I think it’s safe to say The Walking Dead has always been a dark show. And that’s not just because it features hordes of bloodthirsty zombies. The Walking Dead has always been emotionally bleak, with a few rays of sunshine now and then.

Usually, once things seem to be taking a turn for the better, everything gets much worse for Rick’s group. Remember the veritable utopia of the prison? And then The Governor came in with a tank, blew it up and sliced Hershel’s head off. So, like I said, it’s dark.

Rick Opens Up About the Darkness

Negan The Walking DeadNegan The Walking Dead

According to series star Andrew Lincoln, though, things are about to get even darker. I think we all could’ve guessed the new season would start out dark. After all, there’s a pretty wicked cliffhanger waiting to be resolved. In a new interview with EW, though, Lincoln says that’s just the beginning:

“We are opening up in a way that we’ve not done before,” says Lincoln. “And it truly is very brave, and is something that I looked forward to in the book. I’ve always thought this is really when it started to get really interesting. Because it’s like, how are these different communities reinventing themselves? And what kind of society have they built? It’s really, really cool. It feels deeper. It’s darker.”

The Dark Before the Dawn

How are fans supposed to deal with so much darkness? After all, life is depressing enough without watching our pop culture heroes suffering, too. According to Lincoln, we all just need to be patient:

“This is a very, very dark season but it’s always darkest before the dawn,” he says. “Hang in there, guys, because it’s alive. It feels like there’s a great shape at the moment that [showrunner Scott M. Gimple] is crossing for the show and it’s very, very exciting. It began a few years ago and it’s turned into much more expansive, courageous, and more adventurous storytelling, both time-wise and location-wise.”

A Larger World

If you’ve read The Walking Dead comic books, then you have an idea of what’s likely coming this season. “A Larger World” was the storyline in the comic that established the existence of multiple survivor groups in the area. Needless to see, it’s a game changer for the show:

“Yeah, I think that is very much the dramatic meat of this season,” confirms Lincoln. “And what you will see is a much bigger universe, an expansion. This world is about to get a lot bigger. That’s what’s about to happen in season 7. Obviously, the fallout from the death is going to make different alignments between the people that survive the death and any other communities.”

You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet

The storyline involving The Hilltop, The Kingdom, and all the other various communities fighting off against Negan is the linchpin moment of the comic book. After the nerve-wracking storyline with The Governor, fans could be forgiven for thinking the worst is past. After all, how can things possibly get any worse? I’ll leave you with one last quote from Andrew Lincoln:

“If we can’t be bold and brave now, in season 7, then we’re not doing it right.”

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