Who is Negan’s wife Lucille on The Walking Dead?

Hilarie Burton Morgan (Photo by Jim Spellman/Getty Images)
Hilarie Burton Morgan (Photo by Jim Spellman/Getty Images) /

As long as Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) has been a character on The Walking Dead, Lucille has been a huge part of his story. Of course, for much of his appearance in the TV show, Lucille has exclusively been Negan’s signature weapon – a baseball bat wrapped in wire – but we know Lucille is also the name of his late wife.

On-screen so far, we know very little about Mrs. Negan, but that’s going to be corrected very soon as Lucille – played by Morgan’s real-life wife Hilarie Burton-Morgan – is coming to life and featuring heavily in the final episode of 10c of The Walking Dead, which begins airing in February.

“Here’s Negan” is the 6th episode in the bonus run created when COVID restrictions meant filming for season 11 had to be postponed. Thus, these episodes are more intimate and personal and focus on a smaller number of characters, which created the perfect conditions to tell Negan’s backstory.

The episode is based on the comic volume of the same name, which details Negan’s story from shortly before the apocalypse occurred until he became the Negan we know, as leader of the Saviors. However, it looks like the episode retelling this story is going to deviate from that path.

We find out all about who Negan’s late wife Lucille is in “Here’s Negan.”

Some weeks ago, AMC released a table-read from “Here’s Negan,” which seemed to show that when we join Negan and his wife Lucille (in Negan’s memories), the world has already fallen, and the couple are trying to survive in their basement.

In the comic, we begin the story shortly before Lucille is diagnosed with cancer, and we’re made aware of their dynamic as a couple. Negan already shows his current personality elements, mocking and belittling students under his tutelage as a coach. While Lucille admonishes him, she loves him all the same.

We also discover that Negan has a mistress, who breaks up with him when he reveals Lucille’s diagnosis. Yet when Negan confesses his affair to his wife, she is angry he ended his affair and is shackled with her, the sick woman.

Negan confesses Lucille is the only woman he’s ever loved, and her condition worsens until she is in a coma when the world begins to burn. As the apocalypse rages, Negan stays by Lucille’s side until she dies and turns.

This sequence of events sets him on the road to become the man who would kill Glenn and torture Rick and all the others as the leader of the Sanctuary. It seems likely that although the TV version of the story begins in a different place, the defining elements will remain the same.

NEW YORK, NY – DECEMBER 05: Hilarie Burton and Jeffrey Dean Morgan attend the Adrienne Shelly Foundation 10th Anniversary Gala at The Angel Orensanz Foundation on December 5, 2016, in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY – DECEMBER 05: Hilarie Burton and Jeffrey Dean Morgan attend the Adrienne Shelly Foundation 10th Anniversary Gala at The Angel Orensanz Foundation on December 5, 2016, in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images) /

In the table-read and trailer for 10c, we get to see more of Lucille than we would have in a scene-for-scene retelling of the comic story – and that likely is why they have changed things up. It looks like the TV version of events will feature more of Lucille’s side of the story and tell more of her arc after falling sick, revealing more about her and her influence on Negan.

From those few glances and lines, we get an idea of how strong Lucille is and that she is the one pushing Negan forward. We see a feisty woman who has turned to colorful wigs to express her personality during her cancer treatment. She is heard encouraging a reluctant Negan who wants to avoid killing a walker that is threatening their generator, and then in the trailer, we fully see just how strong she is.

As Negan, clad in goggles and protective gear, struggles to kill a walker, Lucille shoots and kills the threat. It’s a very powerful visual, of a frail woman, in a gown, attached to an IV, in a green wig, shooting the dead to save her husband.

So it appears that the TV “Here’s Negan” will fully flesh out Lucille, from the passive woman in the comics to a more-rounded character of her own, with her own inner-life and motivations. However, in the end, the theme is likely to remain the same.

Negan’s love for Lucille, which he treated carelessly, is the one defining thing in his life before and after the turn. He seems afraid of the power that love has over him and pushed it away until it was too late. Now it is what drives his behavior, seemingly for both good and bad.

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“Here’s Negan” is scheduled to air on April 4 and should appeal to both comic fans and those who are interested in seeing Negan transform into his idolized persona, and possibly – if the trailer clips are anything to go by – shed that image for a new future.