Pardon my French, but…Fuck. Yes. Fans of The Walking Dead comics have been waiting many years to see the series’ most fascinatingly brutal villain make his way to live-action. The murderously vengeful Negan has been at the center of several rumors and speculations as time has gone by, but we’ve got the best evidence yet that he is heading to Season 6, and it all comes in the form of a hyper-specific casting call that pegs just about all of the character’s damning traits.
Here’s the announcement, as delivered by The Spoiling Dead Fans Facebook page, which itself cites the forum Spoil the Dead. Pay no attention to the name “Orin,” as that’s obviously just a fake moniker to throw fans off the scene of blood.
There are a few things to unpack here. First, it looks like our suspicions were partly correct, and Scott Gimple’s previous thoughts are legit. The casting call is for Episode 616, which will be the last episode of Season 6. But while we thought the show might just have Negan pop up for just a second at the very end of the episode, possibly in a post-credit sequence, the ten-day filming schedule makes it sound like the appearance could be something a tad more substantial.
Second: this line-up of adjectives is downright amazing. It plays up just how brainy Negan is by using “smart,” “brilliant strategist” and “practical and emotional intelligence.” It also draws out just how violent and harsh he is. “Killer of men” is hard to take in any other way but literally. What’s great about this somewhat repetitive list of descriptors is that they leave no stone unturned in letting people know that “Orin” will be one of the most important and engaging characters in this show’s history. It’s unfortunate that “mouth like a thousand sailors” isn’t on there, as Negan’s F-bombs are the stuff of legend.
Finally, the producers and casting directors are leaving it open for Negan to be any ethnicity, which is pretty awesome considering just how under fire this show and Fear the Walking Dead have been at times over their treatment of black characters. Not that this means Negan will necessarily be black and not Japanese or Samoan or something, but I wonder if they’re honestly interested in switches races on Negan and are looking for the best actor possible, no matter what he looks like.
We know that we’ll probably be seeing Gregory of the Hilltop Colony in Season 6, as well as several other comic characters. So now we’re just waiting for confirmation of Paul “Jesus” Monroe and we’ll be truly sated.
Even though we won’t be seeing Negan for a while, fans can still look forward to a long season of murder and mayhem when The Walking Dead returns for Season 6, which will premiere on AMC on Sunday, October 11.