Season 7 of AMC's The Walking Dead, which consists of sixteen episodes, aired between October 23, 2016 and April 2, 2017, at 9/8c after being renewed on October 30, 2015. Scott Gimple continued as showrunner for the fourth consecutive season.
Rick is in shock as he has seen Abraham and Glenn brutally beaten to death at the hands of Negan, the charismatic and psychotic leader of the Saviors. Believing he still hasn't gotten through to Rick yet, he takes him for a drive in the RV. In a heavy fog, Negan forces Rick to go get “his” axe. While laying on top of the RV, Rick somberly thinks about his group as Negan taunts him. After retrieving the axe from the herd, they drive back to the line where Rick is given the choice of chopping off his son's arm or watching his group get shot to death. Breaking down, Rick begs for Negan to stop and only kill him but is refused. Negan begins counting down and just before he cuts off Carl's arm, Negan stops him. "You answer to me. You provide for me" he says as Rick agrees, completely broken. Daryl is taken in a van as they leave.
As the group reels from the experience, Sasha volunteers to take Maggie to the Hilltop while the rest return to Alexandria.
An injured Carol awakens with Morgan at her side and he tells her what happened and where they are. The community is called The Kingdom and is led by "King" Ezekiel. Carol is stunned by the way things are run and concludes it's a fantasy and needs to leave. She plays along in order to keep people fooled she's sweet while planning to escape with supplies. Before she can leave, Ezekiel catches her and they both drop their facades. Ezekiel encourages her to embrace life and suggests a plan that would allow her to simultaneously "go and not go." She takes residence in a cottage outside the Kingdom.
Meanwhile, Morgan begins to bond with Benjamin, a young resident who is training to be a soldier. He also discovers that The Kingdom is being extorted by the Saviors and is kept secret from the community.
At the Savior compound, Daryl is held in a cell eating dog food and subjected to psychological torture through music. Dwight is his warden who gives him the options of being a soldier with privileges like him, remain the way he is now, or be chained to the fence as a Walker. He tries to escape despite a warning from Sherry but is caught, beaten, and locked up again by Negan's men who refer to themselves as "Negan." He sobs wildly after seeing a photo of Glenn's mutilated body. Later. Negan shows him an efficiency apartment and uses Dwight as an example of how he broke the rules and was punished but became one of his top men after "seeing the light." He says that Daryl can be a top man if answers what his name is. Daryl responses with his own name instead of "Negan" and is returned to the cell.
Negan and his crew arrive early for their offering. Rick reluctantly lets them in despite the confusion of the residents. They take furniture, medical supplies, miscellaneous items and even their guns after Carl tries to shoot a Savior. Negan agrees to let them keep the food for now. All but one gun is confiscated and Olivia, the inventory keeper, is threatened with death unless the missing gun is found. It is at Spencer's home who holds a grudge on Rick. After the Savior's leave, He confides in Michonne his reasoning for living under the Saviors, to keep Carl and Judith safe.
Rosita confiscates a gun off a dead Savior and asks Eugene to make her a bullet.
As Maggie is being treated by Dr. Harlan Carson, Gregory is angry that her group not only failed to kill The Saviors but potentially made things worse. That night, fires are blazing and music blares from a car and Maggie and Sasha rally the Hilltop to help put a stop to it. The next day, Simon and a group of Saviors confess to the walker invasion and lets Gregory know he is in charge of the sector now due to the massacre at the Satellite outpost. Attempting to turn Maggie and Sasha over to them, Gregory leads them to the closet they are hiding in only to find scotch instead. Simon sees this as a gesture of good will and takes it. The girls and Jesus confront Gregory where they cement their stay at the Hilltop whether he likes it or not.
Carl and Enid share their views on the situation. Carl is vengeful towards The Saviors for killing Glenn and Abraham while Enid thinks it's not a good idea to go after Negan alone. Enid goes to the Hilltop to help Maggie, and Carl follows Jesus to the Sanctuary.
Tara and Heath get separated during their supply run and the former is found by Cyndie who spares her despite her people's policy on “kill on sight.” Tara follows her to the Oceanside community consisting of women and young children. She is captured and nearly shot but is spared only because she spared one of their own. She offers to leave their settlement, but Natania, the leader, worries that she knows too much. At dinner, Tara talks about her group and briefly brings up Saviors. It appears they let her go, but Tara is shot at and learns Oceanside was extorted by The Saviors and they killed their men after they fought back and lost. They fled and never looked back. Cyndie helps her escape only to have her swear never to tell anyone about her community.
Tara reaches Alexandria where she learns of Denise's death and keeps her promise to Cyndie.
Carl separates from Jesus to go straight to the Sanctuary where he fails to kill Negan head on. Impressed by his ingenuity, Negan shows him around the Sanctuary. Carl refuses but complies after Negan threatens to chop off Daryl's arm. Carl watches him give a speech, is introduced to Negan's wives, and watches a public humiliation of a soldier who slept with one of the wives. In his apartment; he orders Carl to sit across from him and remove his hat and eye bandage. Humiliated, Carl starts crying. Negan apologizes for hurting his feelings. Eventually, Carl regains his courage and taunts Negan for being unable to kill him, Rick, or Daryl. Negan takes him back to Alexandria where he tours Rick's home and meets Judith.
Daryl hears footsteps outside his cell. Someone slips a note under the door. "Go now," is written on the front, and a key is taped to the back.
Meanwhile, Rosita gets her bullet from Eugene after berating him over his way of survival which leaves friction between them, and Spencer finds goods on a supply run while also fuming some more over Rick’s choices.
As Daryl makes his escape thanks to a key given to him under the door, he gets new clothes and kills a guard while stealing his bike back. Jesus finds him and they head for the Hilltop.
As Negan continues his way through the community, he is approached by Spencer who wants him to kill Rick and make him the leader of the community. Negan, however, publicly chastises him for conspiring against Rick as well as not attempting to kill Rick himself and slices his stomach, spilling his guts all over the street. Rosita shoots him but the bullet hits Lucille, his bat, instead. Rosita defiantly refuses to say who made the bullet which leads to Olivia's death. Eugene confesses to making the bullet and is taken by the Saviors. Rick arrives at the scene and, along with words from Michonne, regains his will to fight and he meets Maggie and Daryl at the Hilltop to prepare for battle.
Meanwhile, Richard, a soldier in the Kingdom's army, fails to convince Carol and Morgan to help him get Ezekiel to fight against the Saviors as Carol wants to be left alone and Morgan thinks there’s a peaceful way to cope.
Gabriel packs a car with supplies to hide from the Saviors only to be kidnapped by a dark figure. Meanwhile, Rick, Maggie, Sasha, Carl, Michonne, Tara, Rosita, Daryl and Jesus meet with Gregory in his office at the Hilltop. He refuses to help them in the fight against the Saviors. Jesus then takes them to The Kingdom where they attempt to convince Ezekiel to help in the fight. Morgan tells the group that Carol's OK but keeps a promise to not say where she is. The next day, Ezekiel shows sympathy for Rick's cause by offering Daryl asylum despite refusing to fight. After destroying a trap made by The Saviors, they discover Gabriel's missing. They track him to a junk heap where they encounter another group.
Daryl clashes with the passive approach The Kingdom has taken towards the conflict with The Saviors. When he finds similar interests with Richard, Daryl is disturbed by his willingness to put lives on the line in order to stop the thugs when he nearly has Carol caught in their crossfire. He manages to talk to Carol and after seeing how affected Carol is from the killing, Daryl lies about Glenn and Abraham's deaths, saying they survived to prevent her from seeking revenge. He later, returns to the Hilltop
Meanwhile, Rick's group is surrounded by The Scavengers who have Gabriel hostage. Rick attempts to convince them to help fight against the Saviors. The leader, Jadis, tests him by having him go up against a Walker with spike protruding out of it. Rick wins the fight and Jadis is convinced that Rick is serious about the fight. They agree to help as long as they get guns, one-third of the Saviors' supplies and a portion of the goods that they stole from the Alexandria pantry in return.
As Dwight is being punished for letting Daryl escape, Eugene is brought to The Sanctuary where, to his surprise, he is treated as a guest. He is given a private apartment and any food he wants. At the fence, Eugene, under intimidation, comes up with an idea on how to keep the Walkers from falling off the fence with liquid metal that hardens and make them indestructible. He is later visited by some of Negan's wives as a reward who ask him to make poison pills for them which he later deduces are for Negan. He makes them but he refuses to give them the pills. Eugene accepts his new role in The Saviors knowing that it means his old friends would be his enemies.
Dwight figures that Sherry let Daryl out and fled. He frames Dr. Emmett Carson for the incident after he makes a comment about his wife and Negan forces him to confess before throwing him in the furnace.
As Rick and Michonne scavenge for guns to fulfill the agreement with Jadis, they both continue to explore their relationship and Michonne realizes how fragile she becomes when she thinks Rick had been killed by Walkers. She can’t bare to lose him too, but Rick reassures her she won't. They deliver the supplies and guns they find to Jadis asks for more guns. Rick hold 20 of them until they meet her demand.
Rosita, having become impatient over the inaction of the group, takes her anger out on her friends and after failing to find guns on her own, she decides to go to the Hilltop to ask for Sasha’s help in killing Negan knowing they both could die as a result. Sasha agrees a long as she pulls the trigger.
While going on a normal trade off with The Saviors, Gavin, the leader, complains that there are not enough cantaloupes despite Ezekiel’s claims they met the amount, not knowing why one is missing. As a fight escalates, Richard calms the situation but Gavin wants Richard to be shot dead as an example of not meeting expectations. However, the shooter, Jared, shoots Benjamin in the leg where he bleeds out in Carol’s home. Jared is chastised by Gavin for the event. As Morgan’s trauma resurfaces from the event, he realizes Richard had taken the cantaloupe in order make Ezekiel see The Saviors true colors and Richard would die for The Kingdom. The next day, at the drop-off of the cantaloupe, Morgan kills Richard before revealing his fault. This stabilizes the trade relations, but Morgan is ready to kill again. He reveals to Carol what really happened to Glenn and Abraham and takes up residence in her cottage while she moves into The Kingdom.
Rosita and Sasha make their way to The Sanctuary, they share their experiences which Abraham and after seeing Eugene at the compound, they decide to rescue on top of their assassination attempt. That night, Rosita and Sasha cut through the fence and urge Eugene to come with them and escape but refuses. He tells them to go away and heads back inside. At Sasha’s suggestion, Rosita keeps watch as Sasha slips through the fence. She uses a lock to close the opening behind her, locking Rosita out. Sasha tells Rosita that Alexandria still needs her then runs inside. Rosita sobs in frustration and flees. She stops and notices a dark figure watching her.
When The Saviors arrive for Dr. Harlan Carson, Maggie and Daryl hide in order to not be discovered. Gregory reluctantly gives them the doctor while Simon gives Gregory a crate of aspirin as compensation and a note of directions to a meet spot in case there are problems.
After Tara tells Rick about the arsenal at Oceanside, they lead a group of Alexandrians to the distant community. Tara sneaks in and holds Natania and Cyndie at gunpoint begging them to talk to Rick. Feigning injury, Natania now holds Tara hostage only to find the gun was unloaded. Despite Cyndie and other Oceanside members desire to fight and a combined defense against invading Walkers, Natania adamantly refuse to let her people join the fight but allows them to take their guns. Rick’s group returns to Alexandria late at night. Rosita opens the gate for them and reveals Dwight in a cell.
At the Sanctuary, Sasha is in a cell and is saved by Negan from an attempted rape. The dead rapist lies on the floor as he offers Sasha to join the Saviors and presents his proposition use the knife to kill the dead Savior or let it reanimate and kill her. Negan returns to Sasha’s cell and sees she killed the Walker. Negan retrieves the knife and says that Sasha needs to further prove her loyalty by enlisting her help in stopping Rick. Eugene stops by the cell and Sasha begs him to help her kill herself with a knife or gun. He brings her the poison pills much to her disappointment but accepts her eventual fate.
In a dark, enclosed coffin, Sasha is taken to Alexandria as a hostage to be bargained with. While listening to music, she takes Eugene’s pills and peacefully dies on the way there.
Dwight offers to help take Negan down as an inside man and reveals Negan is coming to Alexandria. With the Scavengers, Rick and his group prepare for The Saviors’ arrival. Despite Eugene warning them to stop, Rick gives the OK to blow the bombs only to find that Jadis' people disarmed them and joined the Saviors. Negan arrives and offers to let her live if Rick turns over all their guns – and Daryl. Even then, Negan will still execute one Alexandrian of Rick’s choosing. Rick insists on seeing Sasha. Negan opens the casket door. Sasha, now a walker, lunges at him. Gunfire erupts in the confusion but Rick is once more on his knees though more determined to kill Negan no matter what the man throws at him. As Negan prepares to strike Carl, The Kingdom group and Hilltop fighters arrive. Battle ensues, The Scavengers and Saviors retreat as both sides prepare for war.
|Title||Writer(s)||Air Dates||U.S. Viewers|
|1.||"The Day Will Come When You Won't Be"||Scott Gimple||October 23, 2016 (US)|
October 24, 2016 (UK)
|2.||"The Well"||Matt Negrete||October 30, 2016 (US)|
October 31, 2016 (UK)
|3.||"The Cell"||Angela Kang||November 6, 2016 (US)|
November 7, 2016 (UK)
|4.||"Service"||Corey Reed||November 13, 2016 (US)|
November 14, 2016 (UK)
|5.||"Go Getters"||Channing Powell||November 20, 2016 (US)|
November 21, 2016 (UK)
|6.||"Swear"||David Leslie Johnson||November 27, 2016 (US)|
November 28, 2016 (UK)
|7.||"Sing Me a Song"||Angela Kang|
|December 4, 2016 (US)|
December 5, 2016 (UK)
|8.||"Hearts Still Beating"||Matt Negrete|
|December 11, 2016 (US)|
December 12, 2016 (UK)
|9.||"Rock in the Road"||Angela Kang||February 12, 2017 (US)|
February 13, 2017 (UK)
|10.||"New Best Friends"||Channing Powell||February 19, 2017 (US)|
February 20, 2017 (UK)
|11.||"Hostiles and Calamities"||David Leslie Johnson||February 26, 2017 (US)|
February 27, 2017 (UK)
|12.||"Say Yes"||Matt Negrete||March 5, 2017 (US)|
March 6, 2017 (UK)
|13.||"Bury Me Here"||Scott Gimple||March 12, 2017 (US)|
March 13, 2017 (UK)
|14.||"The Other Side"||Angela Kang||March 19, 2017 (US)|
March 20, 2017 (UK)
|15.||"Something They Need"||Corey Reed||March 26, 2017 (US)|
March 27, 2017 (UK)
|16.||"The First Day of the Rest of Your Life"||Scott Gimple|
|April 2, 2017 (US)|
April 3, 2017 (UK)
- Abraham Ford (Confirmed Fate)
- Glenn Rhee
- Benjamin's Father (Confirmed Fate)
- Maria (Confirmed Fate)
- Gordon (Alive)
- Neil (Zombified)
- Cyndie's Mother (Confirmed Fate)
- Cyndie's Brother (Confirmed Fate)
- Spencer Monroe (Alive and Zombified)
- Winslow (Alive, Confirmed Fate)
- Emmett Carson
- Katy (Confirmed Fate)
- Richard's Wife (Confirmed Fate)
- David (Alive and Zombified)
- Sasha Williams (Alive and Zombified)
- 1 Horse from The Kingdom
- 8 Pigs from The Kingdom
- 7 unnamed Kingdom survivors (Confirmed Fate)
- Several female Oceanside residents (Confirmed Fate)
- All male Oceanside residents aged 10 and above (Confirmed Fate)
- 2 Deer
- At least 6 unnamed Saviors
- At least 20 unnamed Scavengers
- At least 2 unnamed Alexandria residents
- This season is mainly based on the second half of "Volume 17: Something To Fear", "Volume 18: What Comes After", "Volume 19: March To War" and parts of "Volume 20: All Out War - Part One" from the Comic Series.
- Season 7 has a total of 12 extended episodes, it is the season with the second-most number of extended episodes. The season with the most extended episodes is the succeeding season, Season 8.
- This season has the highest number of main cast members in the opening credits, exceeding the usual ten regulars, with 11 in "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be" and 12 from "The Well" onwards.
- Below are the changes made to the main cast in this season.
- Although they have been regulars since season 5, Alanna Masterson (Tara), Josh McDermitt (Eugene) and Christian Serratos (Rosita) were added to the opening credits after being listed under "also starring" in previous seasons.
- Seth Gilliam (Fr. Gabriel), Ross Marquand (Aaron) and Austin Nichols (Spencer) are still listed under "Also Starring" despite being regulars in previous seasons.
- Austin Nichols is removed from the credits following Spencer's death in "Hearts Still Beating".
- Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Negan), Austin Amelio (Dwight), Tom Payne (Jesus), and Xander Berkeley (Gregory) have all been upgraded from recurring or guest starring to main cast members.
- Jeffrey Dean Morgan was added to the opening credits, while Austin Amelio, Xander Berkeley and Tom Payne are listed under "also starring".
- Khary Payton was cast as Ezekiel and was initially reported to be a series regular for Season 7, although his appearances are listed as a guest star as he is not credited in the episodes he doesn't appear in.
- Following the deaths of Abraham and Glenn in "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be", Michael Cudlitz and Steven Yeun are removed from the opening sequence in succeeding episodes.
- This is the first season to not have Rick in a released poster, prior to the season's release.
- This season has twelve extended episodes, with the other four episodes being normal length.
- This is the second consecutive season to have no episodes written by Robert Kirkman.
- This is the first season where Rick is not in more or at least the same amount of episodes as everyone else. Instead, Rosita has the most appearances this season with 11 episodes to Rick's 10.
- This season contained the least number of episode featuring a live character being killed by walkers - a total of one.
- This is also the first season in which no character is killed by a unnamed walker.
- This season is tied with Season 5 with killing off the most main cast characters, with four regulars killed off: Abraham Ford, Glenn Rhee, Spencer Monroe and Sasha Williams.
- This season featured several episodes containing event sequences taking place out of the story's chronological order that aired before or after one another; therefore a few of these episodes can be viewed out of their original airing order without affecting the viewers knowledge of the show's plot to a point. The Well and The Cell are two of such of these examples; as it was reported that the airing order of these episodes was switched at the last minute anyway.