Daryl Dixon is the favorite character of a huge swath of The Walking Dead fans. The crossbow-firing redneck has done nearly every character arc from the comic series, which includes stabbing his brother’s walker corpse, beating demons like alcohol abuse, and sacrificing himself more than once.

If Daryl were to die on the show, it would need to mean something. It would almost need to replicate some sort of Batman-for-the-people, martyr-like death. One possibility is that Daryl dies at the hands (or bat) of Negan.

The Walking Dead | Photo Credit AMCThe Walking Dead | Photo Credit AMC

Kirkman Says No One Is Safe on the Walking Dead

As major characters get killed off, Kirkman, the creator, receives more and more hate mail, claiming a riot would occur if Daryl Dixon ever dies. Kirkman once told reporters that fans are going to get him killed, admitting, “That fan reaction is going to get him killed. I feel like it’s a dare. ‘Oh, really? You’re gonna riot?’ We’ll see…we’ll see. No one is safe.”

In The Walking Dead, Negan killed Glenn and Abraham, stole Rick’s will to fight, and kidnapped Daryl. In the comics, Rick’s retaliation involved locking Negan up in a basement for two years, but his fate on the show may be different (Negan even dropped an Easter Egg for fans in the premier about keeping Rick alive, but locked up).

Fans of the show seem to view the world as a place where justice means brutality. Negan took things too far in the first episode, so he must pay. Comic book Rick separated these two thoughts by keeping Negan alive, but taking away his power. In a way, that is more justified than killing him in a horrific manner. After the Season 7 premiere, however, Negan’s comic book fate might not reflect his television fate.

The Walking Dead | Photo Credit AMCThe Walking Dead | Photo Credit AMC

Daryl as a Martyr in Season 7

Whatever happens, it’s likely that Daryl will play a role, either as a savior or a martyr. Daryl’s death has been a topic of speculation since he started receiving love from fans. 

In the premier, Daryl’s attack on Negan could have been the final straw that got Glenn killed (which may be Maggie’s thought as well). After Daryl had jumped to his feet to punch Negan, Negan chose to kill Glenn. This defiance that may have killed Glenn may get Daryl killed if he’s not careful.

Many felt like Daryl would have been killed in place of Glenn, and outside the show, it’s possible that actor Norman Reedus may be looking to leave to focus on his other show, Ride with Norman Reedus.

Reedus commented on the possibility of his death in an interview with Comicbook.com:

“I’d like him just to walk away and just walk away into the woods, and people go, ‘Where the heck is that guy?’ It’s like, ‘Oh, he gets shot.’ ‘Oh, he turns into a zombie.’ ‘They put him down.’ We’ve seen all of that happen so many times. I think with Daryl because he came in that way, I think he should go out that way. He should just walk away, and people are like, ‘Whatever happened to him?’ Nobody knows. He’s like the Outlaw Josey Wales [Clint Eastwood].”

 

Hopefully, this won’t happen anytime soon.