The Walking Dead table-read of new episode raises questions

SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 20: Lauren Cohan and Jeffrey Dean Morgan attend 'The Walking Dead' panel with AMC during during Comic-Con International 2018 at San Diego Convention Center on July 20, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for AMC)
SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 20: Lauren Cohan and Jeffrey Dean Morgan attend 'The Walking Dead' panel with AMC during during Comic-Con International 2018 at San Diego Convention Center on July 20, 2018 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for AMC) /

A table read of Maggie and Negan’s meeting raises questions for Carol and Daryl

When Entertainment Weekly released a table read from an as yet unseen The Walking Dead episode, “Home Sweet Home”, fans were able to get a tantalizing glimpse of the much anticipated meeting of Maggie and Negan.

The dialogue we got in the video clip gives very little away long term about Maggie’s views on Negan, especially when it’s clearly made up of lines from a variety of scenes.

The clip appears to cover several scenes, with edited lines chosen from across scenes from the first half of the episode – presumably in order to give us a feel of how the Negan issue will affect several dynamics, and so as not to spoil the story too heavily.

One of the biggest questions it raises is will this situation cause a rift in the newly reformed Carol and Daryl friendship? From what we can see from these lines, it’s obviously going to be an issue that has to be talked out, but will it be a contentious one?

Will Daryl feel pulled between Maggie and Carol if one is fine with Negan and one isn’t?

It seems from the few lines we have, that Maggie understands Carol’s actions in releasing Negan, at least to a degree. Maggie is a mother, she’s a leader, she knows that sometimes they have to go down routes they’d rather not.

She knows how much she would do for her son Hershel, and she can understand that losing so many people – Edith, Jesus, Tara, Siddiq, on top of Henry – changes everything, and certainly changes who you look to as an ally.

Yet, that doesn’t mean Maggie could or should forgive Negan. He killed her husband, before he could meet his own son. It’s not surprising she’d be reluctant to overlook that, no matter what good he’s done since.

And that’s a feeling Daryl is only too aware of. He has lived through Negan’s reign of terror second by second. He suffered a prolonged and psychologically damaging assault by Negan, but at the same time he has been around to see the good Negan’s done.

Daryl has seen first hand how Negan has changed – with Judith, with Lydia, even with Daryl himself – and he saw that Negan kept his promise to Carol and was returning to Alexandria after he killed Alpha.

He saw that Negan had a chance for power again, to take over and lead the Whisperers against them, and he saw that Negan didn’t even flinch in turning that down. Instead he proved his loyalty to Alexandria and Daryl, completely.

It must all be a maelstrom of emotions for Daryl as he struggles to reconcile everything he feels about Negan into one solid opinion.

When Daryl questions Carol in the table read if she has forgiven Negan, she seems casually noncommittal. It’s possible Daryl is asking not because he thinks Carol is all aboard the Negan train, because he’s not sure what he himself thinks of his once nemesis.

Does the guilt of Glenn’s death mean he will always side with Maggie and side against Negan, or will his experience with people like Dwight, and even his own brother Merle, have taught him that no one is unredeemable?

We don’t know what other lines of dialogue surround the scene when Carol says to Daryl that Maggie will never accept Negan. We don’t know what Maggie has said about Negan, and we don’t know if Carol is pleading his case for him, or simply pointing out that this is a factor they need to consider in how things are going to work going forward.

We can, however, assume no one knows where they stand.

Even if Daryl and Carol are both on the same page for what should be done with Negan now Maggie is home, that may not be the end of the problem Negan can cause between the best friends.

It’s possible that Carol releasing Negan in itself was never an issue for Daryl, but the fact she didn’t tell him about it, is.

Daryl, like Maggie, can possibly understand exactly why Carol used Negan the way she did. After all, Carol was the only one who knew Alpha wouldn’t keep the peace, and wanted to take steps to protect themselves, whilst everyone else was sleeping in their bed with their new friend Dante slowly killing them all off on Alpha’s behalf.

In hindsight, Carol was right about Alpha, and using Negan – someone she didn’t care about one way or another – was a smart move. And it worked, eventually. So it’s likely Daryl can forgive the action, but what he may have trouble moving past is the fact Carol didn’t tell him about it.

Several times in season 10 Daryl was pleading with her to talk to him, open up and be a team with him, but Carol was in too much of her own personal hell to do that. She took everything on her own shoulders, did everything alone, because that was the only way she felt she could do it.

Now things are more resolved between them, Carol has said that period is over, does that mean Daryl has let that go, or is that hurt feeling he has that she didn’t trust him or whatever he thinks her motivation was, not going to go away?

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If that’s the case, it may not be how to deal with Negan, or how to ensure Maggie is happy and comfortable, that could cause friction between Daryl and Carol, but in fact their own issues and insecurities that have come to the fore in those turbulent months.

Do you think Maggie’s return and Negan’s freedom will risk upsetting the rekindled friendship between Carol and Daryl?