'The Walking Dead' alternate take in which Maggie dies would've been horrible for the show
One of the most absurd stories that came out of The Walking Dead's filming of season seven was the lengths to which AMC wanted to keep the show's big secret: Negan's victim from that absurd season six cliffhanger. There were 11 potential victims, and so the series reportedly filmed all 11 characters being beaten to death by Negan and his beloved barbed wire-covered baseball bat, Lucille.
Of course, anyone who watched the season seven premiere knows who's on the end of Negan's bat: Abraham, followed by Glenn when Daryl makes the mistake of punching — punching! — Negan in the face after the villain warned the group not to interrupt his unsettling entrance.
However, some leaked footage has made it online that seemingly shows another victim meeting the end of Negan's bat: Maggie. It appears her death would've ostensibly happened in place of that of her husband, Glenn — who, in this clip, is instead knocked out in the video after protesting his wife's gruesome fate.
To be clear, if The Walking Dead went this route, it would've been disastrous. There's a disturbing element to the show fetishizing Negan's kills — and there's nothing to like about what happened to Glenn and Abraham. But why would The Walking Dead want to dole out that fate to a pregnant woman?
It would've been the most indicting instance of violence against women on television since Sansa Stark's controversial rape scene in Game of Thrones' fifth season. Fans of The Walking Dead have suggested they'd boycott the show after the season six cliffhanger (which, based on the premiere's stellar ratings, was a bit of a stretch), but something that calamitous could've actually caused them to lose some viewers.
The good news, however, is that AMC didn't opt for a Maggie death, and there's a decent explanation as to how this footage came to light. While Rick is processing what happened in the premiere, he envisions Negan's bat making contact with all the members of the group — including his son, Carl, as well as Maggie.
It's the show's attempt to visualize the trauma Rick just went through at the hands of Negan. (Though in reality, it's also just a way for them to justify spending time on all those alternate death takes.)
Thankfully, Maggie's story will continue, and if it follows the path of the comic books, she'll become the leader of the Hilltop Colony. But even more than that — after Negan effectively broke Rick's spirit and emasculated him — she might be up to the task of leading the core group. We're all in for that.