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With the casting of Jeffrey Dean Morgan as the infamous Negan on The Walking Dead, the conversation among the fan community has begun to turn towards expectations regarding the television show’s ability to accurately capture one of the comic’s most profane characters.
Negan is known for his foul mouth and his willingness to brutalize people with his trust bat, Lucille. He currently stands as the most violent of antagonists to grace the pages of writer Robert Kirkman‘s world, and long-time fans of the comics are hoping that carries over to the television show.
Speaking with Entertainment Weekly, Morgan discussed his excitement about taking on the role, and he didn’t avoid the coarse language, saying he is “really f–ing excited.” When the topic of Negan’s heavy use of profanity was broached, Morgan tackled it head on.
“Look, it’s a speed bump. I’m not going to say it’s an issue because they’re working on it. We’re going to push AMC — the plan is to push them as far as they can because it’s who Negan is. He uses some colorful language. And I use some colorful language. And reading the comic, it’s important. So we’ll see where that lands. It’s our intention that this character is going to leap off the pages of the comic book. It’s very important that that’s who it is. Some of the characters there’s much more leeway, but Negan is a guy that you want to keep as true as possible, and that would be how I want to play him as well.”
The Walking Dead, shown as it is on AMC, isn’t held to quite the same restrictions as shows on network television. That said, AMC has rarely veered into the same sort of language as networks such as HBO or Cinemax. How far the network is willing to bend its’ self-imposed rules will go a long way towards determining how accurate the translation of Negan from the page to the screen truly is.