The Walking Dead Director Reveals Big Negan "Do-Over"

Sunday night's episode of The Walking Dead brought the characters into a fiery battle outside of the Hilltop. Daryl lead the charge as the Whisperers came knocking on their door but he originally wanted to find help elsewhere. Daryl tried to get additional support from the Oceanside community but the road to the other group was blocked by a downed tree, bringing back vibes on the Season 6 finale which lead the group straight to Negan. For Daryl, he immediately realized the show's former villain had escaped his Alexandria prison to join the Whisperers and had helped them block this road as his Saviors group did years. Now, he wants to do things differently.

"Yes, it's intentional," Michael Starazemis, who directed Sunday's episode, told Insider. "We know that that's fresh in Daryl's mind. He's playing through it." The last time Daryl was with a group that ran into trees blocking the road, Glenn and Abraham were killed when they were trapped by the Saviors. Daryl reflected on this moment later, ultimately preparing for battle similarly to how Rick Grimes did, once upon a time.

The realization immediately gave Daryl a new perspective and boosted his urge to get his army together. "When he mentions, 'It's Negan,' I think he's choosing to fight to the finish. They all are," said Satrazemis. "Some of the most beautiful moments of the episode are all leading up to that fifth act, with everybody saying goodbye, and trying to resolve a lot of their past complications."

Satrazemis, who directs a handful of episodes on both The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead has nothing but praise for how showrunner Angela Kang has shaped the tenth season of the AMC zombie series. Where previous seasons may have used such a battle to end or begin its batch of episodes, the current pattern is to drop them right where they fit. "I love how Angela has designed this season," Satrazemis said. "There's so many internal complications. It's neat. All of the characters, and I think they all build to this point, and those middle three acts are really everybody realizing that they need to do this now. They need to try to quickly resolve everything. They're going to fight to the finish. And I think it became very poetic and beautiful because of it."

Satrazemis did up the scale of the episode on a production level, as well. He brought out impressive slow motion sequences and fiery beats for a truly cinematic entry to the saga. "It feels like a season ender," said Satrazemis of the action that happens on "Morning Star." The episode was so big, and it kind of leaves you in a spot. It felt like it could have been a season ender."


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The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9pm ET on AMC.