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The Walking Dead: Negan’s origin story is revealed with his wife Lucille in the Season 10 finale

Negan’s tragic backstory was finally revealed – along with his wife Lucille (played by real-life wife Hillarie Burton) on Sunday’s Season 10 finale of The Walking Dead.

In the episode ‘Negan’s Here,’ the former Savior reflected on his former life as a loving husband who could barely kill a zombie.

He’d lost his job as a gym teacher after ‘seeing red’ in a fight, and was otherwise not violent.

Negan's wife: Negan's wife Lucille - played by real-life wife Hilarie Burton - is seen for the first time

Negan’s origin story: Negan’s tragic backstory was finally revealed – along with his wife Lucille (played by real-life wife Hillarie Burton) on Sunday’s Season 10 finale of The Walking Dead

Seeing red: He’d lost his job as a gym teacher after ‘seeing red’ in a fight, and was otherwise not violent

Seeing red: He’d lost his job as a gym teacher after ‘seeing red’ in a fight, and was otherwise not violent

But after an unexpected death, something broke inside him and his reign of terror began.

Once there were no longer consequences for violence, he asked himself, why not do it?

‘Now nobody’s suing anybody,’ said Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) to a man he wanted to kill. ‘Nobody’s getting fired. Nobody’s keeping score. Now when I see red, it’s just a question of what I am capable of. And man, I hate to break it to you, but I am starting to think I am capable of damn near anything.’

No consequence: Once there were no longer consequences for violence, he asked himself, why not do it?

No consequence: Once there were no longer consequences for violence, he asked himself, why not do it?

Capable: ‘Now nobody’s suing anybody,’ said Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) to a man he wanted to kill. ‘Nobody’s getting fired. Nobody’s keeping score. Now when I see red, it’s just a question of what I am capable of. And man, I hate to break it to you, but I am starting to think I am capable of damn near anything'

Capable: ‘Now nobody’s suing anybody,’ said Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) to a man he wanted to kill. ‘Nobody’s getting fired. Nobody’s keeping score. Now when I see red, it’s just a question of what I am capable of. And man, I hate to break it to you, but I am starting to think I am capable of damn near anything’

Negan was living in Alexandria when the show opened, and he’d found it hard to escape the angry glances of his nemesis Maggie Rhee (Lauren Cohan).

Noticing the friction, Carol Peletier (Melissa McBride) took Negan hunting in the woods.

‘I’m sorry,’ she said, walking him to a stocked cabin. ‘The Council’s voted to banish you.’

Nemesis: Negan was living in Alexandria when the show opened, and he’d found it hard to escape the angry glances of his nemesis Maggie Rhee (Lauren Cohan)

Nemesis: Negan was living in Alexandria when the show opened, and he’d found it hard to escape the angry glances of his nemesis Maggie Rhee (Lauren Cohan)

Hunting: Noticing the friction, Carol Peletier (Melissa McBride) took Negan hunting in the woods

Hunting: Noticing the friction, Carol Peletier (Melissa McBride) took Negan hunting in the woods

Banished: ‘I’m sorry,’ she said, walking him to a stocked cabin. ‘The Council’s voted to banish you'

Banished: ‘I’m sorry,’ she said, walking him to a stocked cabin. ‘The Council’s voted to banish you’

Negan suspected that it was a decision Carol had made herself, but he honored it.

That night, he lit a fire in the fireplace and drank a glass of whiskey.

He imagined speaking to his old Savior self, sitting with his bat Lucille in a rocking chair.

Honored: Negan suspected that it was a decision Carol had made herself, but he honored it

Honored: Negan suspected that it was a decision Carol had made herself, but he honored it

Fire: That night, he lit a fire in the fireplace and drank a glass of whiskey

Fire: That night, he lit a fire in the fireplace and drank a glass of whiskey

Imagined: He imagined speaking to his old Savior self, sitting with his bat Lucille in a rocking chair

Imagined: He imagined speaking to his old Savior self, sitting with his bat Lucille in a rocking chair 

‘Litte pig, little pig,’ Savior Negan said. ‘Let me in.’

Negan ignored him and the figure spoke again.

‘I know that you can hear me loud and clear,’ Savior Negan said. ‘You know what the sad part is? The sad part isn’t that we ended up here, ’cause let’s face it, it could have been a he** of a lot worse. No, see, the sad part is that you thought for even a second that those folks could see you for anything but who you truly are. Which is me.’

Little pig: ‘Litte pig, little pig,’ Savior Negan said. ‘Let me in'

Little pig: ‘Litte pig, little pig,’ Savior Negan said. ‘Let me in’

Ignored: Negan ignored him and the figure spoke again

Ignored: Negan ignored him and the figure spoke again

‘You’re a clown,’ Negan told his alter ego. ‘A cult of personality with no cult.’

‘You go ahead and you call me whatever little names you want to call me,’ Savior Negan said. ‘But you gotta admit—you got a he** of a lot further with a kind word and good old Lucille here than we ever got with just a kind word.’

Negan threw his glass at the figure and tumbled back into a memory.

Clown: ‘You’re a clown,’ Negan told his alter ego. ‘A cult of personality with no cult'

Clown: ‘You’re a clown,’ Negan told his alter ego. ‘A cult of personality with no cult’

Glass: Negan threw his glass at the figure and tumbled back into a memory

Glass: Negan threw his glass at the figure and tumbled back into a memory

He found himself in front of a stained-glass sign with a Celtic symbol, in a grassy field.

He remembered fighting there with Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), and later, unsuccessfully begging Michonne (Danai Gurira) to see Lucille, his bat wrapped in barbed wire.

Curious, he visited that field and dug holes all over it until he found his old weapon.

Fight: He remembered fighting there with Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), and later, unsuccessfully begging Michonne (Danai Gurira) to see Lucille, his bat wrapped in barbed wire

Fight: He remembered fighting there with Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), and later, unsuccessfully begging Michonne (Danai Gurira) to see Lucille, his bat wrapped in barbed wire

Digging: Curious, he visited that field and dug holes all over it until he found his old weapon.

Digging: Curious, he visited that field and dug holes all over it until he found his old weapon.

Suddenly the scene flashed back 12 years, showing Negan hooded and tied to a chair.

‘You gotta let me go,’ he pleaded to men opening a cooler with bags of a sodium chloride. ‘My wife, she has cancer. She needs that.’

His captor threatened to let the medicine go bad unless Negan told them where he got it.

Flashback: Suddenly the scene flashed back 12 years, showing Negan hooded and tied to a chair

Flashback: Suddenly the scene flashed back 12 years, showing Negan hooded and tied to a chair

Let me go: ‘You gotta let me go,’ he pleaded to men opening a cooler with bags of a sodium chloride. ‘My wife, she has cancer. She needs that'

Let me go: ‘You gotta let me go,’ he pleaded to men opening a cooler with bags of a sodium chloride. ‘My wife, she has cancer. She needs that’

Captor: His captor threatened to let the medicine go bad unless Negan told them where he got it

Negan said he’d been tracking a medical clinic for weeks.

He relayed how he’d found them days before, holding them up with an empty gun.

He was caught and brought to a compassionate doctor named Franklin (Miles Mussenden), who gave him food and asked where he’d come from.

Clinic: Negan said he’d been tracking a medical clinic for weeks

Clinic: Negan said he’d been tracking a medical clinic for weeks

Hold up: He relayed how he'd found them days before, holding them up with an empty gun

Hold up: He relayed how he’d found them days before, holding them up with an empty gun

Doctor: He was caught and brought to a compassionate doctor named Franklin (Miles Mussenden), who gave him food and asked where he’d come from

Doctor: He was caught and brought to a compassionate doctor named Franklin (Miles Mussenden), who gave him food and asked where he’d come from

Negan, wild-eyed and desperate, said that his wife had cancer and was in the middle of treatment ‘when the world went to s***.’

Negan was just a gym teacher, but he had a menu of the drugs his wife Lucille needed.

He told Franklin that six weeks before, his stockpile had been destroyed.

Desperate: Negan, wild-eyed and desperate, said that his wife had cancer and was in the middle of treatment ‘when the world went to s***.’

Desperate: Negan, wild-eyed and desperate, said that his wife had cancer and was in the middle of treatment ‘when the world went to s***.’

Gym teacher: Negan was just a gym teacher, but he had a menu of the drugs his wife Lucille needed

Gym teacher: Negan was just a gym teacher, but he had a menu of the drugs his wife Lucille needed

Franklin: He told Franklin that six weeks before, his stockpile had been destroyed

Franklin: He told Franklin that six weeks before, his stockpile had been destroyed

The couple often turned off the generator powering their fridge because it attracted zombies.

One day, as Negan was reading to his wife the dead growled outside, and she said, ‘You gotta take care of it.’

He went out and fought haplessly with one zombie, stabbing him ineffectively in the eye.

Couple: The couple often turned off the generator powering their fridge because it attracted zombies

Couple: The couple often turned off the generator powering their fridge because it attracted zombies

Reading: One day, as Negan was reading to his wife the dead growled outside, and she said, ‘You gotta take care of it'

Reading: One day, as Negan was reading to his wife the dead growled outside, and she said, ‘You gotta take care of it’

Fought: He went out and fought haplessly with one zombie, stabbing him ineffectively in the eye

Fought: He went out and fought haplessly with one zombie, stabbing him ineffectively in the eye

Seconds later, his wife shot the creature with their last bullet.

‘Turn the generator on,’ she said, dragging an IV. ‘I want to watch a movie.’

As Negan searched for supplies one day, he found marijuana for his wife in an old car.

Last bullet: Seconds later, his wife shot the creature with their last bullet

Last bullet: Seconds later, his wife shot the creature with their last bullet

Movie: ‘Turn the generator on,’ she said, dragging an IV. ‘I want to watch a movie'

Movie: ‘Turn the generator on,’ she said, dragging an IV. ‘I want to watch a movie’

Wife: As Negan searched for supplies one day, he found marijuana for his wife in an old car

Wife: As Negan searched for supplies one day, he found marijuana for his wife in an old car

At night, he held her and sang ‘You Are so Beautiful,’ thinking about their love.

Negan’s wife cautioned him to be more aggressive in killing zombies, saying, ‘It’s not like killing a person. You’re killing an animal. You can’t let it keep bothering you.’

‘It doesn’t bother me,’ Negan said. ‘I’m just worried that I’m gonna get used to it.’

Love: At night, he held her and sang 'You Are so Beautiful,' thinking about their love

Love: At night, he held her and sang ‘You Are so Beautiful,’ thinking about their love

Bother: Negan's wife cautioned him to be more aggressive in killing zombies, saying, 'It's not like killing a person. You're killing an animal. You can't let it keep bothering you'

Bother: Negan’s wife cautioned him to be more aggressive in killing zombies, saying, ‘It’s not like killing a person. You’re killing an animal. You can’t let it keep bothering you’

One night at dinner, his wife gave him a leather jacket that she had hidden in a crawlspace after Negan spent $600 on it pre-apocalypse.

She apologized, and Negan said that he should be apologizing—for things he’d put her through.

‘Listen to me,’ she said, crawling into his lap. ‘I stuck with you because I could always see the man you are right now, even when you weren’t. And that a**hole really had it coming.’

Jacket: One night at dinner, his wife gave him a leather jacket that she had hidden in a crawlspace after Negan spent $600 on it pre-apocalypse

Jacket: One night at dinner, his wife gave him a leather jacket that she had hidden in a crawlspace after Negan spent $600 on it pre-apocalypse

Stuck: 'Listen to me,' she said, crawling into his lap. 'I stuck with you because I could always see the man you are right now, even when you weren't. And that a**hole really had it coming'

Stuck: ‘Listen to me,’ she said, crawling into his lap. ‘I stuck with you because I could always see the man you are right now, even when you weren’t. And that a**hole really had it coming’

She suggested they smoke the pot, saying she felt ‘good enough.’

They fell asleep with the generator off, and when they woke the fridge was warm; the last of her medication was ruined.

Negan wanted to find doctors, and she yelled, ‘Stop! I have something to tell you.’

Seven months earlier, she had argued with him about the pricey jacket, and he promised that he would be finding a job soon after getting fired for misdemeanor assault.

Argued: Seven months earlier, she had argued with him about the pricey jacket, and he promised that he would be finding a job soon after getting fired for misdemeanor assault

Argued: Seven months earlier, she had argued with him about the pricey jacket, and he promised that he would be finding a job soon after getting fired for misdemeanor assault

Doctors: Negan wanted to find doctors, and she yelled, 'Stop! I have something to tell you'

Doctors: Negan wanted to find doctors, and she yelled, ‘Stop! I have something to tell you’ 

On the phone with her friend Janine, she said she couldn’t give up on Negan even though he’d put the guy in the hospital, saying, ‘That a**hole had it coming.’

The next day Negan’s wife needed a ride to her doctor’s office for an MRI, and Negan couldn’t take her because he had to meet his probation officer.

The doctor told her she had cancer, and she nodded when asked if she had a ride home.

Had it coming: On the phone with her friend Janine, she said she couldn't give up on Negan even though he'd put the guy in the hospital, saying, 'That a**hole had it coming.

Had it coming: On the phone with her friend Janine, she said she couldn’t give up on Negan even though he’d put the guy in the hospital, saying, ‘That a**hole had it coming.

No ride: The next day Negan's wife needed a ride to her doctor's office for an MRI, and Negan couldn't take her because he had to meet his probation officer

No ride: The next day Negan’s wife needed a ride to her doctor’s office for an MRI, and Negan couldn’t take her because he had to meet his probation officer

Cancer: The doctor told her she had cancer, and she nodded when asked if she had a ride home

Cancer: The doctor told her she had cancer, and she nodded when asked if she had a ride home

Afterward she called Negan’s probation officer who said he was not on the calendar, and she realized he’d been cheating with Janine.

She had her finger on a gun when he walked in the door and instead announced her diagnosis.

Long after the apocalypse ravaged everything, she told him that he’d made up for it all, that he could stop trying to find her meds.

No calendar: Afterward she called Negan's probation officer who said he was not on the calendar

Realized: She realized he'd been cheating with Janine

Cheating: Afterward she called Negan’s probation officer who said he was not on the calendar, and she realized he’d been cheating with Janine

Cancer: She had her finger on a gun when he walked in the door and instead announced her diagnosis

Cancer: She had her finger on a gun when he walked in the door and instead announced her diagnosis

Made up: Long after the apocalypse ravaged everything, she told him that he'd made up for it all, that he could stop trying to find her meds

Made up: Long after the apocalypse ravaged everything, she told him that he’d made up for it all, that he could stop trying to find her meds

‘Baby, we are so close,’ Negan protested. ‘The doctors said this could work.’

‘Negan, we went down swinging,’ she said. ‘Now it’s time for you to go on without me. I need you to fight for me.’

Negan refused to ever give up on the woman he called Lucille.

So close: 'Baby, we are so close,' Negan protested. 'The doctors said this could work'

So close: ‘Baby, we are so close,’ Negan protested. ‘The doctors said this could work’

At the medical clinic with Franklin, he got the drugs and was given a bat for protection.

Shortly thereafter, he was held hostage by a man who wanted to infiltrate the clinic too.

Negan caved and told him how to find it, which led to the doctors getting captured.

Protection: At the medical clinic with Franklin, he got the drugs and was given a bat for protection

Protection: At the medical clinic with Franklin, he got the drugs and was given a bat for protection

Hostage: Shortly thereafter, he was held hostage by a man who wanted to infiltrate the clinic too

Hostage: Shortly thereafter, he was held hostage by a man who wanted to infiltrate the clinic too

Arriving home, he found a door on which was written, ‘Please don’t leave me like this.’

Inside the room was Lucille, who had succumbed to her cancer and turned into a zombie.

She had a bag over her head that she’d zip-tied, an arm zip-tied to a bed post and bags of pills everywhere.

Please: Arriving home, he found a door on which was written, 'Please don't leave me like this'

Please: Arriving home, he found a door on which was written, ‘Please don’t leave me like this’

Lucille: Inside the room was Lucille, who had succumbed to her cancer and turned into a zombie

Lucille: Inside the room was Lucille, who had succumbed to her cancer and turned into a zombie

Bag: She had a bag over her head that she'd zip-tied, an arm zip-tied to a bed post and bags of pills everywhere

 Bag: She had a bag over her head that she’d zip-tied, an arm zip-tied to a bed post and bags of pills everywhere 

That night Negan made the impossible decision to move on.

With a dead look in his eyes, he lit the cabin on fire and went outside to cut barbed wire from a fence for his bat.

He stormed into the Valaks’ compound just as Franklin broke free from their torture chair.

Fire: With a dead look in his eyes, he lit the cabin on fire and went outside to cut barbed wire from a fence for his bat

Fire: With a dead look in his eyes, he lit the cabin on fire and went outside to cut barbed wire from a fence for his bat

Stormed: He stormed into the Valaks' compound just as Franklin broke free from their torture chair

Stormed: He stormed into the Valaks’ compound just as Franklin broke free from their torture chair

Negan murdered men on the way in and stopped in front of his jailer.

‘Look at us,’ he told the man. ‘Here we are again. Last time we did this you said I talked too much… But see this time, you’d better hope I never stop talking. Because when I do something very terrible is gonna happen to you.’

He’d never killed a man before that night, Negan said—though he came close once.

Look: 'Look at us,' he told the man. 'Here we are again. Last time we did this you said I talked too much… But see this time, you'd better hope I never stop talking. Because when I do something very terrible is gonna happen to you'

Look: ‘Look at us,’ he told the man. ‘Here we are again. Last time we did this you said I talked too much… But see this time, you’d better hope I never stop talking. Because when I do something very terrible is gonna happen to you’

He recalled the night he badly beat a man at a bar because he was rude to his wife when she wanted to play her song, Joe Cocker’s You Are So Beautiful.

‘You know when people get so angry they say they see red?’ Negan asked. ‘That s*** is actually true. When this a**hole comes at me, all I see is red. It’s like I’m looking at the world through blood. So I whale on him. I whale on this sonofab**** until he’s not moving. And I reach down and I grab his wallet, and I take out one dollar and I play her song again. Twice.’

The man’s kids went to Negan’s school, so he got sued and fired; Lucille had to pay the man’s medical bills.

Angry: He recalled the night he badly beat a man at a bar because he was rude to his wife when she wanted to play her song, Joe Cocker's You Are So Beautiful.

Angry: He recalled the night he badly beat a man at a bar because he was rude to his wife when she wanted to play her song, Joe Cocker’s You Are So Beautiful.

That’s when he learned what consequences were, he said, noting that there weren’t any now.

He held out the bat Lucille, and added, ‘This is for not killing me.’

In the present day, he fell to his knees in the field.

Consequences: That's when he learned what consequences were, he said, noting that there weren't any now

Consequences: That’s when he learned what consequences were, he said, noting that there weren’t any now

‘I am sorry that I left you,’ he said to Lucille’s memory. ‘I was a coward. I couldn’t face the pain of losing you so I ran away. And then I made myself not feel anything because I didn’t want to feel the shame. The problem is that shame is the one thing that I still feel.’

‘I am sorry that you went out like that,’ he went on. ‘I should have been there. I am sorry that I named a stupid baseball bat after you. I am sorry for all the pain that I put you through. I hope you found someone in the afterlife and you are screwing your brains out. Not really, but fair is fair. I miss you. I love the s*** out of you. And I am gonna do your fighting for you.’

Negan burned the bat, and walked back to Alexandria.

Burned: Negan burned the bat, and walked back to Alexandria

Burned: Negan burned the bat, and walked back to Alexandria

To Carol, he said, ‘I think that whole situation isn’t going to work out. I wonder if you could requisition a cart for me to bring back my stuff.’

‘I’ll ask Gabriel to approve that,’ Carol replied, affirming, ‘If you stay here, [Maggie] will kill you. I just didn’t want your death on my conscience. Now it’s not.’

‘Fair enough,’ Negan said, smiling at Maggie as he walked by her.

Cart: To Carol, he said, 'I think that whole situation isn't going to work out. I wonder if you could requisition a cart for me to bring back my stuff'

Cart: To Carol, he said, ‘I think that whole situation isn’t going to work out. I wonder if you could requisition a cart for me to bring back my stuff’

Death: 'I'll ask Gabriel to approve that,' Carol replied, affirming, 'If you stay here, [Maggie] will kill you. I just didn't want your death on my conscience. Now it's not'

Death: ‘I’ll ask Gabriel to approve that,’ Carol replied, affirming, ‘If you stay here, [Maggie] will kill you. I just didn’t want your death on my conscience. Now it’s not’

Fair enough: 'Fair enough,' Negan said, smiling at Maggie as he walked by her

Fair enough: ‘Fair enough,’ Negan said, smiling at Maggie as he walked by her


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