Even if one didn’t watch ‘The Walking Dead’, there was no way to avoid the Glenn firestorm of the past month. In the third episode of Season Six, beloved good guy Glenn Rhee played by Steven Yeun was knocked off a fence into a massive Walker herd after his guilt-wracked companion Nicholas committed suicide. Glenn was last glimpsed, screaming in agony as Walkers seemingly ripped him asunder and devoured his entrails. But is that REALLY what happened, fans wondered. Glenn wasn’t depicted in the In Memorium highlight reel on ‘Talking Dead’. This gave fans a glimmer of hope as they tuned in on pins and needles to see if he’d somehow survived and if so how. But answers did not come immediately. Not for weeks and weeks, as it turns out.
That gave viewers on both sides of the debate time to concoct theories and firmly dig in their heels as to whether Glenn or not Glenn should even be allowed to live. (GUILTY! Read my thoughts here.)
Showrunner Scott M. Gimple certainly doesn’t live in a bubble and was inundated with every response under the sun.
As he says:
“I wasn’t entirely surprised. It was exciting to see the audience so keyed into it that it really became a big thing to people. The responses I got direct from fans seemed to be all very positive. But from a journalistic aspect, there was a disconnect … the two reactions I was getting were very different.”
He is referencing the fact that many journalists (like me) felt that allowing Glenn to live would betray the show’s “No one is safe” theme. Since the show began, fan favorite characters have been killed off regularly. Some were from the comic; some weren’t. Some dies the same way they did in the comics; some didn’t. But still, they died. No one was safe, right? That was the rule, right?
Gimple is quick to point to previous instances on the show where characters were seemingly killed off, or left for dead, only to turn out to be alive later.
This is what he said:
“It’s hard for me to answer that question directly in as much as I don’t agree with the credibility thing. That’s a very interesting way to look at it — that people are telling the audience how to watch the show and what to believe. We’ve had instances of people in a very emotional state — Tyreese jumping into the middle of a large herd and fighting his way out; a man cut off his own hand and fights his way through a department store full of walkers. These things are part of the world. Glenn had the bad luck of being knocked off that dumpster by Nicholas, ending his own life but [Glenn] had the good luck of Nicholas landing on him. There’s a lot of very specific facts about it that I think a lot of people have sort of gotten wrong. But breaking it down shot for shot … I think we’re past that point. I don’t think this is any sort of new instance that broke the rules of our show at all. I think it’s very much in line with everything we’ve done before. I don’t think there’s a credibility issue. It seems like there’s this growing sort of divide between the people who watch the show and the people who write about the show. There’s not a wrong way to watch it; nobody is doing anything wrong. I’m getting a lot different messages that are diametrically opposed.”
Reaction to Glenn’s death, particularly on the pro-death side, no doubt stem from the fact that in the comic book Glenn does actually die around this point in the story. A bit later and in a different way, but he dies. And also possibly fanning these flames were non-readers’ “Not Glenn!” declarations, seemingly indicating that for whatever reason, Glenn was special and couldn’t die, unlike Hershel, Tyreese, Andrea, Beth and so many others.
But he’s alive… for now. And now viewers will just have to deal with that and see what comes next. It’s hardly the first time the show has deviated greatly from the comics and it certainly won’t be the last.
I’ll just take the blame. I’m the asshole telling people including the writers what they need to do. My bad!
How do you feel now that we’re at the halfway point of the season? Is Glenn safe for the duration? Or will the show pull a real switcheroo and kill him off for real after all the anguish? What would you like to see in the second half of Season Six?
Source: Cinema Blend