If you're a hardcore Walking Dead fan, then the past few weeks have presumably been pretty difficult for you. With AMC's apocalyptic drama currently on its midseason break, fans are left to sit, wait, and wonder about what is to come once the winter premiere airs in February. The first half of Season 7 proved divisive for many fans, starting with the premiere episode. Because while the fandom was eager to find out who Jeffrey Dean Morgan's Negan killed in the final moments of Season 6, the answer came along with brutal imagery. Glenn and Abraham were killed on screen in the one of the show's most gory moments, leading some viewers too upset to even continue the show. Now it appears that the premiere backlash has affected the rest of Season 7.

The Walking Dead executive producer Gale Anne Hurd recently spoke at a panel at The NATPE conference. During her appearance, Hurd revealed how backlash from the season premiere affected the show moving forward. She said the following (via Variety):

We were able to look at the feedback on the level of violence. We did tone it down for episodes we were still filming for later on in the season.

It loos like the people have spoken. The Walking Dead is cognizant of their audience's concerns, and took it into consideration when producing the second half of Season 7. I guess its safe to say that we won't see much of Lucille's wrath in the next few episodes.

the walking dead season 7 premiere

The violence depicted in the Season 7 premiere episode "The Day Will Come When You Won't Be" was truly hard to watch. In it, we saw Abraham fall victim to Negan's evil game of "eenie meenie miney mo", with Negan slamming Lucille down on his exposed skull. Despite Abraham's sassy retort and secret sign of love to Sasha, everyone's favorite ginger ended up brutally killed. And while this was bad enough, it was Glenn's death that proved to be the nail in some audience's coffin. Because he also took Negan's attacks "like a champ", calling out to Maggie, despite one of his eyes popping out of its socket. It's a shocking moment of violence that fans will forever remember when thinking about the former pizza boy.

Then again, The Walking Dead has never been short on horrifying onscreen violence. Dale was disemboweled by a walker back in Season 2 and Lori suffered a grisly C-section by Maggie's knife at the prison. Then there's Noah, who still may have had the most painful death in the show's history. So it's a bit surprising that Season 7 is when the showrunners decided to tone down the violence. I guess Glenn's status as an original cast member carried more weight than we thought.

The Walking Dead will return, with slightly less violence, on February 12th, 2017.

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