Fans of Image Comics' The Walking Dead comic book series have come to expect some rather raw language from fan-favorite villain Negan, but that personality quirk was missing from the character's introduction on the AMC television series due to the network's policy. However, when the series returns for Season 8 next month, viewers may hear an F-bomb or two thanks to a policy change.
"You get a specific number of curse words you can say, and then there's a list of what you can and can't do," Fear the Walking Dead executive producer Dave Erickson told ComicBook.com. "I think it was our script coordinator who told me there was an email had come up -- there had been a memo saying we could now say 'f***' twice over the course of an entire season."
Fear the Walking Dead has therefore already used half of its quota for the season, as Frank Dillane's character Nick Clark uttered the expletive at the conclusion of this past Sunday's episode. Ironically, this breakthrough moment for the franchise means that Negan won't be the first to drop the term, an honor that many may feel belongs to Jeffrey Dean Morgan's character.
The quota for the term's usage means Negan won't be able to freely toss the word around like his comic book counterpart, but it will make for some interesting speculation on when -- or if -- Negan will drop those F-bombs.
The unexpected exclamation came as a surprise to many Fear the Walking Dead viewers, who had grown accustomed to both shows airing as F-bomb-free zones. "I don't know at what point AMC corporate decided to allow it, but they did," Erickson said. The policy has left its mark on other AMC shows, such as Preacher and Halt and Catch Fire, which have already dropped the term in selected episodes.
The F-bomb watch continues on Fear the Walking Dead, currently airing on AMC Sundays at 9PM ET. The Walking Dead returns to the network on October 22, after its companion series completes its third season.