‘The Walking Dead’s Steven Yeun was Excited for Glenn’s Death

Former The Walking Dead star Steven Yeun says he was "really excited" to bring Glenn Rhee's comic book death to life when killed off by baseball bat in the zombie drama's Season Seven premiere.

"I had known for some time about that death, and if I'm gonna be honest with you, I was like really excited for that day. I was excited to get my skull bashed in," Yeun told W Magazine.

"Doesn't everybody fantasize about what it would be like to die cool? Just goes to show who I am right now."

Unlike most Walking Dead characters, who typically don't receive the same death as their black-and-white counterparts in creator Robert Kirkman's comic books, Glenn was gruesomely killed as he was in the book's milestone 100th issue: bludgeoned by the barbwire-wrapped baseball bat Lucille, wielded by then newcomer villain Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan).

Some criticized Glenn's final episode as being excessively brutal and violent, including the Parents Television Council, who complained the graphic back-to-back executions of Abraham (Michael Cudlitz) and Glenn belonged to "one of the most graphically violent shows we've ever seen on television."

Yeun later defended the death at Walker Stalker Con Nashville in 2017, saying it was both true to the source material and a necessary shocker needed to propel the rest of the story, which saw a traumatized Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and company forced to work in servitude to Negan and his Saviors.

"I actually found out I was going to die about wo years before it happened. It was like, not talked about. It was unsaid but it was understood that we were gonna do what we were supposed to do," Yeun said.

"I advocated for that, too, because it could've been just me rationalizing it, what was inevitable, but at the same time, you look at that journey and you realize that is marked in such a dramatic way in the comic that to change it, I think is a cheat."

"Maybe we did take it too far," he added. "It was pretty bad but we did it and people remember it, so it's cool."

Yeun most recently headlined South Korean psychological drama Burning and will next feature on the rebooted Twilight Zone television series from executive producer Jordan Peele.

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The star will reportedly reteam with Kirkman for adult animated superhero series Invincible, to debut on Amazon, alongside voice actors Khary Payton, Zazie Beetz, Gillian Jacobs and Zachary Quinto.

The Walking Dead Season Nine resumes with new episodes Sunday, February 10 on AMC.