The Walking Dead showrunner Angela Kang says there won't be an "easy road" for Maggie (Lauren Cohan) or Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) when they're next brought together in Season 11, where the returning Cohan will be reinstated as a series regular after some time away. Cohan temporarily exited the zombie drama in its ninth season, but not before Maggie could confront Negan over the vicious murder of husband Glenn (Steven Yeun). Maggie conspired with Daryl (Norman Reedus) to execute Negan for his crimes — going against the unilateral decision made by Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) to spare Negan and jail him for life — but ultimately allowed her husband's killer to live and rot away in prison.
Some eight years later, Negan is a free man: the former Savior leader was secretly set loose by Carol (Melissa McBride), who arranged for Negan to infiltrate the Whisperers and murder leader Alpha (Samantha Morton) to avenge murdered son Henry (Matt Lintz). Negan held up his end of the bargain — even delivering Alpha's decapitated to a satisfied Carol — but she reneged on her end of the deal just before Whisperer Beta (Ryan Hurst) launched a full-scale assault against the Alexandrians.
If Negan survives Beta's attack on the hospital hideout where he's held up with ex-Whisperer Lydia (Cassady McClincy) and other survivors, he'll have to face a Maggie who comes to find out he had a hand in the attack that left her home — the frequently targeted Hilltop colony — in ashes.
"Look, Negan killed Maggie's husband, and burnt down her house, so it's just not going to be an easy road, I think, for either of them," Kang said Friday during the Comic-Con@Home virtual Walking Dead panel. "And Negan's been on this whole other journey while she's been gone, but it's sort of like Maggie is coming in and she hasn't seen any of that."
While undercover within the Whisperers, Negan was forced to participate in Alpha's fiery attack that burned down Hilltop but he's since convinced Daryl he was acting in the group's best interests. Negan was able to do so after saving Daryl from attacking Whisperers, the latest good-guy move made by a Negan who stuck his neck out for Aaron (Ross Marquand) and Judith Grimes (Cailey Fleming).
"What [Maggie] knows is she comes back and Hilltop is destroyed, and the guy that she thought she left to rot in prison is out walking around with everybody else," Kang said. "These two have to figure out how to occupy the same space. So it will hopefully be really fun."
To accommodate "these two amazing actors," Kang added, "we'll try to write to their amazing abilities and we'll see what happens."
The Walking Dead Season 10 finale premieres Sunday, October 4 on AMC. For all things TWD, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.