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‘Walking Dead’ Creator Robert Kirkman Teases Governor’s (Eventual) Successor

With the Governor finally out of the picture, AMC’s The Walking Dead is left without a main human antagonist. But that might not be the case for too long.

In the Walking Dead comics, a new villain eventually emerges after the fall of the Governor: Negan, the proud owner of Lucille, a baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire. In other words, he’s a psychopath worthy of filling the Governor’s shoes.

Negan doesn’t debut in the comics until more than 50 issues after the Governor’s death, but the Walking Dead television series has been known to take departures from the source material. Is it possible the writers of the hit drama will speed up the timetable and introduce Negan earlier than in the comics? Creator Robert Kirkman says, sure, it’s possible — but it won’t happen this season.

“The plan is that we will see him eventually,” he told Entertainment Weekly. “But I definitely do think there needs to be some kind of space from a Governor into a Negan. You have to have something of a break in there. So I wouldn’t expect him to be showing up — definitely not in Season 4. I don’t know. I wouldn’t expect it too soon.”

But Kirkman admitted that Negan could appear on the show at an earlier point than in the comic.

“Whether or not we have the same amount of breathing room, or if we do cut that down a little bit and bring him into the show a little early remains to be seen,” he said. “But we are all very excited about the prospect of bringing that guy into the show.”

The Walking Dead returns Feb. 9 on AMC.


  • Darren Hollander

    I wonder if AMC would reconsider their policy towards the F-word for Negan? What’s a Negan without the work fuck 10 times in the same sentence?

  • Rob

    Negan is such a boring one-dimensional character that I really hope the show takes some initiative and creates some new characters to act as antagonists. Go read some of his dialogue in the comic. Just flip to the portions of the issues where Negan speaks, and you’ll see what I mean. Over the course of the last 118 issues, he’s shown no character development whatsoever. I stopped reading it because he is that boring.

  • Pseudo-Scientific

    What about the Hunters storyline? That’s in-between and I’d love to see how they spin that for TV.

  • DCBlackbird

    Robert Kirkman always likes to write antagonist that contrast Rick…. At the moment Rick seems so much more troubled that Negan just feels less like a sinister psychopath that he was in his first appearance, and more like a creepy muscle bound child.

  • JustSaying

    Being that we didn’t see the kill shot, I’m not so sure we’re done with the governor yet.

  • Yakushiji Tenzen

    ugh god I was hoping Negan would stay exclusive in the comic. We don’t need a tv version, instead create a new villain! But if he is, they should hold off putting him in the series AT LEAST until season 6. I mean there’s still 50 issues of material there before we even see Negan.

  • Sentry616

    I think it’s an interesting exploration of the place a slow witted bully has in this post apocalyptic world. Rick and the Governor were in many ways the same, just with different limits on their morality. Negan on the other hand is the readers power fantasy run amok. The world has gone to shit so I’m gonna fuck bitches and fuck up anyone who gets in my way. Might makes right and all that dumb shit.

  • The General

    The hunters?

  • Phoenix Foundation

    I’m thinking they’ll be around soon. Remember the hippie couple and how girl with the tattoo on her leg looked like the leg may have been cut off and not pulled off?

  • Nick Kruse

    He got run through with Michonne’s sword in the mid-series finale.

  • seksivitez

    You know that they would not write a character like Negan as 1 dimensional. A dumb witted muscle dude can be written very well. Last seasons’s Justified had one.

  • seksivitez

    He was stabbed in the gut by her, but you can live from that. He was not shown shot in the head. That lady may have missed his brain.

  • shokk

    That’s part of Negan’s brutality. He’s not going to be anything more than a powerful thug.

  • Jason Torres

    Does that mean bye bye Glenn? We all know what happens to him when Negan arrivs,.


    Dude, he had zero strength, was surrounding by walkers, and was shot. He isn’t living to tell that tale.

  • Mantis Girl ’94

    I would LOVE to see the Hunters… that was a fabulous storyline :)


    The Governor is still alive. He survived the prison attack, the beating by Rick, the run through of a Katana sword by Michoone, and the supposed gun shot from Lilly. Three photo stills from the end of episode #8 reveals the truth.