The Walking Dead: Dead City Brings Negan’s Iconic Bat Back in Flashback Scene
The latest episode of “Everybody Wins a Prize” in The Walking Dead: Dead City concluded with several captivating developments. Negan, portrayed by Jeffrey Dean Morgan, displayed his heroic side by saving Armstrong, played by Gaius Charles. However, the tables quickly turned when Armstrong threatened Negan with execution. In a surprising twist, Negan retaliated by hurling a derogatory term at Armstrong, one that rhymes with a common first name followed by Grimes. Meanwhile, Maggie, portrayed by Lauren Cohan, and her group embarked on a treacherous journey into the sewers of Manhattan, bracing themselves for unknown dangers.
Yet, it was the opening scene of the episode that truly caught everyone’s attention. The episode commenced with an unexpected flashback to the Sanctuary, where Negan reemerged in his classic Negan 1.0 persona. Complete with his signature leather jacket and his infamous baseball bat adorned with barbed wire, Lucille, the sight of Negan in his element delighted fans.
In an interview with EW, Jeffrey Dean Morgan expressed his excitement about the flashback scene. He revealed, “I was so happy. It was just awesome to have on the leather jacket and to have Lucille in my hand. I can’t tell you how much I miss her. There’s something about holding that bat in a scene that makes me feel whole.”
Morgan spoke about Negan’s bat with a fondness usually reserved for human scene partners. He explained that the inanimate object played a pivotal role in shaping his performance when he first joined The Walking Dead franchise during the sixth season’s finale. “There is a relationship that I will forever have with that piece of wood wrapped in barbed wire — that I will have as Jeff. It’s incredibly special because, for whatever reason, on that first day when Negan comes out of the trailer and the first couple of days that we shot, I really bonded in an odd way to this object. And it indicated so much of what I did as an actor. It indicated the lean back. It indicated so much of the physicality of who Negan was by just holding it. Everything kind of stemmed from that bat.”
The flashback not only featured Negan’s iconic leather jacket and Lucille but also surprised fans with the return of Simon, Negan’s once-trusted lieutenant, played by the talented Steven Ogg. Simon informed Negan that the Croat, portrayed by Željko Ivanek, had defied a direct order by resorting to torturing a child for information, despite explicit instructions not to do so. Simon and Negan confronted the Croat, who claimed the girl had “confessed.” Simon, sternly addressing the man he referred to as a “Slavic psychopathic nutjob,” firmly asserted that children were off-limits.
For Morgan, having the Saviors gang come together again was a joyous reunion. He expressed his delight at bringing Steven Ogg back, stating, “I was so happy to get a chance to bring Steven back. What an amazing choice — out of all the people in this universe we could have had come back, to have Ogg come back. I’d take him back any f—ing time. It was so good to see him. And Steven is one of the funniest people you will ever meet. That guy’s a trip, man. He is a laugh, he is a poet, and he’s an individual that is unlike anyone I’ve ever met. I just adore him, so I feel really lucky to have had him come back. He can have his own f—ing series just doing anything, and I would watch it.”
During the flashback scenes, Morgan found himself in a passive role, as he did not have any lines in the scenes shared with Ogg. He described it as an opportunity to witness the intense dynamics unfold before the cameras began rolling. He recalled a rehearsal where Steven fully embodied his character, leaving Željko Ivanek astounded. Morgan observed, “And it was the first day I’d worked with Željko in the whole series as well. During the rehearsal, Steven went full Ogg, and I remember looking at Željko because he realized pretty quickly, ‘Oh s—.’ And so in the rehearsal, these two guys are going at it 120 percent. And I was sitting there just watching this going, ‘Oh, f— me. I don’t know what they’re going to do when the cameras are actually rolling because they’re not rolling right now, and they’re going to kill each other!’ It was spectacular. I’m glad I got to be a spectator on that one and just sort of feel it all.” Undoubtedly, fans were thrilled to witness Negan donning the leather jacket once again, with Lucille faithfully by his side.
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