The Walking Dead actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan today said he wants to see Negan’s backstory adapted for the AMC television show. Negan’s backstory was first revealed in the standalone The Waking Dead comic book volume Here’s Negan. The events of that volume have yet to transpire in the show, likely because they would require a hefty amount of flashbacks to be done right. If the actor gets his way, though, that might be in the cards.
Morgan hinted at as much in an interview with Entertainment Weekly:
“I have to be careful because the writers have so much fun with Negan and his dialogue that I have to be very careful in kind of tampering that dialogue in places to keep it open to other interpretations, because everybody wants him to be this big bad but I just can’t play him like that. I refuse to, and there’s more to him than that. This year Gimple and I are on a mission to find him in there.
“And you know, I always am hoping that, at some point, we do a backstory episode for Negan, because it’s an amazing story. I don’t know that that’s going to happen this year, but we are going to see enough of him and he talks quite a bit, as you know. So he’s going to reveal some of himself to the audience this year, which is going to be awesome. It’s going to be fascinating. [pauses] Of course, he’s still going to be a big f—ing dick!”
In brief, Here's Negan revealed the character to be a high school gym teacher infatuated with gaining the respect of others. When Negan’s wife collapses, it’s revealed she has cancer. The zombie apocalypse starts while she is hospitalized. Negan, enrapt by the unfolding chaos outside, doesn’t realize his wife has turned and she attacks him. In time, Negan is forced to end the life of his zombified wife. He goes on to explore this strange, new apocalyptic world and eventually even discovers what would become his iconic baseball bat. He names it for his deceased wife – Lucille. The volume ends with him forming the Saviors.
Returning for its eighth season to AMC on Oct. 22, The Walking Dead is a production of Skybound Entertainment starring Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal, Sarah Wayne Callies, Laurie Holden, Jeffrey DeMunn, Steven Yeun, Chandler Riggs, Norman Reedus, Lauren Cohan, Danai Gurira, Michael Rooker, David Morrissey, Melissa McBride, Scott Wilson, Michael Cudlitz, Emily Kinney, Chad L. Coleman, Lennie James, Sonequa Martin-Green and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.