baseball bat and destroys his mailbox as he drives off on his motorcycle.

Negan returns to the bar where Craven and his men are torturing Franklin for the location of his drug stash. Negan kills one of the bikers with Lucille and, after staring at the bat in shock for a moment, searches the body and finds a gun. As another biker comes around the corner and finds him, Negan shoots and kills the man. Negan engages in a gunfight with the bikers, killing them all single-handedly before smashing in the glass door of the bar. As Craven shoots at Negan, Franklin breaks free and smashes his chair over the man's back and Negan enters and subdues Craven with a blow to the face from Lucille. As Franklin binds Craven, Negan tells him that he thinks he got all of the bikers. Giving Franklin his gun, Negan tells him to go find Laura and make sure that she's ok.

Left alone with Craven, Negan remarks on the irony of their situation being reversed and states that he has a lot of stuff to get off of his chest this time too and "something very terrible is going to happen to you" when Negan stops talking this time. Negan states that he's never killed a man before that night, but he came close once. Negan explains how one night at his and Lucille's favorite bar, they were playing their favorite song "You Are So Beautiful" by Joe Crocker when a man was being completely obnoxious while the song was playing. When the man refused to stop, Negan demanded 50 cents to play the song again for his wife and when the man refused and came at him, Negan saw red and beat the man badly before taking a dollar from his wallet to play the song again twice. However, the man had kids at the school where Negan worked which got him fired. The guy then sued Negan, forcing Lucille to pay his medical bills since Negan didn't have a job anymore. "The point of this is there are consequences to me seeing red. Seeing red was a bad thing then. I was a bad man. Then. But seeing red now? Nobody's suing anybody. Nobody's getting fired. Hell, nobody's keeping score. Now, when I see red, it's just a question of what I am capable of. And well, man, I hate to break it to ya, but I am starting think I am capable of damn near anything." Stating that this is for not killing him, Negan bashes Craven's head in with Lucille.

In the present, Negan continues to study Lucille while a walker approaches him. Negan puts the walker down with two blows to the head, but the blows break off part of the bat's end and crack it down the middle. Heartbroken, Negan falls to his knees in tears. That night, Negan sits in front of the fire in the cabin and says goodbye to his wife, apologizing for everything, particularly all of the pain that he put his wife through and naming "a stupid baseball bat" after her. Once he's finished, Negan wraps the barbed wire in a towel and burns Lucille in the fire, destroying the bat.

The next day, Negan returns to Alexandria where Carol, Maggie and Daryl are shocked to see him again. Carol promises that if they find any food at an old Army base that Daryl found she will bring some by his cabin, but Negan intends to move back into Alexandria permanently and wants Carol's help requisitioning a cart to bring back his stuff. Carol promises to get Gabriel to approve it, but warns Negan that if he stays, Maggie will kill him and Carol didn't want his death on his conscience and now it's not. Negan acknowledges that its "fair enough" and smirks at a glaring Maggie as he walks back into Alexandria.

Other Cast

Co-Stars

Uncredited

Deaths

Trivia

  • First (and last) appearance of Craven. (Flashback)
  • First (and last) appearance of Franklin. (Flashback, Unknown)
  • First (and last) appearance of Lucille Smith. (Flashback)
  • First (and last) appearance of Janine. (Voice Only; Flashback, Unknown)
  • First (and last) appearance of Valak's Vipers. (Flashback)
  • Last appearance of Rick Grimes. (Flashback)
  • Last appearance of Michonne Hawthorne. (Flashback)
  • Last appearance of Laura. (Flashback)
  • Last appearance of Beta. (Flashback/Photograph)
  • Negan and Lucille's last name is revealed as Smith as seen on their mailbox prior to Negan smashing it with a bat. The last name was also used when listing Lucille in the In Memoriam segment for this episode's Talking Dead.
    • In addition, he was a gym teacher before the outbreak but got fired for assaulting the father of some of his students.
  • The time jumps in this episode place the start of the apocalypse, in 2010, as roughly twelve years and eight months prior to the present timeline, meaning the show currently takes place in roughly early 2022.
    • Lucille's phone history shows the apocalypse began in mid-November. This is an error as the date, November 12, 2020, was during the production of the episode. Based on previous established timelines, the apocalypse began in August 2010.
  • In a flashback, Negan is playing Gears of War 2 before the outbreak.
    • Negan and Lucille's storyline is also parallel to one of the major storylines in Gears of War 2, in which soldier Dominic Santiago tries to find his missing wife, Maria Santiago. After locating her in a labor camp, he finds her tortured and lobotomized by the Locust Horde, and very much in a zombie state like Lucille. Dominic, in his heartbreak, euthanizes Maria - similar to Negan putting down Lucille.
  • Negan's leather jacket was bought by him prior to the outbreak for six hundred dollars. After taking it away, Lucille gave it back to him as an anniversary gift.
  • The book Negan was reading to Lucille was Pride and Prejudice.
  • Negan's bat Lucille originally belonged to Laura who gave it to him after seeing that Negan was only armed with an empty pistol. Negan cut the barbed wire off of the fence outside of his house and added it after Lucille's death.
  • Negan recovers Lucille from where it was buried under the tree Rick slit his throat at. After the bat breaks putting down a walker, Negan burns it.
  • On Talking Dead for this episode, Jeffrey Dean Morgan reveals that he never saw his wife in her walker makeup until they shot the scene. In addition, Hilarie confirms that she did the stunt where Lucille had the bag over her head herself.
    • Additionally, according to Hilarie Burton Morgan on Talking Dead, she believed that Lucille killed herself the day Negan left to find medicine.
  • When the doctor tells Lucille she has cancer, the scene play out similar to Breaking Bad, when the patient listening to the doctor zones out and the low pitch sound plays at the same.
  • This episode was made available for streaming to subscribers of AMC Premiere on April 1, 2021.
  • This is the twelfth episode to share the same title of a Comic Series volume, after "Days Gone Bye", "Made to Suffer", "This Sorrowful Life", "Too Far Gone", "No Way Out", "A New Beginning", "What Comes After", "The Calm Before", "Lines We Cross", "What We Become" and "A Certain Doom".
    • This episode, along with "Days Gone Bye", "No Way Out", "A New Beginning" and "A Certain Doom" are the only episodes to be directly adapted from the respective comic volumes of the same name. The other seven used the titles for episodes that are not directly related to the source material from that volume.
  • This episode marks the second time that the name of a character is included in the episode's title, after "The King, the Widow, and Rick".
  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Hilarie Burton Morgan are the third real life couple to portray a couple in the TV Series, in this case Negan and Lucille. The first being Curtis Jackson and Helen Jackson, and the second being Robert Patrick and Barbara Hooper.
  • Lucille is seen wearing a Half Moon T-shirt.
  • The voice heard on the car radio is writer David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick.
    • The dialogue on the radio was taken directly from Night of the Living Dead as an homage to the film and George A. Romero.
  • On Talking Dead, Jeffrey Dean Morgan revealed that the smile he gave Maggie at the end of the episode was unscripted and the producers decided to go along with it.
  • "You Are So Beautiful" by Joe Cocker is Negan and Lucille's favorite song. It is both sung by Negan during the episode and plays over the scene where Negan finds Lucille reanimated.
  • Originally, Dwight was meant to appear instead of Laura, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic affecting the film schedule for both The Walking Dead and Fear The Walking Dead, it was not possible to bring Austin Amelio in for the episode, and thus Laura was used instead.[2]
  • "You Are So Beautiful" by Joe Cocker and "Back in Black" by AC/DC both play during the episode, the latter when Lucille walks in on Negan playing Gears of War 2 before the world ends.

Comic Parallels

  • Negan's backstory is adapted from Here's Negan.
  • Negan being banished is adapted from Issue 169.
  • Negan living alone in a cabin is adapted from Issue 174.
  • Lucille breaking is adapted from Issue 159.
  • Negan apologizing to his late wife is adapted from Issue 174.

Goofs/Errors

  • When Negan plays Gears of War 2, he's supposedly playing multiplayer. However, he's actually playing the first chapter of the second act of the regular campaign game.

References

Episodes of The Walking Dead
Season 1 "Days Gone Bye" • "Guts" • "Tell It to the Frogs" • "Vatos" • "Wildfire" • "TS-19"
Season 2 "What Lies Ahead" • "Bloodletting" • "Save the Last One" • "Cherokee Rose" • "Chupacabra" • "Secrets" • "Pretty Much Dead Already" • "Nebraska" • "Triggerfinger" • "18 Miles Out" • "Judge, Jury, Executioner" • "Better Angels" • "Beside the Dying Fire"
Season 3 "Seed" • "Sick" • "Walk With Me" • "Killer Within" • "Say the Word" • "Hounded" • "When the Dead Come Knocking" • "Made to Suffer" • "The Suicide King" • "Home" • "I Ain't a Judas" • "Clear" • "Arrow on the Doorpost" • "Prey" • "This Sorrowful Life" • "Welcome to the Tombs"
Season 4 "30 Days Without An Accident" • "Infected" • "Isolation" • "Indifference" • "Internment" • "Live Bait" • "Dead Weight" • "Too Far Gone" • "After" • "Inmates" • "Claimed" • "Still" • "Alone" • "The Grove" • "Us" • "A"
Season 5 "No Sanctuary" • "Strangers" • "Four Walls and a Roof" • "Slabtown" • "Self Help" • "Consumed" • "Crossed" • "Coda" • "What Happened and What's Going On" • "Them" • "The Distance" • "Remember" • "Forget" • "Spend" • "Try" • "Conquer"
Season 6 "First Time Again" • "JSS" • "Thank You" • "Here's Not Here" • "Now" • "Always Accountable" • "Heads Up" • "Start to Finish" • "No Way Out" • "The Next World" • "Knots Untie" • "Not Tomorrow Yet" • "The Same Boat" • "Twice as Far" • "East" • "Last Day on Earth"
Season 7 "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be" • "The Well" • "The Cell" • "Service" • "Go Getters" • "Swear" • "Sing Me a Song" • "Hearts Still Beating" • "Rock in the Road" • "New Best Friends" • "Hostiles and Calamities" • "Say Yes" • "Bury Me Here" • "The Other Side" • "Something They Need" • "The First Day of the Rest of Your Life"
Season 8 "Mercy" • "The Damned" • "Monsters" • "Some Guy" • "The Big Scary U" • "The King, the Widow, and Rick" • "Time for After" • "How It's Gotta Be" • "Honor" • "The Lost and the Plunderers" • "Dead or Alive Or" • "The Key" • "Do Not Send Us Astray" • "Still Gotta Mean Something" • "Worth" • "Wrath"
Season 9 "A New Beginning" • "The Bridge" • "Warning Signs" • "The Obliged" • "What Comes After" • "Who Are You Now?" • "Stradivarius" • "Evolution" • "Adaptation" • "Omega" • "Bounty" • "Guardians" • "Chokepoint" • "Scars" • "The Calm Before" • "The Storm"
Season 10 "Lines We Cross" • "We Are the End of the World" • "Ghosts" • "Silence the Whisperers" • "What It Always Is" • "Bonds" • "Open Your Eyes" • "The World Before" • "Squeeze" • "Stalker" • "Morning Star" • "Walk With Us" • "What We Become" • "Look at the Flowers" • "The Tower" • "A Certain Doom" • "Home Sweet Home" • "Find Me" • "One More" • "Splinter" • "Diverged" • "Here's Negan"
Season 11 "For Blood"
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