In The Walking Dead comics, Negan’s redemption arc turns this bat-swinging and killing menace to a dutiful citizen of Alexandria. In the second half of season nine, viewers got to see a few glimpses of that storyline being developed on-screen too.
Negan’s (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) relationship with Rick Grimes’s daughter, Judith (Cailey Fleming) has become one of the most admirable and respectful ones in the series. When Fleming attended a Fan Fest in New Jersey, she was asked if Negan would eventually become a better version of himself – a “good guy”- in season 10.
“Yes. I am hopeful because I believe in him,” Fleming said.
Negan gained the respect of Judith’s mother, Michonne (Danai Gurira), when he saved Judith from the blizzard.
“In the season finale of Season 9, you can see all the different sides of him. And you can see how he has a special bond with Judith, and I think that’s gonna take him places in Season 10,” said Fleming.
Showrunner Angela Kang dives in deeper to this bond that has captured fans’ hearts.
“I think Negan just, he legitimately is fond of Judith. Just as he respected Carl, she’s spunky, and she’s funny, and she’s really smart, and she’s really tough,” Kang said on Talking Dead. “And Negan had a background working with children before the apocalypse and so this is somebody that he legitimately has a friendship with and cares about.”
Fans of Negan like the character’s blunt humor and eccentric personality. Kang confirms those beloved qualities won’t be lost as Negan slowly makes his way to the good side.
“Negan is Negan. As we’ve seen in the episode, he still has that part of him that likes to needle people, he’s always gonna have an edge, he’s never like a pure hero,” Kang said.
The Walking Dead returns this fall with season 10 on AMC.