Fans of The Walking Dead have finally gotten some answers they've been waiting for on the latest episode of the series. In Episode 5 of Season 8, "The Big Scary U," the details of Negan's backstory became a bit clearer. Fans have said for years that Negan's weapon of choice, Lucille, was named after his dead wife. And while the show hasn't exactly made clear that the bat is named after his first wife, the tweets about Lucille on The Walking Dead that resulted from the tease are the actual best.
Why do fans think that Negan's bat is named after his wife? Well, whenever she's brought up by Negan he's talking about "her" in a peculiarly affectionate way. Ever since Lucille was first introduced in the series, Negan's referred to it as an actual person and it's raised many questions among a community of fans. The instrument is basically a random bat wrapped with barbed wire that Negan uses to brutally bash in the heads of his enemies, but Negan talks about the bat so affectionately, fans have wondered if the name Lucille has some underlying meaning. (Comic fans, of course, already have their answer.)
And in the latest episode we got to hear some of that backstory. After Father Gabriel and Negan found themselves trapped in a trailer while avoiding walkers, at the end of Season 8 Episode 1, "Mercy," and it's here that the two have a little confessional. Gabriel decided to question Negan about his habit of coercing women into joining his harem as multiple "wives," asking if there had been a first wife — one that he loved. In response, Negan got touchy, holding up Lucille (the bat) and asking for strength while listening to Gabriel's questions.
And fans were surprised.
Thanks to the unusual show of emotion from Negan, many fans started thinking that we'd finally get details about Negan's wife, who died before the apocalypse began.
And we did. When Gabriel coerced a "confession" out of him in exchange for help getting out of the trailer, Negan revealed that, yes, he was married before the apocalypse, but he wasn't a very good husband. While he was married to his wife, who he calls his "real wife", he cheated on her. But she was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness, and he devoted all of his time to her in remorse.
To Negan's horror, the apocalypse began at around the same time and at her death, his wife became a walker — but he couldn't bring himself to kill his wife, zombie or no. "I couldn't put her down. That is how I was weak. That is what I will confess because, yeah, maybe we do bite the big one here," Negan confessed.
And though we still didn't hear that all-important name, now we've gotten a couple of answers that are helping solve the puzzle that is Negan's character and backstory.
And Twitter fans were absolutely eating it up:
Feeling sorry or not, it's a weird little reminder that everyone in this story started as something else — before the zombie apocalypse, Negan's story hints, he was just a regular guy with a job taking care of kids, a wife that he loved, and a bunch of mistakes that he now regrets. It's a far cry from who he is now.
So Negan, while a great villain, isn't a completely heartless character after all. And though he didn't end up using his beloved Lucille in this episode, we'll undoubtedly be seeing her as the All Out War season progresses. And hopefully we'll learn more about Negan, too. Maybe he isn't such a horrible human after all — though we're not counting on it.