Leave a Comment
Major spoilers below for anyone who hasn't yet watched The Walking Dead's latest episode, titled "Monsters."
Of all the Walking Dead characters whose choices perplex me, Morgan has earned the most blue ribbons. Since his earliest moments, Morgan's mind has been volleyed between strict discipline and paranoid lunacy, and he is apparently going to re-embrace his darker, disturbed psyche as Season 8 moves forward. It's certainly possible that The Walking Dead will repetitiously just send him off to "clear" for a while before bringing him back to reality again, but what if this is the beginning of the end for Morgan? Is it time for Morgan to die?
Over the course of his narrative, we've seen Morgan go from a grieving husband to a mad-with-grief father to a stone-faced tracker to a bo-wielding zen master to a stone-faced killer. Now reaching a point where he almost shanked Jesus after their squabble, Morgan realized that his mental facilities are getting more fractured and he's potentially willing to allow executions at will. He could very well become a Savior himself in a slightly different situation, so he chose to leave. But what could happen in the future?
Since there's no overall cure or fix for Morgan's breakdowns, short of actually bringing his wife and son back to life (which would open up another round of emotional complexities), Morgan doesn't have a "clear" exit from this narrative loop. I'd be cool with watching Morgan going all Rambo on people on a weekly basis, especially if he gets to kill Jared at some point in the future, but it doesn't seem like he's being set up for some bigger character arc in the future. "Everybody turns." And since he instigated the fight with Jesus and kept it going, I think that was the big sign that he's on the path of no return. And without a straightforward end game, Morgan should probably be the next big character to go.
Morgan had a much different story in the comics, and he was killed off before Negan first showed up. He died after being bitten by walkers, and without any of the breakdowns that he has faced on the TV show. So there's no information to be gleaned from there about what Morgan's ultimate fate will be, but I definitely hope that his death, assuming it happens, is more meaningful than just a random walker bite.
Lennie James is one of The Walking Dead's most talented actors, and is capable of giving endlessly captivating performances at all levels of energy, which makes it frustrating to have Morgan always walking around so stone-faced and solemn. Not that Morgan needs to be a chuckle-fest like Jerry or anything, but if it takes more mental breakdowns to get Morgan back to showcasing a wider array of emotions, as well as inciting more fisticuffs, so be it.