The Walking Dead round table: Most hated character

Father Gabriel, The Walking Dead - AMC
Father Gabriel, The Walking Dead - AMC /
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Susan’s choice: The Governor

The Governor, The Walking Dead - AMC
The Governor, The Walking Dead – AMC /

My most hated character is tangled up with some of my most liked characters and I hated him for some reasons beyond the obvious ones. He did some horrible things to members of our group and was a fantastic on-screen villain.

He could be hated just for what he did to the Greene family alone. He had Merle terrorize Glenn while he had Maggie listen and he humiliated Maggie. He cut off our wise and gentle patriarch Hershel’s head with Michonne’s sword while Michonne knelt beside him and all were present in the auditorium of the prison yard to watch.

While all of these things are horrific, if you tried to turn them around and walk in the Phillip’s shoes, you could make the argument that he was doing what needed to be done to ensure the survival of his group and himself. You could try to make that argument.

What I really hated about Phillip, was how he treated the people who were closest to him. I hated his façade. I hated his alleged charm. His abuse of power. His plastic Governor Halloween costume that he wore like a business suit.

I hated the way he treated Merle, who was not a gracious personality, but a frank one, and one that cowered to the person he thought he owed.

I hated the way he treated Martinez, before and after Brian Heriot. His jealousy and insecurity so apparent with just the thought that Lilly could compliment Martinez or that he could suggest sharing responsibility.

I hated the way he treated Milton, another one who thought he owed Phillip somehow.Enough that Milton stayed to the very end with him, thinking he wouldn’t be valued or accepted anywhere else. If only Milton had a little more time with Hershel to build up some armor against the mysterious Governor hold.

And I hated the way he treated Andrea. Telling her she was a visitor, just passing through. Chipping away at what little self-esteem she had left after losing her sister, coming back from suicidal thinking and being sick and abandoned at the farm and then likely angry with herself for abandoning Michonne in order to feel secure and valued and helpful.

Yes, I was mad at Andrea for falling for whatever charm The Governor supposedly had. But he offered her safety and a chance to help others weaker than she, the way she had before the outbreak in her law career. And he exploited that.

Phillip, Brian and the Governor didn’t care about anyone. He didn’t care about Lilly or Penny or Meghan. He cared about the love and admiration he could receive from them. As soon as the loyalty or love or adulation stopped coming or he wasn’t considered top dog, he turned. And when he turned, he was like the walkers that they fear. He fed on whatever was available. He was a living walker. Whatever was human in him was gone.

Next: Tracey's choice: Martin