Though The Walking Dead seems to be straying from its source material with major character deaths, the AMC show still managed to slip several moments straight from its source material into Episode 8x11.
Spoilers for The Walking Dead's Dead or Alive Or episode follow!
Episode 8x11 is titled, "Dead or Alive Or." The official synopsis for Dead or Alive Or reads, "Daryl finds himself in bad company as his group heads to the Hilltop; Gabriel's faith gets tested." While Daryl and Gabriel's journey were drastically different from the stories in the comics, it was Negan who most closely represent Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard's original work.
Check out some of the comparison in the side by side photos created by The Walking Dead comic publisher Skybound below!
In the wake of Negan's attack on Alexandria, the survivors head over to the Hilltop to prepare for the rest of the war. The group which arrived at Maggie's community in Episode 8x11 was far thinner than that of the comics but their arrival came, nonetheless.
The biggest difference here, however, is the sombre mood which the characters were carrying. Carl's death hindered their excitement to be reunited as the devastating news was delivered to Maggie, Carol, Enid and others upon arrival. Such a moment never occurred in The Walking Dead comics.
Still, with the group all together at the Hilltop, the stage is set for a major battle to take place and conclude the war, once and for all.
Fans of The Walking Dead comic saw this one coming for a while.
After Eugene stalled his bullet manufacturing, possibly in an effort to save his Alexandria buddies, Negan spawned the idea of covering his weapons in walker muck. He believes now that any strike from a bullet, knife, or other Savior weapon will be enough to ensure death of the victim of the blow.
From here on out, all of the Saviors will use the walkers chained to the fences to cover their weapons and ammo before heading out to war.
The moment was pulled straight from the pages of The Walking Dead issue #122.
Negan's plan with the guts wasn't the only aspect of Episode 8x11's final scene which mirrored the comics. His entire speech reflected Robert Kirkman's original dialogue in the source material, though he gets away with some more colorful words on the pages than on television.
While some of the dialogue is changed when adapted to television, there are key words, phrases, and moments which are identically transformed to the AMC series' version of the walker apocalypse.
In this case, Negan's language was altered and shortened to save time and FCC fines, but the message and some of the words remained.
In the end, Negan believes this will be the tool which helps him march to victory.
In The Walking Dead comics, it ultimately leads to his downfall. He believes this method to be effective in killing Rick but ultimately is fooled when Dwight betrays him and shoots him with a clean arrow rather than a mucked up arrow which could have infected Rick.
It will be interesting to see if the rule applies to the AMC series, seeing as Rick had previously been cut by a walker-mucked machete in Season Six and never became infected by the walker virus and was able to keep his hand.