Fans have had a couple of months to come to terms with the excruciating cliffhanger from the Season 6 finale of The Walking Dead. The final scene of the season involved new bad guy Negan viciously beating one of the good guys to death with a baseball bat, but it failed to reveal just which of the good guys had been pummeled off to the great zombie apocalypse sanctuary in the sky. The ending didn’t go over well with a lot of fans who were tired of The Walking Dead dangling cliffhanger after cliffhanger in Season 6. According to Daryl Dixon actor Norman Reedus, however, the ending did exactly what it needed to do to prime the audience for Season 7.
In a chat with IGN, Norman Reedus had this to say about what he really thinks of the big Walking Dead cliffhanger:
Well, I mean, everyone’s got an Instagram and a Facebook and a Twitter, and everybody wants to know everything right now. ‘We deserve to know everything right now!’ You know, cliffhangers have been happening ever since television started. And I like that there’s so much enthusiasm for this show. Everybody’s so invested in it, and we are too, but you make art sometimes to start conversation, and having people talk about what you did is kind of a compliment no matter what they’re saying. So I get it. I mean, I like watching television and being pissed off and wanting to throw something through the TV too, but that’s part of the excitement! I like that kind of thing. So I’ll say it again: It’s well worth the wait. You’ll get it, and you may wish that you…You know what I mean. Sometimes you want things to happen, you don’t want things to happen, and they happen, and you’re like, ‘DAMN!’ So, you know, just be ready.
Given that The Walking Dead is relatively early in its hiatus between Seasons 6 and 7, fans will have plenty of time to heed Norman Reedus’ advice and get ready for what’s coming next. The reveal may have viewers shouting “DAMN!” from their couches, but the fall premiere feels awfully far off at this point. To his credit, Norman Reedus has done a great job so far of hyping Season 7.
Norman Reedus definitely isn’t wrong that cliffhangers are a big part of television, and there have been enough Walking Dead cliffhangers over the years that it was safe for fans to guess that Season 6 would end on a major unanswered question. Personally, I wouldn’t have been so frustrated with the Season 6 finale cliffhanger if The Walking Dead hadn’t spent so many other episodes of Season 6 ending on fakeout death cliffhangers. This was one death cliffhanger too many for me to be happy about the ending.
If the “all buzz is good buzz” rule does indeed apply to The Walking Dead, then Norman Reedus is right to be excited that so many people still have so much to say about the finale. Only time will tell if there will still be buzz by the time Season 7 finally arrives.
The Walking Dead won’t be back for a while, but Norman Reedus can be seen on AMC in his new show Ride with Norman Reedus starting on Sunday, June 12 at 9 p.m. ET. Check out our breakdown of what we know so far about The Walking Dead Season 7, and take a look at our summer TV premiere schedule to see what else there is to watch over hiatus.